C&P 10x15 horrible clunking noise & locks on impression HELP!

I’m Desperate for help, I think my C&P is dying!
I bought a C&P 10x15 and It’s always made a small clunking noise when closing for impression. I just figured that was one of its quirky sounds. I’ve really babied this & am diligent about oiling a lot, even if I’m only doing short 20 runs. I’m also not going for a huge impression, just something you can feel.

Im printing a 5x7 without any full coverage areas, just thin lines across half of the plate. Im using photopolymer plates. I’ve been printing on 110 lettra. The clunking was worse on the lettra than on the trial pieces. I then ran 220 & it increased HUGELY. I did another cycle slowly by hand just to pinpoint the noise & it stopped on impression & the fly wheel started rolling back the opposite way, towards me. I feel stupid for doing this again but I replaced the 220 with thin card stock I use for trial pieces to hear the clunking & it sounded just as horrible. Needless to say I’m FREAKING OUT! I cannot pinpoint the noise either, it sounds like its opposite the flywheel inside the press somewhere.

I’ve looked at every post on here & checked everything for breaks, welds, and movement. The press seems like its super solid. No movement on the platen or other parts. I follow the oiling guide to a T & get all holes & rubbing parts. I adjusted the platen & backed off impression at first before running the press, so much that it really can’t back off anymore. When I adjusted it using type in each corner it gave a kiss, no impression. I think my packing is okay, but I could be wrong. I’ve got pressboard, index & bond paper, 1 piece of each. The overall impression on the 220 is light. I’ve never bruised the back on the 220 or the 110. At the first I tried more packing & then less trying to get the noise to stop, but it didn’t matter what or how much packing I had.

I HAVE to finish this run like yesterday, but I do not want to continue at the cost chandler’s health. I don’t want to kill it!

Any thoughts or help would be much appreciated!!!!

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Where are you located?

I had one that made a horrible clunking noise like yours, the more impression the more loud the noise got, i found out the collar that the shaft runs thru on the flywheel side was worn kind of egg shaped, light impression was ok but with a large form or heavy stock i got a loud noise, so i turned the collar 180 degrees, the noise seemed less but was still there. i ran the press that way for about 10 years, it didn’t seem to get any worse. Dick G.

Plate press- I’m in Colorado

Dick G- I’ll check the collar now. I’m willing to investigate everything & anything at this point!

The sound is also like a clu-clunk and feels like its getting hit from the bottom up. Just a nasty noise!

Check behind the ink disk, where the dog hits the teeth behind the disk.

hwest007, how old is your press? it could be just plain ole
wore out. A simple test is to open the platen and embrace
it with your forearms and see how much play there is by gently rocking it. If there is a lot a action that is not a good
sign. Also have you closely insepected and oiled the main cam? Best james

Don’t know what they may cost now but I have used a cheap medical stethoscope for many years and it has helped pinpoint the source of many clunks, thumps, grinds and noises!!
Good luck.

First of all, I don’t have a fix yet, but THANK YOU all for your input! You all are so very helpful and kind to take the time to try to help me. I do appreciate it.

Dick G- Darn it, the collar looks fine. I was really hoping that was the problem.

Mega- Behind the ink disk looks fine too, no noise or any issues.

James- Theres SLIGHT rocking, like very very minimal. It really feels solid though. Do you think the slightest movement can cause an issue? The oil cam is greased now, but I’m cleaning it out and will replace it with oil. Do you think this could also cause a problem? I read somewhere to grease these parts, but perhaps I should go back to trusty old oil. I just found last night that C&P didn’t suggest greasing, only oiling.

Stanislaus- The press is a New Style, made in the first year the new series came out, around 1911. The thing is everything seems solid on it, it doesn’t “feel” too worn, but I’m not an expert. No welds or breaks that I can find.

I think I’ll get a mechanics stethoscope as suggested.

If you all have any other suggestions, keep them coming. I’ll post on the outcomes. Thanks again!

My collar was worn so badly that i could lift the flywheel a little. You should put your press on impression without the chase in it then try to rock the platen, if it rocks your press is worn. The only other thing i can think of is the large gear on the right side has a track inside of it, you need to kaap that oiled. good luck Dick G.

Are the spline gears free of all debris? I would concentrate on where the gears mesh close to when the sound is made.

I have seen things like small parts or junk stuck in the spline that are not large enough to stop the press cause the type of noise. Particularly when heavy grease is used to lube the spline gears. It acts like a magnet for debris.

If this is not the case, start looking at the various cam followers for debris.

1) is your image centered or a bit low of center on the platen? you do not want heavy impression high on the plate. this will cause the “gate lock” to pop out causing a big clunk or even a bang. the gate lock moves in and out to hold the rocker in place during impression.
2) check for a loose key in the pinion gear on the crankshaft on gear side. any play or movement there will give the kind of sound you describe. the noise happens when the pinion snaps past center. the press loads up on impression fighting against the sheet. thicker stock, more pressure. as the press continues through its cycle the arms go past full impression and the pressure in the impression area actually forces the press open, reversing the force on the pinion gear. this is the noise.

dickg- There’s no movement withe the platen when closed, it all seems very sturdy and solid. The collar looks fine, and there is no movement with the flywheel going up and down. There is some movement (1/8” maybe) on the flywheel when I push and pull it going in and out (pushing towards the right) I don’t know if that matters?

phasetwo- It does seem clear of large debris, I went through it last night. But I’m going to take your suggestion and de-grease the entire thing now and make sure the debris is not the culprit. I really hope that’s what it is. I wonder if that would also make it lock up on impression, or not go a full turn?

ericm- Grrrr, I wish it was the placement of the plate. I pretty much have it centered on a small base about the size of a 5x7. Although I’m taking up the whole base w/ the plate, but its not full coverage everywhere. Basically there’s an oval outline about 5” high in the center of the plate with text inside, and a continuous stripe pattern outside the oval. The stripes are about a millimeter thick w/ a millimeter between each stripe.

I also checked the key in the pinion. No luck, it’s all good. Haha, I feel so guilty actually wanting to find things broken or not working, and I’m actually finding that I’m disappointed when it’s not screwed up! I feel like I would at least have somewhere to go if I found something broken.

Again, THANK YOU all so very much for your suggestions. I’m desperate and will try anything at this point.

most of these old presses have some play in them, maybe your pinion gear slipped a little, but i don’t think it should cause the press to make that noise. Check to see if there is any pets, husband, boyfriends or other relatives in there, can’t think of anything else to check.

To elaborate on what ericm said in his item 1: If you look under the delivery board, you will see what he calls the gate lock. I call it the platen lock, but ericm’s name might be the correct one. It is the “X” shaped casting.

Keep a safe distance away, but while you are still looking under the delivery board, have someone slowly run the press through its cycle by hand: as the press gets close to making the impression, an extension which is part of the platen casting, moves up against the casting which holds the big shaft directly under the delivery board. Then the platen lock (the “X” shaped piece), will move in underneath the extension of the platen casting and wedge the platen firmly so that it can’t move. The movement of the platen lock is governed by a cam on the upper left corner of the platen lock, which mates with the wheel on the left side of the big shaft. The impression is made while the platen casting is wedged between the two other castings, and this is what keeps the platen from rocking or moving during the impression.

Is all this working correctly on your press, and does the platen become tightly wedged so that it can’t rock, just before and during the time it prints.

Hi everyone! I am having a similar problem and although I have cleaned up everything and oil every single hole, the clunking noise still is there when I print with packing. When there is no packing noise disappears… it’s as if the machine is finding too much resistance when printing. Can you please watch this video I’ve uploaded to help me solve the mystery?


Thanks a lot!!!!