Yeah, I did something similar with a 6x18 mini-lathe. I remounted the headstock on a riser base and made new, taller mounts for the two bed rails. I also swapped out the tubular rails for solid, cold rolled steel bar stock. I tweaked the electronic speed control, upping the amperage from 2.5 amps. to 5 amps and added filtered fan cooling to the headstock. There is a port on the right end for a shop vac hose, as the lathe frame tends to capture some chips. Since the original lathe was intended to be mounted on a board, I built a torque box frame for the unit to make it more stiff. I ended up with a 14x36 lathe that can also be configured as a gap bed lathe. I built this in 2001 and have been quite satisfied with its performance.
I've gone out to find myself. If I return before I get back, have me wait for me.
"Sawdust is Man Glitter"
Made one longer... by another 4'. Turning length capacity is about 8' 3", overall length is 10'. Still just a 12" lathe but outboard is basically to the floor if you wanted to try that. WAY too big for our little two-car garage shop and it's 3 phase so I can't even use it.