Page 7 - July 2017
P. 7

feeds the lead down a slide, pushed by
       a weight, and cut up by a reciprocating
       blade.
        Inessentials
       20: Setting Rules. These are lovely things,
       especially if it’s a boxed set, but designed
       for use in commercial shops where work
       was set by several people for the one
       job, and their settings needed to match
       precisely. Setting your stick to length
       using leads is not ideal (they are too likely
       to be slightly inaccurate), but using quads
       is fi ne. Just put in a lead then to help with
       handling the type when taking it out of
       the stick.
       21: Planer. The idea that you should
       hammer your type forme fl at with a
       planer and mallet rather horrifi es me. All
       very well in the hustle and compromises
       of a newspaper works, but otherwise
       it is better to check there is no dirt
       underneath, and then feel for projecting
       pieces by running your hand over the
       forms, and possibly again with a large    Type high gauges & Linen tester
       piece of furniture. Anything projecting
       can usually be dealt with gently, which   stop the paper just slipping over the quad)
       is actually how a mallet and planer are   stuck on top, attached by double-sided
       meant to be used.                     adhesive tape. Like the gauge pins, these
       22: A Bodkin. I’ve never used or needed   are a fi ddle to adjust when making small
       one. I prefer to pick out type for correction   positioning corrections. I’m too mean to
       using tweezers, I suspect a bodkin is   have tried Caslon’s modern equivalent,
       liable to scratch it. They were used in   although this sounds easier to adjust.
       cheap work to ‘spike’ spaces: if a line was   24: A Hand Roller. This is not normally
       loose, the bodkin was driven into a space,   essential, but useful if you want to go
       distorting it to make it wider (but not   beyond straightforward printing, eg. by
       while the boss was watching).         hand-inking using part-mixed colours.
          A matter of choice                 However, a larger heftier roller is better.
       23: Gauge Pins. If your press doesn’t   The tiny ones that came from Adana
       have a lay gauge to position the paper   years ago (about 1cm diameter and 5cm
       for printing, these were the traditional   long) are not much use. Purists roll out
       gadget to do the job. Bent wire pins that   their ink on a slab before use, small-press
       stabbed into the tympan sheet, they   users can do this by inking-up the plate
       obviously worked well for many printers.   and working the press a few times before
       In similar circumstances, I have used 8pt   putting in the forme.
       quads with projecting pieces of card (to
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