Monarch AA vs Polamco/Toolmex TUG 40 lathe

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Ignoramus8699

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May 22, 2015, 9:06:38 PM5/22/15
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Pictures are here:

http://igor.chudov.com/tmp/Monarch-vs-Polamco/

Right now, my "shop lathe" is a Monarch model AA 16x54 lathe. The
amazing thing about it is that it is almost brand new (!!!) and has no
wear whatsoever. I know that it is weird, but it is true. Somehow or
other, it escaped the usual fate of these lathes, it was made in
1944.

It has only two problems:

1) It is slow, top speed is 500 RPM
2) Someone told me that the lubrication system in the head may not be
working right, based on what he saw in the sight glass.

I recently purchased a AFM Toolmex or Polamco lathe. It has about the
same size, and its top speed is a respectable 1,600 RPM. It does have
wear, unlike the Monarch, but very little. It also has a removable
gap, which we do not care for too much.

There is two people in my shop who use a lathe, me and another guy. I
told him that we can now pick the lathe out of these two.

So, I wanted to solicit some opinions as to what lathe is better. I
know that I can get good money for either of them, so money is not the
issue.

Another option is to keep the Monarch and add a small Hardinge HC for
working on small stuff at high speed. I bought three small hardinges
for $200 each two weeks ago.

I will appreciate some intelligent comments. Thanks

i

Garrett Fulton

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May 22, 2015, 9:19:07 PM5/22/15
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I have no worthwhile advice on which lathe to keep, Ig. But I would like to find a Hardinge lathe for $200. And you found 3?

Karl Townsend

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May 22, 2015, 9:26:20 PM5/22/15
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Its a shame, that low top speed on the Monarch is a killer. that's why
it has no wear. I'd send it on down the road.

Ignoramus8699

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May 22, 2015, 9:35:10 PM5/22/15
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On 2015-05-23, Karl Townsend <karltown...@emmarqmail.com> wrote:
> Its a shame, that low top speed on the Monarch is a killer. that's why
> it has no wear. I'd send it on down the road.

All other monarchs that I have ever seen are always worn to death. I
save tailstocks, cross slides and handles and scrap the rest. This one
was so unusual.

The thing is that I am still in love with it because it is so good
looking. Have hard times letting go.

What, exactly, is bad about slow top speed? That works takes longer to
finish? I keep hearing how high RPM is needed for carbide, but I use
carbide at low speed. I do not quite get it. I am sure that I am
missing something.

i

Ignoramus8699

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May 22, 2015, 9:36:25 PM5/22/15
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Also the Monarch has a taper attachment, which we never used but it is
there.

i

Ed Huntress

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May 22, 2015, 9:39:17 PM5/22/15
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Slow speed has been the Achilles' heel of Monarchs for decades. They
are magnificent machine tools -- one of the best representations of
American machine tool design. But they were made for HSS tooling.

I don't know what the speed of Iggy's machine should be, but even if
it's running at its top designed speed, if it's from 1944, it will be
slow.

--
Ed Huntress

Ignoramus8699

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May 22, 2015, 9:40:23 PM5/22/15
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It is 500 RPM.

Ed, can you explain what is so bad, other than more time spent
machining, about slow top speed?

i

Ed Huntress

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May 22, 2015, 9:41:31 PM5/22/15
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Carbide needs higher speed only to get the best par-part cost out of
the machine. It's an economics thing. The idea that you need to run
carbide at high speed is a myth.

--
Ed Huntress

Ignoramus8699

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May 22, 2015, 9:44:20 PM5/22/15
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On 2015-05-23, Ed Huntress <hunt...@optonline.net> wrote:
OK, so, if I have a 1500 RPM lathe, vs 500 RPM lathe, I can make
anything on both, but with a faster lathe it may take me less
time. Right?

i

Ed Huntress

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May 22, 2015, 9:52:22 PM5/22/15
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That's it, Iggy -- more time spent machining.

These are commercial machine tools. The objective is to produce
quality parts at the lowest cost. That means, first, the shortest
part-to-part cycle time. Then you factor in the tooling cost;
generally speaking, running tools faster wears them out at a faster
rate. In other words, they last for fewer parts.

Running those two curves in an equation -- cycle time and tool life --
is the traditional way of optimizing cost-per-part. Today's
multi-coated tools confound the simple curves a bit, because some of
them, particularly those with an aluminum-oxide top coat, or a
lubricating top coat of molybdemum disulfide over aluminum oxide, need
to run very hot to perform well.

In general, though, with the tools we use in hobby work and in most
general machine-shop work, the only thing you lose by running slower
is time. There are some exceptions regarding surface finish, where
faster can be better, but that's the general rule.

