Attaching Counter to Pilot

Does anyone know if it is possible to attach a counter to a Pilot Press?
Pictures would be helpful.

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A friend gave me a reddington counter from a C&P. Actually he was going to throw it away & I caught it.
He had some old ink scales, a small box of furniture, several quoins, a riglet cabinet (not full,but lots of pieces) & some numbering machines. Small score for me.

The devil is making me say this. Why bother? This is not a production press.


Easy now, I was just curious.
It’s the only press I have.
I’ll go back in my cave now & maybe scratch at little on the walls.

The Kelseys sometimes had a little rod that passed out through the lower frame that could act to push (or was it pull?) the arm on a lever counter. I am sure you could improvise something similar on your Pilot if you wanted. There was a fella with a massive amount of the Veeder Root counters that was selling them on eBay recently for about $3 a pop. Have a look.

Daniel Morris
The Arm Letterpress
Brooklyn, NY

There’s a reason why the Pilot press was not made with a counter—you don’t need one.

Updated. Well I guess when I get past 10 I’ll just have to take my shoes off. Just joking. Someone gave me a Reddington from a C&P & didn’t know if anyone had ever tried to mount one on a Pilot. The Kluge I run has one & so does the Windmill. The Multis (5) has one, as does the AB Dicks (3). I know how rediculous it sounds.

I think a counter is a very useful device even for short runs — it saves thinking! I attached a small counter with a lever actuator to the wooden base of my Sigwalt and connected the arm to an available screw on the side of the platen, using a link made from a piece of coat hanger and a small spring. When the platen closes it pulls on the link and the counter gets the message — the spring prevents excess force being applied to the counter. It has worked fine for more than 20 years. I’m not sure how you would attach the Reddington, but I’m sure something can be worked out.

I think it was a perfectly legit question, Bob… and anyone who answers with “Why?” just doesn’t have the creative thinking to ask “Why not?” instead.

I have no suggestions, but The Arm and Ad Lib’s ideas sound good enough that you could rig something up based on their concepts.

Thank you all for your comments. The positive & not so positive. If I had a digital camera I could show you just what I did. And the answer is YES you can do it if you just stop & think about how it all moves. I just used a long spring I had in a box of parts. Connected it to the bolt that holds the arm on & adjusted the length. Moved some things around & yes it really works. Now I can count past 10 without taking my shoes off.

Hi Bob,

I recently purchased a C&P Pilot and it came with a counter attached. I can take a picture and email you if you want to see how it was put on.

That would be great. Just so I can compare how someone else made it work.
Thanks, Bob

Hi Bob, Here are some pictures of the counter on my C&P Pilot:

image 1
image 2
image 3

Updated. Thank you for the pictures of the application for the counter. Since my counter is quite large, Redington, it will not fit like yours. If I can borrow my daughter camera I’ll post a picture.

hi bob
i would just chase up a mumbering machine on a corner that does not hit the paper. you can keep count of your impressions that way.

Why didn’t I think of that??? DUH
Great idea. I suppose you would have to use a forward counting machine. Just kidding, I have forward & backward numbering machines. Letterpress numbering is much easier with backward numbering so you don’t have to flip the sheets over when you take them out of the press. :)

Bob, It sounds as if you have found a number of appropriate options for using a counter with your Pilot. As for the large Redington counter, I did once see it in use on a tabletop press. The counter was mounted on the wall in back of the press and connected with a rod and wire to some part of the press! I wish I had a photo of it.

The easiest suggestion seems to be the numbering machine suggested by claudewilson. I do have a photo of a smaller counter attached to a Kelsey press. I’m not sure I would want to drill into the body of the press like this. The photos shown by adaley seem to be a better solution.

I realize this is an old post, but do any of you have an image of the counter on a pilot?