locating a press

Hi there. I am a letterpress newbie. I was wondering where (besides ebay, craigslist, and this site) I would need to look to locate a press. I am interested in the tabletop Pilot or the Pearl 11. I currently live in Portland Oregon, and would like to locate one nearby, if that’s possible.

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I’ve only been coming here for a short while, and I think I’ve read through every discussion, but it seems that the harder you look for a specific press, the harder it is to find what you want.

It seems that a press will find you when It is ready for you,
kind of a serendipity thing.

Just keep looking! I was talking with a gentleman in California a couple of weeks ago and he found a C&P Pilot at a garage sale for $10 [Yes $10]. He turned around and sold it for $850. They can come and go fast, so keep on top of the listings.

Good Luck!

Go to antique shows, print shops, advertise in your local paper, hit collectible shows etc. and talk, talk, talk to people, keep net working and soon you will have printing stuff coming out your ears. Presses and equipment are where you find them. Vern

Hang around with other printers who’ve been around a while as often as possible. They know where the presses are to be found.

Thank you so much for the replies…

Hi, weselli—

Portland has an active letterpress community. You can try to meet other printers at some of the shops around town that do letterpress—Advanced, Vince’s, Star, Stumptown, Oblation.

Also, the Independent Publishing Resource Center and the Oregon College of Art and Craft are great local resources. Someone you meet locally may have a line on equipment that will save you long distance shipping, and from having to buy sight unseen.

Good luck, Brian

Also check out em space http://www.em-space.org/
It’s a member co-op with several presses.

Write up some “wanted” ads on index cards and post them on bulletin boards in supermarkets and laundromats. I have gotten a couple of good presses that way, really cheap. Try not to be too specific. I think I wrote, “Wanted: Small, tabletop printing press, any condition.” There is still a lot of good stuff out there. People used to buy old Pilots at school surplus auctions for $5 and $10 each and a lot of those purchases haven’t moved an inch in 40 years.

You can also try setting up a Google alert with search terms like “Kelsey” or “letterpress” and see what comes up. I just purchased a press that I found this way. It took about 3 months.