Other Brands of Flat-bed Cylinder Proof Presses
Paul Moxon

Because Vandercook & Sons dominated the market, the presses listed below are found less frequently and therefore available information is scant. Also note that the emphasize of this table is on geared-cylinder presses over gravity presses, although a few are represented.

Please email me if you can provide any information or images. See also, censuses for several brands on the blog.

Brand Models Years Location Notes
Asbern

AD-1
PI-1

c.1960s Germany

E.G. Linder was a Los Angeles area printing equipment dealer who accounts for many Asbern presses on the U.S. West Coast. Ernest A. Lindner co-founded The International Printing Museum in Southern California member to house the Lindner Collection of Antique Printing Machinery.

Atlantic

KAS 21
KAS 22
KAS 23

c.1960s USA

PDF of a poor photocopy courtesy of David S. Rose Library

Brower Nos. 0, 1, 2 c.1923 USA Distributed by ATF. See Specimen and Catalog 1923, p.924–26.

Canuck

 

RO 39 x 52 c.1960s Torino, Italy

Contacted the successor company MEC Saroglia (makers of automatic platen die cutting machines with devices for simultaneous hot foil stamping and embossing) who said that all info on the Canuck was lost in a move to a new building ten years ago. On the Saroglia website is an interesting historical outline of the company, which was founded in 1911— two years after Vandercook.

Don Black has had these presses for sale from time to time.

Challenge

1418-E
1425-E
2025-E
15MA
15MP

15MPC
21MA
21MP
21PMC
1528 K
1528 KA
1528 KP
2028 K
2028 KA
2028 KP

Literature

1935–73

 

Grand Haven MI

The 15MA and 15MP are similiar to the SP15. Vandercook won a lawsuit that forced Challenge to abandon the proof press market.

Challenge is still in business manufacturing paper cutters, drills, folders and joggers. They are not helpful in providing info on products they no longer make.

The 1935 ATF Catalog shows “Challenge-Potter” and “Challenge-Poco” presses p F-11, F-13.

Claybourn

Precision Hand Proof Press

Precision Power Proof Press

Four-Color Proof Press

c.1920s Milwaukee, WI Comparable in engineering and styling to Hacker presses.

Eickhoff

1BSF c.1930-60s Copenhagen, Denmark

Manufactured by JGA Eickhoff.

Boxcar Press claims to have the only 1BSF in North America.

Visitor photos of clandestine presses at the Museum of Danish Resistance including a homemade cylinder proof press.

FAG

 

Swiss Proof 40
Swiss Proof 52
C-525

1937–

Lausanne, Switzerland

FAG is still in business providing offset and digital products and services. Website sells used letterpress proof presses.

Was a European Vandercook importer and a manufacturing licensee by it's British subsidiary.

Farley

25

  Croydon, UK

 

Hacker

No. 4
No. 5A power
No. 5B hand
No. 6 power
No. 7A power
No. 7 hand

1916?–37 Chicago

Hacker bought by Vandercook & Sons in 1937.

A 1936 Hacker Catalog makes reference to 1923 as the year in which "a few courageous engravers adopted cylinder proofing and set the pace for what has since become new proofing standards for the industry." However a 1916 patent date can be seen on their plate gauges.

Hacker acquired the companies that made Potter and Poco Presses, date unknown.

Harrild Pullman
Super Speedy
Verax (1952)
c.1930s–50s, London

Harrild & Son, Ltd. (1801-1951) Well-known manufacturer of Albion and Columbian Iron Hand Presses.

W.L. Harrild and Partners Limited (1970)

See Ganderton V.S, "Proof and Platen Presses" Pitman, Printing Proof and Platen Presses. London. Vol. 6, 1946. Reprinted 1953.
PDF available at Bibliography.

Hohner Comfort I
Comfort II
c.1950s-60s West Germany Distributed in US by American Printing Equipment and Supply Co.
Grafix Unknown c.1960s-70s West Germany  
Korrex

Berlin-Spezial
Berlin Type I
Berlin Type II
Frankfurt
Hanover
Nürnberg
Stuttgart
Super Royal No.10

c.1910s-77s Pforzheim, West Germany

Manufactured by Max Simmel Maschenenfabrik who now make an offset proof press with FAG, the FAG Korrex 2000.

