Drummond B type recommisioning help and advice

  1. Mike Pinches Member

    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    North Wales
    I have recently acquired a Drummond B type lathe, made in 1920 from the serial number. It is in need of a fair amount of work to get it to a standard I am happy with, but thought that recommissioning an old lathe would give me a better understanding of lathes than just buying a small lathe from China. I haven't actually used a lathe since in school 20 years ago, and that was only facing a couple of bits of bar.
    Eventually I'm hoping to use to make a few bits for my motorbikes as well as a few tools etc.

    I haven't had much time to look in depth at the lathe or take anything apart but I have so far found that there is a fair amount of backlash (I think that's the right term) in all the feeds ie they require between 1/8 -1/4 of a turn of the hand wheel when changing direction before any movement of the cross slide or carriage.

    There is also a fair amount of rust, though none of it looks too bad. My plan is to dip everything in citric acid to clean it all up. Hopefully this should be fairly gentle an a decent method for removing the rust?

    I am not happy with the current motor set up as it is direct drive. I am looking to build a new stand for the lathe to sit on, which is narrower than the current set up to save space in the crowded garage. In to this bench I would like to include a countershaft arrangement. If anyone has any suggestions for making a bench with countershaft or photos on good setups it would be appreciated in helping to design mine.

    Eventually I would like to add some form of basic DRO as pretty much everything I will be making will be metric and this will save on having to do conversions. It should also help if I can't remove most of the backlash I think.

    Here are a few photos to give everyone a better idea of the condition. IMG_20190911_185123.jpg IMG_20190912_113949.jpg IMG_20191114_192125.jpg IMG_20191114_192155.jpg IMG_20191114_192210.jpg
     
  2. eLuSiVeMiTe

    eLuSiVeMiTe Member

    Messages:
    12,124
    Location:
    Bedfordshire England
    Nice project
    I can confirm rebuilding a lathe teaches you a lot.

    With regards to backlash there is often some adjustments in the nut normally a split with some method of forcing it slightly apart so the thread bares on both sides.

    Alternatively it could be worn.

    Do want a dro on my mill but haven't found the need on my lathes. I use a DTI with a magnetic base agaisnt the apron or slide to move the tool accurately.

    Lots of pictures please.
    They will also help a lot when you rebuild it
     
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  3. Mike Pinches Member

    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    North Wales
    Thanks for that. I will investigate whether there is adjustment in the nuts, hopefully there is as that would be easier than trying to find new replacements to remove the backlash.
    I hadn't thought of using a dial indicator, well worth considering as I all ready have a couple.
    Hopefully I will get to start stripping it down soon, just trying to get a motorbike finished and out the way first.
     
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  4. Mike Pinches Member

    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    North Wales
    I've not had much chance to get into the garage to make a start on either the bike or the lathe, but had to nip out this evening to grab some tools to fit a new washing machine. Whilst I was in there I couldn't help but start taking the lathe apart.
    I decided to start with the compound slide as I had noticed there was a tight spot when turning the handle and was worried it was either the internal threads in the slide or the screw itself that was damaged. Having stripped it all down it appears that the tight spot was caused by a slight misalignment between the dogged spacer (not really sure what to call it) and the body of the cross slide. Unfortunately the first couple of threads in the main body have broken off at some point.
    Before disassembly I was thinking I may have to replace the cross slide, possibly adapting a myford one as they seem easier to find, or possibly making a new one incorporating a Norman Patent tool post. I still might do this as an interesting project once the lathe is back together.
    Anyway here are a few picture of it being taken apart and a very quick wipe over with WD40.

