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Manufacturers Index - S. E. Smith & Bro.
Last Modified: Nov 5 2019 5:33PM by Jeff_Joslin
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In 1885-6, S. E. Smith & Bro.—a partnership of Spencer E. Smith and De Witt C. Smith of St. Paul—were manufacturing a clever lathe for turning pieces of polygonal cross-section, such as balusters or piano legs. The lathe consists of a large drum that can rotate. The work-pieces are cut to length and made of all the same square cross-section, and then about 40 of them are clamped to the outer face of the drum. The drum then rotates and the outer face of the work-pieces is cut using the using lathe tools and tool-rest. When the outer face of the pieces has been shaped then each piece is rotated 90 degrees and then process is repeated until all four sides of the work-pieces have been cut. The manufacturer claimed that because their lathe cut so many pieces at once, albeit each piece having to be cut four times, it is four to eight times faster than other lathes.

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