--
Ed Huntress

Ed Huntress

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May 22, 2015, 9:53:58 PM5/22/15
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On Fri, 22 May 2015 20:44:18 -0500, Ignoramus8699
That's pretty much it. But some of the guys here with a lot of
experience probably will chime in on the surface-finish issue.

--
Ed Huntress

Ignoramus8699

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May 22, 2015, 9:55:52 PM5/22/15
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OK, then I am keeping the Monarch!

i

Ed Huntress

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May 22, 2015, 10:11:16 PM5/22/15
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On Fri, 22 May 2015 20:55:50 -0500, Ignoramus8699
Since you already have a smaller lathe for small-diameter parts, the
Monarch probably will be a good complement to it -- a luxury few of us
have. You'll probably notice the machine's qualities when you have to
turn a large-diameter part, or you have to take heavy cuts.

Old Warner & Swaseys were the real monsters in that regard, but
Monarchs also were excellent.

--
Ed Huntress

Ignoramus8699

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May 22, 2015, 10:18:10 PM5/22/15
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On 2015-05-23, Ed Huntress <hunt...@optonline.net> wrote:
> On Fri, 22 May 2015 20:55:50 -0500, Ignoramus8699
>>On 2015-05-23, Ed Huntress <hunt...@optonline.net> wrote:
>>> In general, though, with the tools we use in hobby work and in most
>>> general machine-shop work, the only thing you lose by running slower
>>> is time. There are some exceptions regarding surface finish, where
>>> faster can be better, but that's the general rule.
>>
>>OK, then I am keeping the Monarch!
>
> Since you already have a smaller lathe for small-diameter parts, the
> Monarch probably will be a good complement to it -- a luxury few of us
> have. You'll probably notice the machine's qualities when you have to
> turn a large-diameter part, or you have to take heavy cuts.

I do not "have" a smaller lathe, right now, but I could take one of
the three Hardinges off sale and then I would "have" it.

I think that what I really need is this Monarch and a hardinge HC
style for small parts and high speed.

We use the lathe for shop purposes only, not to make money on it.

i

Lloyd E. Sponenburgh

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May 22, 2015, 10:18:47 PM5/22/15
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Ed Huntress <hunt...@optonline.net> fired this volley in
news:59ovla12upjt0asq4...@4ax.com:

> Old Warner & Swaseys were the real monsters in that regard, but
> Monarchs also were excellent.

Even older -- the old F.E. Reed taper machines. 'Built like tanks! They
could turn a full-swing part to tolerance every time -- but slowly, natch.

Lloyd

Larry Jaques

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May 22, 2015, 10:46:43 PM5/22/15
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On Fri, 22 May 2015 20:35:08 -0500, Ignoramus8699
<ignora...@NOSPAM.8699.invalid> wrote:

>On 2015-05-23, Karl Townsend <karltown...@emmarqmail.com> wrote:
>> Its a shame, that low top speed on the Monarch is a killer. that's why
>> it has no wear. I'd send it on down the road.
>
>All other monarchs that I have ever seen are always worn to death. I
>save tailstocks, cross slides and handles and scrap the rest. This one
>was so unusual.
>
>The thing is that I am still in love with it because it is so good
>looking. Have hard times letting go.

At least you ACK that flaw. ;)


>What, exactly, is bad about slow top speed? That works takes longer to
>finish? I keep hearing how high RPM is needed for carbide, but I use
>carbide at low speed. I do not quite get it. I am sure that I am
>missing something.

Because it has a 16" swing, top speed is lower, da? If you do more
work on smaller diameter items (who doesn't?), then select the lathe
with the higher speeds. It all depends on exactly how the lathe is
being used and what the lathe is being used for in -your- shop. You
(probably) already have all the info you need to choose.

--
Win first, Fight later.

--martial principle of the Samurai

Larry Jaques

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May 22, 2015, 10:48:33 PM5/22/15
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On Fri, 22 May 2015 20:40:21 -0500, Ignoramus8699
<ignora...@NOSPAM.8699.invalid> wrote:

Isn't the final finish determined by tool type, style, and speed on
each material? That can be a biggie.

Terry Coombs

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May 22, 2015, 11:12:35 PM5/22/15
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Iggy , the Monarch and a smaller lathe with higher speed will give you the
best of both worlds . I've never seen a Hardinge , but everything I've read
indicates they're very good machines . Fortunately , the 10" Logan/Wards
fills my needs quite handily .

--
Snag


Ignoramus8699

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May 22, 2015, 11:50:01 PM5/22/15
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I feel the same way about this. Hardinge for tiny stuff, Monarch for
everything else. Low top speed also is safer.

i

Karl Townsend

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May 23, 2015, 4:45:58 AM5/23/15
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>>It is 500 RPM.
>>
>>Ed, can you explain what is so bad, other than more time spent
>>machining, about slow top speed?
>
>Isn't the final finish determined by tool type, style, and speed on
>each material? That can be a biggie.


