Hazdent Machine Tools - Birmingham
One among so many Birmingham manufacturers of machine tools and associated equipment, "Hazdent" was the trading name of Hazlewood & Dent Ltd. of Great Hamton Street and Barr Street, Birmingham 18.
Founded in 1885, the company survived, it is believed, until the 1980s, though by then their manufacturing business would have long been suspended. Their machine tools were, as far as is known, all concerned with metal spinning, pressing and forming - though they did advertise themselves as "Machine Tool Makers, General Engineers and Mill Furnishers". In addition, they also functioned as ironmongers - shown in the sepia-tinted photograph below taken at what must have been an open-air exhibition in the early 1900s. The address given on the banner differs slightly from the advertisement being "H&D Hazlewood & Dent Ironmongery & Tools, Corner of Great Hamptons St & Vyse St, Birmingham Estb 1885".
Only one of Hazdent's large spinning lathes is known to have survived and is shown below in its as-found state and during a rebuild. It appears to be a smaller version of the type in the centre of the advert shown below. Like the better-known Taylor spinning lathes, this was a high-quality, industrial-class product, heavily built and weighing around 1650 lbs (750 kg), the lathe has its headstock and bed cast in one piece - the lower section of the headstock-end plinth and the tailstock-end foot being bolted on. The centre height is 12.5", a common figure for spinning lathes that allows discs up to 2 feet in diameter to be spun. The headstock bearings are very heavy-duty, plain bronze types, 3 inches in diameter and 2 inches wide with oil thrower rings, and two small inspection cups at the front to check the oil level. Thrust is taken against a large ball race and the spindle - as on so many genuine spinning lathes that were not intended for general use - is solid without a Morse taper socket.
Power comes from a 3-speed, 3 h.p. 6-pole (950 r.p.m.) 3-phase motor. Initial drive is by three B-section V-belts and then to a 2.75" flat belt to drive the spindle. The lower level V-belt countershaft runs in a pair of double-row. Self-aligning SKF ball bearings. Changing the belt speed is a bit cumbersome and involves opening the cast-iron door, lifting off the top cover, loosening two bolts, moving the belt and re-tightening.
Weighing over 100 lbs (45) - and not easy to move along the bed - the tailstock has a spindle with 10 inches of travel, a 3-Morse taper socket with self-eject for the centre..
Currently used as a large wood lathe, it runs very smoothly with no vibration at all, even when turning large, off-centre blanks and this is without the lathe being bolted down. At some point, the spindle bearings have been run dry and are lightly scored but, as I not normally do not run it above 1200 r.p.m. all seems well.
The owner reports that, had he known the rarity of the machine, he would have retained the original motor and finish - but with a new motor and fresh paint it has a renewed new lease of life and will almost certainly outlast him. A few faults are apparent, including a tailstock is not on centre - and a difficult thing to correct - but as he tends to turn just large oak bowls without tailstock support, this is not a problem.
If you know more about the company and their products, have a Hazdent machine tool or any advertisements or literature about them, the writer would be pleased to hear from you..