Most items are currently in stock. We can handle most requests and usually ship within 24 hours.
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We carry more than 1,000 items for all your printing needs.
We have gradually increased our stock. Some things like Kort Gauge Pins are no longer manufactured and the equipment has been disbursed. Butch Kort is 92 and it's time for him to retire.
We are open for business as of June 25th. Summer is finally with us here in the mountains. Last 2 weeks found all of the Aspens and Cottonwoods finally in full leaf. While the adjacent low lands are going through a heat wave, we are just nudging into the high 70s. We finally had some good rain this past weekend, easing the fire concern.
There is a new item that we have to contend with. It's called inflation, and rising prices mainly on certain materials are often crazy. The most recent one is stainless steel. Simple things like line gauges and die cutting jackets have sky rocketing price increases. So as stocks of older material are used up, the new replacement stock is much more expensive. Unfortunately, we have to pass on these costs. The other thing is back ordered items that go on for months hoping that they will be available. Case in point is the 4 inch Lamson ink knife which we have been checking on for the last six months.
We had some good news about Pressboard. Our mill order was made and it was picked up from the mill in Vermont, Monday, June 19. We began filling back orders by the following Monday, June 26. But the bad news is that the mill has increased its minimum order to 40,000 pounds. That's an awful lot of paper. The mill, formerly owned by Neenah Paper, started us off with pressboard by the 125 sheet carton, then by the 1000 pound skid, and now what amounts to a boxcar load minimum order. We will see what happens.
A town vote showed that the locals did not want the use of off road vehicles on town streets so that this summer the town will be much quieter. Things will change dramatically as the train starts running for the season the first weekend in May. The off road vehicles had overwhelmed the town to the point it was an unbearable place to live and work. Winter is almost a memory but we have had snow happen in June and even July.
We operate out of a real store front, with regular hours, pay taxes, nothing under the table, have employees, and all that goes with a business. Some of our competitors in the letterpress field operate from their homes perhaps using a spare bedroom or the garage. Our prices are up front, on our website for all to see.
Our plan is to make it through the new decade alive. So far the plan is working. We face new challenges in 2022 but we are doing ok as we near the mid-point of 2022. We are trying something new by cleaning out our messages on the phone. Moving with the times, we will start answering our messages, hopefully, the same day, and going through all the junk and robocalls to get to your message. Then I guess we'll start messaging and we will be modernized. I even look at facebook, but why I don't know.
We finally received several of our die-cut tympans including the Heidelberg 10x15 size. We doubled the amount we normally order to stay ahead of the delays that are happening. We are shipping this week. Our suppliers are all still working and they are all over the country. We continue to have UPS and Post Office service every day even though avalanches across the highway have cut us off for parts of a day. Remember that we do not charge your credit card until we actually ship your order. Rollers are still being made in one or two days with no slowdown and those orders have no delay. We are exercising all the restrictions while still staying open.
The UPS guy stops by daily and so does the FedEx person, and we see the occasional walker and car drive past. Our train that has been our mainstay for so many years ran only two test trains in 2020 and has resumed business on a limited schedule this year. Some of our customers are taking on projects, especially their Vandercooks, now that they have time to work on them. We maintain a safe workplace and rarely have contact with outside people. The locals maintain their distance from the tourists to a large extent. Our construction business has remained viable with work on the county courthouse, a high-end hotel, and for our historical society.
Supply issues continue to be a problem as some products are no longer available. We do have adequate supplies of most sizes of tympan on hand. Don't count on anything being available in the future as we have in the past. Almost everyone in the letterpress supply business is past retirement age with few ready to take over. As we venture towards the end of 2021, we have had a reasonable year and look forward to 2022.
We prefer that orders be placed through this website rather than phone calls. Handwritten notes with the wrong hand are sometimes hard to read, so help out your order--there is a place on the web site order form to write about special needs or questions.
Bev Rich, Loren Lew, Rick Hunter, Casey Carroll, Fritz Klinke having lunch in our old restaurant, the Pickle Barrel, 2019. These are the folks who have been instrumental in my recovery. Loren is also my business partner for the past 45 years.
Fritz's house, an 1887-era Victorian, Winter 2018-2019. The winters are very cold with most nights below zero. The summer of 2022 is one that will have some major changes. By a vote of the town last Fall, the use of off road vehicles is now prohibited. The past 2 summers saw a dramatic increase in their use to the point the vehicles overwhelmed the town. The train has resumed running as it comes back from Covid restrictions, but is now facing possible shut downs due to drought conditions. We face the same problem as the rest of the country with a serious lack of people willing to work. We used to serve three meals a day seven days a week in our Silverton restaurant but the current owners are reduced to 5 days a week lunch only. Strange times.
NA Graphics Assistant, Missy (in the arcane world of letterpress printing).