Printing with a Can Crusher?

Someone suggested inking with a brayer and using a wall-mounted can crusher as a portable press for printing with school groups, etc. Anybody ever tried it or have opinions as to why it would or wouldn’t work? Or other suggestions of how to let kids print images without hauling a heavy press to a school?

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Alaska…. I’ve not heard of using a can crusher for printing, but in theory it could work. It would not be my first choice for a school-kid’s printing experiment, though. It seems like it would be a bit clunky to use and could possibly smash little fingers.

I’d recommend hand-printing which requires no press at all. All you need to do is hand ink the block or type with a brayer, lay a sheet of paper on top of it, and rub the back with a spoon or other smooth object. It’s the method that Japanese, and many Western printmakers employ. I’ve taught 6 year olds how to print using that method and they love it.

The beauty of hand-printing is that it requires no specialized equipment other than a brayer, and is completely safe. It demonstrates the basic principles involved without bringing in more complicated elements. PLUS if done carefully can produce excellent results. It IS a very slow method of printing, but who cares?

I have given little demonstrations using a Miles Nervine Proof Press. They don’t weigh that much and there’s little danger that anyone will get a smashed anything.

I will endorse winking cat’s idea.

And it is very portable. My better half taught a single-day university seminar that way. And there weren’t 15 people all itching to smash something in a press they didn’t know how to use.

To go along with hand printing, resingrave blocks have a good feel, similar to that of end-grain boxwood. Lino is good, but resingrave is perhaps more real.

Now I’m curious. Has anyone ever used a tabletop press to crush cans?
How about calling a letterpress machine a “paper crusher”.

don’t know about cans, but crushed a few gauge pins.

don’t know about cans, but crushed a few gauge pins.

don’t know about cans, but crushed a few gauge pins.

I was just wondering, have you ever crushed any gauge pins?

looks like i crushed a few

Back in the old days, we didn’t show any impression when we crushed cans….

“Back in the old days, we didn’t show any impression when we crushed cans….”

That made me laugh.

Alaskaprinter, I have used a Line-O-Scribe Show Card Writer size 7X10 and mostly portable to let fourth graders print their own bookmarks. No one has been hurt yet. Some inky finders at worst. Also I have learner that the correct turm for impression is to smush because letterpressers like to make a good impression

That should be learned not learner. Give me a type case over a key-board any day.

Funny you should ask, Bill…. I *have* crushed cans using my 8x12 C&P.

They fall right through. I should have mounted a garbage bag on the lower edge of the platen :)

The real problem is that there isn’t a gage pin which will hold them.

This simple press is a good alternative. Available from a company Joop Stoop.

image: press.jpg