What kind of table to support C&P Pilot?

I currently have my C&P Pilot on a not-so-sturdy old desk, the kind with three drawers on one side and two legs with a space for your knees on the other; a writing desk I guess it is. My press is too heavy, too wide, and the desk is slowly giving out. I’d like to build or acquire a better table or stand that will hold my little press. Does anyone have any plans for a good bench, or know where to find an affordable equivalent to those wonderful “turtles” no one wants to give up? Any suggestion would be helpful, as I am considering reassigning my nice maple kitchen table to the press room. I also have a Poco cylinder proof press that needs a stand.

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I would build a table myself. I am not a carpenter, but have built many tables from scratch by just using simple common sense and no plans. Just build as I go along. Tables can be built
strong to hold press. Advantage is you can build a custom size table if you have the room and accommodate both presses if you so desire. Top can be made of 3/4” ply or even a double thick top, and press can be bolted down, etc. I think this better than your maple kitchen table.

Lots of Luck!


PS Have made strong tables put together with bolts, washes and nuts. You can nail first, but
then apply the bolts for strength.

2 x 4’s & 3/4” Plywood will make a nice sturdy table. You can make it just the right level for you. Comfort is important. Too tall & you’ll be reaching & standing on your toes. Too short & you’ll be stouping & your back will tell you about it later. Put it together with bolts & screws. Paint it a nice color. If you’re not handy with tools, go to a cabinet shop & tell them the size & how tall you want the table. I built mine about 30 years ago & still doing a great job for my needs. After mine being out of use for the last few years, I hope to soon get the Pilot going again. I need so many supplies, rollers, trucks, composing stick & some type. I work in a offset shop during the day so I have access to many items like negatives, ink & use of 2 good paper cutters.
Good luck on your project,

Cut four 4 X 4s to the proper length for legs. Horizontals can be made of scrap plywood or 1-inch boards. Nail the plywood top on and you’re done. I made one like that and it worked fine. With the 4 X 4s, you don’t ever have to worry about a collapse, believe me.

Thompson Cabinet Co. still have a few of their original Pilot press stands in stock in a metal finish crated and ready to ship. Talk to Ed and he might cut you a deal.


Daniel Morris
The Arm Letterpress
Brooklyn, NY