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Author Topic: A Traveling Dime Museum  (Read 3626 times)
oprion
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« Reply #25 on: April 12, 2016, 09:53:54 am »

This is how I think things should be done. None who've paid their dime shall ever forget the experience.
When are you coming to Spain?

At current exhibition rates, it would take me a few decades of weekly dime shows to afford a passage to Hispania! Smiley
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oprion
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« Reply #26 on: April 21, 2016, 02:08:32 am »

A collection of box labels, inserts and decals related to the Traveling Press / Museum:



https://c2.staticflickr.com/2/1666/26521565226_47f3a696e4_o.jpg

I never really bothered to create a signature house style for my hobby shop (Pillowface Press), but hoped that a certain harmonizing and unifying quality would emerge, between the various box labels and tool sets that comprise it.

Brought all of this personal paraphernalia together for the first time, and gotta say, there does appear to be a certain pleasing sameness, without the rigidity of "branding". Yay!
« Last Edit: April 21, 2016, 02:10:21 am by oprion » Logged
Mme. Ratchet
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« Reply #27 on: April 21, 2016, 02:28:51 am »

I am simply blown away by this! I'd never heard of a printing press that small before! Could you tell us a bit more about it? I'd be fascinated to learn more about it.
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oprion
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« Reply #28 on: April 21, 2016, 02:46:37 am »

I am simply blown away by this! I'd never heard of a printing press that small before! Could you tell us a bit more about it? I'd be fascinated to learn more about it.

The press is a Sigwalt Chicago #9, made in 1907. It is a self-inking, table-top platen model. The smallest in the line, with a chase (printing area) size of 2 1/8 x 3 1/4".

You might find that it looks a little like old Singer sewing machines. The resemblance might not be entirely accidental.

John Sigwalt (1836-1924) actually worked for the Singer Sewing machine company for a while. Then tried selling his own "slightly modified" version as a Sigwalt sewing machine, got bitten by lawsuits and the Great Chicago fire and switched to making something dangerously similar to "Baltimore" hand presses Smiley

Still, I do believe the Singer aesthetic shows through here. Baltimores, Victors and Acme Presses (all very similar in style and nomenclature) that preceded Sigwalts were somewhat bulkier and less exquisitely decorated.

Here's a handy time-line of similr looking presses, that I made a while back to make better sense of it all:

Part one: https://c2.staticflickr.com/8/7112/7068179547_8e3b7469a8_o.jpg
Part two: https://c2.staticflickr.com/8/7083/6922098424_96f74ef0e4_b.jpg
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Mme. Ratchet
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« Reply #29 on: April 21, 2016, 03:26:17 am »

Can you describe how it works? I've always been fascinated by printing presses and the like but never have understood how they work (excluding the original Gutenburg press, I figured that one out, and it was quite fascinating!). I'm an engineering nerd at heart so learning how machines and stuff work, and the history behind them, tickles me pink!
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oprion
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« Reply #30 on: April 21, 2016, 06:02:37 am »

Can you describe how it works? I've always been fascinated by printing presses and the like but never have understood how they work (excluding the original Gutenburg press, I figured that one out, and it was quite fascinating!). I'm an engineering nerd at heart so learning how machines and stuff work, and the history behind them, tickles me pink!


The mechanical movement of platen presses differ between models, but the basic principle is more or less the same.

I made an animated reference for how things operate here: http://oprion.livejournal.com/119972.html

But, broadly speaking, a press has:
1. A "platen" the flat surface unto which the paper is attached.
2. A "press bed" - another flat surface that holds the chase (metal frame) which secures the form (letters and engravings locked up into a tight bundle).
3. When the platen and the press bed come in contact, an impression is made, as the form pushes into the paper.
4. Ink is added from a can to an "ink disk" - the round metal disk on top of the press. It revolves slightly after every impression, thus making the ink distribution more even.
5. Roller arms carry the rollers (different number on different presses, my tiny Sigwalt only has one) across the ink disk, picking up ink, then down across the form, inking up the letters and pictures, then up again to the disk to replenish supplies. Thus, the form is inked twice between impressions.
6. I am omitting the miscellaneous appendages such as tympan, grippers, bales etc. for the benefit of clarity.

