“Handdigel” in Swedish

Another newbie’s entry:

I bougt this press for about forty years ago and have carried it with me ever since (figuratively). It has been stored in parts for almost 20 years, but last autumn I had the time and inspiration to reassemble it again. From what I was told when I purchased the press; it was probably german and by seaching the forum here at Briar Press, I am about to decide that this is an “Emil Kahle”. The initials “E.K.” is under the ink disk.
If anyone could confirm or correct, I would appreciate it very much. (The year of manufacturing is impossible to know, I suppose? I have found nothing looking like serial number.)

I have used this press earlier in my life: to learn, to print business cards (for fun) and to develop my lino- and woodcuts. I’m no print maker. Yet.

Ronny L.

image: ek14.jpg


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Hi, the Kahle I have looks very similar, it has an ‘Emil Kahle’ makers plate on the front of the base, you may have signs of the fixings for this. A press with lots power and yours still appears to have its original chase.

I have an Emil Kahle which I have restored. I removed all the paint and rust before repainting and all the parts had “E.K.” stamped on them. The maker’s plate is secured on the front by two pins which go through two holes filled with some kind of black resin. I have taken the press apart and have taken photos of each part before putting it back together so if you need any detailed information or measurements I can help. I had found an Emil Khale patent application in the US dated 1905


Yes, I belive it’s the original chase. And as a matter of fact I have another one too. I’m kind of proud managing to keep the press complet. I have been moving around a few times. It is a robust machine, I like it (of course).
No traces of a name plate at all, but the “E.K.” on another piece too.

Nicolas. I have seen restored presses and of course, it’s a dream project. But for now it has to wait. I’m going to use it first.
Thanks for your offer! There is one piece at the ink disc “rotation thing” that is broken. It stops the hook from falling back too far, losing it’s grip. I have solved it with a piece of wood (painted black) so it works well. But in the future I might want to have that fixed properly. Then a photo would help!

Thank you booth for your comments.

The broken piece:

image: ek15.jpg


Hi Ronny and Nicolas, when I came home I checked the letters on the underside of the ink disc and now see that what I thought was ‘CK’ is in fact ‘EK’ with a faint central stroke in the middle of the letter. After the EK it has either ‘BC8 +’ or ‘BCB +’ cut into the metal, not stamped.

I read it pretty clear in right angle of light: “E K B 6 8” at the underside of the ink disc.. So they could be casted in same serie. A wild guess: “B”stands for “Boston”? The letters are indeed handcarved, so I assume it may be the founder’s marking?
No doubt then: it comes from Emil Kahle Maschinenfabrik.
Thanks! :)


Many of the German manufacturers of tabletop presses like yours copied the mechanism design of the Golding Official press, made in Boston USA, and their presses are called “Boston-tiegel”, so that might be the “B” — or not!


With yet another look the ‘C’ could be a ‘6’ but with the loops on both ends of the letter/number. So it sounds probable that they are the same as yours.
The story that goes with this press is that it was taken from a German ship impounded in New Zealand in 1939. I have yet to find any confirmation of this.
And Bob, the ‘Boston’ idea sounds likely.
Thanks for all this, I have not seen very much written on these presses.

Here is a photo of your part that is broken

image: IMG_3590.jpg


Yes Nicolas, I recognize the part. And it’s close now. The broken piece is on the fixed part that this is connected to. I think I can guess the form and size of the missing piece (as in my sketch).

Now, I have been thinking: maybe it’s not a big deal to have it repaired, but since it works well as it is (with my “wooden stopper”), maybe I should leave that to next owner, in the future? Isn’t it risky, welding in cast iron?


image: ek16.jpg


There are specialized professionals who will use the right tools and right materials for each kind of metal. If it works there is no need to mess with it.

I agree. I don’t feel it’s that important. Not right now, anyway.