Melbourne Museum of Printing
Monotype Composition Caster
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Monotype Composition Caster

Monotype Composition Caster

This machine composes type by casting new, single types in correct order, ready for printing. Spaces between words are varied by the system (in steps of 0.0005 inch!) to exactly justify each line.

The system was devised by Tolbert Lanston and others in the USA with British cooperation about 1890.

Monotype Standard Keyboard

Monotype Composition Keyboard

The keyboard is a separate machine: it produces a roll of punched paper tape to control the casting operation.

Monotype Duplex Keyboard

Monotype Duplex Composition Keyboard

This could produce two identical or similar but differentiated rolls at once.
The Monotype system was immediately popular with book printers. It was used for newpapers only to a limited extent. "The Times" in London used them: it was for that paper that the Monotype Corporation first produced the typeface "Times New Roman".

There were numerous Monotype installations in Australia.

The Monotype Composition Caster can also be used for casting types `in bulk' for later hand-setting.


Our collection of Monotypes - about 30.

Examples of Monotype Typesettings.

The Monotype Supercaster - a related machine.

How the Monotype operates.

Typefaces of the Monotype System.

British and US monotypes - similar in principle - but many details are different. We would like to hear from someone with knowledge of the US Monotype machines.

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