I made a video of the whole process a good while back, using a slightly bigger press. The captions are in Russian, but you'll get the idea:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Ndfi73kNbI


And another little stom-motion animation (took a bit of time to film Smiley) on how the chase and form are made up):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XKmbO1qsreE
« Last Edit: April 21, 2016, 08:43:18 am by oprion » Logged
Prof. Cecily
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« Reply #31 on: April 21, 2016, 11:56:16 am »

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.
It was most interesting to see those videos- thanks for sharing them!

I remain yours,
Prof. Cecily
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oprion
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« Reply #32 on: May 10, 2016, 06:01:12 am »

Upping the scale of my traveling printshop a bit:

Here's a bit of wishful thinking. I am Imagining an ideal printshop and bindery. It would double as a living history museum, focusing on tramp printers, early typecasting methods and letterpress folklore (jeffing, lice, Ralph etc.).

One day...



There is an old tradition of drinking among typographic workers.
Naturally, my ideal printshop / museum could not possibly overlook that important spirituous aspect.

With a flip of wrist, the shop would transform into an ideal place to entertain friends and fellow printers!

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Mme. Ratchet
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« Reply #33 on: May 10, 2016, 11:03:49 am »

That is super cool!
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oprion
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« Reply #34 on: May 19, 2016, 08:26:05 am »

Having illustrated the principles of 19 century platen presses, it might as well be prudent to do the same for the original printing behemoths.

The basics of a Common press remained virtually unchanged from early 15th to late 18th century.



The hose and spindle assembly:



Tympan and frisket closing down onto the inked up form:



Coffin movement:



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Asphalt
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« Reply #35 on: May 19, 2016, 11:32:40 am »



I own one of these little guys.  None of the accessories needed to print, but the press itself.  I will see if I can find it and shoot a picture.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=5Ndfi73kNbI

It is smaller than the one in the video.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2016, 11:34:28 am by Asphalt » Logged
Asphalt
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« Reply #36 on: May 19, 2016, 03:56:38 pm »

[/url]

Looks like it is very similar to y our #9.  I wonder what it would take to find the missing pieces.
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oprion
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« Reply #37 on: May 19, 2016, 10:23:04 pm »


Looks like it is very similar to your #9.  I wonder what it would take to find the missing pieces.


This looks like a Baltimorean #10. Gotta measure the metal plate (platen) on the right side of the picture to know for sure.

It appears fairly complete, only missing the chase, and a roller (which you'd need a new one anyways as they get old and shriveled with age).

You can order rollers from these guys (once we are certain about the model): www.ramcoroller.com

The matching chase, might be a little difficult to track, but it's a pretty easy build. Essentially, just a square frame with some indents at the bottom for the matching protrusions. Measure the size of the chase bed that it needs to fit (width and height), and make sure it is less than 0.8 inches in depth. Metal would be ideal, but a wooden one can suffice if used sparingly.



Half/half vinegar and lemon juice mixture should get rid of most rust (to conserve the precious fluids, just soak some paper towels in the concoction, and stick to the surfaces). A good cleaning with mineral spirits or kerosene, a hearty dose of oil and some elbow grease should get it all ship-shaped in no time at all.
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Asphalt
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« Reply #38 on: May 19, 2016, 11:27:18 pm »

Thanks for the info.  Would finding the lettering hardware be the difficult part then?
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oprion
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« Reply #39 on: May 20, 2016, 12:14:16 am »

Thanks for the info.  Would finding the lettering hardware be the difficult part then?


Not really. There are plenty of old fonts, cuts and borders sold online. In addition, there's still a handful of type foundries still casting shiny new fonts and decorations. You can source spacing material, inks, gauge pins, composing sticks etc. fairly easily. There are also people who sell starting kits, with everything a new printer needs (excluding the press itself).

