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Creating Analog Meter Artworks: A Blast From the Past

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DWILSON373
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Re: Metal plates
DWILSON373   12/18/2014 9:53:49 AM
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@ antedeluvian:  The old Lino-type machines used lead or some low melting lead alloy to creat the print.  A local newspaper was using this as late as 1968 for publishing the daily paper.  The text of the news was typed into the machine.  The letters of the text were reversed when cast.  The machines put the reversed letters into columns.  A typesetter assembled the columns with the artwork and photos into pages that matched the layout from the editors.  Next, the proof readers read the reversed page and corrected spelling errors before sending the typeset page to the press.

Max The Magnificent
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Re: Nice work, Jason
Max The Magnificent   12/11/2014 2:24:59 PM
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@David: ...you've got all the round ones I reckon!

I will do after next year's EE Times Road-Trip to Hamvention

David Ashton
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Re: Nice work, Jason
David Ashton   12/11/2014 2:18:13 PM
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@Max...Well someone has to buy up all the square meters - you've got all the round ones I reckon!

David Ashton
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Re: Nice work, Jason
David Ashton   12/11/2014 2:17:07 PM
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@Jason... " It isn't easy being in this business..."   I'm sure it isn't...meters can be tricky little sods.....but I wouldn't imagine your're short of business though?

The square meters are usually MU-45, MU-52...etc....which I gather is based on the diameter of the barrel at the back in millimeters.  Do you use those sizes as well in the US?   The DIN sizes are for the really big square ones that you find on electricity instrumentation.

I've never built stuff INTO a meter (apart from shunts etc) but the terminasl are real handy for mounting a PCB onto :-)

Max The Magnificent
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Re: Nice work, Jason
Max The Magnificent   12/11/2014 11:58:53 AM
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@David: I love analog meters (though I prefer the newer square ones, not the ancient round ones that Max loves)

How strange... how square of you... :-)

metersales
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Re: Nice work, Jason
metersales   12/11/2014 11:26:43 AM
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I'm glad you liked it.  It isn't easy being in this business as it does require a certian skill set.  The square (DIN?) meters are alright.  They just tend to be either made in China, Taiwan, or India.  The movements can be very nice, but on the whole, they always feel a bith cheap to me.  They do look very nice though, and the large amount of internal space means some nice circuitry can fit in there to perform a wider range of functions without making the meter stick out eith inches behind the panel.

David Ashton
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Re: Metal plates
David Ashton   12/11/2014 5:12:22 AM
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I was at a boarding school in my youth and they had an ancient printing press.  The letters were already formed individually and you had to assemble them from trays  into a frame. (This was not as easy as it sounds as you had to work mirror-image).  You then put the frame in the press, inked up a plate and fed your paper (or whatever) into a holder and turned a huge wheel which inked the type and printed the page.   I loved the old machine and used to get tasked with printing programs, hymn sheets, etc.   I wasn't there long but it's one of the few things I missed about that school.

David Ashton
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Nice work, Jason
David Ashton   12/11/2014 5:07:22 AM
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Jason...read your article very quickly at 4.30 this morning (Aussie time) and have been looking forward to re-reading it all day (been away on a training course in another town 2-1/2 hours drive away).  very much enjoyed it - thanks.

I love analog meters (though I prefer the newer square ones, not the ancient round ones that Max loves) and much prefer them to digital displays for most things.  I have used Letraset on a faceplate in my youth, but your techniques are great to read about.

I reckon you are a very lucky  smart guy - even TV repairmen are dying out but you have found a niche dealing with a great old technology for which there is still (and I hope long will be) good demand.  

antedeluvian
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Re: Metal plates
antedeluvian   12/10/2014 1:37:21 PM
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Glen, Mark, Max, perl_geek

Interesting that for a particular age group we all had very similar outings in our childhood that spanned countries and even continents.

 

zeeglen
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Re: Metal plates
zeeglen   12/10/2014 1:33:35 PM
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@antedeluvian They used to cast words, or perhaps even phrases.

My uncle was once a linotype machine operator for a newspaper, when I was a young lad my Dad took me on a visit to watch.  He would type a line at a time on a keyboard and the machine would cast the line into a bar of lead that would be used in the printing press.  Afterwards the lead would be melted down for re-use.  I too had my name in one of these lead bars; don't know whatever happened to it.

Interesting article on meter faceplates.  Will forward to my colleague who also likes analog meters.

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