Chandler & Price Oldstyle Chrome Press?

Hi Everyone,

I came across a man who had a Chandler & Price Oldstyle Press. He found the press through a friend (neither with printing knowledge) however the odd thing about it was that it had a chrome finish. I am looking to buy the press but I am not sure if the chrome finish, especially on the ink plate, will effect the printing. I was also wondering if anybody had any suggestions or red flags to look for when buying this press (other than welds and obvious broken parts).

See the pictures below. Also there was a number under where the chase was (42431). Thanks in advance for all advice.

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Log in to reply   15 replies so far

The chrome plating wouldn’t affect the printing.
I’m wondering if this press might not have been made for exhibition purposes by C & P, or maybe plated by someone for display. Surely it was never made for regular printing. What a cool piece!

The serial number on this press indicates it was made in 1904. The placement of the foot brake on this press is reversed, as the pedal should be at the front! The chrome plating applied unevenly on the bed, platen, and roller tracks could have an affect on the printing if it would cause an uneven impression.

Ink is pretty sticky stuff, and will happily stick to most any surface. My c. 1915 Multigraph Junior has a chrome ink oscillator roller (the equivalent of an ink disk) and the ink sticks to it just fine; it prints just like any non-chome version, but I think cleanup is easier.

Wasn’t there a chrome C&P on eBay several weeks back? If this is a different one, I’m amazed that two would show up one right after the other!

Thanks for your replies.

Stanislaus, that is a good point about the chrome plating I didnt think of that before. I went to see the press yesterday and he did reverse the way the foot break was positioned.

Dave, this is the same press that was posted. He just reposted it last night. I contacted him about the press and went to see it the other day. It looked good from what I saw but I have never owned a C&P so I was weary of buying one from someone that hasn’t used it. My main concern is if it will print well.

The footbrake needs more than turning around. The brake-pad should not hit at the bottom of the flywheel (6 o’clock) but more like 7 or 8 o’clock. That gives a better working position for the footpedal, and misses the belt if the press is motorized.

Is this press really chrome plated or is it nickel plated? Real chrome plating would give it an almost mirror-like appearance (think of older-model car bumpers), whereas nickel plating provides a nice shiny appearance, just not as highly reflective as a chrome finish. Old wood-burning stoves had their shiny parts nickel plated for instance. The cost of chrome plating is exhorbitant as compared to nickel plating. Both would have been expensive processes for something like this press, but I think that the cost of actually chrome plating would have been exhorbitant.

It does look “brilliant”, a real show-stopper.

not to ask a dumb question but… . did you turn the press over when you looked at it? If it was plated as individual parts and then assembled all should be well. However, if the press was dipped as a whole unit I’d be worried.

I’d think any imperfection in plating on the bed and platen would be minimal since plating is typically only a few thousands thick.

Parallel, thanks for the input he turned it around and it was in the correct position.

Foolproof, I am not sure… it was a dark and at night when I went to look at it. The man selling it is a machinist tho and he said chrome, but thats a good question.

Lammy, the press turned over fine and all the parts worked smoothly. It was definitely not dipped in as a whole unit.

Thanks for all your advice and input.

My advice: If the price is even half-way right, buy it! It’s a museum piece! Old Series C & Ps are a dime a dozen (I’ve owned six or seven) but where would you ever find another chrome plated one?

Yeah if I had a grand for a museum piece I would. Right now I would rather have a working press…preferably under a grand. But man is it tempting. Anyone know a good market value for a OS C&P Press right now? I see some table presses going for thousands on ebay. That just seems absolutely ridiculous to me.

Around here (Indiana) you can usually get one for $300-$500, depending on roller condition. I know a printer who had two New Series 8 X 12s for $50 each, but that’s been more than a year ago.

Could you give me his email or phone number? I would love to see if he still has them.. it would be worth the drive.

There has been some talk of this press on letpress listserv. Most came to the conclusion that the press is one of the reproduced versions that were available oversees until very recently.
These repop presses came standard in nickle finish. Like most tools, a press with nickle finish should wipe clean easier than a painted surface. I hope you get the press. Should be lots of fun to work on a beautiful press like this.

Moi, I’d be a little nervous to shell out a thousand dollars to someone with zero feedback on eBay who puts “sold as is no returns” in the listing.

Check this out:

A company in India makes C&P style presses that are nickel plated. There was one on eBay a while back and I bet you it was from this company. it is unclear whether they are new presses with new parts cast and machined to C&P specs, or if they are refurbished older C&P presses. Apparently, they are no longer producing the larger sizes but will build a 13x19 per order.