Page 8 - January 2015
P. 8

RestoRing a twin Ball Diestamping pRess

                                            by Tim Honnor (5578)

          HAT, I HEAR YOU ASK, IS A TWIN      I have known Justin Knopp of the Typoretum
          BALL PRESS. Well, some of you       for many years and it was a joy to be able to
          may remember the pictures in the    go and visit his wonderful printshop whilst at
November 2013 Small Printer, where I asked    the 2013 Convention at Colchester. Justin had
you to ‘Name the Press’ but also to provide   mentioned that in his father’s garage there
me with some information on how to restore    was a heap of metal that could be an old hand
this piece of printing equipment.             diestamping (intaglio) press and it was mine
                                              if wanted it. I asked Roger Pertwee (from the
                                              London firm of Baddeley Brothers who have
                                              been diestamping for over 150 years) if he
                                              could come over with me to view the press
                                              and he indeed confirmed that it was a Twin
                                              Ball Diestamping Press. Thus, having no idea if
                                              it was complete, I got it shipped to my garage
                                              in Inverness, where it took a six weeks to
                                              strip every part down and clean it up. (Thank
                                              goodness for a digital camera that was able to
                                              record every move I took).

Nothing came of my request, BUT Bob
Richardson (9718) was able to unearth a
picture from the St Bride Library, showing
a press that looked similar to the one I was
trying to restore. But I must start at the

                                                          After a while, it became clear that the press
                                                          was quite close to the picture provided by
                                                          Bob Richardson. The press is a beautifully
                                                          made machine that when the twin balls are
                                                          turned by hand, sends a die carriage under
                                                          an inking brush (sadly lost from this press),
                                                          then to a wiping paper that rolls off from a
                                                          large roll, and thence places the die under the
                                                          stamper. The last part of the travel of the twin

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