Beginner press

My parents were nice enough to offer to buy me a beginning press for my birthday, and I found this one for what looks like a good price, but was wondering if anyone could give me any advice on it? I’ve only worked minimally with a proof press and want to make sure the first investment is a good start! Thanks!

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If you’ve already done some work on a proof press, and perhaps even if you haven’t, I think this press is too small for you unless you don’t intend to print anything but business cards for the forseeable future. And I don’t mean “deep impression” cards on Lettra.

You’d be better off with a 6 x 9 Kelsey or even better a Pilot press. If you have the room you couldn’t go wrong with an 8 x12 or 10 x15 C&P. This assumes of course that you’ve made the decision to seriously pursue letterpress printing as a hobby or business.

If you haven’t yet made that decision, unless you can get the above press for a steal, I’d continue to use the proof press until you’ve made up your mind one way or another. Any press will be an investment and you don’t want to buy something you’ll just outgrow in 6 months or a year. You’re better off buying something you can start with now and grow into as you gain experience and techinical knowledge and skill.


Front Room Press
Milford, NJ

I’d have to concur that the above press is a bit small for a beginner’s press. It’s a nice machine, but it was designed to primarily inprint business cards, return addresses on envelopes, and small letterheads. For that purpose it’s fine….. for anything else, it’s a bit too small.

I’d recommend a 5 x 8 Kelsey as a minimum size to get started on.