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Re: [PPLetterpress] photopolymer plate newbie

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  • Scott Rubel
    I create almost everything with InDesign and sometimes Illustrator, when making plates. These programs allow me to manipulate type and render it about as close
    Message 1 of 23 , Sep 17, 2009
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      I create almost everything with InDesign and sometimes Illustrator, when
      making plates. These programs allow me to manipulate type and render it
      about as close to the way it should be as you can get. You need at least
      Illustrator and a decent collection of fonts.

      Adobe's current licensing restrictions are pretty harsh, though. They
      won't both you if you only use one or two computers, but these programs
      are still expensive if you are just starting out and didn't plan on
      acquiring them. Even though I own all this stuff, I haven't been
      upgrading for the last couple of years, and if I had to start over I
      would consider some alternatives.

      For instance, I am pretty certain that Adobe Elements or Photoshop Lite
      may let me do all the tricks I currently do with Photoshop, and I would
      not miss whatever it is that is missing in the lite version.

      Also, I have been told about a shareware photo manipulator called The
      Gimp. Once again, I am passing along news I have not first hand
      knowledge of, but if I were starting out today, I'd play around with
      that before laying out the dough for Photoshop. <http://gimp.org>

      Similarly, I would try a shareware alternative to Illustrator, like
      Lineform or Inkscape.
      http://applezoom.com/2007/07/12/cheap-alternative-to-adobe-illustrator-for-mac-os-x
      I do not know how they handle type, though, so I look forward to hearing
      about all these from personal experience.

      --Scott

      amanda.dimitrov wrote:
      > Hi all,
      > I am new to the photopolymer plate making technology. I just purchased a new base from Boxcar Press for my Kelsey 5x8 press. My experience with letterpress thus far has strictly been in hand set type and printing blocks that I have found on Ebay. I am so excited to be able to create my own designs; however, I am having trouble understanding which program(s) to use to make my designs and how to get my designs to the platemakers. Do most of you create designs using Illustrator or Photoshop? Then after the design is created, do you PDF the document (I read on Boxcar Press that they prefer PDF docs)? What if I wanted to create a simple design using Word and then PDF that doc? Would that work as well?
      >
      > Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I have read many of these posts, in addition to researching on Boxcar Press.
      >
      > Thanks so much in advance!!
      > ~A
      >
      >
      >
      > ------------------------------------
      >
      > Yahoo! Groups Links
      >
      >
      >
      >
    • engrossersscript@aol.com
      I am?a calligrapher - so what if I want to write my own script and scan it... can anyone give me some advise as to what resolution to scan it or if its even
      Message 2 of 23 , Sep 17, 2009
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        I am?a calligrapher - so what if I want to write my own script and scan it... can anyone give me some advise as to what resolution to scan it or if its even possible! =( I dnt have a machine YET but I am getting ready!



        Leenah

        Houston, Tx


        -----Original Message-----
        From: amanda.dimitrov <amanda.dimitrov@...>
        To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Thu, Sep 17, 2009 2:31 pm
        Subject: [PPLetterpress] Re: photopolymer plate newbie







        This is very helpful! Thanks so much for the quick response!
        ~A

        --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Harold Kyle <harold@...> wrote:
        >
        > A PDF from Word is not ideal, but it will work in a pinch if everything is
        > set up in black ink. Multiple colors don't work well from Word and also Word
        > doesn't kern typefaces well (the letters don't fit together as well as they
        > would in a graphic design program).
        > We usually recommend that customers eventually purchase Adobe Illustrator
        > (or a similar graphic design program) to produce better plates--certainly
        > that's the most common program used for creating photopolymer plates.
        > Photoshop is appropriate for vector images (for instance from a scanner) but
        > Illustrator is better for setting type and for drawing vector images. The
        > learning curve on these programs will be a little steep if you haven't used
        > them before, so in the meantime, as long as your Word PDF is 100% black,
        > we should be able to use it.
        > I hope this helps!
        > Harold
        >
        > --
        > ---
        > Boxcar Press
        > 501 W. Fayette St. #222
        > Syracuse, NY 13204
        > www.boxcarpress.com
        >
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >








        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Visualpropaganda
        Hello Amanda, Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop are the big names in the Graphic Design Market. They have a lot of features. And they are quite expensive.
        Message 3 of 23 , Sep 17, 2009
        • 0 Attachment
          Hello Amanda,

          Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop are the big names in the Graphic
          Design Market. They have a lot of features. And they are quite
          expensive.
          But they are by no means necessary to make your design. You can do it
          in Word if you have to (I wouldn't), you could even draw your designs
          and have them scanned. But as Scott mentioned there are also a few
          free vector and bitmap editing apps, that can give you most of the
          main-features of Illustrator or InDesign:

          The Gimp (Bitmap/Picture-Editing): http://www.gimp.org/

          Inkscape (Vector): http://www.inkscape.org/


          If you need fonts for your designs, there are a lot of free fonts that
          are really high quality and beautyfull. A good start to look for fonts
          is:
          http://www.dafont.com/

          If you want script fonts, check:
          http://www.dafont.com/theme.php?cat=601

          Also a lot of font-designer give away some of their fonts for free.
          For example
          Jos Buivenga (exljibris): http://www.josbuivenga.demon.nl/index.html

          I used Calluna regular, which he gives away for free for a card design
          for my sister.

          Hope that get's you started. All the best
          Mirko


          Am 17.09.2009 um 22:50 schrieb Scott Rubel:

          > I create almost everything with InDesign and sometimes Illustrator,
          > when
          > making plates. These programs allow me to manipulate type and render
          > it
          > about as close to the way it should be as you can get. You need at
          > least
          > Illustrator and a decent collection of fonts.
          >
          > Adobe's current licensing restrictions are pretty harsh, though. They
          > won't both you if you only use one or two computers, but these
          > programs
          > are still expensive if you are just starting out and didn't plan on
          > acquiring them. Even though I own all this stuff, I haven't been
          > upgrading for the last couple of years, and if I had to start over I
          > would consider some alternatives.
          >
          > For instance, I am pretty certain that Adobe Elements or Photoshop
          > Lite
          > may let me do all the tricks I currently do with Photoshop, and I
          > would
          > not miss whatever it is that is missing in the lite version.
          >
          > Also, I have been told about a shareware photo manipulator called The
          > Gimp. Once again, I am passing along news I have not first hand
          > knowledge of, but if I were starting out today, I'd play around with
          > that before laying out the dough for Photoshop. <http://gimp.org>
          >
          > Similarly, I would try a shareware alternative to Illustrator, like
          > Lineform or Inkscape.
          > http://applezoom.com/2007/07/12/cheap-alternative-to-adobe-illustrator-for-mac-os-x
          > I do not know how they handle type, though, so I look forward to
          > hearing
          > about all these from personal experience.
          >
          > --Scott
          >
          > amanda.dimitrov wrote:
          >> Hi all,
          >> I am new to the photopolymer plate making technology. I just
          >> purchased a new base from Boxcar Press for my Kelsey 5x8 press. My
          >> experience with letterpress thus far has strictly been in hand set
          >> type and printing blocks that I have found on Ebay. I am so
          >> excited to be able to create my own designs; however, I am having
          >> trouble understanding which program(s) to use to make my designs
          >> and how to get my designs to the platemakers. Do most of you create
          >> designs using Illustrator or Photoshop? Then after the design is
          >> created, do you PDF the document (I read on Boxcar Press that they
          >> prefer PDF docs)? What if I wanted to create a simple design using
          >> Word and then PDF that doc? Would that work as well?
          >>
          >> Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I have read many of these
          >> posts, in addition to researching on Boxcar Press.
          >>
          >> Thanks so much in advance!!
          >> ~A
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >> ------------------------------------
          >>
          >> Yahoo! Groups Links
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >
          >
          > ------------------------------------
          >
          > Yahoo! Groups Links
          >
          >
          >
        • foofnik79
          i scan my calligraphy in at 600 dpi. make sure the dots on all of the i s, j s, etc. are large enough that they don t get lost. make sure the artwork is 100%
          Message 4 of 23 , Sep 17, 2009
          • 0 Attachment
            i scan my calligraphy in at 600 dpi. make sure the dots on all of the i's, j's, etc. are large enough that they don't get lost. make sure the artwork is 100% black and change it to a bitmap for ordering. check your hairlines and dots again in bitmap format. that's it!

