Select and David Page 2 Other South Bend 9-inch Clones
Manufactured in Taiwan by the Lin Huan Machine Tool Company and branded using various names (including "David") for sale in export markets, the "Select" was yet another development of the South Bend 9-inch. In the USA from, 1977 to 1979, Live Steam Magazine carried bi-monthly advertisements from the Maxcraft Division of Basic Machine Tools extolling the virtues of the lathe and listing a number of models and on-going modifications to the specification. In addition to the lathes, a number of typically Taiwanese milling machines were also listed while the complete headstock of the Select (with it's neatly-enclosed, V-belt countershaft assembly) bears a strong resemblance to those also used on other Select-branded models, the widely-distributed 1320BH and 1320GH.
Typical details also found on contemporary Taiwanese machine tools were the type of knurling used on the tailstock and screwcutting gearbox levers, the shape of the handles used on the carriage, cross-slide and top-slide feed - and even the texture of the major castings. Although information suggests that most parts are not interchangeable with the original American machine, the complete carriage assembly was certainly styled along very similar lines with the cross and top slides appearing to be identical. Instead of the original rather soft South Bend bed, that on the Select was hardened and, significantly, replacing the slow and rather awkward-to-use wind-in-and-out star wheel power-feed engagement on the apron was an instant-engage lever that allowed the feeds to be snapped into and out of mesh. Unfortunately the drawback to this modification was that it removed the original apron-mounted worm-and-wheel reduction gearing and so lost the extra-fine rates of sliding feed, only power cross feed enjoying this facility - at 1/3 the leadscrew-driven longitudinal rate. However, a later version of the lathe (illustrated below in an advertisement) had a modified apron together with a separate power shaft to drive the sliding and surfacing feeds and its likely that this model, though not confirmed, would have had a far more useful and complete range of feed rates
Constructed with bed, feet and chip tray cast as-one (and originally supplied on a pair of stout, cast-iron legs) the Select was very heavily built, though the lack of capacity between centres - most 9-inch South Bend lathes offered rather more - must have hindered its appeal. With its rigid, box-like construction and taper roller-bearing supported spindle, the headstock would appear to have been an improvement on the original - unfortunately the designer unaccountably chose to use the earliest form of 9-inch tumble-reverse mechanism, one that required a bolt to be slackened before the leadscrew drive could be put into neutral or reversed. 12 spindle speeds were provided, from a rather fast bottom speed of 90 (that would have made screwcutting awkward for a beginner) to a usefully high 1800 r.p.m. For a Far Eastern belt-drive lathe of the period the high top speed was distinctly unusual, and probably allowed for by the use of grease-packed bearings.
Presumably fitted with an internal arrangement identical to the original, the screwcutting gearbox took it's drive from a train of changewheels carried on a single instead of double-slot bracket. Although that part of the bed near the headstock was cut away to form a slight gap, the rest of the lathe - the complete carriage and rather Boxford-like No. 2 Morse taper tailstock - conformed to standard South Bend practice. Push-button electrical switch gear was built neatly into a housing on the front edge of the chip tray and a capacitor-start 1-phase motor appears to have been part of the standard equipment.
If any reader has a Select lathe, or any knowledge about their production, the writer would be interested to hear from you..
Pictures continued here
Links to other South Bend 9-inch clones here