Old Style Rider Bushings

Greetings Paul and Vanderbloggers (First post!)

I’ve acquired a Vandercook No 3 – OS (green) model. Serial is #9403 (currently registered to a previous owner on the census). While already functional, I am in the midst of typical maintenance/rehab and becoming familiar with this particular model.

First issue: This backside rider roller (Part M-123) is loose/large — cause by the interior of it disintegrating (there was some black gunk falling out of it). This obviously affects inking. I’m not even sure how to take this apart (if I can).

Question: Can this be replaced, modified …or do I need to look for an entire new roller carriage?



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Paul Moxon, Moderator
10 years ago

Jonathan: a solid rider would have to have a bore for the stationary tie rods and would bind during rotation—Especially since the top frame is removable and has likely been dropped at some point.

A solid rider, as on an SP15, works when it has journaled (solid bearing) ends that rotate in notches on the the vibrator frame.

Jonathan Jarvis
10 years ago

could just as easily get a roller and shaft turned completely out of steel?

Eric Holub
10 years ago

Today you might use oil-impregnated bronze bushings, or some machinable nylon, but I bet wood to original specs will still be cheaper and outlast the alternatives.

Fritz Klinke
10 years ago

The original F-761 wood bearing is still available from us, $9.75 each. Wood is still specified where oiling is not practical, as in the rider rollers. And these are not made out of 2x4s. The fact that the bearing lasted from the shipping date of May 15, 1941 for this press until about now is an indication of the long wearing capacity of the wood. I’m only 3 weeks older than this press and my body parts are getting replaced with titanium.


The Arm
10 years ago

The brass ends of this assembly are held in place with taper pins. You will need to drive out two of them on one end of the assembly to get access to the broken bushing. While it is apart I would suggest replacing all four. They were originally wood and I think the original wood ones are still available from NA Graphics, but Perry Tymeson (Suitcase Press) sells some very high quality synthetic ones that won’t disintegrate like yours has and are a tad easier to successfully install.


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