Substitute for “@”

None of the lead type I have seen has a “@” piece of type. (I am sure that some type does, just not the stuff I’ve seen or been able to buy.)

So when printing an email address with lead type, is there any convention for what might be substituted?

I realize that I could get a PP Plate made with several sizes of different fonts for “@”, but is there another way to get there?



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I think you can buy handy boxes of this symbol, i bought mine from Quaker City Type, i’m sure others sell them.

Do you know anyone with a Linotype/Intertype? The @ symbol is run as a special sort character. They should be able to run you different point sizes on a slug. You could then trim each one to fit your different point size requirements.
You can store them in the box above the cap “B” in your California Job Case!

ADDENDUM to my last comment.
Do you know of “American Printing Equipment and Supply Company” They still mange to maintain the best supply of letterpress supplies, parts and materials.
Tel # 718-729-5779

good luck!

Skyline Type Foundry carries the commercial-at symbol (‘@’) in their Collection No. 6, at 14 through 36 point.
(look in the “Initials and Collections” PDF catalog)

M&H also has it.

There are more foundries casting type today than you might think. One list of them is at:

David M.

Actually, on the linotype, the @ sign runs in the magazine, not as a sort or pi.

James, not on my machine, in fact i can’t get any mats to run in the magazine!!!!


You need to get the parts of your thumb you left in the gear removed from the machine!


Why not turn an italicised lower case handset “a” upside down, adjust alignments with thin lead spacing and fire away? Needless to say, the “a” will be the approprate size and font. One way to do it in the Australian bush. Or light up the old Ludlow and cast a couple of slugs. William Amer

Easy answer, there is no substitute for the ‘@’ sign.

here is three for sale.

You could always write it literally: “at” to mee it looks even more stylish.

Back in the far-far reaches of my memory I either dreamed or recalled someone casting smaller @ signs on larger bodies of type. The proportions were far more appropriate to their most current use. I’ve searched thru my records but can’t come up with the typecaster. It had to have been 10+ years ago that I saw these offered. Does anyone know if they are currently being cast?

I bought a Handy Box “Collection #6” from Skyline Type Foundry and they are excellent for all my needs.
The box contains a variety of pt. sizes.

My mistake James Carpenter. The @ symbol is with the Small cap “H”. on the Linotype machine. Guess that”s why I’m a “retiredprinter”.

I wonder whether many young people today realise the @ sign existed long before the Internet and email? — Alan.

We cast our @ symbols on a larger body for the exact reason described above - proportions look better. 6 on 8, 8 on 10 etc. I’m sure you can get them in the US, but we can post from the UK if you need them

to James Carpenter and retiredprinter

If the Linotype/Intertype fount in the magazine does not include small caps, perhaps the @ may be found in pi. During my apprenticeship, we had lots and lots of pi characters which we never had call for; but one pi character we needed rarely, but was not there, was the one-third 1/3, which we made from the one-eighth 1/8.


Butch, and all: Pat Reagh in California has cast fonts of “at”s. All sizes are 2 pts smaller than the body they’re on, so they’re in better proportion.

PS He calls them “Pat’s @s”

Yes, I have fonts of @ signs. There are 2 styles: Sans serif (Gill regular), and serif: generic thick and thin, possibly Century.

They come on 6, 8, 10, 12 bodies, with every size on its own body and larger, i.e. 6/6, 6/8, 6/10, 6/12; 8/8, 8/10, 8/12; 10/10,
10/12, and 12/12.

You can contact me at: [email protected]