Small Press Gauge Bar – here comes Corflute
Because of the limited hand space available to fit gauge pins on small presses such as the Adana 6 x 4 HS and 5x3 etc, they are provided with a slot- adjustable metal bar which you raise and lower to level your card or paper. If this is missing or broken there are several options.
Double sided tape, an 18pt space side on, and a small finger of triangle card double sided tape as well, will do the trick.
Then there is the stainless steel ruler, cut to length, drilled and bolted with a wing nut, but you need to build a lip with DST and card.
I’ve found a 2c answer that can also be used on any handfed platen.
A strip of corflute (that’s plastic corrugated “cardboard” used extensively for real estate signs).Readily available at Warehouse Stationery, and a local real estate company will have a heap of it. Simply cut with a snap-off blade knife.
It is the square cells in the sheet that are the key, and you should get 4mm thick pieces.
Cut a 25mm deep strip, the width of your platen.
Look at the end cells – there will be about 6 in a 25mm strip. ( 6 x 4mm)
Place your ruler along the middle of the lowest cell and slice the Corflute.
You now have about a 2mm U shaped groove into which your paper will sit..perfectly.
Mount on the platen packing with double sided tape, or whatever fittings are provided with your press.
Great eh ?
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On my small table top presses i use a 6 point slug with double sided tape for my gauge pins, works great. if the paper pulls off the gauge pins i tape a small piece of chipboard on top of the slug to pull the paper from the type. Dick G.
There is an inherant problem with using a long strip as a head guide: if the sheet edge is bowed out (or deckled), you will not get consistant register because the sheet can pivot on the hump. Three-point register is the standard on all sheeetfed presses, and that means two separate head guides and one side guide. Most platen presses with built-in head lays use two sliding lays on a band. (On Vandercooks with multiple head guides, only one pair is used at any time, never all four.)