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Patent Model for Molds for Casting Blocks for Printing Carpets or Wall Paper

Patent Model for Molds for Casting Blocks for Printing Carpets or Wall Paper

Description (Brief)
This patent model demonstrates an invention for a mold that made blocks that were used in printing carpets or wall paper; the invention was granted patent number 10630. The design, formed of short and long pieces of type, was set up in a square casting box. The printing block was then cast in any suitable material such as type metal, plaster-of-paris, vulcanized rubber, or, by preference, gutta percha - a popular material in the mid nineteenth century.
Currently not on view
Object Name
method, manufacturing molds
Object Type
Patent Model
date made
ca 1854
patent date
Berry, James
Physical Description
metal (overall material)
overall: 6 cm x 11.5 cm x 11 cm; 2 3/8 in x 4 1/2 in x 4 5/16 in
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
patent number
See more items in
Work and Industry: Graphic Arts
Patent Models, Graphic Arts
Industry & Manufacturing
Patent Models
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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Very interesting model - and even more interesting to me was learning about Gutta-Percha as the molding medium. I am familiar with all sorts of type metal used in printing, but had never heard of this material before now. Apparently, it is still in use by dentists making fillings. I am currently working with modern resins and rubbers to make molds and castings of irreplaceable pieces of metal Foundry Type, but now I may have to find some Gutta-Percha myself to replicate the molding materials that may have been used in making printing type during the mid-19th century. Thanks!

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