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George Westover's Rotofoto

Started by stafford-Baker, July 11, 2022, 04:45:13 PM

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Somewhere I have a copy of the leaflet we produced on this machine at the London College of Printing in around 1954 or so.  Remarkable machine worked for us perfectly well.  Corrections were the problem of course at that time.  But we a did do a few lines as I recall. 

Dave Hughes

Not familiar with this machine, S-B.

Do you have any details? Any info online, Google came up with nothing, is the spelling correct?
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On reflection it may well have been Rotofoto with an f not a ph.   Essentially George Westover had somewhow been at Salfords in what capacity I dont know. He had proposed to the management a film setter and told no thanks.  He departed Salfords and got Coventry Gauge and Tool Ltd to adapt an ordinary hot metal machine to have a film side instead of the usual metal pot.   The matrix case holder as I recall seemed to be much as usual I dont recall how the matrices were.  It is a long time ago..  The roll of negative film produced was around 6 inches wide I think,  and there was a sort of separate light-box desk thing on which one cut out complete lines that had errors in, and replaced with complete re-set lines.  Variations in exposure and processing  made the correction lines show up rather.  I recall there were at least two installations, one in South Africa, and the other in the L.C.P. What the relationship of all that was to the eventual Monofoto I dont know.  What happened to him I dont know.    The L.C.P. produced several small leaflets by small offset using films from the system. Operated there by the L.C.P. staff and students.   Its all a long time ago.

Dave Hughes

Look what I found on eBay (UK). Dating back to 1948! That was early for photosetting:

Here's the Listing: Typesetting By Photography Rotofoto George Westover Photogravure 1948 Clip

Here's a close-up of the article:

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Julius Stafford-Baker

Who remembers H.O. Smith, at the London College of Printing at Stamford Street??,  the Tutor for Monotype  and Mentor for the whole time students (the bosses sons mostly!)  remarkable man, who  led much early photosetting research work at the LCP, way ahead of the industry.  He was a great teacher as well.

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