            --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, engrossersscript@... wrote:
            >
            >
            > I am?a calligrapher - so what if I want to write my own script and scan it... can anyone give me some advise as to what resolution to scan it or if its even possible! =( I dnt have a machine YET but I am getting ready!
            >
            >
            >
            > Leenah
            >
            > Houston, Tx
            >
            >
            > -----Original Message-----
            > From: amanda.dimitrov <amanda.dimitrov@...>
            > To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
            > Sent: Thu, Sep 17, 2009 2:31 pm
            > Subject: [PPLetterpress] Re: photopolymer plate newbie
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > This is very helpful! Thanks so much for the quick response!
            > ~A
            >
            > --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Harold Kyle <harold@> wrote:
            > >
            > > A PDF from Word is not ideal, but it will work in a pinch if everything is
            > > set up in black ink. Multiple colors don't work well from Word and also Word
            > > doesn't kern typefaces well (the letters don't fit together as well as they
            > > would in a graphic design program).
            > > We usually recommend that customers eventually purchase Adobe Illustrator
            > > (or a similar graphic design program) to produce better plates--certainly
            > > that's the most common program used for creating photopolymer plates.
            > > Photoshop is appropriate for vector images (for instance from a scanner) but
            > > Illustrator is better for setting type and for drawing vector images. The
            > > learning curve on these programs will be a little steep if you haven't used
            > > them before, so in the meantime, as long as your Word PDF is 100% black,
            > > we should be able to use it.
            > > I hope this helps!
            > > Harold
            > >
            > > --
            > > ---
            > > Boxcar Press
            > > 501 W. Fayette St. #222
            > > Syracuse, NY 13204
            > > www.boxcarpress.com
            > >
            > >
            > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            > >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >
          • Scott Rubel
            1200 dpi if the lines are thin. Then you may have to play with contrast and then turn into a bitmap to be sure the black is really black. It may look black on
            Message 5 of 23 , Sep 17, 2009
            • 0 Attachment
              1200 dpi if the lines are thin. Then you may have to play with
              contrast and then turn into a bitmap to be sure the black is really
              black. It may look black on your monitor, but the negative will
              develop as a screen if it's not 100%.

              --Scott

              On Sep 17, 2009, at 4:31 PM, foofnik79 wrote:

              > i scan my calligraphy in at 600 dpi. make sure the dots on all of
              > the i's, j's, etc. are large enough that they don't get lost. make
              > sure the artwork is 100% black and change it to a bitmap for
              > ordering. check your hairlines and dots again in bitmap format.
              > that's it!
              >
              > --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, engrossersscript@... wrote:
              >>
              >>
              >> I am?a calligrapher - so what if I want to write my own script and
              >> scan it... can anyone give me some advise as to what resolution to
              >> scan it or if its even possible! =( I dnt have a machine YET but I
              >> am getting ready!
              >>
              >> Leenah
              >>
              >> Houston, Tx




              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • engrossersscript@aol.com
              Thank you all soooooooooooo very much for taking the time to answer my question! I really really appreciate it. I can not wait to show you guys how it comes
              Message 6 of 23 , Sep 17, 2009
              • 0 Attachment
                Thank you all soooooooooooo very much for taking the time to answer my question! I really really appreciate it. I can not wait to show you guys how it comes out when I do it.


                -----Original Message-----
                From: Scott Rubel <scott@...>
                To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                Sent: Thu, Sep 17, 2009 7:01 pm
                Subject: Re: & CALLIGRAPHY Re: [PPLetterpress] Re: photopolymer plate newbie






                1200 dpi if the lines are thin. Then you may have to play with
                contrast and then turn into a bitmap to be sure the black is really
                black. It may look black on your monitor, but the negative will
                develop as a screen if it's not 100%.

                --Scott

                On Sep 17, 2009, at 4:31 PM, foofnik79 wrote:

                > i scan my calligraphy in at 600 dpi. make sure the dots on all of
                > the i's, j's, etc. are large enough that they don't get lost. make
                > sure the artwork is 100% black and change it to a bitmap for
                > ordering. check your hairlines and dots again in bitmap format.
                > that's it!
                >
                > --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, engrossersscript@... wrote:
                >>
                >>
                >> I am?a calligrapher - so what if I want to write my own script and
                >> scan it... can anyone give me some advise as to what resolution to
                >> scan it or if its even possible! =( I dnt have a machine YET but I
                >> am getting ready!
                >>
                >> Leenah
                >>
                >> Houston, Tx

                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]








                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Claire Gendron
                This is my first post to this group. I ve used illustrator and photoshop quite a bit and just bought a pilot and am really excited about creating my own
                Message 7 of 23 , Sep 17, 2009
                • 0 Attachment
                  This is my first post to this group.



