Ew, the dreaded ink question. Well, every printer has his own thing
In regard to your first question. I don't actually notice a difference
between rubber- and oil-based inks. The latter drys out faster, that's
about it. I start the second color as soon as I can, but I am
generally working with dampened paper. Backing up, I try to leave at
least 24 hours and then monitor the offset on the tympan quite
carefully. If I am running an immediate run (re: "the weight of the
hand"), I am tending to stretch my fingers to prevent possible
Second question. Solids are best handled with less tack to the ink. I
use Setswell Compound as a reducer (for solids). Most printmaking
suppliers, such as Dan Smith, carry this.
Third question: Walter Hamady always said ink should slump not puddle.
Not a bad rec. But you have to figure out what that exactly means for
Also, re Regis's comment. To further that. I run separate runs for
every variance in form; small type, medium type, large type,
illustration, solids, etc. Another Hamady rec. But, then again, I have
the luxury of not being a commercial letterpress printer.
> Hi all:
> Two questions: Rubber-based ink, black: page of text, poetry, no
> solids. how long do folks leave this dry before startig into the
> second (color) run: no close registration, but printing on a
> Vandercook, so the sheet might need to feel the weight of the hand
> going around. And how about oil-based ink?
> Second question. Someone (a high-end invitation and stationary
> printer) informed me that putting a tiny, tiny bit of "tack reducer"
> on the platen ( 10x15 platen, different press) and allowing the press
> to work it in (or, I suppose, mixing it in ahead of time) would
> decrease problems with inking, especially solids, in the transfer of
> ink from the rollers to the solid image and/or type and hence, to
> the paper. Better results all round, he said, no matter the weather.
> Sounds counter-intuitive, but I thought I'd put it out there.
> What consistenly do you all use for your ink and has anyone been
> doing this? (I erased Chuck Sumner's elegant answer to the
> consistency question much earlier. Something like whipped cream
> before it begins to hold its weight in peaks.)
> Eileen Grace O Malley Callahan
> Office of Undergraduate and Interdisciplinary Studies
> 301 Campbell Hall
> University of California, Berkeley
> (510) 643-2173