How Type Has Been Made

A List

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1. Introduction

The universally repeated story today is that type was made by hand cutting punches and driving matrices from them until this was swept away by Benton's pantograph. The reality of the history of type-making is much, much more complex. This is just a list of all of the ways, major and minor, that type has been made.

Important: Even though it identifies many more methods than will be cited in most histories, this list is still incomplete. It is particularly deficient in the area of the making of large types before the advent of electroforming from patrices hand-cut in soft metal.

This list is also a work in progress insofar as I have not yet linked each method to its discussion elsewhere in these Notebooks (in which discussions one should find proper references).

2. List

1. Methods involving punch cutting in steel, by hand.

For each of the methods above:

Iterations: The punches are tested as they are made by making smoke proofs. The information from the smoke proofs is fed back into the punchcutting. This is information about letterforms, not alignment or spacing.

Iterations: Types are cast by the matrix justifier and proofed in the press. The information on alignment and spacing from these proofs is fed back into the justification process.

2. Methods involving patrix cutting in soft metal, by hand.

3. Methods involving direct matrix cutting, by pantographic engraving machine

4. Methods involving patrix cutting in soft metal, by pantographic engraving machine

5. Methods involving punch cutting in steel, by pantographic engraving machine

6. Direct casting of individual types

7. Direct making of matrices, by hand

8. Direct making of individual types

9. Duplication of existing types

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