    IMG_20191127_190909.jpg IMG_20191127_191252.jpg IMG_20191127_192106.jpg IMG_20191127_192217.jpg IMG_20191127_192545.jpg
     
  5. Hopefuldave Intergalactic pot-mender

    Messages:
    1,656
    Location:
    The Shed of Danger, surrey, England
    Re backlash, all machines will have some, some have a lot... As long as you always put cuts on in the same direction (i.e. backing out a full turn first if you need to) you'll be OK, it's something you get used to - whether you have a DRO or not, always load the moving slide in the same way, against the forces you'll get from the cut (so e.g, outside diameters always wind in towards the work, inside diameters when boring outwards into the work).
    My first lathe had a huge amount, got used to it and could turn out accurate (for certain values of accurate on a knobbed 1940s cheapo with worn ways) work with practice.
    I like electrolysis for rust removal, doesn't remove / etch the good metal (I've found citric acid does a little), if you need to do it to bits that won't fit in a manageable tank you can use the thin sponge kitchen wipes or similar soaked in the soda solution with the +ve anode laid on top. Or dig a pit and put DPC or pond liner in it... PLEASE don't be tempted to use stainless for the anode, the solution goes yellow from hexavalent chromium salts, very VERY nasty stuff and officially hazardous waste! I skipdived some graphite blocks and they work really well!

    Dave H. (the other one)
     
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  6. Mike Pinches Member

    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    North Wales
    Thanks for the advice. I will look more into electrolysis, I'm not set up to do it at the moment but could be worth it to avoid etching into the metal. As for a tank I think even the bed will fit in the bin I have in the garage so was going to use that.

    I've had a bit more of an investigation into why there was a tightspot when turning the handle. It turns out the threads for the handle are cross threaded and heavily worn, and it looks like the handle end of the lead screw may be slightly bent. I will put it in the chuck and check it with a dial gauge when I get home.
    Does anyone have any suggestions for either straightening the leadscrew, or where I may find a replacement as drummond use a square cut thread which is differant to an acme thread I believe.
    IMG_20191129_084523.jpg
     
  7. zx9

    zx9 Member

    Messages:
    4,046
    Location:
    South East London
    There is a lot of info here https://groups.io/g/drummondlathe which is the newly migrated Drummond Yahoo group. The files section is much more searchable than it was under Yahoo :thumbup:. You could have a new one made / make a new one which is something I will need to do for my Drummond M or there are drawings on the site for conversion to the Myford screws using new Myford parts including the matching Myford nuts and adding needle bearings to the front casting.
     
  8. Kram

    Kram Member

    Messages:
    1,431
    Location:
    Sussex
    I use the cross slide from one as a vertical milling attachment on a slightly bigger chinese lathe.
    Im half way through modifying it to be upside down, after which I will no longer need the original screw (the nut is directly threaded in the casting and will be at the wrong end). Im not sure when I will get it finished tho..

    Ignore that, your after the compound screw... Unless they are the same thread?
     
  9. Mike Pinches Member

    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    North Wales
    Thanks for that. I had feared that all the information on the yahoo groups had been lost when they go rid of the groups. Every time I searched for anything to do with a Drummond lathe someone always suggested the yahoo group. I never got round to registering so though I had missed the opportunity. Will go and register on the new site now. Thanks.

    I'm not sure if they are the same thread or not as I've not taken the cross slide apart yet. Hopefully I will get to do that soon. If you are not needing the screw could I ask for it anyway when you are done? It is getting harder to find parts for these old lathes so having a pare would be useful, or necessary as I haven't seen the condition of mine yet, or it may be modifiable to fit the compound slide. There would be no rush, I have a lot of projects on the go and not much time. Cheers
     
