New letterpress help Challenge Gordon

I’m new to letterpress and recently picked up one from an old glove shop in Kentucky. It looks like I’m missing a gear that turns the ink plate. Is there anywhere that I could start looking for this? Any help is appreciated

image: photo2.jpg


image: photo1.jpg


image: photo.jpg


Log in to reply   4 replies so far

It was probably a match for the one that is there. You might check Boston Gear or one of the other stock gear people. It’s called a bevel gear and you’ll need the diameter and tooth count. Measure the outer diameter of the existing gear and from its widest point to the center of the ink disc shaft; double the latter measurement for the diameter of the missing gear. Hopefully they were the same diameter.


Thanks Bob! I’m hoping they were the same diameter. Looks like they could be. I’ll give that a try.

It looks like the ink disc shaft may be larger in diameter than the horizontal shaft. It also looks to me like the ink disc gear would have had a shorter hub because if it had a hub as big as the gear on the horizontal shaft, the teeth would probably be down to far.

The original gear may or may not have an odd-ball tooth profile/tooth spacing. You might be better off getting two new bevel gears, and then at least you would know that they would mesh correctly with each other. You will need to get gears to fit on the shaft sizes you have, or get the gears bored to your shaft sizes. You could also, if necessary, get the hub of the ink disc gear cut down so you could position the two gears to mesh correctly.

Good Luck!

Thanks for the advice Geoffrey. I called a local machine shop here in Cincinnati. They’re going to take a look at it and hopefully get the disc turning again.