Stereotype Plate Making may be the most significant forgotten technology of the 19th century. Simply put, it enabled the rotary press (just try to imagine a rotary press with flat chases of type - a cylinder press, yes, but not a rotary). Without the rotary press a great deal of the 19th century would have been very different. This was in a way a happy accident - the origins of stereotyping predate the rotary press, and this manner of use was not one of the original arguments for the process. Yet in historical terms this ended up being the most important application of stereotyping. This is because the rotary press enabled true high-speed printing, which in turn enabled (along with mechanical composition, which came slightly later) the media cultures of the last half of the 19th and first half of the 20th centuries. Yet even within printing circles, stereotype platemaking is almost forgotten. It was important enough to shape our language (the words "stereotype" (which doesn't mean what you think it does, etymologically), "boilerplate," and (from the French variation) "cliche" all derive from this technology), but today it is lost.
Historical instructions, books, and treatises on various methods of stereotyping. See also the documentation for individual machines, below.
Hammond Machinery Builders
The MatMakir, EasyKaster, and RouterPlaner
Note: The Hammond EasyKaster is a piece of "crossover" equipment. Most people that I know now who have one use it as a remelt furnace to produce long ingots for linecasters. However, it is by design primarily a stereotype plate caster which could be adapted to cast ingots. Because its documentation covers it as a platemaker, I'll put it here. More general remelt furnaces which do not incorporate platemaking capabilities (but which of course could be used to melt stereotype metal for stereotype casting) are covered in the Remelting Equipment Notebooks in the Common Casting Equipment section.
A small electrically powered stereotype casting box, together with the Electriladle for stealing typemetal from your Linotype pot and suggestions for using a paper cutter for making stereotype mats.
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