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Old Printer Parts

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HasBean01/11/2018 15:43:04
141 forum posts
32 photos


Many moons ago, in a previous existance, I used to repair large scale printers as part of my job and accumulated some bits which I thought wpould be usefull.

Fast forwarding 35 years to the present day I've found a piece of stainless rod just the right size for my next project. Thing is has anyone any idea what grade it might be, and if indeed any of it's worth keeping?



Oldiron01/11/2018 16:58:58
850 forum posts
23 photos

I also have stripped out many large and small printers for the screws and round bars. I have found that some of the real cheap rods are chromed mild steel. The majority though are stainless. Some magnetic some not. I keep them all as they will come in useful one day. They are all made to a very tight tolerance so handy for many applications.

Ideal for making studding and small parts.


Steve Crow01/11/2018 17:06:34
283 forum posts
166 photos

Does the chromed mild steel cut ok?


John Haine01/11/2018 17:28:05
4186 forum posts
242 photos

The stainless ones that I've salvaged have cut beautifully. Treasure them.

Rik Shaw01/11/2018 17:32:11
1456 forum posts
396 photos

Over the years I have constructively destroyed a good number of printers, scanners and photocopiers for those lovely shiny guide rod innards. That which I have butchered to date has been a pleasure to machine.


ChrisH01/11/2018 18:08:23
1003 forum posts
30 photos

Got two old printers to strip, I value the metal rods too.

Are there any other parts worth looking for? From what I can remember the rest seems to consist of loads of plastic bits and gears and odd electronic bits which would be no use to me unless someone can suggest if anything there might be useful. Plus of course the glass plate from the scanner bit, and maybe some springs and screws.



Edited By ChrisH on 01/11/2018 18:08:50

Oldiron01/11/2018 18:16:17
850 forum posts
23 photos
Posted by Steve Crow on 01/11/2018 17:06:34:

Does the chromed mild steel cut ok?


Yes it does.


Rod Ashton01/11/2018 18:20:10
339 forum posts
12 photos

Excuse the aside but - Any of you printer guru`s know of a driver source, for an old pen plotter please? Parallel port type

Kettrinboy02/11/2018 08:15:42
93 forum posts
49 photos

There are quite a few useful parts in old printers , when I junked my last one I got a couple of 6mm rods which were chromed and precision ground , I used one for the displacer rod on my rhombic drive hot air engine , it was solid so to reduce weight I drilled it through from both ends to give 0.5 mm wall thickness , it drilled very easily so must have been a freecutting steel and stayed dead straight so has worked out perfectly for this engine.

regards Geoffdisplacer.jpg

Nick Clarke 302/11/2018 08:20:48
1256 forum posts
50 photos

Posted by Rod Ashton on 01/11/2018 18:20:10:

Excuse the aside but - Any of you printer guru`s know of a driver source, for an old pen plotter please? Parallel port type

Try here they seem to support most HP plotters, but not tried it myself - my last plotter is still in the attic gathering dust!

This is a quite expensive paid driver, but I have been told that it works well - there are other free drivers on the web, but these all seem to come with 'update all your drives in one go' software that I don't want on any of my systems.

The HP site still lists a driver but for Windows XP only.


Edited By Nick Clarke 3 on 02/11/2018 08:28:54

John Haine02/11/2018 09:03:09
4186 forum posts
242 photos

Scanners sometimes have nice stepper motors.

SillyOldDuffer02/11/2018 10:01:37
7566 forum posts
1681 photos

Don't be put off reusing old printer parts if - like me - you get unlucky early on. I'm not sure which printer it came from but one of the ex-printer rods in my junk box turned out to be unusably hard. It may have come from a scrap office dot-matrix printer rather than a domestic inkjet. However, I must have stripped a dozen or so old printers by now and all the other scrap rods have machined well.


Oldiron02/11/2018 11:13:10
850 forum posts
23 photos
Posted by Rod Ashton on 01/11/2018 18:20:10:

Excuse the aside but - Any of you printer guru`s know of a driver source, for an old pen plotter please? Parallel port type

Hi Rod I have used Driverguide for many years and have great results from them. **LINK**

No adds no emails except for one when you join. Joining is free.

Good Luck


HasBean02/11/2018 12:54:18
141 forum posts
32 photos

Thank you Gents, the piece I have is beautifully straight and round, almost a shame to chop it up, but I'll give it a whirl over the weekend and see how it goes,


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