Sunday, May 19, 2013

Paper Project: making Chris' Wedding Invitation Stock

This entry is a follow up from the Paper Wren Press Blog entry here.  I am placing this entry here on the Printer's Blog because this blog is where I keep educational and information oriented articles.  If you followed the link, you will have read Part 2, the printing of the Invitation.  This is Part 1, the making of the card stock used.  Chris is the Groom, and wanted maximum creative involvement in the creation of his and his Bride-to-be's wedding suite.  What better way than to make the paper?

Above is the home-made beater. The barrel is a sawed-off Jack Daniels Whiskey barrel, made waterproof by an inner liner.  The axle of the main pulley (bicycle wheel) holds about five sickle-like blades which rotate between fixed metal vanes attached to the inner lining of the bucket, with a few tenths of an inch clearing.  The paper fibers are not cut, but beaten, hydrating them.  The beater wheel is belted, as you can see, to a half horse motor.

Here is Chris feeding the beater.  The pulp contained burlap, cotton, and recycled printed paper, probably from an old Encyclopedia.  Not....too old, we're not ripping up collector items.  There was some plant clippings that found their way into the mix, plus some charred wood from the barrel itself.

This is Josh, pulling a home made mould through the mix.  Josh has been working on this paper system for better part of a year, now, beginning with a self-cycling garbage disposal system, and slowly honing his system to improve his results.  Chris and Josh both designed their latest beater, which actually resembles a Japanese design.  Oh, and Josh made the mould and deckle.

Josh inspecting the pull.  One of the challenges was to produce something like consistent thickness, since these sheets are slated for Letterpress Printing.  There is very little sizing in this mix, I think Josh mentioned adding some Calcium from charred bone.

Josh pulling the mould from the deckle.

Posing for the Camera.  A little James Dean action here.

Couching on the blanket.

A little forced-air help.

There ya go! A good release.

A few hours later, and we have a lay-out ready for pressing and drying.

Gathering the sheets from the blanket.

These sheets were pressed with metal interleaves, under the pressure of a hydraulic jack.

Chris is "candling" each sheet visually to determine which sheets to send off to Paper Wren Press for printing.

And finally, the finished product.  There are about one hundred 5x7" (approx) sheets here.  All told, Chris and Josh made about 200 sheets, 150 of which were selected for use.

So here ya go, the "behind the scenes" story. The Paper Wren Press blog entry describes the actual printing of these sheets.  

We hope you enjoyed reading this piece.  All photos were taken by Chris Rupp, the paper maker is Josh Rustin, one of our local DeLand resident artisan craftsmen and artist.


Monday, May 6, 2013

More Kluge Information

I had committed to enter Kluge Information as I came upon it.  From Brandtje & Kluge's site, I submit some general model information.

The first of the Kluge Platen Presses were made in 1931.  Prior to this, B&K only made the feeder for other presses.  Their design goal was to build a heavy, durable, and very fast press.  The two models made through the 1930s, and through WW2 were the Model M (10x15) and the Model N (12x18)

From this point on, "M" designates the 10x15 sizes, and "N" designates the 12x18.

"The Model M and N presses proved an overnight success. During the balance of the thirties, the company was producing 50 to 60 presses per month, and opened branch offices in many cities including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco and Detroit, also taking their first venture into the foreign market with exports of KLUGE presses to India, the Philippines and Australia"

During the post WW2 boom, B&K improved their presses:

"Following the war, the booming economy created an unprecedented demand for KLUGE Automatic Presses that was met by assembly line production of over 300 feeders per month from the St. Paul facility. By 1946, significant improvements in inking and registration led to the development of "MA" and "NA" models, which were in turn replaced by the enhanced "MB" and "NB" models just two years later." 

Thus, we find the "MA" and "NA" series presses dating between 1946 through 1948.

The "MB" and "NB" series presses begin manufacture in 1948.  

Apparently, the "B" series enjoyed a span of eleven years, from 1948 - 1959.  Then, from the Kluge History page we read:

"The decision to focus on its existing platen press knowledge and expand the product's potential energized the company with a keen sense of direction, and by 1959, Brandtjen & Kluge introduced the Model "C" Automatic with innovative sealed ball bearings that increased maintenance intervals and a constant speed motor drive system."

Thus, the "MC" and "NC" models find their origins in 1959.

What is not clear is when the "C" series ended and the "D" series of the mid 1960s begins.  Again, reading from the Kluge History page:

"This was the forerunner of KLUGE's most popular presses-the 11 X 17 and 13 X 19 "D" Series sheetfed printing presses."

The "EHD" was developed in 1967, so it might be safe to put the "C" series in the early 1960s, and the "D" series in the middle 1960s, up until 1967.

The entire Kluge Story can be found here.