First, if Iggy keeps that Hardinge for the small diameter work, I'd
agree keep this Monarch lathe. I'll wager if he keeps two, the Monarch
will sit unless he can't fit the part in the Hardinge.

I find surface feet per minute critical for finish and part
deflection, especially if you get under 0.500" diameter. My lathe does
4500, I'm up to top end often. I needed a number of long 0.125"
diameter parts with threads and snap ring grooves a while back. Ended
up running them on my neighbor's lathe that does 10K.

I also find carbide will just chip if you try to run it slow. i loose
more inserts to chipping than to wear.



Pete Keillor

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May 23, 2015, 7:44:00 AM5/23/15
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On Fri, 22 May 2015 20:36:24 -0500, Ignoramus8699
<ignora...@NOSPAM.8699.invalid> wrote:

>Also the Monarch has a taper attachment, which we never used but it is
>there.
>
>i
>
I use my taper attachment a fair bit. Last use was to make an L00
spindle adapter for my threaded nose Hardinge dividing head. Both
general devices were made obsolete by cnc, but I don't have cnc. It
took a few tries to learn to compensate for the backlash in the taper
attachment, but I get good results now.

Pete Keillor

dca...@krl.org

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May 23, 2015, 8:16:58 AM5/23/15
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On Friday, May 22, 2015 at 9:55:52 PM UTC-4, Ignoramus8699 wrote:

>
> OK, then I am keeping the Monarch!
>
> i

Good decision, especially since it has a taper attachment. I assume it has a three phase motor. So you could add a Variable Speed Drive and get higher speeds. I would not try for really high speeds as heavy things turning at high speed have a lot of stored energy.

Dan

John B.

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May 23, 2015, 9:31:39 AM5/23/15
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On Fri, 22 May 2015 20:35:08 -0500, Ignoramus8699
<ignora...@NOSPAM.8699.invalid> wrote:

You 1944 Monarch was built in the days of high speed tools and from
your description would turn a 16" piece of steel four and a half feet
long. About 1.5 tons of material.

Firstly if you are turning a hunk of steel that size with high speed
tools 500 RPM is likely enough, probably more than enough, speed.

Secondly turning a piece that heavy at 500 RPM might make some people
want to stand back a ways, a long ways, from the machine :-)

I would think that if you wanted to work within the limits that the
machine was designed for then you have a keeper. If you are turning
tiny little pieces at high speeds than a different machine would be a
better selection.
--
Cheers,

John B.

John B.

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May 23, 2015, 9:31:44 AM5/23/15
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On Fri, 22 May 2015 20:40:21 -0500, Ignoramus8699
<ignora...@NOSPAM.8699.invalid> wrote:

It isn't even, perhaps, a lot slower then what some of the people here
seem to be doing with their high speed, tiny cuts.

One of my last jobs during my apprenticeship was to rough out some
wood planer heads from some 12 inch "line shafting" that was removed
from an old woolen mill when they converted from overhead shafts.

This is from memory but the cutter head would have been about 2 feet
wide, plain bearing on one side, say 6 inches and a bearing and two or
three V pulley on the other. Say 3 and a half feet over all. The ends
were, say 2 inch and the cutter head about 6 maybe 7 inches. So more
or less, three inches of cut over the head and more over the end
shafts.

We were taking about a 3/8", maybe 7/16", deep cut and the rotational
and cutting speed was set to get a very light brown chip. A single
pass took ~about 3 hours to remove 581 cu. in. or material, or 194 cu.
inches/hour. Of course, as the work got smaller the rotational speed
was increased but the depth of cut was always the same. Until we got
to the bottom, of course :-)

As we had an automatic stop on the feed the old machine didn't take a
full time manager, just a quick look every 15 minutes or so :-)

--
Cheers,

John B.

Jim Wilkins

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May 23, 2015, 9:59:49 AM5/23/15
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"Ignoramus8699" <ignora...@NOSPAM.8699.invalid> wrote in message
news:1Nudne-gOeQGT8LI...@giganews.com...
I read a comparison between the Hardinge HLV and the South Bend 10L
that concluded the South Bend was a better choice for general
non-critical work because of its geater versatility and back-gearing
that allows heavy cuts on large diameters. The author had used both at
the National Bureau of Standards shop. The Hardinge was better for
precision threading but not decisively so. He (and I) valued 5C
collets and low speed torque more than the name on the machine.

