The second day of the 2018 ATF conference again took place at M&H Type.
The second day of the 2018 ATF conference again took place at M&H Type.
The first day proper of the 2018 ATF conference consisted of a series of presentations given in the gallery space at Arion Press.
The day started off with a continental breakfast, a Welcome and general comments and announcements, then on to the first presentation.
This will take place at Howard Iron Works, 800 Westgate Road, Oakville Ontario, where they have (so I’ve heard) a wonderful museum of restored old printing presses as a backdrop to the fair. I’ve been meaning to visit this museum for several years but never seem to get around to it.
This event is being held in conjunction with the local Doors Open event, which is a sort of organized simultaneous open house of multiple local buildings and businesses.
For the fair, the museum will have a press or two running, and perhaps their Linotype, and some of the 14 exhibitors will be doing demonstrations as well.
We’ll have a table there, selling paper, marbling, and some bookbinding supplies.
We don’t do Facebook ourselves, but the museum has a page there for this event.
About 2½ years ago we changed our dryer felt because we couldn’t obtain the previous product. Our last roll of this wide thick stuff has run out, but we’ve managed to find a supplier of dryer felt that is more like what we sold pre-2015, both in terms of thickness and also roll width (60″/152cm).
The price for this felt is also changing back to its pre-2015 price of $6.00 per metre.
Why “Day Zero”? The American Typefounding Fellowship conference proper started on Friday, August 24th, but the day before that had technical sessions, where we got to see how M&H Type run their Monotype Composition casters. I attended the afternoon session, not so much to learn how to run a caster, but to see the special quirks that every foundry seems to have on how they run their casters. As an aside, there was also a “Day -1” which consisted of an evening hospitality suite at our hotel.
On my return flight from the ATF conference in San Francisco I spotted two interesting views out of my airplane window (facing South).
The first was an interesting landform in Wyoming:
The Killpecker Sand Dunes are formed from an old riverbed which provides a source of sand, with the prevailing westerly winds blowing this sand though a gap in the mountains across the plain.
The blown sand forms this long cigar-shaped dark area with patchy dunes in it. I expect that the dark shape is from the sand wearing away lighter-coloured surface materials. This erosion probably forms a bit of a depressed area which keeps the sand confined despite minor variations in the wind direction.
The other interesting sight was a thunderstorm near the Wisconsin/Illinois border, west of Beloit. This was just after dusk so the lightning flashes were easily seen, though the bolts themselves were mostly hidden within the cloud. Although it was not a huge storm, the view was excellent so I took a short movie of in using my cell phone.
Tomorrow I’ll be flying to San Francisco for the 2018 American Typecasting Fellowship (ATF) conference, hosted this year by M&H Type and the Arion Press. I expect most of the usual gang to be there, with presentations about old systems for casting type for letterpress and stories (both horror and successful) about keeping the old craft alive in the modern age. There will probably be some ATF people based on the West coast whom I haven’t met before as well.
I hope to have a report in this blog of some of the activities in a more timely manner than in 2016!
A month or two ago we were featured on the local CTV station’s Made Right Here segment. I guess they found us so photogenic they sent another crew (well, just two people, actually) over and this week we appeared on their In Your Backyard segment, presented as three 3-minute items during the 5 o’clock news. I can’t seem to find a link currently that will play all three in sequence (each one links on to an August 1st item about a bakery), so here are the links to the individual parts:
These are all preceded by ads, of course. On my browser, these start up with the sound muted in the video player so you might have to unmute it to hear things too.
We received our Sigwalt Chicago No. 11 press with no chase so it has been sitting collecting dust for a while.
I recently cobbled together a chase from a scrap of the ¾″-thick high-density polyethylene (HDPE) sheet we use to make our moulds and deckles.
I cut the HDPE to a rectangle which fit closely between the rails of the press, then shaved off a bit on each side leaving a small wedge to engage the chase retainer lugs on either side of the bed. I cut the chase opening using my sabre saw, with a drilled hole to start the cut, and filed the edges to the desired shape (more or less). I drilled some holes on two sides and tapped them #8-32 to take setscrews to lock in the type.
To test it, I locked in three lines of standing type I had waiting to be dissed (the title lines from a Wayzgoose Anthology submission from four years ago). After some fiddling with packing and the press bed adjustments I got a half-decent print out of it. The rollers on this press seem really hard (Shore A45/OO90) for the strength of the roller saddle springs, and things ended up a bit over-inked.
This press has a small foot so it really needs to be attached to a tabletop or larger base to avoid tipping when operating it. A bigger base plate and new ink rollers are the next items to be addressed for this press.
Because I hand-shaped the opening, one end of it is a bit wonky so I put the setscrews in that end. The other screws ended up on the bottom of the chase purely by chance. I didn’t have the correct screw size handy so I made my own, and the slot in the head (cut with a hacksaw) is a bit too narrow to accept the screwdriver tip properly. Also, the screws have to be recessed so it takes a tiny screwdriver to tighten them. I think I will re-drill and re-tap the holes to accept the same screw size as those on the chase of our Kelsey press (which I think is ¼″-20) so I can use the same screwdriver that I use for the Kelsey.
This gives me a starting point for making a chase out of metal. The HDPE material is very forgiving so I didn’t need to worry too much about proper engagement of the retainer lugs. The lugs on my press bed do not match each other so for a metal chase there would be manual fitting on both sides. I can think of several ways of forming a metal chase:
A genuine chase seems to be about 5/16″ thick on the top and bottom, and 7/32″ thick on the sides, so welding four sides together might be the easiest way, as long as I can keep the sides from distorting.
It appears the the Kitchener Aud is hosting a lacrosse tournament just prior to the Maker Expo and won’t have time to take down the rink boards between the two events. As a result there will be less space available in the arena, but the Expo will now have use of the Kiwanis arena as well as the original Kinsmen arena.
The floor plan has changed substantially, but I’m not going to make yet another map showing where we are because (although our booth number is now #22) we are still essentially in the same location—in the Kinsmen arena at the end of the row of booths along the center of the arena near the main entrance.
It turns out we can sell items at this event, so we will be using our second table to sell some of our marbled and handmade paper.