Monotype 0.4 inch Crank Press

Monotype Corporation Limited
Monotype 0.4 inch Crank Press

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Monotype 0.4 inch Crank Press
Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Monotype 0.4 inch Crank Press , flywheel-operated, Plant No.1162, made by Monotype Corporation Limited, Salford, Redhill, Surrey, England, 1930. Part of the equipment used in the production system for Monotype matrices.

The crank press in the Monotype collection is a standard crank press, as used by many engineering companies, but considerably adapted by The Monotype Corporation to be able to insert, strike and eject 0.4 inch matrices. The engraved end of the hardened steel punch is driven into the softer bronze 0.4 inch blank matrix with a pressure of 60 tons. The punch leaves its intaglio equivalent in the matrix. Over twenty further operations are undertaken before the finished matrix is ready to go to the Monotype Composition Caster where molten metal is pumped through a mould against the matrix to produce a piece of type.

There are three crank presses in the matrix workshop at The Type Archive that are used to strike matrices. The smaller press (SMG object number: 1995-1583) of 20 tons is set up for 0.2 inch matrices. There are no other Monotype versions of these machines in the world.


Printing & Writing
Object Number:
carborundum, leather, nickel-plated brass (copper, zinc alloy) and steel (metal)
  • tools and equipment
  • equipment