South Bend SB1047GF Lathe Review

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In Brief: South Bend SB1047GF Lathe Review

The South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe has a whopping 440-volts of power behind it, bringing one of the strongest metalworking lathes to the industry. Combined with a massive 80” between centers, this lathe is capable of handling even the largest of metalworking operations with little to no problem.

South Bend Lathe Co. has been in operates for just about 25 years now, basing their operations out of South Bend, IN.

They began by producing lathes and have since developed their lathes into some of the most precise metalworking lathes in the world.

South Bend Lathe Co. has customers in more than 88 countries worldwide and their machines are used in just about every type of industry: home workshops, schools, and large manufacturers alike.

Key Specifications of South Bend SB1047GF

South Bend SB1047PF - 21' x 80' Turn-Nado Gearhead Lathe with DRO

The South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe has a few unique features that make it a standout for any turning operations.

The first is the Fagor digital readout. With older lathes, it could be difficult to get precise readouts. With the digital readout, RPM requirements and measurements can be precise.

More importantly, the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe comes equipped with standard features that some of the more basic lathes lack.

This includes a Halogen work light, three-way bed, and a coolant system to make the entire work process that much better.

The 440-volt motor is unlike any other on the market. Most others are in the 240-volt range, which means that the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe can deliver power like no other.

Multiple speed settings from 20-1600 RPM allow for optimal control during turning operations.

Read the long list of South Bend SB1047GF specs here :

Model Number/ NameSB1047PF
Ideal ForMetal
Current (amps)18
Speed (rpm)20-1600
Distance between centers (in)80
Spindle thread (in)1 ¼”-8
Overall dimensions130 x 27 x 54.75
Weight (lbs)7400
Other FeaturesCoolant System

Top Features to Look For

South Bend SB1047PF Gearhead Lathe with DRO, 21-Inch by 80-Inch

The South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe comes equipped with several features, making it one of the best in the industry.

You will see these lathes in many garage workshops and manufacturing machine shops across the world.

Supreme Power

With an unmatched 440-volts, the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe delivers on supreme power.

Between that and the 80-inches between centers, this lathe is capable of taking on even the largest of projects with ease.

Digital Readout and Threading Dial Indicator

Older lathes can have the difficulty of indicating and setting RPM manually.

But with the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe, you can use the digital readout and threading dial indicator to get the most precise of readings and settings possible.

All of this means a more improved, easier turning experience.

Safety Features

This space won’t be enough to cover all of the safety features on the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe.

The chip tray collects debris for easier cleanup, the splash guard prevents chips from flying into the operators face, and the jog button/emergency stop make it easier than ever to stop the machine at a moment’s notice.


Power and Performance

When talking about the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe, the first thing mentioned will be the power; all 440-volts of it.

With adjustable speeds ranging from 20 RPM all the way up to 1600 RPM, users can get as much or as little speed and power as needed to perform the most precise of machining operations.

Ease of Use

This isn’t a machine that you can learn off the street. Experienced amateurs and professional machine workers will fair best with the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe and all of its options.

When familiar with these features, it will help you achieve the turning operations that you desire.


Ease of Maintenance, Repairs, and Warranty

Keeping the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe clean is relatively easy thanks to the chip tray that collects excess material chips and can easily be blown away thanks to the quick-connect air hose feature.

Replacing the cutting tools and centers is recommended once every few years to ensure that excess wear and tear is avoided.


South Bend Lathe Co. offers a limited one-year warranty on each of their lathes. This is meant to cover parts and repairs as well as any potential defects as a result of materials or craftsmanship.

Proper maintenance is required to maintain the integrity of the warranty. Improper care, maintenance, or use can cause the warranty to be voided.

For more questions about your warranty, contact South Bend’s customer support line at (360) 734-1540 or fill out the contact form on their support contact page with your specifics.

Price of the South Bend SB1047GF

The South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe is a serious manufacturing shop lathe and the price reflects that. At over $30,000, it is the kind of lathe that can become a focal point of any machine shop for years to come.

Since this is a serious lathe meant for major shop settings, most of the customers were manufacturing machine shops.

They feel that the price, though high, was matched by the power and the number of features delivered by the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe.


Pros and cons of the South Bend SB1047GF

Here are some of the pros and cons of the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe :


  • Higher Power
  • Adjustable Speeds
  • Digital Readout
  • Safety Features


  • Huge costs
  • Meant for Machine Shops


Who Should Buy the South Bend SB1047GF ?

Industrial machine shops that have a serious need for high power, precision lathe need look no further than the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe.

With the number of features, not to mention additional safety features, this is a precise, safe lathe.

Our Recommendation

The price tag may seem like a deterrent, but shop owners can feel confident that they are getting a major piece of machinery that will be around for years to come.

Shops with greater precision needs should look to the South Bend SB1047GF Gearhead Lathe.

Last update on 2024-07-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

About Ryan Henderson

Ryan has more than ten years of experience of writing on power tools - use, reviews, and more. During his free time, he loves cooking and spending time with his dog.

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