Looking for a flat-bed iron hand press?

A number of the presses recorded in the North American Hand Press Database are listed as for sale, at varying prices. Examples are Wesel Washingtons, Field and Shniedewend Reliances, etc. If you are seeking such a press I can put you in touch with the owners wishing to sell. Respond with contact info and price range. I receive no compensation for these transactions except the satisfaction of knowing another press has found a good home.

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Is the database online anywhere? It would be interesting to know what is still out there and where.

One day when funds permit I’d like to add a handpress here at The Arm. Until then I will just drool over the Rummonds and Allen manuals.

Daniel Morris
The Arm Letterpress
Brooklyn, NY

Sorry, Daniel — I haven’t been able to find a safe way to put the database online. However, I can tell you that I have recorded about 950 hand presses all together in North America, including European-made ones and modern reproductions and reconstructions. And there are apparently still quite a few out there I haven’t heard about yet!


Hello Arm; I already have a Reliance made by Wm. A. Fields, platen size approx 16x24. I restored it myself and print broadsides about 13x22 from my wood engravings and handset type, both lead and wood. I would love to have a small ‘table top’ like Steve Pratt makes in Utah, but unable to go his price at the moment. Do you have anything that is close to that, maybe even one that requires total restoration or in need of serious rebuilding. I have restored three iron hand presses to date, so am willing to tackle a ‘basket case’……….Carl

Good Morning AdLib…. I’ve been meaning to e-mail you for the last few weeks, but keep forgetting.

Are you aware that the Printing and Imaging Association of Georgia has an Iron Handpress sitting out in front of their offices as an object d’art? It’s located at:

Printing & Imaging Association of Georgia
5020 Highlands Parkway
Smyrna, Georgia 30082

Right now it’s still in restorable condition, but due to the humid climate in that part of the south it’s eventually going to rust away. What a waste…..

Winking Cat: Thanks! I’ll check it out when I return. I’m headed out of the country for 2 months this afternoon, so no time now. I appreciate the heads up!


Hello, Bob—Found any more Adams Cottage Presses? I would still like to compile a list of locations. At this point, I only know of five.


I would appreciate information on iron hand presses for sale. I have a Morgan Wilcox and interested in a complete press with a working tympan and frisket.
Thanks, John McWilliams

I’m looking for a Shniedewend Reliance or Midget, fully restored and operational. Thanks so much for your help!
-W. Buchanan

There are two on the most popular internet auction place right now. Both are Ostrander Seymour. Put letterpress printing press in the search box and they will come up. They are not cheap, though.

Referring to my post above: there is also a Reliance hand press for $3399 on the most popular internet auction place. It is a “buy it now” sale, which means you can buy it for that price. You don’t have to wait for bidding to end. Put “reliance letterpress” (without the quotes) into the search box to find it. (This is not my press; I just found the listing there).


Applecart Press’s 20th Century Reliance will soon be residing in Northampton, Massachusetts at Big Wheel Press.

We are heading up to Brunswick next Wednesday.

It is serial number 503.

Just this weekend there was a Reliance on auction. I was bidding in it but, I totally missed the last minute bidding. That was an awesome 25 inch bed press…

Someone out there is laughing big time with that press. Too bad I missed that one.

Hi, Bob, I just read your book. A nice piece of work.

Two more hand presses for your Database in my collection.

A C. Foster and Brothers Washington, 24x38 platen, identical to the one in your book with the brass finials, but with a large decorative shell on top at the peak of the staple and no finials. I have seen four Foster presses like the one in your book without the finials or the shell. Have you ever seen a Foster with a 6” free standing shell casting on top?

The second is an Alexandra, 1881, 11x16 platen. Very decorative Albion style press. Came to me via England to Cairo to NYC to Long island where I bought it. It was a relic, but with only surface rust and complete less the cam lever and linkage which I duplicated.

Both these presses are fully restored and used frequently.

I would love to know the location of other examples of either of these presses. How does one access your database?

I am in the market for a small Columbian.


I am looking for a medium size wesel. Or reliance , preferably complete, zip 78737, total budget $6000. Thanks, jim

I am looking for a medium size wesel or similar iron hand press, complete. Budget including freight $6000.00. Thanks, jim

James please contact me through Briar Press — I did not find an email for you there. I can suggest some possible sources for a hand press.


My email address is: [email protected]