Numbering Machines

Lately I’ve been playing around with page numbering in my Moleskines:


A numbering stamp (the automatically advancing ones are known as "numbering machines") is a great way to personalize your blank books. It adds a new level of "craft" to the process of filling a book (especially since many of the more affordable ones require you to ink your own pads!), and also makes it easier to add references, such as a table of contents, once your book is full.

Some people question whether a numbering stamp is worth the money when you can just write your own numbers in. I appreciate the economy of this approach, but as a GTD fiend I also believe there is an inexplicable benefit conferred by mechanically created labels. This is operating on the same principle as that of using a Brother labeler for your files rather than writing on them by hand. David Allen himself couldn’t explain it very well, but there it is, and we know from experience that it works.

Joel Dueck

View the photo on FLICKR


Greetings to our friends in Ballesteros, Praha, Fairfield, CT., Bury, Ansan, Faro, Saint Quentin, Mannheim, Osaka, Ghent, Tsim Shia Tsui, Den Haag, Palermo, Bel Aroussi,  Ghana, As Sayyidah Zaynab, Luxembourg, San Juan, Saint-Romuald-d’Etchemin, Argentina, Doha, Decatur, GA., Reykjavk, Caracas, Beijing, Revesby, Kyoto, Yigo, Mongolia, Tijuana, Ha Noi, Sarajevo, Astana and Milano.

Print it in Moleskine MSK format
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4 Responses to Numbering Machines

  1. MarcC says:

    I am a huge GTD fan. I have a Brother labeler. I have a numbering machine. I use a numbering machine on my ruled Moleskine journals. The only tiny problem with the numbering machine is that the ink is fairly slow-drying, so one must be careful not to turn the page before the ink dries lest the wet ink cross bleed onto the facing page. Please do not ask me how I learned about the wet-ink cross-bleed problem. :-(

  2. Joel Dueck says:

    I never not had too much of a problem with this. My biggest danger is in accidently skipping pages šŸ˜› you have to be pretty carefuly to avoid that.

  3. Mark Simpson says:

    I like the idea of a ‘numbering machine’ but i perversely number my pages in hexidecimal [grin]. Not sure if there is such a stamp but if there was i’d buy it up immediately!

    Joel: i’ve had the problem with skipping or misnumbering pages (and with my strange hexidecimal numbering it adds even more chance to screw up)… i have to be very careful when numbeing [grin]

  4. Gerry says:

    To keep pages from cross-bleeds just have a bunch of cut newspaper handy and insert it between the numbered pages as you number them. Leave for a while and then safely remove them. I use a electric numbering machine all the time as a printer and so have some experience with this. Have fun.
    Right now I’m looking for some UK red numbering machine ink that has REXL on the side. It is the only one I found so far that prints fire-engine red. Company log is ENM or such.

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