Gear noise

I have finished oiling every place I can figure to oil on my Ben Franklin Gordon…..the press was easy to treadle when I got it and now its near effortless! BUT

in oiling and turning I began to notice a noise I haven’t heard previously to oiling as far as I know….I believe it’s coming from the large gear on the right, perhaps the connection piece between the arm and gear. It only sounds on the 10 o’clock position of the gear turning and only as the flywheel turns away fom you. It does not sound when flywheel is turning towards you

It sounds like a slight clatter not too loud.

The press moves excellently, there is absolutely no screeching or loud noises and I’ve lubed every moving part

Anyone know what it may be or of its concerning. Possibly too much oil?


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I have never heard of too much oil causing any problem other than the perceived problem of having to wipe it from the floor.
A clatter or chatter sound usually comes from the gears. One school of mechanics says that gears are to be greased. An old C & P parts manual listed a certain oil, but no grease. The gears must be lubricated. Oil gears.

Maybe you could consider using a heavier oil , it is possible you dont have a problem as such just a noise after all the machine is old , my swift makes a bit of a grinding noise part way through the cycle its no problem as long as everything is running free. i know mine does it as the platen opens which is at a point where it is almost in “free wheel” but there is no knock in the sound so no worries. Inky suggests oil for the gears ,that seems right, You could go down the route of oiling the gear to shaft points but put heavy grease on the meshing gears that would have the effect of tightening the gear to gear ccontact a little and probably quieten it .

Your press is about 100 years old, its supposed to make a few noises, i’m no where near 100 and i make some noises when i start up. keep it oiled and let it talk to you, i think every machine makes some kind of noise, soon you will be able to tellif the press needs oiling when the noise changes.

I am using at the advice of a fellow member…30W ND oil. So for gears, what brand or kind of gear oil should I be using?

Thanks All! It sure is nice to have people in the know when the newbie knows….nothing…nothing! But am learning!

As dick G says it is old , i cannot suggest a grade as our oil grades will mean nothing to yuo as yours is alien to me i am in the uk. Just try a grease in the teeth and you should notice the change as dick said , you can always wipe it off if you dont like it .!!

Any oil is better than no oil. Any brand is fine. 30W is good for all the regular oiling points and will work on the gears also. Differentials on rear drive cars and farm tractors take a heavy oil. There are gears in there that turn a lot faster than your press. You can use a 90W gear oil. Just oil

A critical lubrication point on Gordon platens of any make is the cam follower that runs inside the large gear, at the end of the rocker arm. On C&Ps there is a hole that gives access from the side, but otherwise you have to advance the press until you can look down into the camway and see the follower and get its oil hole on top. Clean out the oil hole and lubricate, it should turn freely.
If neglected (or worse, greased rather than oiled) it may develop a flat spot and stop turning. The same is true of similar parts that move the ink disk and the gripper assembly.

There is a hole dead center of the face of the large gear…is this the one your speaking of parallel_imp? There are some small holes on the connector to the gear and arm.

Dead center wouldn’t be an acess hole for the rocker arm cam follower, which moves from the outer edge of the big gear to maybe half-way in (just guessing, don’t have one to look at anymore). Different Gordon-style presses have different features but the rocker arm is common; maybe they don’t have that access hole. That’s why you should look from the inner side to find the cam follower.

I think that hole is only on New Style C&Ps and Gordon-style platens. My Old Style C&P does not have one.

Be sure to check the bolt that holds the Cam follower. I have found that it can work loose.