Arab Parts in Works
Arab Parts in Works

The Arab is a mix of cast-iron frame; steel rods and brass. Machines were fet­ed for their reli­a­bil­i­ty and stur­di­ness. They have to be kept well-oiled and clean. When buy­ing, look out for –

  • cracks in the frame (dif­fi­cult to repair)
  • jud­der on open­ing the plat­en (could be a symp­tom of sig­nif­i­cant wear in the bear­ings)
  • any loose­ness of the plat­en: test by try­ing to pull the plat­en apart from the forme when closed up

The machine body was paint­ed in ‘Roy­al Blue’ but debate con­tin­ues about the exact shade, and whether dif­fer­ent shades were used. The brass roller arms were the only part of the machine to be paint­ed ‘Pil­lar Box Red’. While the machine alone is great, also look out for –

  • man­u­als or erec­tion instruc­tions
  • addi­tion­al chas­es — the Arab came with full-size and ‘but­ter­fly’ chas­es; or even this slant­ed chase
  • roller stocks and bear­ers (per­haps for a third roller)
  • spare parts

Dismantling an Arab

This is a rever­sal of the erec­tion instruc­tions and is based on expe­ri­ence. Remem­ber to keep parts togeth­er as far as pos­si­ble (eg replace nuts on bolt ends as soon as they are removed) and keep things in whole, com­plete ele­ments — like the brak­ing mech­a­nism — remove this as one unit.

  1. Ink­ing mech­a­nism
  2. Feed boards
  3. Tym­pan — by remov­ing the blan­ket rod and wire
  4. Forme Ink­ing Equip­ment
    1. Ink­ing roller bar, ink­ing rollers and run­ners
    2. Roller brass­es — care­ful of the springs
    3. Swinger bars which hold the
    4. Ink­ing disk and bear­er
    5. Ink disk pick lever
  5. Safe­ty Guard
  6. Arab Wheel should be loos­ened
  7. Spring and Plunger to hold the Chase on the back plat­en
  8. Con­nect­ing Rods
  9. Back Plat­en
    1. Low­er the back plat­en
    2. Remove the bolts from the foot of the back plat­en legs
  10. Fly­wheel — remove with nut (may have left-hand thread)
  11. Trea­dle and con­nect­ing rod
  12. Frisket mech­a­nism
    1. Strap Guide Rod
    2. Blan­ket and Frisket shafts
    3. Frisket springs
  13. Die Plate and Bush­es — this is the thing which holds the rock-horse against the plat­en
  14. Remove springs from the Plat­en Hooks
  15. Front plat­en — by remov­ing the rod, and col­lect­ing the plat­en hooks
  16. Remove the Arab wheel all togeth­er
  17. Impres­sion adjuster
  18. Eccen­tic shaft (con­nect­ed orig­i­nal­ly to the impres­sion adjuster)
  19. Rock horse
  20. Crank shaft — orig­i­nal­ly con­nect­ed to the fly­wheel
  21. Clutch and trip link
  22. Remove the bolts on the stays
  23. Take one side from the oth­er

Re-Erecting the Arab

You can start work on get­ting the machine back togeth­er by fol­low­ing the orig­i­nal instruc­tions that came with each machine.


The orig­i­nal doc­u­ments that came with each Arab have been con­vert­ed to PDF files by Steve Fish­er and Ben Wein­er. The Arab Parts List should be used with the Erec­tion Instruc­tions