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Re: grave item

All this talk about letterpresses is pretty exciting.  Last Spring, I bought a
letterpress, actually 3 letterpresses:  two are 8 1/2" by 11" sizes, one 17"
by 22".  I also have a LARGE cabinet full of different fonts; some are square,
some are italics, etc.  I have not identified the fonts yet.   I've been told
that this actually isn't a 'fine' press, but I'm plannin on usin it that way!
So now I can print my own writing or excerpts of something else, illustrate it
with my own art (prints, etc.), and then bind it.  What fun!!!!!  I love the
'automatic' embossing that happens!  I also have wooden letters!!!!!  They are
gorgeous, too.  I know that the equipment that I have was dumped after WWII.
Somehow it was recovered, thank goodness.

I washed (and washed and washed, etc.) letters all fall.  By that I mean, I
had to get the crusted, dried ink off and soaked it off in a home cleaning
product that we bought from Sam's club.  It is called Pro.  It worked better
than acetone, Green solvent, citrus solvents, etc.  I am trying to keep the
toxic stuff out of my studio as much as possible.  Making prints and using
asphaltum and litholene is about as toxic as I want to get and would actually
like to get less toxic!  But!  Anyway, I know that kerosene would have cleaned
them really fast, but my work time alloted to cleaning these letters was
limited and I felt that keeping kerosene for these (seemingly thousands)
letters was too dangerous/toxic/unsettling to me.  Now I have bought some sign
lettering ink!  I hope this is what to use to make the letters print.  I am
doing everything by "I think this is the right way" principle.

I did use oil based ink while testing some metal stamps that I also got with
everything else--they are incredible!!!  They are advertising cuts (I think
that's the name for them!)  If you are a fine printer and wouldn't mind
chatting with me about some questions I have as I work my way through this,
I'd really appreciate your time!

Thanks!  jansapp@aol.com

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