Month: May 2015

From drought to downpour

We’ve had several weeks here with essentially no rain, and the garden has been looking rather sad. I planted tomatoes, cucumbers, melons, and basil around May 24th, with promise of rain (finally!) in the forecast but it did not materialize,

Posted in Gardening, Kevin, Weather

Challenge Guillotine (still) for sale

We still have our Challenge 265 power guillotine for sale. I’ve removed the VFD and converted the wiring back to plain 208V 3-phase. The problems with the VFD tripping turned out to be due to a defective current sensor in

Posted in Sold

More information on Matrix pneumatic valves

This week I was having another look at the pneumatic solenoid valves I want to use to run my Monotype from a computer. I was somewhat disappointed that the valves I had were the Normally Open (N/O) type and designed

Posted in Caster Computer Control, Equipment Acquisition, Repair, and Maintenance, Kevin

Cleaning up the pantograph

The Gorton 3U pantograph engraver/mill I just bought needed a bit of fixing up. Some of the bearings in the mechanism were loose, things were dry (of oil) and pretty dirty, and there was a drive belt missing. I have

Posted in Equipment Acquisition, Repair, and Maintenance, Gorton 3U Pantograph, Kevin

More Equipment!

The main reason for my visit to Don Black last Friday was to pick up a new (to me) machine. This is a Gorton 3U pantograph mill/engraver, which turned up when Don and Craig were reorganizing their stock. This machine

Posted in Equipment Acquisition, Repair, and Maintenance, Gorton 3U Pantograph, Kevin, Other people Tagged with: ,

Monomatic Parts

I got a big lot of what appeared to be justification wedges for a Monotype composition caster from Don Black last week, many of them brand new, still in the protective plastic dip from the factory. It turns out, however,

Posted in Equipment Acquisition, Repair, and Maintenance, Kevin, Mystery Parts, Other people Tagged with:

Strip Moulds at Don Black’s

While I was at Don Black’s today, Don mentioned that in the process of cleaning up their warehouse (a daunting project which appears to be coming along well) he found a few boxes of what he thought were Monotype parts.

Posted in Equipment Acquisition, Repair, and Maintenance, Mystery Parts, Other people Tagged with:

Cleaning up unearths a treasure—a month late

I did a round of cleaning up in the shop, partly to search for my missing mat holder, and partly because I picked up more parts from Don Black. While cleaning up, I found the box of stuff I picked

Posted in Equipment Acquisition, Repair, and Maintenance, Kevin, Monotype Composition Caster

Measuring air valve spring strength

In addition to poor flow when open, the other shortcoming of my stock of surplus Matrix pneumatic valves is poor sealing (leakage) when operated in NC mode, where the shutter spring is the only force holding back the flow of

Posted in Caster Computer Control, Equipment Acquisition, Repair, and Maintenance, Kevin

Measuring air valve shutters

Looking deeper into the poor airflow observed on my stock of surplus Matrix pneumatic valves, I did a subjective measurement of the airflow on each port, on a scale from 0 to 5, using a 20PSI supply. At zero, the

Posted in Caster Computer Control, Equipment Acquisition, Repair, and Maintenance, Kevin