8G for a Vandercook??

How many jobs do you have to do to be able to afford one of these things? Have institutions made it impossible to have one of these in your shop? Or hobbyists?

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I’d say it is due to most contemporary instruction being done on Vandercooks (or tabletop platens which make the Vandercook seem efficient by comparison). Motorized platens, considered too dangerous, are less used, and autofed production presses are entirely absent from instruction today.
The idea of doing jobwork (as opposed to doing fine press printing and publishing) on a Vandercook is a serious divergence from previous printing practice, or from “practical printing” in general.
Don’t misunderstand. I use my Vandercook, but mostly for proofing, and the rare jobwork done on it is short-run or large format.


Everyone is going NUTS with these prices. Seems like the less they know about the equipment, the more they are willing to pay/charge for it. Burns my butt, that the scrap dealers are influencing some of the CRAZY pricing. Some people are adding scrap plus a sell price. I.E.: Ludlow cabinet for $300.00 empty. You don’t even want to know what they wanted for the Matrix, when over half is Tempo. Nothing Rare in type.

lovely little Triumph cylinder press sold in europe 306 euros the other week………..!!!!!!!

If someone wants to pay me $15.5 for my SP-20, I might take them up on it!

I bought my first SP-15 for $345 in the late ’90s. The last Vandercook I bought was a Uni I and it was $7k and at that price I knew I had to act quickly.

But then, looking at what a new #4 cost in 1955, it was the same price as the average cost of a new car. $8k won’t get you much at a dealership these days…


All right i’ll give you $15.50 for it. Will you deliver it for that?

Some people have more money than sense.

Thanks, dickg. Offer accepted. Delivery is extra, though - $15,484.50. :-)

And conversely, some people have more sense than they have cents.

check out

also linotype machine in Germany seems a bargain price

Well, demand for Vanderooks exceeds supply, so there is a financial explanation. My criticism is that most contemporary instruction ignores the floor-model platen press, which is even now affordable. A 10x15 is far more suitable to social work than is any Vandercook, and invitations and stationery seem to be the driving force in letterpress today.

I was lucky to get my SP-15 in 1985 for free. In those days, typographers and printers couldn’t get rid of their old letterpress equipment fast enough. The only conditions they made were that I had to get it out of their shop in one week.

>>> My criticism is that most contemporary
>>> instruction ignores the floor-model platen press,

Its not that they ignore floor-model platen press, its just that most teachers and teaching institutions cannot afford the insurance costs (covering occasions when fingers get caught between machine-driven platens).

My question: if demand for “safer” presses are there (as evidenced by people willing to pay $15K for a Vandy), shouldn’t this point to a business opportunity to manufacture cheaper cylinder presses (similar to the Poco). If so, what features should an affordable new cylinder press have.