Category: Things we have

An Interem Solution to the Pneumatic Valves Problems

This week I’ve been occupied with (finally) putting away all the display mats I bought last year at the Anderson and Skyline matrix auctions. They have been cluttering up the shop since last summer with their variety of packaging. I

Posted in Caster Computer Control, Equipment Acquisition, Repair, and Maintenance, Kevin, Matrix Making, Monotype Composition Caster Tagged with:

Matrix Making: Handling Ink Gain

Letterpress printing has a property called “ink gain” where the inked area left on the printed sheet is a tiny bit larger than the type used to do the printing. Because of this, when designing type (which includes designing the

Posted in Gorton 3U Pantograph, Kevin, Matrix Making

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: ,

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

Pneumatic valves for Monotype computer control

The most expensive and bulky aspect of making a system for computer control of the Monotype composition caster is the pneumatic solenoid valves. You need 31 valves, and they typically cost $30-$50 each. They are generally large enough that they

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

Cleaning and refilling the Monotype pot

For the casting job I have coming up I want to use Monotype medium alloy (74/10/16% Pb/Sn/Sb) rather than the softer Linotype alloy (84/4/12%) currently in the pot, which I was using to cast spacing. To do this, I got

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