I have just acquired a very sad Universal I AB which from a first look is missing a few parts. I am hoping to get it back in good order but really don’t know how I will even be able to make a start without a reasonably detailed manual. Is there such a beast to be had? If so I would welcome a copy or a lead to where I might get one. I saw it was missing the gripper system in its entirety – apparently the previous owner used it for monoprints which he just layed on the table and then ran the cylinder over the top. Are these gripper assemblies still available new or second hand? I ask this as I live in South Australia where there are precious few of these presses to be had, let alone any spares.
This will be along term project so I expect to be returning here quite a few times.
I’m sure we could make a new gripper bar, but as mentioned, it would be very expensive–maybe in the range of $1500 without counting up all the various parts at this point. As important is if the rest of the operating parts for the gripper are still on the press, starting with the foot pedal, linkage, and operating rod and cams inside the cylinder. But the value of the press for printing is minimal with out an operating gripper.
For anyone who has missed the point, we do have manuals for almost all the Vandercooks. The poor quality SP-15 manual that was mentioned was replaced by us without question, and as part of our service, especially to those who patronize us, is the research and copying of relevant drawings for specific problems. I either email a scan of the drawing or mail a paper copy. I do not share manufacturing specifications.
Did you try sending an email to the Letpress List?
For a manual, contact NA Graphics
. A used gripper bar will be difficult to acquire. Contact Steve Robinson
NA, which owns the Vandercook original drawings, can have it made, but the cost will be substantial.