Taking an Arab Apart

A step-by-step account of dis­man­tling an Arab press

This is an account of dis­man­tling a Crown Folio Arab Plat­en. The machine is ear­ly (Ser­i­al Num­ber 1086 c. 1892) but has had a num­ber of safe­ty fea­tures fit­ted. The guide below shows the major steps and will be added to. There’s a spe­cial sec­tion at the foot of this page about the brak­ing sys­tem.

The main body of the Machine

The start­ing point: a com­plete Arab

Arab: complete machine with spare "Arab Wheel" shown
Arab: com­plete machine with spare “Arab Wheel” shown

Ink­ing Disk Removed (remem­ber to replace the bolt under­neath).

Arab: Inking Disc Removed
Arab: Ink­ing Disc Removed

Feed board removed

Arab: feed boards removed
Arab: feed boards removed

One of the ink­ing arms removed. Remem­ber that they are under the pres­sure of a spring so you have to keep hold of the arm as you release. In prepa­ra­tion for this you should have removed the rollers and stocks; and also removed the met­al bar which links left and right roller arms: keep this safe!

Arab: inking arms removed
Arab: ink­ing arms removed

Over-arch­ing guard removed by unbolt­ing one site of the guard bars (not pic­tured)

There are two strong springs which force the front plat­en towards to back plat­en. These need to be un-hooked while the front plat­en is almost ver­ti­cal. The two col­lars and hooks on the plat­en site need to be loos­ened so that the bar can be slid out lat­er on.

Arab: Platen Springs Removed (looking from front to back under the machine)
Arab: Plat­en Springs Removed (look­ing from front to back under the machine)

The two bolts on the left of the front plat­en must be removed so that the front plat­en is held only on the sup­port­ing bar. Remove the sup­port­ing bar and lift the front plat­en out. This is fair­ly del­i­cate as it will still con­tain the frisket motion.

Arab: front platen removed
Arab: front plat­en removed

The Arab wheel can now be slid from left to right and removed from the machine

Arab wheel removed
Arab wheel removed

The ‘rock horse’ is now removed. This is the U‑shaped met­al cast­ing which forces the front plat­en upwards. This rests in two slots is the frame cov­ered by two semi-cir­cu­lar cast­ings bolt­ed down.

Arab: rock horse removed
Arab: rock horse removed

The back plat­en is now removed as a sin­gle large unit: includ­ing the plat­en and the sup­port­ing cast­ing. This is very heavy but will save trou­ble because the back plat­en will not have to be re-adjust­ed. The eccen­tric is also removed: this is the rod which holds the impres­sion lever.

Arab: back platen removed
Arab: back plat­en removed

The braking system

Side view of the brak­ing sys­tem

Arab: braking system from side
Arab: brak­ing sys­tem from side

Top view of the brak­ing sys­tem

Arab: top of braking system
Arab: top of brak­ing sys­tem