                  I've used illustrator and photoshop quite a bit and just bought a pilot and
                  am really excited about creating my own designs.



                  I know how to use the adobe programs but I don't know what resolution
                  settings/types of images are best to use to create plates. Are line images
                  best? Can varying gray scales be reproduced? Also, would a deep relief base
                  be better than a regular base? Why do they recommend a smaller base than
                  the printer's chase size?



                  Any information would be appreciated as I don't have any other source of
                  information, have never used a press, and have yet to have successfully
                  goaded my significant other into setting up my pilot : (



                  Thanks!



                  _____

                  From: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com [mailto:PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com]
                  On Behalf Of Visualpropaganda
                  Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2009 5:31 PM
                  To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                  Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] photopolymer plate newbie





                  Hello Amanda,

                  Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop are the big names in the Graphic
                  Design Market. They have a lot of features. And they are quite
                  expensive.
                  But they are by no means necessary to make your design. You can do it
                  in Word if you have to (I wouldn't), you could even draw your designs
                  and have them scanned. But as Scott mentioned there are also a few
                  free vector and bitmap editing apps, that can give you most of the
                  main-features of Illustrator or InDesign:

                  The Gimp (Bitmap/Picture-Editing): http://www.gimp. <http://www.gimp.org/>
                  org/

                  Inkscape (Vector): http://www.inkscape <http://www.inkscape.org/> .org/

                  If you need fonts for your designs, there are a lot of free fonts that
                  are really high quality and beautyfull. A good start to look for fonts
                  is:
                  http://www.dafont. <http://www.dafont.com/> com/

                  If you want script fonts, check:
                  http://www.dafont. <http://www.dafont.com/theme.php?cat=601>
                  com/theme.php?cat=601

                  Also a lot of font-designer give away some of their fonts for free.
                  For example
                  Jos Buivenga (exljibris): http://www.josbuive
                  <http://www.josbuivenga.demon.nl/index.html> nga.demon.nl/index.html

                  I used Calluna regular, which he gives away for free for a card design
                  for my sister.

                  Hope that get's you started. All the best
                  Mirko

                  Am 17.09.2009 um 22:50 schrieb Scott Rubel:

                  > I create almost everything with InDesign and sometimes Illustrator,
                  > when
                  > making plates. These programs allow me to manipulate type and render
                  > it
                  > about as close to the way it should be as you can get. You need at
                  > least
                  > Illustrator and a decent collection of fonts.
                  >
                  > Adobe's current licensing restrictions are pretty harsh, though. They
                  > won't both you if you only use one or two computers, but these
                  > programs
                  > are still expensive if you are just starting out and didn't plan on
                  > acquiring them. Even though I own all this stuff, I haven't been
                  > upgrading for the last couple of years, and if I had to start over I
                  > would consider some alternatives.
                  >
                  > For instance, I am pretty certain that Adobe Elements or Photoshop
                  > Lite
                  > may let me do all the tricks I currently do with Photoshop, and I
                  > would
                  > not miss whatever it is that is missing in the lite version.
                  >
                  > Also, I have been told about a shareware photo manipulator called The
                  > Gimp. Once again, I am passing along news I have not first hand
                  > knowledge of, but if I were starting out today, I'd play around with
                  > that before laying out the dough for Photoshop. <http://gimp.
                  <http://gimp.org> org>
                  >
                  > Similarly, I would try a shareware alternative to Illustrator, like
                  > Lineform or Inkscape.
                  > http://applezoom.
                  <http://applezoom.com/2007/07/12/cheap-alternative-to-adobe-illustrator-for-
                  mac-os-x> com/2007/07/12/cheap-alternative-to-adobe-illustrator-for-mac-os-x
                  > I do not know how they handle type, though, so I look forward to
                  > hearing
                  > about all these from personal experience.
                  >
                  > --Scott
                  >
                  > amanda.dimitrov wrote:
                  >> Hi all,
                  >> I am new to the photopolymer plate making technology. I just
                  >> purchased a new base from Boxcar Press for my Kelsey 5x8 press. My
                  >> experience with letterpress thus far has strictly been in hand set
                  >> type and printing blocks that I have found on Ebay. I am so
                  >> excited to be able to create my own designs; however, I am having
                  >> trouble understanding which program(s) to use to make my designs
                  >> and how to get my designs to the platemakers. Do most of you create
                  >> designs using Illustrator or Photoshop? Then after the design is
                  >> created, do you PDF the document (I read on Boxcar Press that they
                  >> prefer PDF docs)? What if I wanted to create a simple design using
                  >> Word and then PDF that doc? Would that work as well?
                  >>
                  >> Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I have read many of these
                  >> posts, in addition to researching on Boxcar Press.
                  >>
                  >> Thanks so much in advance!!
                  >> ~A
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >> ------------------------------------
                  >>
                  >> Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >>
                  >
                  >
                  > ------------------------------------
                  >
                  > Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >
                  >
                  >





