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Sneaky! I didn't take the shafts all the way out to check for straightness, but turning them in place and measuring the change sounds like a reasonable experiment. I did notice that there was a side-to-side deviation when unhooked from one end, which could have been due to bend in the shaft - I assumed the mount was misaligned turnwise also. Alternatively it might be that the bearings on the bed are not the correct distance apart!

Given the robust construction of the rest of the machine, the flimsyness of the Y axis is pretty poor. I've got a feeling that I might be turning the handles on my friend's Bridgeport again some time soon...