Vandercook Bed Plate

Howdy and Happy New Year to all of you. I hope your Christmas was family-rich.

Earlier in the year I removed the bed plate from my SP-20 and stood it on its edge (I had no idea not to do that) for several days to do some cleaning/maintenance. When I placed the plate back on the bed it had warped and I did not really know it until I was trying to adjust the roller height and could not get them high enough.

I understand the plates are galley thick at .05.

Has anyone sourced a bed plate replacement? And from where?

I checked with NA Graphics and they do not have any for an SP-20.

I appreciate any leads.


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Have you tried a good machine shop to straighten?

Howdy EricM — yes, but with no luck so far.


dadofgauds2, you could go to a sheet metal shop and have them cut you a new one 18 gauge should do.
best james

Get cold-rolled steel NOT hot rolled.

I concur with the previous comments but think it’s worth refining their points:
1) Confirm the actual thickness from the supplier. The industry standard for 18 gauge steel is 0.0478”. This may be adequate for your work, such as printing wood type (often 0.921”), but if you are printing new metal or photopolymer on a purpose-made base you might consider adding a 0.002” packing sheet under the bed plate or the base.
2) Have the width of the bed plate trimmed to be slightly narrower than the press bed width so that it can be removed to clean its underside.

Meanwhile, flip the bed plate over and test for springiness. If possible, build a heavier form with an iron chase and an iron furniture to improve its flatness.