Ludlow brass matrices in composing stick. A stunning memento of the golden age of letterpress typography.
This stick was created for New Dance Horizons, Regina, SK to support their work in popularizing modern dance across Canada.
In the Ludlow typographic system, small brass molds (also known as matrices or mats) were used to cast each letter or character. To cast a word or string of words or characters, the corresponding mats were assembled in a Ludlow composing stick. After the line of matrices were assembled, the stick was inserted into the Ludlow machine and firmly clamped in place above the mold mechanism. The operator then activated the casting mechanism and hot linecasting metal was injected into the matrices to form a line of type known as a “slug”. After the slug had cooled, it was assembled together with other slugs and locked into a form. Once the form was locked onto a printing press, the job could be printed.
Once the job was complete, the matrices or mats in the composing stick were then returned back to the type cases to be used for the next job. The typecasting slugs were then melted in the Ludlow machine to be ready for the next job.
Industrial Art: Get your name or business name set in brass matrixes in a Ludlow Stick. Limited choices of fonts and sizes. Prices start at $100.
These will not be available long. And enduring and very cool ultra-modern decoration that pays tribute to a past age of letterpress printing technology.
FOR SALE: Antique Letterpress Ludlow Sticks
Offered for sale are “Ludlow sticks” with brass matrices/mats that spell out any set of words that you would like. The Ludlow Stick is a precision metal locking frame that held the brass matrix/mats (moulds) from which lead alloy type was cast.
Get your name or business name set in brass mats in a Ludlow Stick.
Hanging on your wall a Ludlow stick with brass mats spelling your name or company name, is an item of distinction that will surely attract admiring attention. Ludlow sticks are an enduring and very cool ultra-modern decoration that pays tribute to a past age of letterpress printing technology.
For more information and images see: http://www.ambrosi.ca/ambrosi-printers/letterpress-equipment-books/ludlow-sticks/
By the 1950s, letterpress printing was supplanted by new printing technologies and much of the old equipment was discarded. Now far fewer letterpress shops remain, but are run primarily as artistic pursuits.
These precision-crafted Ludlow sticks stand as remarkable specimens of industrial art and hearken back to the heyday of busy letterpress printing shops. They are testimony to the technology used in the printing industry of the last century that brought knowledge forth to the present era.
See the example photos.
Prices vary according to font size and the number of characters.
- Base price $100. Includes 10 characters (mats)
- Includes all smaller fonts up to 48pt
- Extra characters (mats) $10 each.
- ie) if you wanted to spell “Website of Ambrosi.ca “, in 38pt mats Total characters: 19 including the period. Because 10 characters are included in the base price of $100, you would have to pay for 9 extra mats ($90) for a total price of $190.
- Base price $200. Includes 10 characters (mats)
Includes larger 60pt and 72pt fonts
- Extra characters (mats) $20 each.
- ie) if you wanted to spell “Website of Ambrosi.ca “, in 38pt mats Total characters: 19 including the period. Because 10 characters are included in the base price of $200, you would have to pay for 9 extra mats ($180) for a total price of $380.
Limited choices of fonts and sizes. Limited availability as we no longer have many sticks or type remaining. Contact us for information and to talk about prices.
The Ludlow sticks and brass matrices are in very good condition considering their age. Light rust or stains can be easily removed with a metal cleaning solution. All pieces have some scratches from natural age wearing which enhances the rustic industrial look of each piece.
Ludlow sticks and letterpress printing
Updated on 2015-06-22T23:36:46-06:00, by .