Split fountain effect with the Heidelberg Windmill 10x15

does anybody know if the split fountain effect is possible with the Heidelberg Windmill?

I’ve seen this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SnPkzSYEqFM

..but I was wondering whether is possible to block the main big metal roller on the windmill so the inks won’t merge each others.


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Heidleburg rollers move back and forth to distribute the ink, you won’t be able to split the fountain unless you disable the oscillating rollers (its too much trouble and not worth it) Dick G.

holy crap that’s too many rollers to clean. lol.

that’s a pretty sweet effect though.

something I assume also not possible on a C&P.



It’s very doable. You need to disable the rotation of the ink disk and apply the colors of ink in verticle stripes on the disk.


my list of ‘things i plan on doing’ grows longer every day.
thanks john.

Hello Dickg.
so isn’t totally possible!?


like John Falstrom said you can stop the ink disk on a job press or table top press from turning but the windmill you can’t. Dick G.

Does anyone make a replacement roller that doesn’t have the oscillating motion?

Since there are two oscillators on a Windmill, I don’t think you can get around it. The rear oscillator probably can be deactivated by disconnecting the linkage, but the more important one is the ink drum and taking the press apart to disconnect the oscillator crescent goes far beyond simple or quick. Honestly, the quickest path to running split fountain would be to have a C&P with a full fountain and a distributor roller—lock the disk and away you go.

If you can disconnect the ink turning mechanism on a Kluge, that might be an even better production press for the job, but you still need the distributor rollers or the old style Kluges with the extra ink disk rollers.

I didn’t realize the assembly within the Windmill was so complex. Guess I should learn that as mine is due to be delivered in the next few weeks.

I’ve done split on a Vandercook which wasn’t too hard. It may have been Dick who suggested to run it with the power off, thereby minimizing the ink mixing through the run. It worked out quite well. Of course the Vandy’s not exactly a high-quantity production press…

You can very, very easily stop the ink turning mechanism on a Kluge. At least, on my presses. Sometimes all I have to do is look at them cross-ways and they’ll stop turning..

There’s a small toggle that climbs a gear to turn the ink disc on the Kluge. All you need to do is dial it past the top (or was it the bottom?) position and the toggle will cease to make contact with the gear which regulates the turning. Press will then run normally.

Fabio, check out this : Beast Pieces is a blog that shows the effect I think you’re looking for http://www.beastpieces.com/ Scroll about halfway down, “Split Fountain Wedding”. That doesn’t look too hard to set up. Please show pictures of what you end up printing :)

Thank you all guys.

Like carriev said, and Amber from Flywheel Press suggested me on PPletterpress group the wonderful guys at the High on Fire studio has successed to make a split fountain on the cylinder Heidelberg.

A partial solution can be this: http://www.beastpieces.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/0001_Stu...

..put some dividers in the inkwell (I hope it’s the right English word). Eric Holub suggested me too (or at least is what I have understood) to raise the distance between the form rollers and the big frontal metal roller..in this way the ink won’t mix like it should.

I hope to find others info and make a test on my Windmill in future.

Thank you all guys, you’re great,

You didn’t quite get what I was suggesting. Since your post implied you did not want the split-fountain inks to mix, and since the Windmill oscillation is fixed, the way to prevent mixing is to modify the rollers by having a strip ground down below roller surface height, in a width to match the travel of the oscillatiors. The ink can’t jump this little “moat” as the drum moves back and forth, and so it cannot mix. This strip becomes a non-inking area. All the forms and rider in contact with the oscillators would have to be ground in line with each other, so this isn’t a cheap solution. But it is a proven method on the Vandercook, and if done right, ought to work on the Windmill.
If Heidelberg had built adjustment of the oscillators into the press, the control would be labelled as such (as it is on the Heidelberg cylinder), and it would be in the manual. They did not hide such things from the operator.

Hello paralle_imp (are you Eric Holub, right?)
perhaps my question wasn’t clear (my English is quite poor).

I want a common split fountain effect but I was wondering whether the oscillations of the main metal roller won’t mix totally the ink, printing another color and not a split fountain effect. I hope this time is more clear!

About the blank are method you are describing..I can’t understand where exactly put the strip (sorry!)

I’ll check on the Heidelberg manual but until now I haven’t never listened it was possible. Another problem about the labels: in Europe the Windmill labels are Deutch or French, my labels are Deutch, and I don’t know Deutch!


If you want for example half the form in red and half the form in black, the groove would be put around the middle of each rubber roller, in the center. That is, rubber is removed from the surface of the roller so it does not contqact the drum. If it is more like 1/4 red and 3/4 black, then the groove would be at the 3/4 position. The idea is that with a gap in the rubber slightly wider than the travel of the oscillator, the two inks won’t be carried into each other.
If you actually want the colorss to blend in the middle, forget I ever said a thing.

Hello Eric,
thanks for the reply.

Do you speak about a groove. A groove is something like a “pit”. How can I create this gap on the roller?!


Another trick I have heard of, but haven’t had sucess with (don’t have proper fountain dividers) is to use Albany grease (actually petrolatum/petroleum jelly ie; Vaseline) in the color gutter. It sort of worked for me but you need a divider in the fountain and the stuff is a real bear to clean off. It also requires a fair size gutter (2 inches) so you either will need more paper.

My attempt was for a work and whirl job on the guides with a second color border. I got the imposition to work, but not the split fountain.

I could see and adjustable oscillator could be a nice option for the 10 x 15, but the ink drum is probably near impossible to adjust that way. Of course 99.9 percent of your jobs won’t need require that function anyway (hence I would be averse to grinding my rollers/oscillators unless I had a dedicated job to make it worthwhile).

thanks for the tips but there’s a wall between my English and your English :)

Can you explain me better what do you mean with fair size gutter!!?


Getting the groove in a composition roller is easy, just cut with a sharp knife; it was a common practice to prepare rollers for use with numbering machines. It is tougher with a rubber roller but still possible with the right blade.
Grinding would be better, that is after all how the rollers are surfaced by the maker, on a lathe. You would need a grinding wheel, and some way to support and turn the roller as you grind it.
You’d have to do either way carefully, to avoid ruining the rollers. And in the end they will no longer be useable on any form with image in that gap area. So unless it is a big job, or one of many similar jobs, it’d be easier and cheaper to do it in two separate runs and leave the rollers alone.
By the way, a “gutter” is a blank area between elements in a form, for example between pages in a multi-page sheet. A blank area outside those pages would be a “margin”.

Thank you Eric!