First, I have to commemorate this day as the first run of my new virgin press. After months of noodling around, re-reading the WetCanvas posts about these presses and looking at the pictures on the Blick website, I took the leap and ordered it. No, I don't do things rashly and I suppose part of me was still hoping to come across an old-style letter press or something. But where would I even put such a thing? So really, this press is the best choice for me now.
Here it is, in the place it will (I hope) occupy for many Sundays to come. It doesn't have a name yet but I'm sort of thinking about one.
Yeah, I did want to the first thing I printed on it to be something new and really awesome - cherries should be broken in style - but, in the end, curiosity won out and I used it for the detail on the trunk.
It was actually the second time I printed the trunk; the first time, still on my old press, I'd carved the contrast lines too thin a didn't like the result. I recarved them and reprinted, and am much happier. In retrospect, printing almost the same thing, first on one press and then the other, was probably the best way to compare the two of them.
And OMG what a huge difference in printing! I now get the significance of the gear-drive : no more straining, no resistance as the bed glides through the rollers. None! Plus, I've gained almost 3" in width on the bed size so I can even move to slightly larger prints and possibly a bit more detail. Another door opening.