COLLECTION: Tools & Equipment

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Traversing mandrel lathe

ca. 1804
Origin: England, Hertfordshire, Bassingbourne
OL: 93"; OW: 42 3/4"; OH (to top of pulley): 54 3/4"
Oak, elm, mahogany, fruitwood, lignum vitae, iron/steel, and brass.
Purchased with funds given by Emil S. Pollak.
Acc. No. 1988-14
Treadle lathe with A-shaped trestles/legs at each end. Inlet into the trestles and supported by them is a 6' bed consisting of two bearers joined and spaced 1-1/2" apart by a large butterfly inlet into each end. The bed is secured to each trestle two bolts in a bed-bolt arrangement. The top surface of each bearer is V-shaped to form a prismatic seating for the popits. The outside side of each bearer is decorated with a horizontal fillet and an ovolo, below which the sides are rabbeted to receive the top rails of the drive assembly.

For further details, see object file.
Label:This elaborate homemade English lathe has a mechanism that allows it to cut screw threads on wood. Few of the large human-powered machines--lathes, looms, and various types of mills--made in the eighteenth century have survived.
Provenance:Roy Arnold, Suffolk, England; purchased by him from a second party who had, in turn, purchased the piece from the Walters family of Bassingbourne, Hertforshire.
Mark(s):Top of tailstock stamped twice "W.Walters" and "1804." Frame and popits stamped in several locations "W .W / B," and "W W."