[rescue] Any interest in an ImageWriter I?

Ron Wickersham rjw at alembic.com
Tue Apr 10 16:09:41 CDT 2007

i have an hp lab plotter (analog) that i'm having no luck finding pens for.
has anyone found a supplier of pens for an HP 7015B XY Recorder?   i use
this plotter regularly, and the plastic-holder felt-tip pens are different
than HP digital plotters.  i've been holding the dry tips against digital
plotter pens and capilary attraction moves ink over to the dry pens well,
but after years the tips are worn and make wider lines than i'd like.

any clues on pen suppliers would be appreciated. HP (Agilent) just laughs.

i have an even older Harrison (HP) plotter but the vacuum tube amplifier
is getting flakey, and keeping the liquid-ink pen unclogged is a hassle
since i don't use it often.

other rescue plotters i have include a couple of "interactive digital
plotters" that would be placed between a modem and a terminal and select
plotting commands or pass-thru terminal characters.   they were rented with
TYMSHARE data service (before the Internet) and was a special model that
could use not only IBM "correspondence code" but USASCII characters or
BCD or EBCD codes. at up to 30 characters per second.  paper was perforated
"chart" paper 11 inches wide which you can still get as well as the pens.
one of the Model 230 plotters has a built-in modem at 300 Baud but on
TYMSHARE it ran at 110 Baud.  it would also work on Telex lines at 60 mA
or 20 mA loops.  the programming is wierd since it is incremental only,
and you can move in any of 8 directions in one step, or to speed things
up since the transmission rate was so slow, your program would determine
if the rate of change was slow and then could proceed in 180 degree sug-range
at 3 steps, or next 60 degree sub-range at 9 steps or 20 degree sub-range
at 27 steps. but it makes beautiful paper plots on the nice rag chart paper.
these plotters are in nice mahogany cases!

On Tue, 10 Apr 2007, Robert Slover wrote:

> I gave away a nice, older HP plotter last year to another list member.
> While researching it a little to see if one could still get pens and
> things for it (yes), I discovered some people had done an interesting
> hack: outfitted the plotter with a swivel knife for cutting adhesive
> vinyl for sign making, automotive decals, etc.  Some guys were making
> decent money on the side doing custom lettering for rear car windows,
> etc.  If I had thought of that, the plotter probably wouldn't have
> spent so many lonely disused years in my attic.
> I have no idea why the thought never occurred to me.  I had helped a
> friend set up a sign shop years before, and his first vinyl cutter was
> a plotter originally designed for cutting denim material for making
> blue jeans.

i'll bet the mfgr was Gerber Scientific.  they still make cloth cutting
machines now including carbon fibre fabric for aerospace industry.  and
i recently got a (free) Gerber pen plotter with a bed size of 20 by 80
inches and a paper advance for roll-feed to do unattended multiple plots.
only one pen, but it's supplied with air pressure to force the ink out
faster so it can plot at very high speeds. the pens are still available
since the plotter is still manufactured.


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