Today I heard some very ignorant claims about ink. The only ink that will run on an AB Dick is rubber base. Any other type especially oil base will not work.
Of course, conventional sheet-fed inks can be run on these small offset presses within
these types of press impediments, e.g. Poor rolling power of ink train also dampening system limitation
and the use of Polyester Plates!
The operators of these presses, often lack fundamental knowledge of the Chemistry of Lithography
and the Mechanics of Lithographic Printing Presses.
If the AB Dick has the very first dampening system rubber base is all that will run. They used to have a copper roller and the copper roller and the water pan roller inked up. Try running any oil base and you will have toning and plugging real quick. Their next dampening system they called the super aqua. Chrome roller ducts to the pan roller and brings water to the ink train. This system requires about 20 percent alcohol to run well. This system is still better suited to rubber base but will run oil base. Doubt you can get good density running metallics though. If you install an after market damp system like compaq or dahlgren you can use any ink with little trouble. Biggest problem you face with an AB Dick is the lack of rollers and only two small forms. Wont print a good solid and ink does not dry well because of the amount of alcohol attacking the driers in the ink. We used to have to run all of our inks with aqua varnish to build up the tack to print good using the super aqua.
I have seen both oil base and acrylic inks run on both AB Dick dampeners 100's of times in just as many shops. The "Pro" (alcohol system) is definitely a better system. It works best with inks formulated to run on duplicator presses as they have better water hold out. From my experience the only reason to run rubber base is that is stays open on press longer than any other ink.