View Full Version : How to Make an Etching and Lino Printing Press

05-01-2016, 12:54 PM
Hello Everyone

Iím afraid I donít have any artistic skills at all, buy my wife is very much interested in lino printing. Over the last nine months Iíve been building her a printing press. You might enjoy the video I've put on youtube, and it might inspire someone else to have a go at making their own press. If you are interested go to YouTube and take a look at the below.


Iím not planning to make any more so itís very much a one of Ė but if anyone wants any advice then please feel free to contact me.

(I should add that we also had a bit of fun with the YouTube comments Ė it is of course all in jest!)


05-01-2016, 12:58 PM
I've added a photo of the press below


05-01-2016, 01:28 PM
You have some great equipment.


winking cat press
05-03-2016, 06:26 PM
that is a nice looking machine. It looks like it will serve you well for many years. That Star Wheel is just what a direct drive press needs to work well for Intaglio. Good work!

I see a number of similarities with the ones on the "Build a Press" website (and my own wooden-framed press). How wide is it? and how big are the rollers? Are the shafts 3/4?

If I ever take a few pics of mine, I'll post them here and we can compare notes on what works well and what might have been done better for the benefit of others who might want to build their own.

05-04-2016, 05:58 PM
HI Ė thanks for the kind comments!

Yes Ė you are correct, it is based on the ďBuild a Press" design. The rollers are 225 mm wide, and 75mm in diameter so itís all quite small. Space practicalities mean we couldnít accommodate anything any bigger. The shaft through the middle of the rollers is 20mm in diameter.


winking cat press
05-09-2016, 12:15 PM
Hello David- as promised, here is a pic of my version of the "Build-A-Press" style etching press. As you can see, it's made of Oak instead of metal. One might would think that the wood wouldn't hold up as well, but after two years of constant use, it's showing no signs of warping or deterioration. One of my earlier wooden presses is over ten years old now, and still is as flat as the day it was made.

The roller is 3" diameter x 13" wide, made of a very hard polyurethane material. ( It is described at length both here and on Briar Press ) Before I decided to use that material, I spent over a year testing it under heavy loads, and then tried my best to make it flat-spot or deteriorate. Now, that It's been in constant use for two years, I'm finally convinced that it is a viable material for impression cylinders.

Other than the materials used, one difference is in the bed-plate. Mine has side rails to lock wood-blocks to, and a gripper to hold the paper in place. This makes registration for multi-color work almost a no-brainer. This style of bed-plate was called a "coffin" by letterpress printers of old..... and it works like a charm. I also made a flat bed-plate for use with copperplates and for Intaglio work.

Another difference is the installation of a blanket-lifting device, copied from a Perkins Model D press of the early 1800's. Essentially, it's a counterweighted system that simply pulls the blanket up and out of the way as the bed-plate is rolled out on the return stroke. It does not change the quality of the finished work, but it does eliminate some of the manual labor.

I do apologize for the poor quality of the pic... but hey, I'm a printmaker, not a photographer! ;)