I found this in a box of letterpress stuff. Maybe it doesn’t have anything to do with printing but not sure. It can punch a square hole in a 2 pt strip of lead.
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just when you think you have seen everything, is the gauge in picas?? I can’t figure out what it could be used for.
Are you punching type-high rule there? Is the hole at slug height?
I wonder if it’s for some rule-form system.
40+ years into this and I have never seen anything like it. I kind of like the rule/form idea, but if the lead being punched in the photo is type high, this wont work. I kind of briefly envisioned it clipping out sections along the printing edge.
Doesn’t appear to be picas, inches, pts, agates…although at one end, there is a 4-1/2 stamped on it.
If you punch at every stop, it makes a long rectangle, if that helps anybody.
Here are a few more photos.
I have seen it used, but never used one. It is a device to release air pressure from complicated type formes such as might be required in large format Accounting Documents. The idea being that the square holes are at the base of the 2 point lead rules to release a build up of air between the many rules and type, allowing air in and out of the form. It gives the printed sheet a quick release, not causing slurring by suction created. One can also imagine, on high speed presses, any kind of suction could cause a make-up to spring and/or draw elements up to catch ink, even causing the form to “explode” in the press. It does require complementary work within the form to assist in the air flow by way of ribbed spacing material and furniture. I have also cause to think that when casting stereo-type flongs, air release allows the mat to connect evenly with the type. www.willamer.com.au
Maybe it is for Wire-o binding. Would the holes space at 3:1” or 2:1” pitch?
Seeing Pressed Letters’ answer now, and lack of air release can also cause wrinkles on the sheet. I think Fred Hoch’s books mention this as one solution to the problem
Sounds like an important piece of equipment. Also sounds like a lot of work, but then again, so is hand setting type. What shall we call this thing? Air control pressure punch?
Is anybody still using these? I can always donate it to a museum.
Air Control Pressure Punch seems as good as any, no doubt there would have been a term for it like “Get the Thingy!”.