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wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L)
wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
5/7/20 6:28 p.m.

Well, I had a project for my $50 Logan lathe, but the guilt of NEVER HAVING CLEANED IT got to me.

Here's a picture of me ridin' it dirty before putting it up wet. I can dig up a better before picture, if anyone's really interested, but this gets the point across.

I had been watching enough videos that I finally felt confident to jump in.

The beds don't have terrible wear from running, but there have been a few ahem, collisions.

I bought this thing when McGavock High School in Nashville shut down their shop program circa 2008. Yep, I couldn't believe my luck finding a 110V running metal lathe. I naively thought it wouldn't be in too bad shape since it was used in a school.


Today's goal was to simply give it some love, and learn a little better how a lathe works.

I filed those boogers on the lead screw, and generally started scrubbing stuff with acetone and some 15 weight Honda fork oil I found laying around.

Then I blew some more stuff apart. Yeah, I can't even name some of this without my cheat sheet. That's the carriage above, right?

I cleaned up the tool post, its slide, and the top part of the cross feed, and disassembled all the dials, cleaned and freed them up.

It's really simple and elegant the way lathes are made. Lucky too, I'm a bit on the simple side myself.

I cleaned every gear I could get to with fork oil and a toothbrush. Much better than they started.

It formerly had a crappy yellow plug, and loose wires everywhere, so I tidied that up with a new cord, reattached the junction box, and slapped the only cover I could find on there.

And, that's about where I got today. I am no longer racked by guilt when I turn it on. I'll be watching videos, learning the basics, and turning out some parts, but probably sparse updates on this thread for the time being.

I did get to the tail stock, but not the 4 jaw chuck.


L5wolvesf Reader
5/7/20 6:42 p.m.

Nice job. I'm lusting for a nice little lathe and learning-wise I'm about in the same place as you. Now your guilt has me thinking about clearing off a chunk of space on my bench. 

EvanB (Forum Supporter)
EvanB (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/7/20 7:19 p.m.

That looks a lot like mine. I really need to fix the mounts to hang the motor back on it and turn some metal into scrap.

03Panther Reader
5/7/20 8:52 p.m.

Nicer machine than mine was, but mine was in great condition. Paid 700 for mine; when I was moving to AL, I owed a mate $400 for some paint work, so I let him move it two doors down to his shop and keep it. I have a newer 8" Taiwan made "tool room" lathe now, but it made it to NC, and I haven't moved it the rest of the way yet.

Lookin' good on the refurb.!

djsilver (Forum Supporter)
djsilver (Forum Supporter) Reader
5/7/20 9:54 p.m.

A home lathe is a handy thing!  My father gave me this WWII vintage Logan.  You can still get parts if you look hard enough. http://www.loganact.com/

jimbbski SuperDork
5/8/20 9:16 a.m.


I'd like to make you  aware of the this company that can provide parts and service for Logan lathes in Harvard, IL.


I bought a much nicer condition Logan lathe back in the late 90's. I haven't needed any parts specific to the  lathe other than a new mounting plate for a Bison 3-jaw chuck I bought. The ond one was worn out and out of tolerance.

If you really want to learn how to run that lathe see if you have a machine shop course at your local community college.  That's what I did even before I bought my lathe. It didn't cost much and it was money well spent.

Toyman01 (Forum Supporter)
Toyman01 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/8/20 9:27 a.m.

Just a FYI. Paint thinner and a Scotch-bright pad does wonders for machine rust. 


Apis Mellifera
Apis Mellifera Dork
5/8/20 9:48 a.m.

I have the same Logan.  I think it's a Model 820.  I owned it for many years before I discovered it has power cross feed. 

wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L)
wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
5/8/20 12:38 p.m.

In reply to Apis Mellifera :

Is that actuated by pulling the knob on the left to engage the gears in the main case?

Thanks everyone else, for the info. Greatly appreciated. Jimbbski: Now I just need to determine what I need.

Toyman: I did use acetone on lots of stuff, but  I can only use so much in the basement shop under the living room. I love your resto work. Makes mine look like a pile of crap.


Question for the hive: Is it fair to generalize that smaller lathes run faster due to the lack of torque, same as drill presses?

Toyman01 (Forum Supporter)
Toyman01 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/8/20 12:40 p.m.

In reply to wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) :

Rather than using acetone, use mineral spirits. It smells much better, doesn't kill you hands, and sticks around longer. It's also frequently cheaper.


Apis Mellifera
Apis Mellifera Dork
5/8/20 2:48 p.m.

On the carriage there is a knurled lever beside the lever that you move to engage the half nut.  You pull it out and it can go up or down and lock into a detent.  I don't remember which way, but one way activates power cross feed.  The other way, I believe, activates a slip function to the regular power feed.  The large handwheel next to the knurled knob on the carriage adjusts the "clutch".  The center detent on the knurled knob is regular power feed like on the 210 above (I had one of those also).  All of this requires the leadscrew to be engaged of course.

jimbbski SuperDork
5/8/20 9:50 p.m.

There also a Yahoo Groups for Logan Lathe owners or those interested in lathes in general.  I'm sure there are others on the net.


wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L)
wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
5/9/20 8:24 a.m.

Some links and media embeds I found useful/interesting.

First, the updated site jimbbski posted above: https://groups.io/g/loganlathe

Toyman recommended this, and I love its pluck. 


wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L)
wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
5/9/20 8:34 a.m.

Lots of the videos I'm finding are, shall we say, dry. Anything from this old tony is entertaining, but I'll post more instructional stuff I find.

Essential Machining Skills:Working With a Lathe


Edit: this really deserves a media embed.


AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/9/20 12:38 p.m.

Watching this thread. I have no idea what brand my lathe is, but the info here will certainly help me restore it and become a more proficient user. It was my Dad's machine, so I'll be keeping it a while.

wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L)
wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
5/9/20 1:18 p.m.

In reply to AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) :

That's so cool! 

The Essential Machining skills videos I linked above are exactly what I've been looking for. They are an articulate operator from MIT named Erik Vaaler. I've just finished a couple hours of having my mind expanded by his lathe series, and am moving on to the milling videos. I highly recommend these videos for any interested noobs, like myself.  

Now I feel like I'm learning.

SkinnyG (Forum Supporter)
SkinnyG (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
5/9/20 3:16 p.m.

This is my YouTube Playlist of The Basics.  I loop through the video while I talk to my students about what is going on.

As long as you don't put your Fingers where you wouldn't put your Johnson Bar, you will figure it out.


And yeah - a lot of the "training videos" are very boring.  If -you- find them boring, rest assured that your average adhd-inspired teen will not stay with it at all.

wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L)
wheelsmithy (Joe-with-an-L) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
5/9/20 5:20 p.m.

Thanks Skinny, your videos are always informative and entertaining. I'll roll them right into the rotation.

Oh yeah, Toyman, I'll try mineral spirits, my stuff could be shinier.

I'm getting wound up on this stuff. Overseas tooling is arriving every day, and I'm getting a sense of how to operate. I'm seeing lots of ways to machine parts that are way better than the ways I was imagining.

  So, let me introduce you to my $100 machine shop.

You already met Logan (model#815 it turns out, with some cleaning and a magnifying glass). Lousy eyes.

and there's the $50 Clarke drill press.

Next to that, you've got the Cummins mini lathe, and further down the table, the Cummins bench top Milling/Drilling machine.

A friend's step dad passed on a couple of years ago, and his Mom asked if I'd help them figure out what they had, and clear some of it out. I told her what the two Cummins were worth (they appear essentially unused), and encouraged her to sell them, and she tried to give them to a local school, but eventually, she asked me to take them. At the time, I had negative cash flow, trying to move and change jobs, so I sheepishly accepted them. I'm truly humbled by her generosity.

In a way, everything but the Logan is offshore quality, but it  was given to me, besides, it's a poor magician who blames his wand. 

For now, I'm watching videos, but will share any nuggets I come across, and maybe talk a little about tooling.

Okay, it may be a little over 200 bucks with the new tooling and vice. It will get pretty expensive soon.

There's been some extensive YouTube viewing going on. I still can not recommend those MIT films highly enough. 

I've also been enjoying this guy:


I've had a steady influx of tooling. Some of my best guesses were miles off. Example, a 6" vice is way bigger than I thought it was:

No matter, I've got a big drill press in storage this would look good on, or maybe save it for my hope chest. It was about 100 bucks I didn't need to spend, but a pretty good deal at that.

On the other hand, my other (better researched) guesses turned out okay.

3" swivel vice looks much better, if a bit tall.

And lots of nick-nacks. Assorted 1/4" cutting dies for my antiquated Armstrong tool holders, collets and cutting dies for the mill, center drills, and I dug up and modified as needed dedicated tools for the three machines.

My carpal tunnel release scar is healing nicely, and once I get the other hand done I should be ready to make some chips.  I just learned how chip brushes got their name.blush

Here's a shot of some other random tooling I have.

I'm still shopping a boring bar, and parting die along with holders for both. Maybe I'll make the boring bar holder.

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/14/20 6:12 p.m.
Apis Mellifera said:

On the carriage there is a knurled lever beside the lever that you move to engage the half nut.  You pull it out and it can go up or down and lock into a detent.



(this post funnier with my original username)


More videos, some mind numbingly boring (no pun intended), some informative.

I had another breakthrough, largely precipitated by this:

Some guy was selling Xeroxed copies of Logan manuals. I paid too much, but would do it again because I now know the functions of everything on the machine.

I was too cautious (read: scared) to just throw some levers and see what happened, so before yesterday, hadn't engaged power feed of any kind, and to my mind, was spinning way too many RPM.

Well, thanks to the manual, I figured out the back gears that were mocking me. Added bonus, I can slow way down. I spun it a bit, sans work just to make sure I understood what I read. Good stuff.

I still have some more recovery to do before I can make any parts, but am definitely learning.

I also came across an equation for figuring cutting speed.

SFM x 3.82/ diameter

SFM= surface feet per minute, and is dependent on cutting tool, and material. Carbide on steel is 250 sq.ft/min. Tool steel on steel is 100 sq.ft/min.

3.82 is a constant in the equation. 

More offshore tooling has arrived:

New 1,2,3 blocks, and a set of boring bars. I also made some holders for the collets and center drills, then dunked them in burnt motor oil. That's about all my hand could take for the day.


Toyman01 (Forum Supporter)
Toyman01 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/18/20 9:52 p.m.

Fun machines. Especially if you like buying tools. There is always some piece of tooling you just have to have. 

JamesMcD SuperDork
5/19/20 5:31 a.m.

I have a Logan lathe similar to the OP. if anyone can recommend a place to get a new belt, it would be much appreciated. 

In reply to JamesMcD :

here's one, maybe

More on ebay. I assume you meant the drive belt. I can get you the measurement from mine if you need it. 

Toyman01 (Forum Supporter)
Toyman01 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/19/20 6:51 a.m.

I'm not super familiar with the Logan, but I run a serpentine automotive belt on my South Bend 9". I cut the leather belt off, measured it and bought a serpentine belt the correct width and length. 

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