Da Vinci and his Printing Press


We have been studying Gutenberg’s printing press recently, first by familiarising ourselves with his printing press and then attempting to make our own.  Whilst Leonardo wasn’t the first to invent the printing press he did attempt to improve upon Gutenberg’s own design.

I had bought a Make-Your-Own kit for the Da Vinci press.  I hadn’t planned on doing a whole post on it but just occasionally I stumble upon a resource which is so well put together and/or so enjoyable to do that I simply have to share!  This kit happens to fall into that category.

There are many kits from the same company which I had ummed and ahhed about getting, and in some ways I rather wish I had bought a few more.  The kits (all Da Vinci inspired inventions) range in price from £9 upwards.  I am only giving my family’s view of the Printing Press Kit, not any of the others:

DSC_0334printing press

Inside each kit are all the wooden bits organised neatly in compartments, making it very clear which part is which:

DSC_0335printing press

There is a sheet with each part diagrammed and labelled to give extra help with clarity if needed.  Included in the kit is a historical booklet and an instructions booklet:


Both were beautifully and authentically designed and added a special something to the kit:


I had been a bit concerned about the instructions booklet because in some of the reviews people had stated the instructions were hard to follow.  Gary and T12 did not find this the case and stated that they were perfectly fine and fairly easy to follow:


A linen sheet of material/paper (?) was included with some of Da Vinci’s original drawings printed on it:


All in all this was a rather special kit, incredibly well presented.  It was hard enough to present a challenge but comprehensive enough to build through to completion.  It took an evening plus a short time to finish off after the glue had dried.  Everything was included in the kit, including the glue and we were all very impressed by the final product:



This was a really good addition to our study, pulling together our study on Gutenberg’s printing press with our project based learning on Leonardo Da Vinci, and as such I would highly recommend it.



  1. I was looking at one of those for later this year when we study Gutenburg. It’s good to know that it worked out well for your family! I wonder if yours is the same as the one I’m looking at. I’ll have to check.

  2. It looks like a wooden kit – is that the case? I’m not opposed to cardboard or plastic, but wooden kits are so durable. Thanks for sharing.

  3. This is wonderful Claire!! I have had these in my Amazon wish list for years. I am so glad you had such a great experience with it. We LOVE Da Vinci!!! Such a great learning experience!!

  4. I have a number of Da Vinci kits on my wish list – if this one isn’t there, I will add it!

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