Buying my first press!

Hey! My name is karissa, I’m 23 years old, and very excited to be, hopefully, soon buying my first press.
I just want to make sure I’m not over paying. Here on the classifieds is a C&P 10x15 for 2,500 the ad states: The 10x15 Chandler & Price is $2500. It has new rollers and a variable speed motor. Also included are accessories including a Boxcar base.

She says that they have been well cared for and are ready to print as soon as I come get it. I live about three hours away from where the press is located.

So guys, what do you think? Any help or advise is greatl appreciated :)

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It seems a little expensive (you could troll through past BP classifieds to get a sense of what these sell for), but the real cost of acquiring a press like this includes moving it and setting it up. This press weighs about 1500 lbs. Is it at ground level? Will you set it up at ground level? How will you transport it?

If it really is in good shape and has good rollers, and you’re willing to pay something close to this, then make a lower offer and see what the seller says.

And then, the usual advice would follow about taking a class, reading books, talking to experienced printers!


There is no feed board on this press and I don’t see where there is a mounting for one either.
so unless the seller has it and the brackets it is an incomplete press and I too feel the price is a bit high.
If you go for it make sure you get chases too.


I live and kansas so I’m not sure where classes would be provided :/

Thank you both for your advice. To transport, I would bring my truck and engine hoist to hoist the press into the truck. Then putting her into my studio which would be on found level. I have asked her about the mount for the feed board, just waiting on a reply.

The press has apparently been used for die-cutting, which can be hard on the bearings and other parts. A motorized press is not a good toy for a beginner to learn on — the learning experience could be very painful.

In order to use the sort of engine hoist I’m familiar with you need a strong overhead beam on which to hang it, unless you have a rolling floor shop crane. If the latter check to be sure the legs will fit on the outsides of the base of the press so you can get in close enough to pick it up. Depending on your truck you will have to pick it up a lot higher than my floor crane would go.

Think the process through and be sure you aren’t going to get hurt financially or physically.


What’s a good press for a beginner that even when I become advanced will serve me well?

One without a motor. So you can learn to have the rhythm as a second nature. I see that same press for $500 to $1200 regularly. I have found if you by from a printer retiring they will sell it at a fair price, rather than someone looking to make a quick buck.

WAY OVER PRICED & Incomplete to.

@Kariiissa. A 8” x 12” or 10” x 15” C&P platen press will serve you well for many years if you choose carefully and find a machine in decent shape. I learned to operate a motorized one with no problems, long before I ever operated a treadle. Just be smart, operate it without distraction, and never try to retrieve a miss-feed. They are easy to set-up and operate, and were the workhorses of job printers for several generations.

The price quoted to you seems high by about a thousand dollars in today’s market. Of course you do have to take into account availability and expense of moving, but you might want to look around a bit before buying. Try to examine the metal surfaces of the bed and platen before purchasing. Platen presses can have dished surfaces from overuse, especially because of the way some people are printing today. Presses that were used extensively for die-cutting tend to have more wear, but without knowing the full history of the machine it’s impossible to really know without a thorough inspection.

I once nearly bought a press that had been run by one man for 60 years. He had literally worn the heels of his hands into the feed-board, and his footprints into the floor at the novelty company that owned it. Unfortunately the building was consumed by fire only a day before I was to pick it up. In retrospect the press was probably worn-out, but it’s hard to beat that kind of documented history.

Good luck in you search. There is a lot to learn in operating a platen press, but it can be a useful and creatively rewarding tool to operate.


I agree with all the above, but if the press is local and you can get help moving it it might not be so bad providing it is in good shape and not too worn.

New rollers, box car base etc all ad up as does moving a press - even a short distance.

As for the motor, yes it can be trickier to learn on. I purchased a treadle for my press when I first got it, after a week I wanted a motor. The treadle shipped to me was $300.00

The variable speed drive on a motor is $700.00 - with that you can run the press at the same speed you would a treadle, nice and slow. So yes it is missing a guard and a piece of wood but if you took away the new rollers, box car base and variable speed drive you would be down to the $1200 range.

Not disagreeing with the points above, just another way of looking at it. I paid $1500 for mine with new rollers and motor ( not hooked up ) but I spent close to 1000 on electrical, base and treadle.

So maybe make an offer $2000 delivered and set up. Then start shopping around for a guard and a nice piece of wood to stick on top.

Thank you all so much! You’re all very nice and helpful :)

Hey, just putting in my two cents as well.

I learned on a motorized 8x12. I love it.

This press should disassemble into 3 pieces. The flywheel comes off (and needs to if you’re going through any doors). And the main body separates from the section containing the ink plate and rollers. There is a pivot point where they meet and a rod that goes through to hold it.

Feel free to reach out if you have any questions

Nice looking press, but it you first press. I would say NO!
There are C&P and other hand feed presses.

This one doesn’t have a guard on the gear on the right side.

Easy way for a first time press person to get hurt!

The cost of moving as everyone has said is the biggest cost.

I want a good hand feed press, but I think you should be able to get one for $1,000 to $1,500 plus the $1,000 plus to move.

Okay so I’ve done some more research. I contacted a press shop on Wichita kansas, which is two hours from where I live. They said they have a c&p10x15 and a 12x18 that they would be willing to sell. The 12x18 is all ready to go, new rollers and is currently still being used. The 10x15 is good but would need new rollers and trucks. Tomorrow I’m supposed to call him to talk about prices and everything. What would you guys suggest a fair price would be assuming they’re in great condition?