Brass type height more than 1”

I have some 6 Pt. Brass Type that measures slightly more than 1” high. Could someone give me some insight on what this might be for?


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Being brass, that generally means that it was used in a foil stamping machine/press of some kind. Brass was the metal of choice because the type needed to be heated in order for the foil to melt/transfer.

Most brass type is generally around type-high so it can be printed on a normal press as well, but whoever made your font probably did it for a specific foil stamping outfit and the height really did not matter much since most of them operate something like a drill-press and is simply pulled down onto the surface to be stamped. The stamped object can be of a wide variety of thicknesses so one pulls the type down until contact is made with enough pressure to transfer the foil.


Brass Type is not exclusive to people who do Foilstamping in one way or another, enclosed a picture of greek type which is used for sandcasting Brassplates, Brass type is used because it gives sharp clean impressions and it stands solid.

You can consider filing the foot of your type carefully down on a honing plate to get to type high, but the fitting of the type (how the letters relate to each other than set) may not be correct for Foil stamping as the type may have never be intended for that purpose.

image: Greek 60 pt.jpg

Greek 60 pt.jpg

The over-height brass type may also have been used by bookbinders, in a pallet, for stamping bindings by hand, in which case the height is not an issue as long as it’s uniform.


The brass type was used for the sandcasting molds more because it would not wear as readily as lead type when when pushed into an abrasive material.

I have several fonts of iron type in my collection. My iron fonts are all large-size and comparable to wood type in style. Iron type was used to imprint flour sacks, etc. because the woven texture of the cloth rapidly wore-out lead type. The iron type was individually sand-cast.


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It’s interesting that there are so many uses to which this kind of (brass) type can be put. Could even have been used o make cast-metal plaques?