Reply by CaptainKlutz

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Posted on South Bend Lathe Company

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3838 posts in 2413 days

#1 posted 01-28-2018 09:05 PM

If tool was made prior to 1960, was made is USA and considered to be one of best lathes available. These tools last many lifetimes.

If made 1960-1975 (when America tool makers were struggling due imported knock offs); then tools are are still considered excellent, but there will be some Asian imported castings/parts, especially on lower end models.

South Bend tools made ~1980 forward have murky mfg history due various ownership changes, but most tools came from parts made in Taiwan.

Today SBL is based in same location as Woodstock Int, and tools are imported/distributed by Woodstock Int. (which is affiliated with Grizzly as well). If you read the marketing from SBL carefully, you will see they make no mention of where machines are made anymore.
The current generation of larger 10”- 18” tool room lathes have fit/finish typical of higher end Taiwan made tools, and are considered a good value if you need a new lathe. The only limitation with the current SBL lathes is there are tools with better precision. So read specs and assess you needs carefully: as when it comes to machine tools; “you get what you pay for”.

-- If it wasn't for bad luck, I wouldn't have no luck at all, - Albert King - Born Under a Bad Sign released 1967

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