Page 11 - March2017
P. 11

and are also prone to wear where one   ffi  ffl  were devised to stop the f
       letter joins the next. Ask for a proof   kerns breaking off in the more usual
       of the fount if there is any doubt as to   combinations of letters set. Amateurs
       how badly the face is worn. Founders’   tend to ignore these ligatures and
       designs often included N, S, E, W and   they may be missing from the fount if
       1, 2, 3, etc. in italic small caps for use   the previous owner has put them to
       in the old postal addresses, which    one side. Certain rarer old faces were
       Monotype designs omitted.             supplied with quaint ligatures such as
         Script faces are frequently kerned   ct, gg, sp, st, tt, etc. or the Qu or QU
       too. (A kern is the small overhang on   ligature.
       a letter such as an f or j.) Kerns are     A test to distinguish founders’ metal
       particularly liable to breakage or wear   from Monotype metal was mentioned
       and the script should be checked      above. This is because
       for this also. Because of this many   founders’ metal
       “Take care over the alignment of the face on the body.
                                             is much
       kerned characters scripts require
        Does the new match the old? When ordering sorts to
       special ‘winged’ spaces to support
       the kerns and these too may not
         supplement an old fount, send an alignment sample
       be interchangeable with
          character with the order so that the founder may adjust
       existing types.
           the new casting to match the old.”
                                                            and lasts longer,
                                                   subject to treatment and use.

                                             but wears more rapidly, so second-
                           founders’ types
                                             hand Monotype metal is also cheap
                                             but usually not worth buying unless it
                   had no kerns and letters   Monotype metal is cheaper when new
       such as j had ‘pot hook’ designs as in   really is what you need to supplement
       Linotype faces, where the letter is bent   a fount. Type metal is easily melted,
       to stay within a normal rectangular   and type which has been allowed to
       body. More recent founders’ faces     get too hot, or has been in a fi re, can
       and most Monotype faces incorporate   look all right but be too distorted to
       kerns in one or more characters,      print properly. Does it smell smoky?
       especially in the italics, to improve the   But corrosion is a much more frequent
       design of the face. Alternatively they   cause of damage to type metal. Type
       may need high spaces to support the   stored in a damp or cold conditions
       kerns or overhanging letters. All script   oxidises easily producing a white
       faces should be checked for damage.   powdery surface, which prints with
       Founders’ types frequently have the   a mottled effect. Metal may also
       kerned characters hand-fi led after    be damaged by misuse of chemical
       casting—this may help to distinguish   cleaners (or abrasive cleaners such as
       them.                                 steel wool!). Oxidation often occurs on
         The ff series of ligatures, ff fi  fl    the least-used characters, which are
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