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C&P or C&P Craftsman

Hello everyone,

I’ve been painstakingly printing on My 10x15 C&P Craftsman during last year. I have a big issue with this press, the part that makes the disc turn is missing. I’ve bought one, and turns out it was for a 12x18. An equipment dealer who sold me the Craftsman got me one, also was for a 12x18.
He’s a nice guy and since he knows that when me and my friend acquired this press we knew nothing about letterpress, he has offered to exchange the Craftsman for a regular C&P.
I looked at the press he’s offering, seems very sound, and it’s complete.
He told me I could keep the Craftsman variable speed motor, and I already have the rollers. Also the C&P has only one missing hook for rollers, but he’s going to get me one, so I can have 3 rollers, which should improve my printing.

What do you guys advice I do? Should I stick with the Craftsman and keep trying to find that part?
Or should I trade-in for the C&P?

I want to know your thoughts please.

Thanks a lot!

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The Craftsman will run impressional rings around a regular C&P. Also, if you have the four roller setup for the Craftsman, then you will have much better ink capacity as well. Better to get (or make) the part than going to a lesser press.

Which part is missing. No doubt somebody may know where there’s a replacement available.

Hello Mike,

Thanks a lot for your input.
I will show you what part is missing. I have tried sourcing this in the past but had no luck.
Maybe I’ll get lucky this time.
It’s this part that engages to that circular part and has an arm that the Roller arm moves up when a cycle is complete. I hope that made some sense.
I’d really like to keep the Craftsman, but I need to find this part fast because inking is almost impossible to keep consistent without this part.
Ideally I would like to get two more roller hooks. Please if anyone knows who might help me get those. I would love to be able to have 4 rollers.

image: missing-part-Craftsman-10x15.jpg


Actually, that little arm can’t be impossible to fabricate. Honestly I believe if you get the right machinist in front of it and they take some detailed measurements, and with the help of some photographs of other assemblies for illustration of effect, you ought to be able to have it made!

(I can’t help with the roller hooks themselves.)

You know what. That’s actually not a bad idea. I believe the 12x18 part fits the circular part, but the arm is too long. Maybe it can be cut in the middle and shortened. I’ll see if I can make it work.
Although, like you say, some dimensions from the actual part might work a lot for me to make it happen.
And the roller hooks might that be something hard to find?

Re manufacturing your part, if >>>BIG IF<<< all else fails, contact me via B.P. I may just be able to help you, I am already, having a fair amount of success making/re-manufacturing small parts, for vintage presses, but only from drawings, in imperial measurements, and of course ONLY when all else has failed, or the cost, is running into telephone number figures. I love the challenge, and just covering my electricity cost and maybe, a jar of coffee is my norm!!!! And NO satisfaction NO payment of any sort, inc postage, and for what it is worth PRESTON THOMAS TUCKER was/is one of my Heros???? What is he wittering about say!!!

Keep the Craftsman. It’s built like a tank, and it’s far more repairable and maintainable than an old style or new style C&P. With the Craftsman, you get better inking and impression, it would be a terrible idea to give up on such a good press for the lack of a single component.

From what I understand, you already have the most difficult to manufacture part already, the cup for the one-way clutch. Do you have the springs and rollers to go with it? If you do, then the rest can be fabricated out of standard steel stock from the hardware store.

Once I get my Craftsman out of storage, which should happen in the next couple of weeks, I’ll be able to make measurements and diagrams of what you’d need. Heck, if we can collectively determine what parts you need, I’d gladly bodge together a replacement for you on my press for you and send it to you for the cost of shipping.

Can you post of photo of all of the 12x18 parts for this assembly that you have?


I was reading some of your other threads, and I saw the work that you’ve been doing to restore a Vandercook — including having a local machinist fabricate missing parts. Go to the same person and talk to them about this problem.

Based off of some of your other comments — and I hope I don’t come off as too critical here — I suspect that you’re looking for a reason to get rid of the Craftsman, rather than a reason to repair it. You’re not going to find a better platen press than the Craftsman, and you’re definitely not going to do better with an older C&P press.

@Keelan, no of course, maybe you’re right, maybe I was looking for a reason to get rid of the Craftsman because I’ve had jobs, and I’ve had to print them in such a manner that is really tiring.
Either turning the flywheel by hand because my motor is too fast, and turning the disk by hand that it’s just terrible memories. But I’m sure this machine with these parts made and with a slow motor and two more rollers will make me very happy.
I’m more convinced to keep it now that you guys have given me your thoughts on this.
I will try to figure out today how to adapt the 12x18 part to my 10x15, it would be really helpful to have photos from different angles and dimensions from another 10x15, hopefully someone could help me out with that.

I really appreciate all your help!

To address your motor’s speed, I think you need a motor controller:

I don’t know which/if any will work because I don’t know what your motor is, but you should be able to vary the speed of the motor with one of these that matches with your motor’s requirements.

I have one on my model N and I can run it at 6 impressions a minute (slower than I would really want to print) or about 45 impressions a minute (faster than I can really reliably feed- but good for inking up the press!)