Letterpress demonstrations using the Miles Nervine galley proof press

At the request of the instructor, an old friend of mine, I recently gave a letterpress demonstration to a class of junior college students who were taking a communications class. The only press that I could move by myself was my old Miles Nervine galley proof press. It worked really well, because I was able to pull proofs of line cuts and type that I had locked up in a Pilot chase. The students actually gasped when I pulled the sheet off the inked illustrations and they saw the impression. If I’m invited back, I’m sticking with the Nervine press. It’s so simple that anybody can understand how it works.

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Kevin….. I agree with you that the Miles Nervine proof press is a great machine for teaching the basics of letterpress. They are great presses, capable of printing far more than most folks realize.

I tried for several years to find one for my shop but was unsuccessful, so I built my own. Functionally, it’s indentical to the Miles Nirvene, but it’s made of HDO plywood with a concrete filled aluminum roller. A description of it was posted here:


The real beauty of presses like this is that they are so simple even a rank newbie can work with them without a lot of training…. and they are simple to build.