> In answer to Matt's thought about using mat foil: I
> use Kreene foil (is that mat?) and no glass right now.
Apologies for my belated reply to this question: Yes, I think it's
called Kreene foil and is a vital part of the system, not only when
exposing the plates using a traditional setup with UV tubes but even
more so when using a UV point light source, like Theimers, NuArcs, Olecs
and the like. Harold Kyle @ Boxcar Press (on the list) sells it,
together with alot of other fine printing pressroom supplies, should you
run out of it.
Regarding halftones I agree with Katie's recent post. Extremely high
quality fine halftone work can be carried out using a letterpress
printing press but since the eclipse of specialty makeready systems,
like Permaton and chalk overlays, you probably wouldn't want to do it
anyway. If you aim for halftones a better investment would be an
entry-level offset press, like some of AB Dick's earlier models, which
can be bought for very modest prices.
Regarding the Windmill, you shouldn't be afraid, but merely keep a
healthy respect for it, and any other motorized presses. Even with all
the guards working fine, a platen press can hurt you very badly, and is
perhaps more dangerous than a cylinder press. Should you aim for a
Windmill - which indeed is a remarkable press of which I own two - never
work by it when you are out of shouting distance to someone until you
are very, very experienced.
All the best,