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Old 07-03-2008, 11:50 AM   #1
Slate Mcleod
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Default Letraset ???

I popped into my local branch of W H Smiths yesterday intending to pick up a few sheets of Letraset rub down lettering to use for super detailing my TB2 model. I always used to buy tons of Letraset from 'Smiths for various projects in the past as they had such a great range of fonts available (but that was like ten years ago!)
I was dismayed to find it was no longer stocked (!). It seems in the last decade almost everyone has got home computers and printers and there was no demand for Letraset rub down letters anymore!
This must be a big problem for model builders as so many of the Anderson vehicles used this form of lettering.
Can this stuff still be obtained via the internet and if so does anyone know where from??

Cheers

Slate
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Old 07-03-2008, 12:04 PM   #2
Dave
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Letraset is like rocking horse poo!

2 options:

1. Ask in old stationers, as some tend to have odd sheets "out the back". But can cost about 5 a sheet. I bought some from a stationers in York fairly recently.
2. Keep an eye on ebay. They come up now and again and providing they have been looked after will be ok.
I bought a job lot of about 600 sheets of Letraset (from ebay) for about 20. Shipping was about 30. I kept about 200 sheets of the ones I wanted and sold the rest for between 50 - 70 PER HUNDRED SHEETS! So made some money and had a good range of Letrasets!
There are also some ebay shops that sell brand new Letraset (or Mechanorma) which is normally about 6 for 10 sheets.

Happy hunting!
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Old 07-03-2008, 12:30 PM   #3
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Try looking in arts and craft shops and you will usually find a small range of rub-down transfers available by folk other than Letraset. In Manchester there is a shop called Fred Aldous who stock a small range, who do mail order, and I think that Hobby's (the people who sell the telephone directory sized catalogue in newsagents) still sell a small range. The main problem is getting white lettering, you can always print off black lettering using transtext (a clear self adhesive film) in your printer.
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Old 07-03-2008, 01:16 PM   #4
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THat's the best option. I've had the same problem.
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Old 07-03-2008, 02:12 PM   #5
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The range of Letraset that is still available has been drastically reduced too. Ebay is your best bet for something specific.
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Old 07-03-2008, 02:42 PM   #6
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Gawd, Letraset! That's a blast from the past, but I imagine it can't be beaten for certain tasks.

Good point about hunting down older stocks of Letraset, but do they decay with age? (Do things decay due to UV in Europe the same way they do in Australia?)

Speaking of old-school tricks, have y'all seen the Obsolete Skills Wiki?
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Old 07-03-2008, 03:02 PM   #7
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I needed some small black letters and numbers to do license plates on a 1/18 german SdKfz 251 halftrack and Ebay came to the rescue! The brand name was Archer Fine Transfers.
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Old 07-03-2008, 06:12 PM   #8
uncle bill
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Check out this site
http://www.pulsarprofx.com/decalpro/index.html
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Old 08-03-2008, 01:31 PM   #9
Slate Mcleod
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uncle bill View Post

That's a great link (!) Thanks Bill!

rgds

Slate
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Old 09-03-2008, 06:34 PM   #10
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I have quite a large selection of Letraset (inluding the Letraset shelving system)I saved from being thrown out when I worked with draughtsmen about 20 years ago, They were throwing out black liner bags full of the stuff on the basis computers were taking off. The person doing the throwing out was really dismissive of Letraset, but I asked him if he had tried putting a three dimensional model through his printer recently!!!

However most of it is black and the one colour I cannot print onto decal paper is white, and white Letraset was even in short supply then. Today I was working on the space station model and needed very small white dots. I found loads of sheets of every colour apart from white, until I found the only white sheet of varying sizes of dots crumpled up behind the shelves. So for the moment I have what I need, but eventually it will run out!

Keith
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Old 09-03-2008, 06:55 PM   #11
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Another famous DX tip. If you get an old sheet that seems hesitant to stick or feels like it's lost it's tack, gently wash it with warm soapy water. If it still won't do, spray a thinned area or clear gloss polyurethane varnish where you want the marking to go and let the varnish dry until it's just got a trace of tacky. Apply the letter or number as usual. You need to get it right first time as this method well and truly sticks the letraset to the model.

Polyurethane varnish is also good for assembling small laminated pieces of brass etch using the tacky trick although you need to paint both joint surfaces.
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Old 11-03-2008, 03:23 AM   #12
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Some years back I went to a signwriters in Canterbury, they a) made me several Matchstick 'Saint' logo's app:6" for my car (sad I know (but unique). As he only charged me 7.50 for about 16 copies I enquired how much he could do my Decals for my 3' TB1 and 3' TB 2 the answer was 20 all in, so when I finally get these things built I have, in storage two sets of self adhesive vinyl markings, correct font, size and everything.

No doubt prices have gone up since but it may be worth your while looking for a local Graphics signwriters.
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Old 11-03-2008, 08:58 AM   #13
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Just wanted to give a bit of customer feedback on http://www.archertransfers.com/

I had been searching in vain for a number of years for information on original WW2 Standard US Army stencil fonts. For those not in the know, in the late 50's to early 60's the Nike Hercules had some wonderful stenciled markings adopted from these same fonts - only in a NON-stencil format - i.e., they looked like normal lettering. So after contacting a couple of Nike vets, one informed me that the stencils were solid cardboard taped together crudely and used repeatedly till they wore out and new ones were hastily created. Thus the answer as to why two rounds placed side by side varied so widely in lettering.

Memory fails me at the moment to remember the company that originally produced dry transfers available here in Ohio throughout the 60's and 70's, but I contacted Archer after seeing a tiny example of their dry transfer "Standard" font and ordered two sets.

These are an exact duplicate to the original army font, but more importantly, these dry transfers are a throwback to the golden age of modeling, and are spectacular both in clarity, design and application. Their online tips section for both dry and wet application using the hugely successful Microsol and Microset solutions, coupled with excellent customer service makes Archer a superstar in my book and I can not give a stronger recommendation to any company.

Cheers,
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Old 11-03-2008, 09:14 AM   #14
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There's a company just outside Shepperton Studios called Data Reprographic that make up custom Letraset too.
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Old 14-03-2008, 12:36 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uncle bill View Post
Looks great, but outside of the US you can't purchase the adhesive from these guys (unless you know of a secret source?)
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Old 15-03-2008, 09:57 AM   #16
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I thought it was just me having trouble locating Letraset , but going from this thread it seems I was mistaken! Only last week I asked in a stationary shop only to be met with the sort of look normally reserved for someone asking for 78s in HMV!
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Old 15-03-2008, 04:20 PM   #17
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i'm with knight1966 on this. i get all my lettering done for me by my local sign maker.its cut on self adhesive vinyl and you can have it made in any size or font. they have made me some brilliant spectrum roundels for my spv ( not cheap ). will post some pics soon
cheers Paul
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Old 16-03-2008, 12:13 PM   #18
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Dunno why, but this thread reminds me of US cartoonist Dan Clowes, who published a small but sincere item mourning the end of 'Zip-a-Tone' shades.

Moderators, jump on me for going OT if you must - but surely I'm not the only one here who enjoyed the stylised '60s aesthetic of 'Lloyd Llewellyn' and 'Eightball'?
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Old 15-04-2008, 08:31 PM   #19
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can anyone tell me what the typeface I should be looking at for Thunderbirds.

they seem to use the same on nearly everything.

this is mainly for the fire engines Im building, the red and yellow one,

any advice on sizes would be great too,

Id like to try the letraset route first

many thanks

Mike
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Old 15-04-2008, 09:11 PM   #20
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For TB2, you need Futura Bold
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