email: tony@lathes.co.uk
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Schuchardt & Schütte
German Machine-tool Agents
& Manufacturers


At one time a leading importer and distributor of machine tools in Germany, in 1898 Schuchard & Schütte had the biggest store in the country, an impressive building in the centre of Berlin, with additional outlets in Brüssel and Wien. Wanting to sell only first-class products, most of the larger machines were imported from America, then the leading maker of such items, though with many of the smaller coming from Germany.
One of the reasons for the popularity of American-made machine tools was a decision by the German Government in the early 1870s to produce a new small firearm, the "Infanteriegewehr 1871" of  Mauser design. At the time, as the Americans had already discovered, mass production and interchangeable parts were both at odds with established hand-crafted methods and it was impossibly slow and expensive to produce the thousands of complex weapons needed. Asked for help, Pratt & Whitney solved the problem and, using proven American methods and the necessary machinery, established three German State armoury plants, one at Danzig and the others at Spandau and Erfurt. As a direct result, German gun-parts suppliers were expected to adopt the same machinery and methods and the reputation of US machine tools was established. Naturally, it was not long before copies were being made and improvements incorporated. (Source -
Karl Heinz Momertz- Bohren, Drehen und Fräsen ;Pratt & Whittney Company History)
Schuchard & Schütte also had representation in the UK and held the selling rights in Germany, Austria and Russia for the well-known and highly respected American Hendey Company A translation from one of their catalogues reads:
These lathes are the result of the American spirit of invention. Schuchardt & Schütte owns the exclusive selling license for the original Hendey/Norton lathes .
As this type of lathe is very famous it therefore not unsurprising that German and European manufacturers have copied them. The copied lathes are promoted and sold as "System Norton" machines but the real the manufacturing company of the original lathe is the Hendey Machine Company, Torrington, Connecticut.
(Source - Loß, Handbuch der Dreherei)
After 1918, and the terrible inflation that gripped Germany, American machines became too expensive - and local makers took over, their big models now equalling the quality of imported ones.
In 1912 Mr. Schütte left S&S and opened a separate shop, first in Berlin and later a second in Köln. By the late 1920s, and under pressure from other successful agents including Hahn & Kolb, Schütte and Krause (from Wien,) S & S shrank in size - with their last catalogue though to have been published in 1929.
It is believed that production of their own-brand lathes begin in 1915, during WW1 when demand would have been high. Still run as a family firm, in the early years of the 21st century the managing partner is Carl Martin Welcker, the founder's great-grandson. Now well known for their multi-spindle automatics and 5-axis CNC grinding machines, previous decades saw the production of tool and cutter grinders (for which the Company has long been famous),  multi-spindle automatic and a range of conventional backgeared and screwcutting lathes such as the one below. Pictured towards the bottom of the page is a typical Schuchard & Schütte lathe from the 1930s.
If any reader has a Schuchardt & Schutte machine tool, the writer would be interested to hear from you.
Wenn ein Leser hat eine Schuchardt & Schütte Werkzeugmaschinen, würde der Schriftsteller interessiert sein, von Ihnen zu hören.

Schuchardt & Schütte's magnificent Berlin store in 1898

Unloading: a 3-ton American Gisholt turret lathe being lifted from a cart pulled by two horses and, to the right, a similar weight of planer and milling machine

A group of American Prentice Brothers lathes, the one on the right in the foreground with its distinctive quick-change screwcutting and feeds gearbox designed by Albert E. Newton

Horizontal milling machines.  Note the small machine on the plinth to the right.
The machine in the foreground to the right is probably a gear hobber, with the hob driven though universal joints from the remote, floor-standing pulley set to the right.

Inspection and measuring equipment, chucks, files, saws, tap & die holders, etc. and, in the mid-ground, an American Rivett "8-inch Precision" lathe

On the left an unusual and very versatile radial-arm drill of the "Universal" type where not only is the arm is able to be rotated about its long axis by use of a worm-and-wheel gearing (so enabling the spindle to drill at an angle) but the spindle housing can be turned as well (the make of machine is unknown). In the centre of the room two treble-backgeared lathes.

Manoeuvring a lathe into position with, behind, a Gray planer from the USA

Thought to be the former dining room in the house of Herr Tickler, an eccentric collector of machine tool accessories. His wife divorced him shortly after he'd replace pictures of their children with ones of his favourite machine tools

A Hendy as advertised in a Schuchard & Schütte catalogue. A translation reads:
"Hendey-Norton" lathe
Thse lathes are the result of the American spirit of invention. Schuchardt & Schütte owns the exclusive selling license for the original Hendey/Norton lathes .
As this type of lathe is very famous it therefore not unsurprising that German and European manufacturers have copied them. The copied lathes are promoted and sold as "System Norton" machines but the real the manufacturing company of the original lathe is the Hendey Machine Company, Torrington, Connecticut. (Source -
Loß, Handbuch der Dreherei)
(
Norton referred to the design of the screwcutting and feeds gearbox)

Founded in 1880 by Alfred H. Schütte, Schuchard & Schutte began life an importers before moving to machine-tool production in 1915. Still run as a family firm, in the early years of the 21st century the managing partner is Carl Martin Welcker, the founder's great-grandson. Now well known for their multi-spindle automatics and 5-axis CNC grinding machines, previous decades saw the production of tool and cutter grinders (for which the Company has long been famous),  multi-spindle automatic and a range of conventional backgeared and screwcutting lathes such as the one below. Looking like a typical design from the 1930s, the gap-bed machine has a centre height of around 7-inches and 30 inches between centres. Heavily built and fitted with a screwcutting gearbox, the sliding and surfacing feeds are driven from a separate power shaft. The carriage assembly is particularly massive - particularly the apron, fitted with a positive, quick-action power-feed engagement mechanism. From the general appearance it is likely that a geared-head version of the lathe was also made.
If any reader has a Schuchardt & Schutte machine tool, the writer would be interested to hear from them.

email: tony@lathes.co.uk
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Schuchardt & Schütte
German Machine-tool Agents
& Manufacturers