The first website I ever designed was for my band in New York, and on it I created little animated dancing bodies with photos of our heads grafted on. That's how I'm really feeling right now after the first successful print on my big letterpress - like a silly, giddy, repetitively dancing cartoon character with my head on top. YES!!!

The throw-off arm is still a little sticky, but workable after I loosened the bolt holding the throw off pin circle. I sprayed a little WD-40 in there, and now at least the pulling of the throw-off arm forward (to print) is relatively smooth. I still need to work on what's making the pushing of the arm backward (trip) stick, but this is great progress.

As for the throw-off arm in "print" position making the press stop (see the video from last week), this time I tried running the press without the chase in first. No problem! Luckily, as I was wandering around inspecting the grippers before putting the chase in I noticed just a bit of ink on one of the grippers. It would appear that one of the gripper arms had been nicking just the very end of my Boxcar base, thus preventing a print and the press from moving further. So, this will officially be my:

moment for the week. After all the lovely advice I received from Rich at Front Room Press, I guess at least I'm glad I didn't have to try and start adjusting all those things.

I got to do a bunch of exciting makeready, cutting out various shapes to put behind my little dead things on the stationery. The finished pieces probably have a little too much impression and have a few breaks in the lines, but the ink coverage is pretty perfect if I do say so myself. I'm considering naming my presses after various characters from Alice In Wonderland, given that the name of my shop is Tweedle Press. Cheshire? Jabberwocky? Mad Hatter? I'll have to see what of their personalities begins to shine through.

Finally, I would like to say that in the future I intend for not all of my posts to be quite so technical and letterpress geek. I'd like to post about some stuff that would be of interest to others as well, so look for entries on the following topics in the near future:
  • Starting A Small Business
  • The Creative Process
  • Finding A Niche
  • Work/Creative Environment
Pulp & Press Soundtrack 4/10/09: Life In Technicolor ii (Coldplay). You must check out this video - it's hysterical.


  1. Well, the 8x12 is the Cheshire Cat since it's grinning at you. I'm glad the impression problem has been sorted out. Keep an eye on different prints for a while for uneven impression. Even though it was not the cause of the problem in this case it's not unusual that they need adjustment. If it is out a little, correcting it can save a lot of makeready time.

    Make sure the the shafts on which the throw off mechanism castings are attached are clean and oiled where they go through the sides of the press.

    The prints look great.