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Friedrich Koenig

Friedrich Koenig

1774-1833

German inventor and printing press designer who produced the first cylinder flatbed press. Koenig spent his early adult years developing models of a new printing press that would produce many more copies than those in use at the time—and at far greater speeds. The platen presses of the era were hand-operated and timeconsuming. Koenig's press was controlled by a series of rollers, operated in turn by a system of gear wheels. The rollers both raised and lowered the platen, providing the to-and-fro movement of the press bed as well as the inking of the form. After several unsuccessful trials in 1811, a working version of Koenig's press was placed on active duty at the London Times in 1814 and Koenig took his place in printing history.

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