Additional model names and photos of a press in France, and a PDF brochure provided by Simon Caquard in France.

Little Joe

S-78
H & HD

 

c.1970-80s Clark NJ

Built by Color Swatcher, Inc. (now Little Joes Industries). Designed for color matching and print evalation in printing ink plants and offset press room. However, the bed is recessed to accommodate a base for offset plates they can be used for relief printing.

Littlejohn (SRL)

No. 2

 

c.1927-60s London UK

Built by Sidney R. Littlejohn Co. .

The No.2 looks very much like the Vandercook 219 NS.

Nolan

"Perfection" Proof Press

Master-Proofer

c.1932-70s Rome NY

Nolan Corporation was a maker of composing room and bindery equipment for the newspaper industry, and later nonprinting equipment and tools.

Distributed by American Wood Type Manufacturing Co. 1955-56 AWT Catalog, p200.

See note for Reprex presses

See profile of Edward Nolan

Poco Nos. 0, 1, 2 c.1912-30s Chicago

The 1935 ATF Catalog shows “Challenge-Potter” and “Challenge-Poco” presses p F-11, F-13.

Some Poco preses have name plates that say made by Hacker Manufacturing.

Distributed by ATF. See Specimen and Catalog 1923, p.928. See also Barnhart Brothers & Spindler, Catalog 25

Potter No. 0
No. 1
No. 2
No. 3
c.1910-30s

Plainsfield NJ

Chicago

Originally Manufactured by A. F. Wanner Co. Chicago, IL. Later Potter preses have name plates that say made by Hacker Manufacturing.

Shown in the 1912 ATF Catalog p.1184.
Shown in the 1923 ATF Catalog p.927.

The 1935 ATF Catalog shows “Challenge-Potter” and “Challenge-Poco” presses p. F-11, F-13.

See also note for Hacker.

Presto Senior Model
Master Model
c.1953 Forth Worth TX Manufactured by K.J. Dollahite Company. Advertised in the Inland Printer, September 1953, p.119.
Reprex

No. 0-1
No. 1
No. 2
No. 3
No. 4 Hand
No. 4 Power

c.1951-mid 70s

 

 

 

 

 

Pulaski NY

Manufactured by the Machinery Division of United States Forge and Foundry, a company started by Edward Nolan.

At one time Reprex presses were sold by American Printing Equipment Co.

See note for Nolan presses

See profile of Edward Nolan

Ronai Unknown Unknown Australia

See images at Melbourne Museum of Printing

Rouse No. 2 c.1920s Chicago H.B. Rouse & Company.Distributed by ATF. See Specimen and Catalog 1923, p.929.
Soldan Lightning 1886–1968 UK

Imported Vandercooks into the UK

Soldan, William. A few notes on Soldans Ltd ... from about 1886-1968. == Also a type founder.

See: Moran, James. Printing Presses: History and Development from the Fifteenth Century to Modern Times (London: Faber & Faber, 1973) (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1978)

Stephenson Blake S Series c.1955 Sheffield UK Distributed in US by American Wood Type Manufacturing Co.
Wesel

Electric Self-inking Proof Press

EPP-4

c.1910s–1950s

New York & Chicago

Scranton PA

Manufactured by F. Wesel Chicago &
New York & Chicago as seen in an image shown in the 1912 ATF Catalog p1184
.

Later: Wesel Manufacturing, Scranton PA

Distributed by American Wood Type Manufacturing Co.

See: 1955-56 AWT Catalog, p199.

Western 30 c.1950-60s Reading UK

Western Manufacturing (had a manufacturing agreement with Vandercook to produce presses.A ubit of Western became known as Pre-Press Ltd.).

"The '30' refers to the width of the bed: 30 ins. There are certainly narrower ones. It was made by Adwest Engineering Ltd in Reading, England. It was sold (possibly not exclusively) by Soldans. I've no idea when it was made but 1960s would be a good bet looking at the Soldans advert pasted in the manual...." (Martyn Ould)

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