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Editorial: The secret to reducing

Did we get your attention? Alas, there is no effective “secret” to weight loss although many people need to accomplish it. But at the newspaper, in olden days, we had a great tool used both for reducing … and enlarging … graphics.

This tool was the “reduction wheel.” Some people call it a “reduction scale” which ties it in even more closely to elusive personal goals set at the New Year.

This magic wheel consisted of two circles of sizes. Say the original photo was 6 inches wide and you needed it to be 4 inches. You positioned the 6 on the inner circle above the 4 of the outer circle, looking in the cut-out scale, and discovered the photo had to be reduced to 66 percent of the original size.

After that came a series of settings on the production camera, a couple of pieces of photo-sensitive paper, and a run of these papers through a developing machine. Presto! A screened photograph of the proper size, ready for paste-up, emerged.


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