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When equipment was built to last

Discussion in 'Norton Commando Motorcycles (Classic)' started by comnoz, Aug 11, 2019.

  1. comnoz

    comnoz VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    I learned today that the boring bar I use on a daily basis is 100 years old this year.

    Storm Mfg., model A, number 259, built in 1919.

    It works at least as good as it did when it was new.

    It has a few updates like a variable speed drive for the quill and variable synchronous down feed along with pressure lubrication.

    P1020913.JPG
     
  2. Esmerela

    Esmerela VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2017
    Jim

    Sounds as original as Triggers broom;)

     
    mdt-son, cliffa, cash and 1 other person like this.
  3. Triton Thrasher

    Triton Thrasher

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2009
    My lathe is only 70 years old!
     
  4. acadian

    acadian VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2010
    Yup,

    Standard Modern 11" ship's lathe - made in Toronto Canada in 1952, it's still running on its original motor

    My grandpa's Beaver - Callander Foundry table and band saws, made mid - late 40's and still running strong on original motors (the table saw motor is as heavy as the bloody saw itself)

    Not to mention the myriad of mid-late 19th century hand planes and chisels I acquired during my time as an apprentice luthier, all still doing what they were made to do
     
  5. comnoz

    comnoz VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    When I got the old boring bar it was un-used military surplus. The cosmoline coating was so thick and dirty it was hard to tell what it was. The v-belt that was wired to the side of it was so hard it broke when I tried to straighten it out.
    I stashed the 1/3 hp, 50 lb, open frame motor and the downfeed geartrain and installed the speed control stuff along with a lube pump from a mill before I started using it.
    It has bored a lot of cylinders since then.
     
    nortriubuell likes this.
  6. oldmikew

    oldmikew

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2015
    1930s Snap on socket set.. used by my uncle as a fitter for a working life on the railways and by me since the 1970s.. still perfect.
     
  7. lazyeye6

    lazyeye6

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2014
    I've got full sets of 1930's 3/8 and 1/2" socket sets + ratchets. Made in USA..
    Thanks Dad! it is sad that our country has lost it's metal industrial prowess.
    Can't even learn the skills anymore. Who teaches anyone how to use a milling machine?
    Where can a machinist learn the trade? What schools actually teach how to read and
    convert inches to metrics? What's a micrometer?
     
    texasSlick likes this.
  8. acadian

    acadian VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2010
    My wife's family has run a tool & die outfit since the 50's, started by her gramps after the war (he was a tank mechanic)

    To this day they are ALWAYS looking for skilled machinists, but can't find them locally as the trade school grads are the pits, so they end up bringing in skilled machinists from Europe on temp work visas (mostly from Hungary for some reason)
     
  9. JimC

    JimC

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2007
    You want skilled machinists? Cashiers in the U.S. can’t even make change. They become befuddled when offered exact coinage and a bill. What few craftsmen left are denigrated and offered subsistence wages. The U.S. does lead in number of billionaires, though.
     
  10. jbruney

    jbruney

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2019
    Put a shaper in front of one of the new lads.
     
  11. Craig

    Craig VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2005
    And bankrupts ....,
     
    B+Bogus likes this.
  12. JimC

    JimC

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2007
    Surely you meant video game.
     
  13. texasSlick

    texasSlick VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2013
    In 1775, Adam Smith wrote that manufacturing was "the wealth of nations". Prior to WWII, Admiral Yamamoto warned his nation "the industrial power of the United States was awesome"!. How much we have forgotten and thrown away since post WWII !!

    Slick
     
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  14. 998cc

    998cc "Cheap" is rarely the least expensive. VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2018
    Great thread! My workbench vise belonged to my first wife's grandfather; it is a Prentiss #53 Bulldog from 1923/24. It was a rusty lump when it came to me, but it cleaned up very well. It was a welcome addition to my workbench and has served many projects very well. My grandkid(s) may well wind up with it on their workbench!

    ~998cc
     
  15. 998cc

    998cc "Cheap" is rarely the least expensive. VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2018
    That's better than a barn find! It makes one wonder how something that old went all those years unused and fully preserved. Anyway, it was a great acquisition that has obviously benefited many Nortons. :)

    ~998cc
     
    comnoz likes this.
  16. acadian

    acadian VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2010
    There's nothing like a solid bench vise, I've two from my grandad, one 8" stephens (1915) and one 10" richards (1918) that I recently restored, I run them parallel with stringers for shooting long boards
    IMG_3028.JPG IMG_3029.JPG

    Here's a complete Stanley #55 in the original box with all cutters... it's a bit of a hassle to set up but cuts beautifully
    IMG_3031.JPG
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2019
  17. Danno

    Danno

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2010
    Norton Motors could have used that boring bar rather than one that took a chunk of 2x4 jammed between the arbor and the upright.
     
    nortriubuell and Craig like this.
  18. comnoz

    comnoz VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    It was a quonset hut find.

    And it was a "find". The guy I got it from said "I know there's one back there somewhere. If you want it you have to find it." He could hardly get around.

    And my wife calls me a packrat. This was serious..there was 2 Indian motorcycles in there too, but we could never come to an agreement.
     
    nortriubuell and 998cc like this.
  19. worntorn

    worntorn

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2006
    1943 Monarch 18" swing tool room lathe.
    I feel privileged to operate it.
    76 years old and a treat to run.
    As with Jim's machine, it has some modern items fitted, a DRO, a quick change tool holder and a new 7.5 HP Baldor.

     
  20. comnoz

    comnoz VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    That looks really sweet. A privilege for sure!

    My only lathe is an old 13 inch Colchester that I have been trying to wear out for 40 years -and pretty much succeeded.
     

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