                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • matthew lamoureux
                  What s the run length metal backed photo polymer plates are rated for? What s the longest run you ve gotten out of a photo polymer plate? With proper storage
                  Message 8 of 23 , Sep 17, 2009
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                    What's the run length metal backed photo polymer plates are rated for?
                    What's the longest run you've gotten out of a photo polymer plate?
                    With proper storage and care what's the longest anyone has kept and used a plate?

                    These are the question the gentleman I'm working on a project for is asking. He's skeptical about using plastic plates, but understands the cost saving compared to magnesium. I'm also trying to show him he won't need to make an investment in lots of type he he uses plates.




                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Scott Rubel
                    I can t give you a run number, but there s one plate I ve used over three years at probably 10,000 impressions, more or less. I could be off by a couple
                    Message 9 of 23 , Sep 17, 2009
                    • 0 Attachment
                      I can't give you a run number, but there's one plate I've used over
                      three years at probably 10,000 impressions, more or less.

                      I could be off by a couple thousand.

                      They should not wear out from age unless you are in high humidity.
                      When I first got started with polymers I had a batch that kept
                      disintegrating. For one thing, I didn't know back then that they were
                      water etched, being accustomed to metal plates. For another thing, I
                      didn't notice that they were on a table inches from an old brick wall
                      which the rain came down. The plates were getting bombarded with tiny
                      splatters at night when I wasn't there.

                      --Scott

                      On Sep 17, 2009, at 8:15 PM, matthew lamoureux wrote:

                      > What's the run length metal backed photo polymer plates are rated for?
                      > What's the longest run you've gotten out of a photo polymer plate?
                      > With proper storage and care what's the longest anyone has kept and
                      > used a plate?
                      >
                      > These are the question the gentleman I'm working on a project for
                      > is asking. He's skeptical about using plastic plates, but
                      > understands the cost saving compared to magnesium. I'm also trying
                      > to show him he won't need to make an investment in lots of type he
                      > he uses plates.
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > ------------------------------------
                      >
                      > Yahoo! Groups Links
                      >
                      >
                      >
                    • susanne martin
                      What do you do about the sticky stuff that holds it to the base? I have only used my plates a few times for much shorter runs, I am worried about when the
                      Message 10 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                      • 0 Attachment
                        What do you do about the sticky stuff that holds it to the base? I have only used my plates a few times for much shorter runs, I am worried about when the sticky won't stick any more.



                        Susanne



                        To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                        From: scott@...
                        Date: Thu, 17 Sep 2009 20:28:19 -0700
                        Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] Run length of Polymer plates





                        I can't give you a run number, but there's one plate I've used over
                        three years at probably 10,000 impressions, more or less.

                        I could be off by a couple thousand.

                        They should not wear out from age unless you are in high humidity.
                        When I first got started with polymers I had a batch that kept
                        disintegrating. For one thing, I didn't know back then that they were
                        water etched, being accustomed to metal plates. For another thing, I
                        didn't notice that they were on a table inches from an old brick wall
                        which the rain came down. The plates were getting bombarded with tiny
                        splatters at night when I wasn't there.

