> I have recently acquired as part of a trade a vintage Delta
> wood lathe. It's probably from the 50's or earlier, based
> solely on my impression and not from any particular inspection.
> It is entirely constructed from cast iron, and basically
> consists of a headstock, bed, tailstock and toolrest. There
> is no tooling or stand or documents of any kind.
> My question is, approximately what is this worth? And how
> much fully restored, painted, on a stand, etc.?
> I would appreciate it if some tool-literate person cares to
> I don't often read this newsgroup.
> Thanks a lot!
> Grant Erwin
> Seattle, Washington
> (BTW, if any Seattle woodworkers want to actually BUY it,
> I'm obviously willing to make a deal on price but delivery
> is strictly uhaul!)
The value depends a lot on condition. I don't know enough about old
Delta's to avoid this question - does it have babbit bearings (with
grease cups) or sealed ball or roller bearings? Are the bearings in
good shape? Can you grab the spindle and feel a lot of play?
I saw an old Delta lathe go at an auction for less than $50 because the
kids in the school that was selling it had apparently driven a spur
center home with a hammer, and had split the spindle apart.
That said, a bare lathe like you've described should still be worth
$100-200, if everything appears to be in good shape. Cleaned and
painted, on a stand, and with a motor, I'd say $350 - 500, depending on
your sales abilities.
Those prices reflect my experiences in the mid-west (Fargo, ND). Prices
will vary with availability - if there are lots of lathes for sale in
your area, you'll get less. Check you local want ads to get a feel.