Heavy facing lathe, 1810.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
This lathe was typical of the large but relatively simple machine tools used in engine-building and all heavy engineering. It worked for many years, until about 1975, at the Charlestown Foundry in Cornwall, was certainly at work by 1845, and is probably the same one that was advertised in that area for sale in 1840. That was a time which improved standards of engineering created a strong demand for larger and stiffer machine tools. This lathe is best adapted to machining wheels, pistons and similar shapes, boring the boses of levers or generating flat surfaces. Differently proportioned lathes would be required for other components such as shafts.