Delta/Rockwell 12" Heavy Duty Lathe (Summer 1998):
Is vintage lathe came out of the middle school I took shop in 20 odd years before. It was painted standard issue green (why shop teachers let students paint machine in the first place let alone green I'll never know). The lathe was dismantled and sand blasted by a local bridge painter, who also primed it with a red oxide heavy duty industrial primer. The head stock is not original as the shop teacher would also exchange them rather then replacing the bearings. It is running the original 3/4 hp motor and has a aftermarket shield that was available through Delta of a more recent vintage. The bearings were good so restoration was mainly a repaint/rebuild. After everything was back together I found a used upper index pulley. The students also liked pushing in the index lever and clicking the pulley, thus wearing out the indexing slots. Next bearing service I'll swap pulleys. The last modification is the switch. I have the original without the locking cover, but the years and paint were not kind, so it was about shot. The replacement is a new variety push button. The lathe uses the older style worm gear speed adjustment, while slower to change speeds than the newer cable systems, it is very smooth and heavy. Overall this was a fun project, the lathe was in good shape went purchased, so no major expenses or overalls were necessary.
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