large presses

Over the past few years I have been shown or offered a number of very large presses. It seems like every community from medium-sized towns up had one or more large presses, often sheet-fed cylinder presses. These presses looked interesting to mechanical-oriented people and many have survived to this day. Unfortunately many of these are being scrapped every month. Many people have done their best to save them for 100 years. Some of the presses were even used to print election ballots and other big items until fairly recently. The electronic voting machines retired the ones that were being used for ballots and offset retired the rest. I knot of half a dozen of these beasts that are available, either for free or for scrap value. There are few takers. They would make great certerpieces for lobbies of printing or publishing houses, additions to local historical museums or important parts of historical recreations (like Greenfield Village and smaller versions throughout the country). I am sitting on leads for these presses and would like to know if anybody has any ideas. One in particular is a 40”x54” Miehle, from about 1905, connected to electricity and running, in fantastic shape (was in use until 5 years ago) and sitting on the ground floor next to a huge garage door (very eary to retrieve). The rollers are stored vertically in cabinets and have no rust on them. I think the owners will give the press to a worthy recipient. The press is located in Wilkes-Barre, PA. There may also be two Miehle’s in West Virginia, but they may be gone. And there are two other large presses in Western New York that I did not see yet. I know we can’t save everything but the price on these units is not right and anybody who would like to have one should act. I have no interest in making money, only a desire to keep some interesting equipment form being scrapped. I will try to post some pictures.
Joe Weber

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Mr. Weber im Todd and am very interested. Please respond to my post and we will save them. I need pics or a contact e-mail. I have rebulit offset presses and am now working on a heidelberg windmill H.S. 13x18 for another gentelman. Todd

Mr. Weber,
I may be interested in the one of the Miehle’s in West Virginia if they are still available.
Please contact me.

Not to be a wet blanket or anything, but please realized that large press weigh LOTS. That 45 x 54 Miehle will weight roughly 10 tons as my friend saved a handfed one of that size. There is a bit of variation, as I’ve seen 38” inch Cottrells that came in at 6000 pounds.

Automatic presses such as the Kelly C or No’s 1 or 2 or the Miehle 29” are actually mid-size machines that still weigh roughly 4 or 5 tons. Most of these presses have main drive motors that are 4 or 5 hp and up and may be set up for 3 phase or other more exotic (DC) drive systems.

Just don’t want somebody to run out and say “I want one!” (the ultimate in impressional power—forget those Vandercooks!) without understanding what goes with them. That said, everybody should have a big flatbed in their garage, plus a couple Linotypes to keep them fed with type!

I have specs on Miehle Flatbeds, including serial numbers if you need particulars.


Thanks for the advise. But I’ve been printing Letterpress 30 years now. Have moved tons of equipment, and now own 7 presses just in Letterpress. I know you have no way of knowing this. And it is good advise to the in-experienced. But I am familar with Miehle’s and many other presses.
Mr. Winfred Reed
Black Diamond Press

This is the last call. The circa 1905 40x54 Miehle cylinder press in Wilkes-Barre is going to be scrapped if nobody says they want it by December 15 and moves it within the next month. It is in excellent, running condition and the rollers are in perfect condition, stored vertically. It is located inside a large garage door on a cement floor with lots of room to maneuver. It is FREE for the taking. It comes with two free large imposing tables and some type cabinets if you want them.
Contact me immediately if you are interested. I can answer any questions. Time is running out.
Joe Weber
604 Centre Street
Ashland, PA 17921
570-875-4787 (home, leave message)
570-590-4787 (cell)

Hello Joseph Weber.

I’ve closed commenting on your post because the Discussions are for the exchange of ideas and not for posting Classifieds or free ads.

We try hard to keep a focus on the different sections of Briar Press so that people can more easily find the information they need. As seen in the Eligibility guidelines, we do not accept ads for this kind of large equipment, but free ads are often accepted in the Classifieds and you have much more exposure in that section.

Thanks for trying to save this fine machine.