Setting type in an arc

I want to set lead type in an arc, for the title sheet of a folio of etchings. How do I do this?

Is there furniture that already exists that I could obtain? Can I/should I bend some leading to suit this purpose? Or see if a woodworker friend can carve me a piece of custom furniture?

If anyone has any experience with this, I would appreciate some advice and/or suggestions.

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Here’s a good guide:


If it’s a modest arc, you could draw a curve on a piece of wood just a little wider than the height of the chord, cut along the line with a bandsaw or jigsaw, put the line of type in the curve between the two pieces of wood, and lock up. The only trick will be applying pressure to the ends of the line, but if you used modeler’s balsa wood and squeeze it pretty hard perpendicular to the type the wood will crush a little and I bet it will lock up fine.


Or you could try to track down a set of circular quads. It might not be an easy task though!


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These photos were from a Briar Press 2009 post.

Casey McGarr

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Thanks for the responses! I couldn’t find any information on this and was beginning to think I would have to get a photopolymer plate made, which I would much rather avoid.

I’ll explore some of these options and see what I can make happen.

And here’s one of my favorites.