10” Utilathe (Miss Metric) Overhaul Repair

Brent H

Ultra Member

So this is the thread where I will post a bunch on overhauling and making some repairs to a 10” Standard Modern Utilathe that has been converted to metric (ish). The lead screw is 7/8” x 4 mm pitch. The cross feed is 1/2” x 2.5 mm LH and the compound is 1/2” x 2.5 mm RH. The conversion to the metric lead screw allows for most of the important metric threads.

The lathe is missing the threading dial and that will be an upcoming project. The lathe also needs a new cross feed nut and I have a trapezoidal 1/2 x 2.5 mm LH tap. This will be one of the first items built and then I can create some of the other items that require a metric pitch.

I will not have to do a lot of tearing apart and gabbing from scratch like my other Utilathe. That story is here: https://canadianhobbymetalworkers.c...irs-on-a-10-ld-utilathe-standard-modern.1475/

I will be doing mostly a cosmetic update and making a few parts. That being said, if anyone needs some focus placed on anything in particular let me know and I can adapt the thread. I will try and do a decent job on the set up, alignment from scratch and adjustments to get a lathe dialled in.

As a bunch of you guys are aware I just got home and will be off to Calgary tomorrow morning. I stripped the lathe this morning - everything looks great.



Ultra Member
The lathe is missing the threading dial and that will be an upcoming project.
Somewhere, and I'm sorry that I can't remember where, I saw postings about using a 3D printer to reproduce a threading dial. Since there is no load to be concerned about, it seemed like a real possibility. Even just printing the gear would probably save time.

Of course, you'd need the gear modelled in 3D but there is an open source library for that:



Brent H

Ultra Member
There probably will not be any “printed” gears. Gotta go hard core. Plus, I don’t have a printer, access to a printer, or anyone that does. Also, by the time I drew the gears, I will have made them. LOL. Plus, with @Johnwa pics and some math/measure I should be able to create a close to original- but better :p

Project right now is relaxing until about 10 days from now when I get home, finish the keg of beer and wake up 2 days later ……

Brent H

Ultra Member
@YYCHM - late response but the Kijiji add you have has been there for many months. The parts are expensive and I have made them in house.

After returning from a great adventure to Calgary I have been cleaning things up on the lathe and hope to re-assemble the lathe over the next few days. I will have a pause for paint and a few other jobs.
The before:


The after:


Cleaned other parts:

The head stock

This will get sanded and masked for paint

Stripping the chip tray:


Hopefully will have things set for paint ASAP

Parts to make: new cross feed nut, thread dial, levelling foot

Parts to install: Gits oilers, sight glass, missing cap screws etc.

Brent H

Ultra Member
@kevin.decelles - yes @David_R8 is correct - it is an “environmental friendly” paint stripper. It works well to get rid of the old hard grease and oils as well as the paint. The lathe pan (at least for me) can stay unpainted as the cutting oils etc keep things pretty no rust. Heated shop also helps :)

@David_R8 - I try to keep organized, it helps with being away a month at a time and then trying to find stuff - saying that, there are a bunch of messes I need to fix. Having those “parts” and not able to find things dives me nuts. - LOL


Scrapper of metal
Premium Member
@David_R8 - I try to keep organized, it helps with being away a month at a time and then trying to find stuff - saying that, there are a bunch of messes I need to fix. Having those “parts” and not able to find things dives me nuts. - LOL
I totally hear you! My shop is too small and I have too many on-the-go projects. I did manage to move my bike trainer setup to the basement so that cleared up some space which was promptly occupied by the return of my 12" compound mitre saw from my nephew.
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Brent H

Ultra Member
So today Miss Metric got her lipstick applied and will be matching Mr Imperial.
E3E7861F-305D-46CC-95B8-E63F47FFBDF1.jpeg E2A8CBF9-F19C-4A76-BE2B-5C4DE04F33FA.jpeg


This will allow me to re-assemble the Lathe to the point that I do not have pieces all over the place.

The longitudinal feed gear on the lathe needs to be repaired in way of the front screw as the threads are stripped out. A new nut for the cross feed out of bronze and I think I might weld up the longitudinal feed handle that was smashed. It is still a sexy part - heavy and well made, just can’t let it get binned. I have some new guys oilers to pop in and a new sight glass for the headstock. Should be nice!

Brent H

Ultra Member
@David_R8 : I have the Fuji spray system - the Mini mite 4 with an older style HVLP gun. It is not cheap by any means and when I first bought it it was a great deal. Fuji was just starting out (sort of). I made them a chart for their gun tips and such.

I used the same paint (the farm implement paint) they used to carry at Peavy Mart or TSC.

I find now, that since so much is going water based (the farm paint is not) it is easy to just buy a gallon or small can and spray away. The Fuji was bought for spraying cabinets etc. but has helped refirb lathes, lawn tractors etc etc.

I blew up the 3 stage I had after 14 years of use.

Brent H

Ultra Member
Another day working on the young lady to get her up to working order.

Utilathes of this vintage have a few quirks that make adjustments difficult. A few other things can be fixed very quickly. The drive gear for the feed box is pinned to the shaft with a brass 1/8” dowel. Easy solution is a 1/8 brazing rod with the flux knocked off.


The head stock is secured with 2 strong backs that lock it to the ways. The back one is held with just one bolt. To get at it you need to remove the 4 Allen screws that hold the feed box idler gear and the seal for the high/low speed plunger. The operation above (putting in the brass rod) should be done after you tighten the back screw down - or you have to pull the gear off again.


I needed to make a new quill lock for the tailstock so I whipped that up quick out of some 3/4” cold rolled.

And put a screw driver slot in the new one to avoid any vice grip action.


Gear train all back on: E6C05C48-40E7-44E8-9867-994691831E64.jpeg

Nice looking piece of tail…….stock:


Some projects remaining on the lathe - repair to carriage handle, new cross feed nut and a new foot for levelling the lathe.


I will get the electric motor up to speed soon enough - need to fashion a FWD/REV switch handle.




Ultra Member
Miss Metric is 3 phase powered? I don't think I picked that up before. It appears you have a VFD ready to supply the 'go juice'. If that is the case, wouldn't you just use the VFD's controls for forward/reverse rather than repairing the broken switch handle?


Brent H

Ultra Member
Hey @trlvn - yes Craig the lathe is 3 phase as I my other lathe and mill. I am essentially just using the VFD to give me the third phase and then I use the headstock in all it’s geared glory. I don’t use the VFD for any speed control. It does yield the benefit of braking - which is nice.

I like using a larger forward and reverse switch wired through the VFD logic but I want to keep my oily dirty fingers off the control pad and not having to look away from the lathe to find a small button.

The original control was interesting, a single throw three pole “light switch” allowed power to the machine, that went to a relay box with the motor starter circuit. You selected FWD or REV and then pushed the start button, push the stop to interrupt power to stop the motor. There is a blank cover for what I assume would be the coolant pump - it would make for a good work light switch location.