                        --Scott

                        On Sep 17, 2009, at 8:15 PM, matthew lamoureux wrote:

                        > What's the run length metal backed photo polymer plates are rated for?
                        > What's the longest run you've gotten out of a photo polymer plate?
                        > With proper storage and care what's the longest anyone has kept and
                        > used a plate?
                        >
                        > These are the question the gentleman I'm working on a project for
                        > is asking. He's skeptical about using plastic plates, but
                        > understands the cost saving compared to magnesium. I'm also trying
                        > to show him he won't need to make an investment in lots of type he
                        > he uses plates.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > ------------------------------------
                        >
                        > Yahoo! Groups Links
                        >
                        >
                        >









                        _________________________________________________________________
                        Hotmail� has ever-growing storage! Don�t worry about storage limits.
                        http://windowslive.com/Tutorial/Hotmail/Storage?ocid=TXT_TAGLM_WL_HM_Tutorial_Storage_062009

                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      • Peter Fraterdeus
                        ... Welcome Claire! ... Congratulations! Welcome again to the wonderfully fulfilling and regularly frustrating world of letterpress printing (with polymer!)
                        Message 11 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                        • 0 Attachment
                          On 17 Sep 2009, at 8:32 PM, Claire Gendron wrote:

                          > This is my first post to this group.

                          Welcome Claire!

                          > I've used illustrator and photoshop quite a bit and just bought a
                          > pilot and
                          > am really excited about creating my own designs.

                          Congratulations!

                          Welcome again to the wonderfully fulfilling and regularly frustrating
                          world of letterpress printing (with polymer!)


                          > I know how to use the adobe programs but I don't know what resolution
                          > settings/types of images are best to use to create plates. Are line
                          > images
                          > best?

                          Unless you are attempting to produce halftone images (ie, like photos
                          in a newspaper), which would likely increase your frustration level
                          quite a lot as a beginner, stick to line art, 100% solid spot-colors,
                          and relatively small solid areas. Small presses are great for type,
                          not for solid color across the whole piece.

                          > Can varying gray scales be reproduced? Also, would a deep relief base
                          > be better than a regular base?

                          Only if the extra depth allows you to use gauge pins

                          > Why do they recommend a smaller base than
                          > the printer's chase size?
                          >

                          Because on most hand-fed platen presses, you have to put gauge pins in
                          the tympan sheet and the base will smash into them.

                          > Any information would be appreciated as I don't have any other
                          > source of
                          > information, have never used a press, and have yet to have
                          > successfully
                          > goaded my significant other into setting up my pilot : (
                          >

                          Hmmm. I highly recommend searching out the (inevitable?) other hidden
                          letterpress folks in your area.
                          While this list is full of helpful people (and an invaluable archive,
                          highly recommended) there's nothing like seeing the real thing in
                          action!


                          Here are my top five points for letterpress printers

                          1. Keep your hands out of the press when it's moving
                          1a. check three times before turning the press that no collisions
                          are imminent - between form and gauge pins, frisket arms and form, etc
                          etc. Go slow.

                          2. use waaaaay less ink than you think you'll need... a teaspoon of
                          ink will print thousands of business cards ;-)
                          But if you're mixing a color, mix more than you think you'll need! Mix
                          magnesium carbonate (a type of chalk from printmaking suppiers like
                          Daniel Smith) into your ink to 'shorten it'. Most commercial printing
                          inks are for lithography and are far too viscous to work well for
                          relief printing. Use more 'mag' than you think you'll need ;-).... but
                          not too much!

                          2a. Don't hesitate to dump your ink, wash the press and start over
                          if it's not working right.
                          2b. use waaay less ink on the press than you think you'll need...
                          did I say that already?

                          3. raise the rollers, using layers of thin, smooth (Scotch?) tape on
                          the roller tracks. If they no longer ink the form, they're too high.
                          Otherwise, keep raising them ;-)

                          3a. buy new rollers and never let them sit on the form or the ink-
                          plate for longer than a few seconds. Flat spots are easily prevented,
                          but will ruin any chance of good printing.
                          3b. use good steel roller trucks, and keep them as clean as possible

                          4. use an appropriate stock, appropriate packing behind the tympan
                          sheet and appropriate makeready. In the final days of commercial
                          letterpress, printers used as smooth and hard a stock as possible to
                          get a very sharp 'kiss' impression, with practically no depth. Today,
                          we have the luxury of using fine soft papers, like fine-art etching
                          (Rives, Arches, Hahnemuhle) or a few commercial papers such as Crane's
                          Lettra, designed to take the depth of impression. However, the back
                          side of the sheet should still show very little evidence. Use as
                          little makeready as possible (the sheets under the tympan added to the
                          packing), but use enough!