  10. Mike Pinches Member

    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    North Wales
    Today didn't go entirely to plan. I decided to remove the chuck and spindle to start cleaning up the headstock. I had been soaking the chuck in penetrating oil for the last week as I guessed it was probably going to be well seized on, and I had spotted that the bull gear had a crack in it all ready where the grub screw secured it to the spindle. Despite by best efforts using the old belt on the pulleys the chuck wouldn't budge, and unfortunately the crack in the bull gear fractured a piece off. In hindsight I should have done what I have now and stripped the spindle out with the chuck still attached and it is now sat in a bath of oil to be looked at some time in the future.
    There is some slight wear in the spindle, not measured yet, but the bearings seem to be in good condition with no scoring and there should be enough room to take up the wear on the spindle.
    With the now broken bull gear I think I have 4 options.
    1) try to build up the broken section with weld, not easy as I believe it is cast iron
    2) get a new one made, either cast if I can find a suitable blank, or from steel/aluminium depending on what would be most appropriate.
    3) machine the broken section flush, then have a spacer turned that is the same thickness, then drill through the bull gear at 90 degree intervals and bolt the spacer in place.
    4) Try and find someone with a spare they are willing to sell

    If anyone has any suggestions as to what the best option would be, or any other ideas please let me know. Half considered buying a mill (have seen a nice small horizontal) and trying to cut the gear myself, but currently struggling for space and projects as it is. Would like to add a mill at some point though.

    20191229_170431.jpg IMG_20191229_122521.jpg
     
  11. eLuSiVeMiTe

    eLuSiVeMiTe Member

    Messages:
    12,124
    Location:
    Bedfordshire England
    Machine the boss off. Machine s new boss slightly bigger and fix it to the gear with tapped holes in the gear would be my method I think
     
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  12. Kram

    Kram Member

    Messages:
    1,431
    Location:
    Sussex
    Bore it out and press fit a new centre.
    Suprised it cracked there, normally they loose teeth.
     
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  13. Mike Pinches Member

    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    North Wales
    I had read about people breaking teeth off but never a crack through there as well. Not sure if it is standard or has been modified over the last 100 years. Need to try and find a drawing of an original spindle with how the pulleys and gears attach. To me it seems like the 5/16 grub screw securing the bull gear to the spindle is too large for the boss it went through as it only left 1mm or so of material on the outside.
    I have a feeling the lathe has had a hard life, but will get it sorted as good as I can. Will certainly be good enough when finished to start learning.
     
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  14. Pete.

    Pete. Member

    Messages:
    9,427
    Location:
    Kent, UK
    There's no keyway in that bull gear so yes it's the original retainer IMO. It has to be big enough not to shear from turning forces but clearly that's weakened the casting.

    To repair it I would turn the boss off, bore the gear and turn a recess in the side to accept a steel boss with a flange. Not a difficult repair just a bit of work. Forget finding any drawings, you're going to have to measure and copy.
     
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  15. slim_boy_fat

    slim_boy_fat Forum Supporter

    With the bonus that in getting it to the useable state, you're learning stuff too. :thumbup:
     
  16. zx9

    zx9 Member

    Messages:
    4,046
    Location:
    South East London
    "Yer but No but" the difficulty is needing a working lathe to fix the broken lathe. :(
    ( Which is another reason that one lathe is never enough lathes)
     
  17. eLuSiVeMiTe

    eLuSiVeMiTe Member

    Messages:
    12,124
    Location:
    Bedfordshire England
    It's the reason I'm on lathe no3.
    Bought no2 to fix no1.
    Sold no1 working but unfixed.
    Bought no 3 for spares for no 2
    Kept no 3 as I couldnt bare breaking for part's
     
  18. Spark plug

    Spark plug Member

    Messages:
    3,633
    Location:
    Durham, England
    Similarly, how was the first lathe made? How do you make a lathe without a lathe to make a lathe :whistle:
     
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  19. eLuSiVeMiTe

    eLuSiVeMiTe Member

    Messages:
    12,124
    Location:
    Bedfordshire England
    Making a lathe isn't hard.
    Making it accurate is.

    Each generation had big increases in accuracy.

    Watched a video on the subject earlier this year. Will see if I can find it
     
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  20. zx9

    zx9 Member

    Messages:
    4,046
    Location:
    South East London
    I suspect you build several, each more capable than the last this may take a while.
     
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