Seeking letterpress (beginner)


I’ve been recently inspired by studying modern presses like The Hogarth Press & Three Mountain Press and would like to buy a letter press. Elementary research leads me to believe that an 8-5 or something slightly larger is ideal for the sort of printing I intend to do. It seems like an Adana or Kelsey letter press is akin to what I’m looking for. But, to be honest, I know nothing of printing and would so appreciate any recommendations on what to purchase or offers from people selling similar machines.


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Isabel, where are you located? i’m in southeastern massachusetts and if you’re near me you could come to my shop and see the kelsey 5x8, poco proof press, 10x15 c&p, and much more. You should go to a printing museum near you and ask old guys there about letterpress, they usually know whee to get old equipment. ebay prices are high and most people selling there don’t know howto pack things for shipping, you could end up with a pile of junk. gooluck Dick G.

Hi Dick,

I currently move between Portland, OR & Houston, TX so unfortunately I’m very far from your shop. Thanks for the advice though, I will definitely look for a printing museum nearby. One more question, if you wouldn’t mind—How much do you think is reasonable for such a machine? The ebay prices seem very high ($2,000+ for okay condition). For a beginner printer looking to use it as a crafting hobby, is there a price range you’d recommend as relatively standard?


Your not that far from me, only a one hour drive, just hop a plane to Boston, rent a car and i’m only one hours drive south. Ebay is not cheap, i would look around and figure out what you really want to do with the press, 10x15 floor model c&p’s are less money and will print much better than a table top press. Check out Excelsior Press in New Jersey, he rebuilds and sells presses, might be cheaper than ebay. Hard to say what is a fairprice, gt my last three small presses for free. The c&p’s are usually much cheaper, also much heavier. Look around a lot before buying anything. Good Luck Dick G.

There are two community shops in Portland, and

good to try it out before diving in.

Hello every one:

I just bought a C&P 11X 15 and I am new to this facinating world. For those who started just like me, from scrach, what were the first things that i should avoid to be able to produce a nice first job? thaks for your advise.

You should avoid printing anything until you get some lessons, these machines can cause serious injury, or you could set it up wrong and do serious damage to the machine. Don’t think you’re going to just start printing excellent work, this takes years of practice. Good Luck Dick G.

Isabel, check out the Houston Printing Museum — I think they have open use of some presses occasionally, as well as workshops and there are some very knowledgeable people associated with the museum.


Dick is right these machines can be dangerous but can also turn out amazing work.
We offer workshops and private classes as well as a full line of supplies.
You can find us in the classified section under schools in California.
The other thing you want to keep in mind is the damage you can do to one of these fine old machines.

I and my Chandler & Price need a tune-up. Are there classes, workshops and/or ? anywhere near Southern California? I am in Laguna

I know its a bit of a drive north, but the Printing Museum in Carson has some very knowledgeable people as well as great workshop classes on weekends.
I took the Platen Press series and really learned a lot. Good luck!


I have a shop in San Diego and offer classes as well as on site press set up and repairs for Chandler and Price, Kluges and Windmills.
Drop me a line and we can discuss….

thanks all for ypur advise, hopefully ill be starting it in few weeks

We do private lessons and press set up instruction.
Drop me an email