                          4a. Control the humidity in the press room. Winter dryness will make
                          for very hard paper. 50% humidity is excellent, but nearly impossible
                          to maintain in heating season (or in the desert, etc). Dampened paper
                          is a joy to print, but adds substantially to the time, and is
                          impractical for many jobs, and for many papers. Check the archives
                          here for more on that.

                          5. Demand perfection from your press. But be happy with progress ;-)

                          Good luck, and keep us up to date!

                          Peter

                          Peter Fraterdeus
                          Exquisite Letterpress from Slow Print Studios
                          http://slowprint.com/
                        • Amanda Dimitrov
                          I second that!! Thanks very much for your time and help! I am brand new to this forum but love it already! thank you again!! ________________________________
                          Message 12 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                          • 0 Attachment
                            I second that!! Thanks very much for your time and help! I am brand new to this forum but love it already!
                            thank you again!!




                            ________________________________
                            From: "engrossersscript@..." <engrossersscript@...>
                            To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                            Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2009 9:04:33 PM
                            Subject: Re: & CALLIGRAPHY Re: [PPLetterpress] Re: photopolymer plate newbie

                             
                            Thank you all soooooooooooo very much for taking the time to answer my question! I really really appreciate it. I can not wait to show you guys how it comes out when I do it.

                            -----Original Message-----
                            From: Scott Rubel <scott@invitesite. com>
                            To: PPLetterpress@ yahoogroups. com
                            Sent: Thu, Sep 17, 2009 7:01 pm
                            Subject: Re: & CALLIGRAPHY Re: [PPLetterpress] Re: photopolymer plate newbie

                            1200 dpi if the lines are thin. Then you may have to play with
                            contrast and then turn into a bitmap to be sure the black is really
                            black. It may look black on your monitor, but the negative will
                            develop as a screen if it's not 100%.

                            --Scott

                            On Sep 17, 2009, at 4:31 PM, foofnik79 wrote:

                            > i scan my calligraphy in at 600 dpi. make sure the dots on all of
                            > the i's, j's, etc. are large enough that they don't get lost. make
                            > sure the artwork is 100% black and change it to a bitmap for
                            > ordering. check your hairlines and dots again in bitmap format.
                            > that's it!
                            >
                            > --- In PPLetterpress@ yahoogroups. com, engrossersscript@ ... wrote:
                            >>
                            >>
                            >> I am?a calligrapher - so what if I want to write my own script and
                            >> scan it... can anyone give me some advise as to what resolution to
                            >> scan it or if its even possible! =( I dnt have a machine YET but I
                            >> am getting ready!
                            >>
                            >> Leenah
                            >>
                            >> Houston, Tx

                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]




                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                          • Amanda Dimitrov
                            Hi! I cannot tell you how helpful your post was! I am saving this one! Thanks again for this great advice and links!! ________________________________ From:
                            Message 13 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                            • 0 Attachment
                              Hi!
                              I cannot tell you how helpful your post was! I am saving this one!
                              Thanks again for this great advice and links!!




                              ________________________________
                              From: Visualpropaganda <visualpropaganda.01@...>
                              To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                              Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2009 5:30:40 PM
                              Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] photopolymer plate newbie

                               
                              Hello Amanda,

                              Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop are the big names in the Graphic
                              Design Market. They have a lot of features. And they are quite
                              expensive.
                              But they are by no means necessary to make your design. You can do it
                              in Word if you have to (I wouldn't), you could even draw your designs
                              and have them scanned. But as Scott mentioned there are also a few
                              free vector and bitmap editing apps, that can give you most of the
                              main-features of Illustrator or InDesign:

                              The Gimp (Bitmap/Picture- Editing): http://www.gimp. org/

                              Inkscape (Vector): http://www.inkscape.org/

                              If you need fonts for your designs, there are a lot of free fonts that
                              are really high quality and beautyfull. A good start to look for fonts
                              is:
                              http://www.dafont. com/

                              If you want script fonts, check:
                              http://www.dafont. com/theme. php?cat=601

                              Also a lot of font-designer give away some of their fonts for free.
                              For example
                              Jos Buivenga (exljibris): http://www.josbuive nga.demon. nl/index. html

                              I used Calluna regular, which he gives away for free for a card design
                              for my sister.

