Just when I thought my SP-15 problems were over, there’s another issue! I apologize for the length of this post, but I’m trying to be as thorough as possible.
I noticed that the press was inking rather lightly, but the impression was good and I had plenty of ink on the rollers. As I adjusted the form rollers I noticed that they were significantly higher towards the end of the bed (away from the feed board). Also, the gear that forces the geared form roller to roll was skipping in the track and would stop spinning shortly after engaging the teeth.
We started by trying to shim the track up. This kept the form roller spinning, but the height was still inconsistent front to rear. Next, we tried readjusting the side bearings – many times. This actually seemed to hurt rather than help. We adjusted the top bearings in trip and the bottom in print to a 0.004″ gap using an automotive feeler gauge, which I believe to be correct. We tried it the other way (adjust top in print and bottom in trip) and the press would no longer trip, leading me to believe that we were running into problems with interference due to the bearings being positioned incorrectly.
After we played with it for a while, we noticed that one of the form rollers sits too low on the gear side of the press and is unable to be adjusted any higher (there is a 1/4″+ ink strike on the roller setting gauge). The other side adjusted fine with a simple turn of the knob. We don’t think that the problem is with unevenness in the bed or bearers because a blind impression is consistently good no matter where we put the plate on the bed. This leads me to believe that the problem is isolated to the form rollers and the associated pieces.
Photos of the inking problem are here:
So, that’s my situation. Here are my questions:
1 – Is it possible that it’s a bearing adjustment issue?
2 – Is there any way to put spacers on the form rollers to bring the up to where they need to be?
3 – What else might cause the inconsistency in form roller height from side to side and from front to back?
4 – Could shimming the gear track have exacerbated the problem? Was it the correct fix given the problem of the gear skipping teeth?
5 – Is the bearing supposed to roll against the form roller on the geared side (photo at link above)?
6 – Is it possible that my bed or my bearers are uneven?
If you have any other ideas, that would help a lot. I’m fresh out and frustrated. Thanks.