I designed an optical instrument that required #0-80 (~1.5mm)
Fillister head screws almost 1" long due to very limited space, they
straddled a lens thread in stacked modules that had to align with a
glued-together array of 10mm cube optics.
http://www.lambda.cc/high-power-laser-polarizing-cube-beamsplitters-hpb-2/

I turned the prototype screws in one piece on my SB, but the shop that
filled the order on a Hardinge attached separate heads to shanks.made
of 1/16" rod.

-jsw



Jim Wilkins

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May 23, 2015, 10:12:30 AM5/23/15
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"Ignoramus8699" <ignora...@NOSPAM.8699.invalid> wrote in message
news:jPWdndyqV9rvRsLI...@giganews.com...
>>
>
> OK, so, if I have a 1500 RPM lathe, vs 500 RPM lathe, I can make
> anything on both, but with a faster lathe it may take me less
> time. Right?
>
> i

I dislike drilling small deep axial oil passages in shafts at low
speed. That's the only job I move to an AA/Sears lathe.

-jsw


Baron

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May 23, 2015, 11:59:36 AM5/23/15
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Ignoramus8699 prodded the keyboard with:

> Pictures are here:
>
> http://igor.chudov.com/tmp/Monarch-vs-Polamco/
>
> Right now, my "shop lathe" is a Monarch model AA 16x54 lathe. The
> amazing thing about it is that it is almost brand new (!!!) and has
> no wear whatsoever. I know that it is weird, but it is true. Somehow
> or other, it escaped the usual fate of these lathes, it was made in
> 1944.
>
> It has only two problems:
>
> 1) It is slow, top speed is 500 RPM
> 2) Someone told me that the lubrication system in the head may not
> be working right, based on what he saw in the sight glass.
>
> I recently purchased a AFM Toolmex or Polamco lathe. It has about
> the same size, and its top speed is a respectable 1,600 RPM. It does
> have wear, unlike the Monarch, but very little. It also has a
> removable gap, which we do not care for too much.
>
> There is two people in my shop who use a lathe, me and another guy.
> I told him that we can now pick the lathe out of these two.
>
> So, I wanted to solicit some opinions as to what lathe is better. I
> know that I can get good money for either of them, so money is not
> the issue.
>
> Another option is to keep the Monarch and add a small Hardinge HC
> for working on small stuff at high speed. I bought three small
> hardinges for $200 each two weeks ago.
>
> I will appreciate some intelligent comments. Thanks

They are quite a nice lathe ! I would investigate putting an
inverter/VFD in there to get higher speeds. I've seen similar
machines running great at 140Hz, which should get you up into the
1200/1400 rpm range. Certainly the machine is quite capable of using
the higher speeds.


--
Best Regards:
Baron.

Pete C.

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May 23, 2015, 1:51:23 PM5/23/15
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For larger work I don't think that top speed is an issue. If you added a
small high speed lathe for small work you'd have the best of both.

Is there any reason the headstock couldn't be upgraded to higher speed?
Upgrade some bearings, change drive pulleys? I'd love a lathe that big,
but I don't have room for it quite yet. Hopefully in a few months if it
ever stops raining here in N. TX I can get a shipping container in and
be able to store such a machine until I get my new shop built hopefully
later in the year.

Gunner Asch

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May 23, 2015, 3:22:33 PM5/23/15
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>i

The Hardinge HC is a superlative machine for work that does not..not
need a tailstock.

You need to be finding a Hardinge HLV-H for your shop.

Gunner

Gunner Asch

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May 24, 2015, 1:31:46 AM5/24/15
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Add a VFD...Variable Frequency Drive..not a VSD.

The best that machine will do is 1000 rpm..maybe 1500..but thats all
anyone will ever need for a lathe that size.


Gunner

angelfa...@gmail.com

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Aug 16, 2016, 11:13:21 PM8/16/16
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Hello, im just got a AFM TUG 40, can you help me to know, what kind of oil takes on the box gears qhere the spindlle strat turning?, thank you su much..

Toolmaker51

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Nov 3, 2021, 11:18:11 AM11/3/21
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replying to John B., Toolmaker51 wrote:
Just remember, RPM selection is a function of part diameter, not available
speed. What earlier machine tools lacked in RPM they had torque in spades,
provided by large diameter motors, chucks and faceplates adding flywheel
inertia.
And willing to bet 90% of the lathes people operate (in capital and private
use) _are not_ mounted on correct foundation bed/ leveled/ lagged/ and grouted
to enable full performance. Next, tooling comes into question, such as max
speed of chucks, of which EVERY chuck has limitations.

--
for full context, visit https://www.polytechforum.com/metalworking/monarch-aa-vs-polamco-toolmex-tug-40-lathe-614458-.htm


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