Paper Mold and Deckle

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Blog series by mileskimball updated 05-19-2013 06:08 PM 4 parts 14625 reads 6 comments total

Part 1: Why a paper mold?

05-13-2013 12:53 AM by mileskimball | 0 comments »

This is a bit of a catch-up post, as I’ve been working on this project for several weeks now. I’m building a more-or-less historically accurate paper mold that will be used to make paper out of West Texas cotton that we’ll print on in the Texas Tech Letterpress Lab ( The idea is to sell prints to alumni to help support the lab, which teaches students about historical methods of printing and helps them understand how most of the litera...

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Part 2: frame and support bars

05-13-2013 05:33 PM by mileskimball | 0 comments »

The first step was to mill the white oak and Spanish cedar to oversized billets and let them season a week or two in the shop. After final milling, I dovetailed the white oak frame by hand (good practice!) and set out to mill the airfoil-shaped support bars. My biggest problem was getting the dowel-end to be well formed. I got some great advice from the joinery forum about machine approaches, but finally ended up whittling them rough, then bringing them to a final shape with a homemade...

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Part 3: Mold Redux; or, the difference between prototyping and screwing up

05-19-2013 05:39 PM by mileskimball | 0 comments »

Having finished the white oak mold and deckle, I’m rethinking my choice of woods. Sure, white oak looks great and it’s really stout, but it weighs significantly more than the mahogany in the Timothy Moore model. Paper mold with mesh sewn on partway: White oak mold and deckle, from corner I’m really happy about how the deckle came out. The joint was tricky, but quite strong despite the short grain on the nub that sticks out on one end: !

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Part 4: More on the deckle joint

05-19-2013 06:08 PM by mileskimball | 6 comments »

To understand the deckle joint, I drew it first in Sketchup. Here’s how it looks, apart and assembled: After assembly, I used a rounderover bit to take an arc out of the outside corners.

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