This would be a good staring point: www.briarpress.org

A bit of warning though, this Baltimorean press is very small and limited in it's capacity. You won't be able to print an area larger than a business card. It might not be worth the effort (and expense) to begin outfitting it with all bells and whistles.

Not exactly a toy press (as it is capable of good impression with care and within strict limits) this tabletop was intended for youths and druggists (to print medicine labels). If you do want to restore it to a printing capacity, I'd recommend starting with just one or two fonts (below 20 points), a set of gauge pins, a few pieces of furniture (wood for filling the chase) and a tube of black ink. Should be enough to gest started, and see if it's worth progressing to a hoarding obsession (a malady that besets all printers).

We've REALLY gotten this off-topic though, haven't we! Yikes.
/looks around nervously
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von Corax
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« Reply #40 on: May 22, 2016, 08:38:03 pm »

We've REALLY gotten this off-topic though, haven't we! Yikes.
/looks around nervously

Not really; it's still interesting and still at least peripherally related to your original post. This sort of excursion is pretty much the norm for BG.
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By the Beans of Life do my thoughts acquire speed
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The shaking becomes a warning
By the power of caffeine do I set my mind in motion
The Leverkusen Institute of Paleocybernetics is 5838 km from Reading
oprion
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« Reply #41 on: June 22, 2016, 09:01:48 am »

Put together a CNC mill. This should help in carving matrices for miniature traveling type-foundry and other fun projects.

Based on Proxxon MF70, with an Arduino board and GRBL.



A close-up of an XY Table, with the Y stepper motor.





A first test carving:



Now, to get some bits...
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Maets
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« Reply #42 on: June 24, 2016, 11:51:24 pm »

Looks good.  What material is the face in.
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oprion
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« Reply #43 on: June 25, 2016, 01:01:25 am »

Just some scrap plywood. Should've used lower rotation speed to prevent the charring though.
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steiconi
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« Reply #44 on: June 25, 2016, 01:35:14 am »

I think the char adds to the design
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oprion
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« Reply #45 on: June 30, 2016, 01:25:53 am »

Testing my new CNC mill. In preparation for casting letterpress type. Based on Proxxon MF70, running GRBL on Arduino board. 3-Axis NEMA 23 Stepper motors.

Custom wooden mold for casting a type metal* toy soldier in a portable foundry.

*Alloy of lead, tin and antimony

CNC MILLING Test (mold for casting toy soldiers)


This was just a machine test, on reflection, wood isn't an ideal medium for something like this. Aluminum would work much better.

Roughing cut and drilling was done with a 1/8 flat end mill.
Finishing was done with a 1mm ball-note end mill.
Feed rate: 320 mm/min. Plunge rate 100mm/min.

Total machining time for 2 roughing cuts, 2 finishing cuts and 2 drilling passes = 1.5 hours.

Software used: 3D Studio Max (for the modeling), Vectric Aspire (for calculating toolpaths), Universal G-code Sender (for controlling the machine, and supplying the code).

Casting information: Lee Precision melting pot. Type metal (75% Lead, 20% Tin, 5%Antimony). Thermal setting 7 (760 F).
_____________________________________________
Gulkoff &Co Portable Foundry is part of the Traveling Dime Museum and Medicine Show, a wayward arm of the Tramping Pillowface Press shop upheld by Ivan Gulkov -- designer, printer of ponderous paraphernalia.
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Mme. Ratchet
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« Reply #46 on: June 30, 2016, 02:13:07 am »

That was amazing Cheesy
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Maets
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« Reply #47 on: July 04, 2016, 03:30:36 am »

Nicely done.
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oprion
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« Reply #48 on: July 07, 2016, 10:28:41 pm »

CNC Test #5, Vyaz (13th century cyrilic) Lettering



Finished with wood stain and gold paint.



Close-up



Cutting diagram

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oprion
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« Reply #49 on: July 12, 2016, 11:42:28 pm »

Framed

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