Moving a Lathe

Gentlemen; I just purchased a used South Bend Heavy 10 lathe, now I have the problem of how to get it home. It is located about a 4 hour drive away, so
to save some money I would like to go and get it myself. I have a suv that can tow a trailer; so I could rent a trailer or rent a small truck. I have a 2 ton engine hoist at my end to unload it and there won't be any problem getting it loaded at the source. Does anyone have any recommendations for a type of trailer or truck to rent? Thanks...Mike
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Some questions:
What kind of truck are you going using?
Will it be a rental U drive or a moving company?
Flat bed or box van?
You said you had no lifting devices, often these can be rented. You might also put them on a small trailer, and bring them to a place where they have forklifts, Often some guy making $8 an hour will jump at the chance to make a quick $20 and find a Six Pack on the seat of his pick-up after work.
-- Roger Shoaf If you are not part of the solution, you are not dissolved in the solvent.

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When I purchased my Habegger, I removed the headtstock, bed and tailstock. I also removed the motor and the drawer for the cabinet. I was able to horse everything around by myself (down an airway into the basement). While the Logan is larger, this might be the safest and easiest way under the circumstances you describe.
Besides, it gives you the opportunity to spruce it up before you reinstall it.
Also, believe it or not it may be least expensive and safest to ship it via Amtrak. Crate and skid the parts. I once shipped a 150 lb watch cleaning machine from Baltimore to Chicago for $28; and it got there the next day. They even provided the plastic wrap. I also shipped a 100 lb timeclock to Boston. Both arrived in excellent condition.
You just have to arrange pickup and delivery from the station and Amtrak will even help with that.
--
Regards,
Dewey Clark http://www.historictimekeepers.com
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too_many snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com says...

Dismantle into smaller chunks so that two individuals can carry each chunk easily. I've moved more large stuff that way.
Jim
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You may need a heavy tree limb or beam and a chain fall to raise at least one end of your machine to load single-handedly. Perhaps some sort of ramp would work if it is a cabinet-style machine. You didn't specify whether truck or trailer would be used this time but if the lathe has cast iron legs and you load it onto a truck you can make short work of the job by unbolting the headstock-end legs first and just slide the machine and chip pan onto the truck bed and then remove the other leg set and slide the remainder on. You can support the motor/countershaft assembly or better yet, remove that first since the connection is very brittle. Perhaps a bit off topic, but I was surprised how the harmonics generated by varying road surfaces can loosen bolts, nuts, etc which aren't "properly" torqued over the long haul. Almost lost my Cincinnati Toolmaster's vertical head and the main control panel literally fell off a 15x42 lathe I was hauling x-country which pulled a bunch of wires out as it went. These are good sized machines but no matter, I'd make sure any loose accessories are well packed away and you frequently check your tie-downs or binders and "loosening" heavy parts. Have a safe trip and watch your back. Uncle Lucky
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I just bought a lathe of similar size. It was delivered 300 miles. The lathe was moved in the back of a pickup truck. It was positioned with the head towards the cab and the tail towards the rear. It was bolted to boards as wide as the truck bed and double nutted. Other boards were cut to length and positioned between the tailgate and the cross boards to prevent it from moving backwards. It was unloaded with a strap around the bed hooked to a hoist. AFter it was lifted up, the truck was driven out from under it.
It went very smooth... Rocky (rockwell 11x24) is setting in my garage... chuck
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On 30 Jul 2003 08:36:34 -0700, too_many snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (Too_Many_Tools) wrote:

Lag bolt it to Skids (4X6s work well) if you can't bolt them on very far apart then bolt the lathe down to crosspieces about 4 feet wide then lag bolt them down to the Skids. If you get the skids wide enough you don't really have to worry about the top heavy problem so much. Buy, rent, or borrow a car trailer or (less ahndy, but nicer for moving) horse trailer (they do ride lower, makes for easier loading). Get several wooden posts of about 4" diameter, they make good rollers and are large enough to roll over small irregularities. Have some blocks and planks handy to use as ramps and you can pull the lathe anywhere with a good come-along and a pile of log chains. It takes a long time, but you can move about anyting like this if you are careful and think thring through. Always keep a log chain tied to the lathe with a few feet of slack when moving it, that will save you from having any runaways. It is easier than you'd think to be paying attention to a roller and not notice that the whole thing has started rolling downhill. :)
If you jack up the back bumper of your vehicle the trailer will teeter totter into a ramp, kinda, anyway, the back will go down, support it there with blocks and set your ramps and just winch it on. You can move it all by yourself, no heavy lifting, and you don't have to disassemble it. I have a few pictures of me moving a 19" LeBlond lathe this way on a sidehill an up into a building. You can see them at http://www.metalworking.com/DropBox/_2002_retired_files /
look under Movingthings01.jpg and on up.
Don't let it intimidate you, remember the egyptians moved big giant blocks of stone with ropes and wooden levers. With sufficient mechanical advantage and time you can move anything.
Dave
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Be extra careful because lathes are way more top heavy than you would think I found this out the hard way by tipping one in my driveway when a cat. type roller slipped out. If you even think your two ton hoist is marginal, have a wrecker take it off the trailer for you. A machine rigger can easily cost $500.00 where a wrecker does a nice job for around $50.00.
Dixon
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Mike DeAngelis wrote:

