Hein (fub) wrote,

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Printing progress

Today, I broke a personal record: I did six print runs in a single day! This progress is also very necessary, because the project I'm working on (a text by luna_puella) has 40 pages. Of those, 39 pages have a title (the medium and/or a time) and the text. I'm printing the title in blue, and I'll be printing the text itself in black -- so that's two print runs per page. I have now finally printed all the titles.

There's also another first: it's the first time I've set three lines of text:

That was kinda tricky, actually. You have to 'fill out' the lines with 'white': pieces of lead that are shorter than the letters, so they don't get inked and printed. Every line has to be exactly the same width, because you then clamp the lines tight in the galley. If one line is shorter, the letters may fall out during printing (or before). But if one line is longer than the others, the others have more space and the letters may fall out as well.
With three lines, it's finnicky but do-able. But for the next print runs, I may have up to ten lines of text -- a lot of work to balance that. And since I'm not trained as a typesetter, I improvise. And improvisation gets you far with this, but it'll cost a lot of extra time. With so many print runs in the future, I need an efficient proces -- otherwise it'll take another year before this gets finished.

So I think I'll be measuring the width of all the letters and all of my 'white' and then write a small program that will tell me which white I need to fill out which line. That shouldn't be too hard to make, and it will change the typesetting from a trial-and-error process into a simple pick-list.

I used a piece of kitchen towel to rub off most of the ink from the letters after the print run. I've bought the supposedly best ink for small run letterpress for the text, but that's an entry for another time.
Tags: craft

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