Makeshift Gauge Pins

I know not everyone out there uses real gauge pins on every job. I would love to hear what kind of makeshift gauge pins folks are using, with maybe some pics. Thanks!

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Due to lack of guage pins, I use two lengths of lead, each with an overlapping length of card attached using double sided tape. This also helps to pull the stock away from the type as an alternative to gripper arms. A bit of a botch, but it does the trick!

in a pinch i’ve used 10 or 12 point 2 or 3 em quads glued to the tympan, lately i’ve used the Richsmall trick, a 6 or 12 point slug with the chipboard. you can also use just card stock or chipboard cut into a narrow strip (1/2”) with the ends folded up, double sided tape this to the top sheet for your pins, the card stock works good if you are using a base and don’t want to crush your base or pins. i’d post pictures but i can’t figure out how to do that.

Some spaces, double-sided tape and card stock, it does the trick.

image: gauge pins.jpg

gauge pins.jpg

Normally I use either Megills double grips or some Hamilton “wood type” gauges- the kind with the two threaded knurled nobs that you crank down with a key after fitting the appendages into a slit cut in the topsheet.
I use regular oiled tympan for a topsheet, which I have trouble sticking tape and other things to. Maybe mine is just a bit more oily than normal or something. So if I need to use an alternative feeding guide, I put a layer of mylar stickerpaper on it before putting it on the platen, and it actually becomes easier to wipe ink off along with being simple to stick things to.

When feeding coasterstock, I use the same double-stick plate material that boxcar uses to attach plates to their bases- I just attach some coasterstock that I’ve cut on a round to have the coasters fit flush. It’s paper and it’s the same thickness as the stock I’m feeding, so it’s not gonna mess up my base.

If I’m really in a pinch and I need something to hold, I can superglue some chipboard down. As long as I’m careful with the glue, it works and I don’t make a mess.

PVC pipe wrap tape works. Use paper strips or pieces of offset plate material for tonges. Similar to gravemaker’s approach.

image: PVC-RegisterGuide.jpg


image: PVCregister.jpg


image: PVCtape.jpg


I have been using photo corners.

I use paper clips as replacement gauge pins on windmill guides but that is only on a windmill.

swap the paper clips on the “windmll” for yard broom bristles , then if you hit the form you dont dent the bed plate (base ) and you dont take a dirty great lump out of your cutting dies ! Wont save your type or nylos though .

I usually make sure the base is above the guide pins. Sometimes I’ll extend them by adding tape.

After that last post I remembered we do have a broom in the back. I just might try that idea.

just when you think you’ve heard everything Peter comes up with broom bristles, what a great idea, thanks peter.

Considering how many pieces you could cut from a broom it should last quite a long time.

Peter…..tried the broom idea today and it worked but I’ll need to get a clean broom! he he I suspect the artificial bristles would be easier to work with, as the natural bristles are different thicknesses.

What kind of tapes do you use?? mine always seem to come loose at some point in the run.

What is pvc tape? where does one get it?

Peter…the broom bristles have been working great…thanks for the idea. Just bought a brand new mini broom today and it should last quite a long time. Ron

An idea born out of embarrassment , due to my once hitting a cutting die with a paperclip at 3am and the job had to go at 6am not such a problem really but it was kiss cut job that was going on a label applicating machine where the labels must release cleanly !!!
PVC tape also called electrical tape or insulating tape .

Trying to remember but it seems I may have done the same thing. So I know the feeling!

Thomas Gravemaker
The picture you put up is a adana ?
the bottom set of sheet guides you have on arent needed really as the long flat bar you have at the bottom of the platen holding the packing has a lip that serves as head lay , however i do realise there are times you will have to make them up but in the instances you would do so would also require they were thinner than the long bar surely ?

Peter, I know that I can use the bar as a lay guide, but for smaller jobs, I still prefer a couple of spaces and some double-sided tape.

I did wonder , i have found that with really thick stock the slot/lip on the bar can be too narrow so i see why you might have chosen your set up , i thought i would ask , i dont use the adana much and then i use it as a glue machine mainly !

It’s a 5 x 3 and I didn’t have enough of those small clips that came originally with the press, to hold the packing down. I use the two remaining clips to hold the packing at the top and the bar to hold it at the bottom. You can use some tape as well to fix your packing…