Headstock Part 1

Here’s the Headstock in the process of being removed in December. You can see the worn drive belt and the motorising assembly. Also the very old looking oil in the sight glasses…

With the bearing caps, sight glasses and spindle with pulleys removed, looking dirty…

Removed from the lathe, underside view followed by the top view…


And a rear view, showing a lot of oily, woody gunge in the nooks and crannies. However, the bearings look in good condition…

In this picture, there’s two brass coloured gears (I don’t know what they’re made of) with a little grey spindle each…

If you look at this picture of them dismantled, you can just tell that the smaller diameter smooth part is eccentric to the larger diameter smooth part…

Clever, eh? But I didn’t notice this until I came to reassemble and couldn’t get the gears to mesh correctly. More on that in a future post. I continued to take things apart, photographing carefully, and in context, as I went along. Here’s a selection…





So that’s the drive end done; the other end next in Part 2.


4 thoughts on “Headstock Part 1

  1. I would hazard a guess that the two brass coloured gears are made from phosphor bronze.

  2. You’re probably right. I’ll check the manuals I have. There are other strange coloured gears at various points. Obviously something to do with not having two cogs of the same metal engaging, to reduce wear, perhaps?

  3. In my Bradley books, chapter 2, “Tumbler Gearing”, these two gears are called “pinions”. In another book on gears which I have, these little things which I call gears are actually called pinions. What I might have called a pinion is actually a stud. Shows how much I’ve been paying attention! On the other hand, in the Myford manual with the diagrams and parts list, they’re called gears.

    Ah, who cares. Anyway, the Bradley books say these two are made of steel on the early ML7s and Tufnol on later ML7-Rs and on the Super 7s. Tufnol is described as “a fabric substance impregnated with synthetic resin”.

    I’ve had these soaking in GUNK and given them a scrub. If they were “fabric”, wouldn’t that have damaged them? I think they’re definitely some kind of metal.

    Also, I still don’t know whether my lathe is an ML7 or an ML7-R.

    More research needed.

  4. Just been out, took one off, and tested it with a magnet. It’s not magnetic so it’s not made of steel. They other grey gears are magnetic.

    Also, the bronzy gears scratch more easily than the grey ones, so are a bit softer.

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