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Thread: Delta 46-715 lathe - fair price?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Fairfield County, CT
    Posts
    43

    Question Delta 46-715 lathe - fair price?

    Hello Turners,

    A close family friend has a Delta 46-715 with an Ironbed 1440 stand. Heís 94 years young and has decided itís time to sell this. I know nothing about lathes but was asked to help get a sense of price, and couldnít find any comparables for sale.

    Assuming this is in good condition (it appears to be, it runs fine) can anyone provide a fair value to ask for this? Located in Fairfield County, CT if that matters. He has various cutters/accessories but discounting those for now.

    Plate picture is below. Thanks for any help anyone can provide!







    Attachment 391136

  2. #2
    I have one that I haven't used for about ten years and I believe that the list price was around $750 about 15 years ago, but it could frequently be found on sale for around $600. It's not the worst lathe ever built, but it is a contender for that dubious honor. It's a Reeves drive lathe with poor quality Reeves pulleys that were constantly in need of maintenance or replacement of the pulleys and parts haven't been available for many years. I wouldn't consider selling or even giving mine away because I feel like it would be a cruel trick to play on someone else. The basic structure is pretty good so if somebody wanted to go to the time and expense of replacing the Reeves drive with an electronic variable speed drive which would mean spending a lot of money, then they would have an OK lathe. For about the same money they could buy a new and better lathe from Grizzly or a similar import.

    The headstock is the type that can slide along the bed as well as rotate to the side. The trouble is that sliding the headstock means that you would have to spend a lot of time getting it lined up again with the tailstock. As a result I permanently parked the headstock on mine so that I wouldn't have to fiddle with the alignment.

    My opinion is that this lathe is really just a spindle turning lathe and maybe an occasional small bowl. Otherwise, the pulleys will either quickly wear out and/or break due to the greater torque load of large diameter turnings. I don't have a good suggestion for a selling price. The one that you are selling may not have seen much use and might still have some useful life left. Most likely the buyer will be a beginner who doesn't know much about lathes so just let your conscience be your guide. You might have noticed that I have a somewhat biased opinion about this lathe.
    Bill

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    TX, NM or on the road
    Posts
    778
    They have a bad reputation of the pulleys falling apart and Delta no longer has the replacement parts. I would only pay scrap iron price because once the pulley is gone it is scrap iron.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Fairfield County, CT
    Posts
    43
    Thanks Bill - really appreciate the detailed response.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Sparta Tn
    Posts
    213
    Ditto what the others have said. I had one and would not recommend them to anyone.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    1,840
    They are a good lathe once you get rid of the factory Reeves drive. I replaced it with a set of CI stepped pulleys and a 1.5 hp three-phase leeson motor/ VFD combo. Now it is a fine lathe. I recently bought a pm3520 because I wanted something larger. So, the Delta 1440 will have to find a new home.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Doylestown, PA
    Posts
    5,583
    Dick, what kind of a task was it to retrofit the pulleys? Step pulleys & VFD would be excellent but that lathe would still be pretty much limited to spindles I'd think. I have that lathe still with the original drive but it has seen very little use, just turning dowels for handles and such. I wonder if the Reeves drive from a Harbor Freight or old Grizzly lathe would fit.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    1,840
    Curt,
    I think I did roughly 2,3,4 pulleys. I also added a 1140 rpm motor with 1.5 hp. So I have speeds of roughly 570, 1140, and 2300 at 60Hz on the vfd. I don't lack torque for bowl turning, even at 20 Hz (190 rpms) so I have no issue with bowl turning other than the 14" diameter limitation imposed by the machine.

    You might be able to fit a 2,3,4,5 for the headstock and a 3,4,5,6 for the motor. You could get a 3:1 reduction or a 5:3 increase this way. I chose 2,3,4 so I could reuse the built in indexing pulley and still mount the handwheel.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    1,840
    The HF/Grizzly/Jet pulley sets will fit but they will require some boring/tweaking. You will still have pot metal pulleys that won't last too long. If you can get a pulley set from a PM90/45 or an older Delta that are in good shape (and cast iron!), then you will have somehting that will last.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    1,840
    Josh,
    You have to be a tinkerer or have a lathe that has already been improved to make this lathe worthwhile IMHO.
    Last edited by Dick Strauss; 08-08-2018 at 1:03 PM.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Crystal Lake, IL
    Posts
    29
    I have one and fixed the pulley with the JET replacement.

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