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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

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I find it's always a good idea to thoroughly clean any machine. Sometimes a lot can be cleaned with minimal disassembly and other times you need to remove every piece. I try and find a happy middle ground, but no matter what make sure every bearing surface, anything coming in contact with something else or otherwise interacting with it, is taken apart, cleaned, and oiled. As you've seen, it can make a world of difference. So much time can otherwise be taken up trying to figure out a problem so it's important to have a good foundation.

Speaking of good foundations, I also am a fan of Mills' book. I have both and like them both but Mills' is the one I turn to most often. Interestingly enough, I got my 10x15 C&P from a man who studied under Mills for a time and was also a high school print shop teacher in the 1960's. I did a post on him in my blog with a photo under the heading Ecce Homo.

A hint about treadling, if you haven't discovered it already. I don't treadle my press but my friend Alan has a few in his shop that I fiddle around with. What works best for me in terms of feeding is leaning against the delivery board while working. It supports my body so I can work with my arms and hands just as well as if I was standing with both feet on the ground. Since the Pearl's board is a little small you might have Brendon make you an extension with a pad on the front edge that can be screwed to the bottom of the the original board. If he got ambitious he might cut slots in it where the screws go through so that it was adjustable in and out. It will be omfortable and if necessary could be removed in the future with no evidence left behind.

I think you should apply grease and always try to maintain your machinery as this is the only way that it will keep on rolling.

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