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Emco DB-5 Wood Lathe
Emco Home Page

Although, over many years, Emco offered an interesting range of amateur and semi-professional wood-working machines - including the versatile the Emcostar, Emco-Rex and Emcostar- Super - they never offered much in the way of ordinary wood-turning lathes, only the DB-5 and DB-6 being built in any numbers. The more popular of the two was the DB-5, a compact, easily-handled lathe with its 0.75 h.p. motor driving, by an "A" section V-belt,  to an overhung 4-step headstock pulley. Although designed for economy of manufacture and of simple construction - with a bed formed from steel plate - the fully-enclosed, box-form headstock (holding a spindle running in sealed-for-life ball races) formed a particularly rigid and effective structure. With an 8-inch (200 mm) centre height, and 39 inches (1000 mm) between centres, its capacity was also a little more than usually offered in this class of machine and allowed a range of good-sized work to be tackled. However, one drawback to the design was that it precluded the fitting of an outboard turning attachment - though with its generous centre height it was still possible to turn reasonably-size bowls on an inboard faceplate.
Spindle speeds ranged from 600 through 1000, 1700 to 2700 r.p.m. with the nose a stout M33 thread to DIN 800. Happily the tailstock was fitted with a No. 2 Morse taper, the makers resisting the temptation - never understood by the writer but given in to by so many other makers - of fitting an inadequate Morse No. 1
Well finished in an attractive shade of green (RAL 6011 smooth) the Emco was an expensive proposition and sales must have been slow--few appearing on today's second-hand market. Although the lathe was available for bench mounting all appear to have been supplied - in the UK at least - mounted on the maker's legs with a set of adjustable, jointed and self-aligning feet.
Offered as an accessory was a simple but heavily-built, cast-iron framed, bolt-on copy attachment. Able to be mounted in line, or across the bed, the unit had a cutter head and profile follower that was moved by a steel wire loop driven by a large, hand-operated 3-spoke capstan wheel. Able to reproduce work up to 850 mm long and with a cut depth of 60 mm, the maximum diameter that could be achieved in the longitudinal position was 200 mm and in the cross position 400 mm.

Emco DB-5 on the maker's legs

Emco DB-5 Copy Attachment mounted in the longitudinal position

Emco DB-5 copy attachment in the traverse position

Emco DB-5 Copy attachment - outside view of the toolholder/profile follower

Emco DB-5 Copy attachment - inside view of the toolholder/profile follower