pressing on

Hello to all.

I have added a new dimension to my old love of writing.

Only recently have I discovered the 150 year old National Amateur Press Association, NAPA, where members create their own newspapers and distribute them to other members through the association.

Trying to remain as old school as possible, I’ve been using my manual typewriter, cut and paste, and then a modern copy machine to make the requisite number of prints.

I would dearly love to letterpress my small paper, but alas, being old enough to see my grandfather in the mirror, I could hardly convince my good wife to spare that much change from her purse.

Many members use computers to write their papers, but I feel that an old fashioned letterpress, black ink, and type would round out the pleasures of the hobby with each monthly issue.

I’ve recently designed a press similar to the DIY hydraulic ones seen on the internet, but I’d rather use a real amateur press - or even a small proof press; almost impossible to find here.

I use A4 folded in half for my amateur paper. Any small press will do with type enough to print 2 columns on 6x8, or better yet a press and type that would print 4 columns on 8x12 landscape.

I’m not choosy about font. Newspaper type seems practical enough to get started. My typewriter has elite type at 12 characters per inch.

BTW I’m an expat from Chicago living in the Philippines.

Any ideas, considerations, or contributions from gifted, kind hearted pressman appreciated.


image: Type.jpg


Log in to reply   2 replies so far

Due to the great expense of shipping heavy letterpress items to the Philippines, I should think you would be better off looking around the Philippines. If you could visit a few print shops and talk to them, they might have, or know of, shops with letterpress items collecting dust in their back rooms. Be sure to tell them you are not going to be a competitor, and they might open up to you more. Letterpress probably lasted longer there than it did in North America, and I know that there are still things being found in North America (in my general area anyway, which is Ontario, Canada). Keep an eye on Philippine online marketplaces as well, and maybe post some wanted ads. Best of luck to you!

You are so right about shipping, import duties, and other general expenses, however, the Philippine printing shops keep up pretty well with technology. The Chinese imported machines like offset are popular. . Any old machines are likely to be broken, and if they are broken in this country that means irreparable. I did see one old platen press operational in cebu but couldnt get close at the time. Im sure they are using photopolymer and not type.
My plan is to look around the shops when this quarantine is over, but I dont hold much hope. These folks arent well enough off to keep stuff around. I anticipate metal type has been sold off for scrap or so worn out it’d be about useless.
Ive advertised across the Philippine nation with absolutely no response.
Yes, it would be wonderful to find a press here, and I’m still looking. Of course I’m also looking in Indonesia, Australia, Singapore, vietnam, taiwan, Japan, and Hong Kong, but that shouldn’t prevent any canadian or american philanthropist from lending a hand.