Any Archdale machines/stories/photos out there?

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honza992

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Hi All
First time poster here. I'm a guitar maker based in Nottingham, so I pretty much use woodworking tools and machinery, I've got no experience of metalworking at all. My great grandfather though was James Archdale who founded Archdale Machine tools. They mostly made massive radial arm drills and industrial lathes. This sort of thing....
img8.jpg

Archdale as a company hasn't existed for decades, but I occasionally see some of the old machines come up for sale on ebay. I was hoping someone here might have used an Archdale, maybe a story they could share, or a photo, or even still have one up and running in a home workshop. Anything Archdale related really. And if anyone has any Archdale items for sale I'd bite your hand off! And if anyone knows of an Archdale that is still in use anywhere in the country that would be amazing. I would love to see one in action.
 

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TFrench

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That's a seriously cool ancestor! There's a beauty of a radial arm in a maintenence shop in a factory we work in - not allowed phones in there to get a pic unfortunately. It's gigantic though - I'd guess its got an 8 foot arm. When they refurbished the workshop everything got moved out apart from the drill - it was easier to work around it!
 

Tris

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I remember the Worcester factory still standing in the early 80s, by 88 it had been demolished to make way for a retail park. All that remains now is part of the wall around the site.
It may be worth a look at the Worcester Evening News website and pop a question on their chat board, there should be a few people around that area with memories of the factory.
 

honza992

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Tris":1517081j said:
I remember the Worcester factory still standing in the early 80s, by 88 it had been demolished to make way for a retail park. All that remains now is part of the wall around the site.
It may be worth a look at the Worcester Evening News website and pop a question on their chat board, there should be a few people around that area with memories of the factory.
A tool maker to a retail park....I guess that's progress :shock: Here'a photo of the factory I pulled from the Lathes site.....
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honza992

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TFrench":1rq9dtne said:
That's a seriously cool ancestor! There's a beauty of a radial arm in a maintenence shop in a factory we work in - not allowed phones in there to get a pic unfortunately. It's gigantic though - I'd guess its got an 8 foot arm. When they refurbished the workshop everything got moved out apart from the drill - it was easier to work around it!
Yep, a large radial arm drill is really an impressive site. Is it an Archdale do you think?


Thanks @Trevanion, the Lathes co uk is a great site. I know more about Archdale machine tools from that site than I do from my own family! It's a shame how within a couple of generations, family history can be almost completely lost. That's really why I'm here. Hoping others can fill in the gaps.

Thanks all for the replies so far.
 
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During Covid lockdown I’ve been giving this Archdale treadle lathe a bit of restoration. I’m led to believe it was used for a fair bit of its life by a pattern maker - and came with quite a lot of chucks and attachments (see photos). I haven’t been able to find another like it anywhere online so I’m wondering whether it might be a bit of a hybrid (or perhaps a ‘one off’?).
 

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bjm

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I applaud you for trying to stop this family history getting lost. Good luck in your quest.
 

clogs

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Mr Her mit,
not enough sawdust n turning shaving in ur workshop.....only kidding......
smart place and an even smarter lathe....serious envy ......
round leather belts......mmmmm....
 

bourbon

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My story is a bit sad really, Our Toolroom has an archdale radial drill not too big, I suppose around 10 feet high. The company is relocating 4.5 miles away. It will be going in the skip, along with various shapers. I have asked about selling them, but they are adamant they will be scrapped
 

Trevanion

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I wouldn't even bother trying. It's a Spanish company whose sole ambition has been to destroy the UK divisions

Well, just tell us which scrap yard they're going to, when they collect it they can swing it by mine for a little bit on top ;)
 

Mackty

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Hi All
First time poster here. I'm a guitar maker based in Nottingham, so I pretty much use woodworking tools and machinery, I've got no experience of metalworking at all. My great grandfather though was James Archdale who founded Archdale Machine tools. They mostly made massive radial arm drills and industrial lathes. This sort of thing....
View attachment 83353
Archdale as a company hasn't existed for decades, but I occasionally see some of the old machines come up for sale on ebay. I was hoping someone here might have used an Archdale, maybe a story they could share, or a photo, or even still have one up and running in a home workshop. Anything Archdale related really. And if anyone has any Archdale items for sale I'd bite your hand off! And if anyone knows of an Archdale that is still in use anywhere in the country that would be amazing. I would love to see one in action.
I have James Archdale junior's car in my garage. I think he took over the company in 1925 when your grandfather died. PM me please I would like to know if you have a photo of the car back then
 

lostb0y

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There’s a guy on youtube who was gifted an Archdale vertical mill and did a series of videos on its rebuild. His channel is Quick Bikes.
 

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