If you have the boom on your hoist extended all the way out, just keep in mind it will no longer be capable of 2 tons. Hate to see accidents happen.
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type of trailer or truck to rent?< A short open trailer would be my suggestion. If you can load the heavy end toward the rear that is usually best. When you fasten it to prevent tipping and sliding some of those ratcheting straps might be a good idea. Then, when you get home, hook-up and make your lift, and then make sure, by pushing downward on the lathe, that it's not going to overbalance, and then pull the truck/trailer out and lower the lathe straight down to the ground. On the ground you may find you can not move with the hoist. In this case you should have the machine skidded for moving on rollers (1" OD pipe would be good). In fact adding a couple of 2X4 cross pieces and a couple of runners before you load on the trailer would be a good idea, if possible. Just remember not to skid it too long or wide as this may prevent your getting in close enough with the hoist and/or finding you can't set it down because it comes down on the legs of the hoist. When you get it where it's going to sit you use the hoist to lift and remove the rollers and skids. What ever way you do it, tie it down well on the trailer and, when unloading, make sure everyone stays clear and understands they need to listen to you. The natural instinct of the average person, if something starts to tip or otherwise go wrong, is to jump in to "catch" the item. This is what can get you killed. Be careful.
dennis in nca
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Heavy end to the rear? I would disagree with this as you want to have a load on a trailer loaded almost balanced with a slight bias to the front of the trailer to maintain some weight on the hitch.
You can acheive a little adjustment of the weight by adjusting the carriage.
Be sure to get good straps and binders to secure the lathe to the trailer.
--

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Roger Shoaf

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load on a trailer loaded almost balanced with a slight bias to the front of the trailer to maintain some weight on the hitch.<
Hi Roger, If you'll notice I said "heavy end to the rear" but I did not say "weight toward the rear of the trailer". The reason for this is because when unloading a lathe, or some other, longer, off center load (where the weight is not centered), when picking from the end, you always want to get the heavy part toward you. That way the long part doesn't bump against your mast/lifting device. Naturally you'll want to have some weight on the hitch and if your trailer is extremely short it MAY be necessary to put the headstock toward the front, although on this small of a machine, I doubt this will be necessary. I must apoligize. After working 13 years as a machinery mover and moving many thousands of machines, I incorrectly take too many things for granted when talking with others who may have less experience. I should spend a little more time in description. Mia culpa (which I think means "my bad"). I should know by now not to ASSume.
dennis in nca
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Someone should jump in but IIRC the SB HD 10 is about 600 pounds or so???
Bolt it down to a pair of 2x12's about 6 feet long. Or better yet, 4' 2x12 crosswise to a pair of 6' long 4x4's with beveled ends. You can do this before you load it on your vehicle. Makes securing it much easier also.
My local rental place has some low bend utility trailers, about $30 a day. Steel beds, steel sides. Either skid the lathe up using a 2x12 x8' or hoist it up. Only needs to come up 24" or so. Pickup can handle the load but very high lift.
Be very careful when hoisting. The center of gravity is right near the center of the bed. If you sling it below that, it can just flip over. Adding the skid base helps there.
The other choice is to dissemble it into mangeable pieces. My Logan 10x24 dissembled into motor and drive, legs, tailstock, covers, and the headstock/compound/bed. Biggest piece was 210 pounds. My Fray mill (900 pounds) comes apart enough so the biggest piece is the base at 400 or so (and no longer top heavy)
Mike DeAngelis wrote:

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This is how my 10L came home, it took a one hour ride in a friend's home-made race car trailer.
Sobel had spiked it to two 4X4s, with bevelled ends. He forked it onto the trailer, and when we got home we tilted the trailer up and gently slid it off onto the ground. From there I disassembled it into bite-sized chunks and brought it down to my basement shop.
If this IS by any chance a cast-iron pedestal base unit, watch out.
The base is far and away the single heaviest part that cannot be lightened any further. Any other piece of a 10L can be carried by one man, or two if it's the bed.
Jim
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call all the local rental places and get a hydraulic drop deck trailer , the entire deck will drop to ground level letting you roll the lathe up on it either on dollies or skates , which you can rent too
I made some dollies for moving my lathe , a 1945 monarch 18x 54 , it worked really well , email me I will send you some pictures of moving the lathe
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On Sun, 13 Nov 2005 11:52:14 -0600, "williamhenry"

Its only a 600-800 lb lathe.......

Much different lathe <G>
gunner
"Pax Americana is a philosophy. Hardly an empire. Making sure other people play nice and dont kill each other (and us) off in job lots is hardly empire building, particularly when you give them self determination under "play nice" rules.
Think of it as having your older brother knock the shit out of you for torturing the cat." Gunner
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The drop deck trailer is really nice. I've used them on many occasions. The local rental place here has a 2,000 capacity trailer with a manual (crank) lift. The deck appears to be about 1/4" thick so that's how close to the ground it will go.
Just roll the tool on, crank it up, tie it down and off you go. The rental is something like $20.00 a day.
Someone suggested bolting the lathe to a couple of 2X's which is what I always do. I will then run a couple of 4X's in the cross direction so that I can move it with a pallet jack.
A Johnson bar comes in handy to lift the lathe and slip the 2X's and 4X's underneath. Use a small sledge to position them.
As for the engine hoist, it is certainly strong enough but I find that the position of the legs on the host is usually a problem. If you can slip the hoist endwise on the lathe, then that might save you time and effort but those support legs are often too close for that to work.
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10L's are nice and light, maybe 800 lbs total. If you don't mind disassembling, then you can load the pieces into a regular pickup truck and off you go- 2 people who don't mind a bit of exercise can do it easily. The pedestal base is marginally easier in this case since it doesn't take up as much room as the cabinet. You'll only need assorted wrenches & screwdrivers, a socket set, some allen wrenches, a couple buckets for bolts & gears etc, baggies for the little bits- maybe a camera to help you remember where stuff goes. 10L's come apart very nicely, nothing magic about it and there are no critical adjustments to worry about- the headstock has a locating peg and is held in place with a couple plates that bolt up into it from beneath the ways. The nylon tie-straps w/ the friction catch are great for tying stuff down once its loaded. If you do disassemble, take off the headstock & remove the carriage. Leave the gearbox in place, but do put the leadscrew support back on once the carriage is off- you really don't want to have that leadscrew hanging out just inviting something to smash into it. The feed collar on the backside of the apron has a funky hook shaped key that will come out once the leadscrew is removed, fetch it and stash it w/ the other small parts- very easy to lose that!
- if your machine has the pedestal base and you're disassembling, be very careful when removing the bed. It tends to require a shove to unseat, and when it comes loose it will try to tumble off the pedestal- be ready for it.
For loading/unloading the assembled machine, if you can back your vehicle into a garage or equiv w/ enough vertical clearance, you might consider putting a 10' 4x4 up on the rafters to distribute the weight, then hoisting from that- though you should be confident about the state of the rafters before trying it, and don't skimp by putting a eyebolt up into 1 rafter, you really need to distribute the weight.... A comealong works but is annoying with weight on it, a 2 ton or so chain hoist from harbor fright will do the job a bit more easily. The usual rig is to lay the nylon towstrap (>= 5000 lb stuff) across the bed up near the headstock, then bring both ends under and up between the ways and up to the hook. If the strap is long enough, maybe you'll have to double it so its not too long. Lift till the lathe starts to shift, then move the carriage and tailstock around until the whole thing balances, maybe also shift the strap if needed, then lock down both. Obviously, remove chucks, cutting tools, toolpost, etc.. If you use a chain hoist, don't let the chain fall batter the lathe, put a piece of old carpet over it, or suspend a bucket beneath the hoist and let the slack chain feed in & out of that. *** Take great care that you and any help DO NOT have any body parts beneath the machine at any time its up in the air ***
I've done 1500 lb machines this way, but I think thats about the most I'd care to do with the 4x4 in the rafters trick.
But no matter how you move the machine, do take the back off the apron at some point and make sure its clean in there. Its supposed to provide an oil bath for the apron gears but is usually clogged with dirt and chips and solidified oil. One nice thing about disassembling for the move is you can clean & check for worn/busted parts as you reassemble.
And be careful!
Regards,
Greg
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I second the dissassembly method. I picked up two Logan 11x24 lathes with cabinet bases and just needed a little help with the bed and jackshaft cabinet - maybe 150lbs each. If it is like most used lathes you will want it apart anyway for a good cleaning and maybe some paint. Assembled, the lathes are 860lbs but I appreciated the reasonable weight components.
If you can, get familiar with the lathe first - manual or visit a local machine to learn what to do. Mike gave you a great start. Bring lots of tools and take your time. Steve
Greg Menke wrote:

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first, make a trailer. this is the metalworking forum, right?
800 pounds means pretty much any trailer will work. snowmobile trailer, landscape trailer, atv trailer, heck even one of those harbor freight things.
a crow bar will pick up one end. bring some 2x4 chunks and you get the one end up to pretty much any height you want.
two football players can pick up one end if they are careful, 4 guys can't really carry it anywhere though.
Like the man said, have a discussion with everyone involved that if it starts to fall over, stand back and watch. No need to sacrifice body parts.
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