                              Hope that get's you started. All the best
                              Mirko

                              Am 17.09.2009 um 22:50 schrieb Scott Rubel:

                              > I create almost everything with InDesign and sometimes Illustrator,
                              > when
                              > making plates. These programs allow me to manipulate type and render
                              > it
                              > about as close to the way it should be as you can get. You need at
                              > least
                              > Illustrator and a decent collection of fonts.
                              >
                              > Adobe's current licensing restrictions are pretty harsh, though. They
                              > won't both you if you only use one or two computers, but these
                              > programs
                              > are still expensive if you are just starting out and didn't plan on
                              > acquiring them. Even though I own all this stuff, I haven't been
                              > upgrading for the last couple of years, and if I had to start over I
                              > would consider some alternatives.
                              >
                              > For instance, I am pretty certain that Adobe Elements or Photoshop
                              > Lite
                              > may let me do all the tricks I currently do with Photoshop, and I
                              > would
                              > not miss whatever it is that is missing in the lite version.
                              >
                              > Also, I have been told about a shareware photo manipulator called The
                              > Gimp. Once again, I am passing along news I have not first hand
                              > knowledge of, but if I were starting out today, I'd play around with
                              > that before laying out the dough for Photoshop. <http://gimp. org>
                              >
                              > Similarly, I would try a shareware alternative to Illustrator, like
                              > Lineform or Inkscape.
                              > http://applezoom. com/2007/ 07/12/cheap- alternative- to-adobe- illustrator- for-mac-os- x
                              > I do not know how they handle type, though, so I look forward to
                              > hearing
                              > about all these from personal experience.
                              >
                              > --Scott
                              >
                              > amanda.dimitrov wrote:
                              >> Hi all,
                              >> I am new to the photopolymer plate making technology. I just
                              >> purchased a new base from Boxcar Press for my Kelsey 5x8 press. My
                              >> experience with letterpress thus far has strictly been in hand set
                              >> type and printing blocks that I have found on Ebay. I am so
                              >> excited to be able to create my own designs; however, I am having
                              >> trouble understanding which program(s) to use to make my designs
                              >> and how to get my designs to the platemakers. Do most of you create
                              >> designs using Illustrator or Photoshop? Then after the design is
                              >> created, do you PDF the document (I read on Boxcar Press that they
                              >> prefer PDF docs)? What if I wanted to create a simple design using
                              >> Word and then PDF that doc? Would that work as well?
                              >>
                              >> Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I have read many of these
                              >> posts, in addition to researching on Boxcar Press.
                              >>
                              >> Thanks so much in advance!!
                              >> ~A
                              >>
                              >>
                              >>
                              >> ------------ --------- --------- ------
                              >>
                              >> Yahoo! Groups Links
                              >>
                              >>
                              >>
                              >>
                              >
                              >
                              > ------------ --------- --------- ------
                              >
                              > Yahoo! Groups Links
                              >
                              >
                              >




                              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            • Eric
                              ... I have gotten 25,000 impressions off MS plates with no wear, on a cylinder press. Still have the plates, 21 years old now, sitting on a galley; they look
                              Message 14 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                              • 0 Attachment
                                --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, matthew lamoureux <lamsland@...> wrote:
                                >
                                > What's the run length metal backed photo polymer plates are rated for?
                                > What's the longest run you've gotten out of a photo polymer plate?
                                > With proper storage and care what's the longest anyone has kept and used a plate?
                                >
                                I have gotten 25,000 impressions off MS plates with no wear, on a cylinder press. Still have the plates, 21 years old now, sitting on a galley; they look printable, but are line art with little detail.
                                On the other hand, the HX plates I use now are sometimes unfit for re-use after a couple years, wrapped for storage, if they are typographically detailed. Sometimes re-drying helps, sometimes not.
                                The most common practice is to store in a plastic bag to protect from moisture, and away from light. I tend to wrap in used tympan paper (an imperfect barrier), but I also have lead-mounted plates just sitting on galleys, most of which are fine. Go figure.
                                Lots of variables, not just light and moisture but also the kind (and batch) of plate material itself are at work here. With photopolymer, I'd say the most important thing to save for re-use is the negative.
                                --Eric Holub, SF
                              • Visualpropaganda
                                Amanda, you are most welcome. If you need more help, just post it here. I ve started doing letterpress a few weeks ago myself. I bought a heidelberg windmill
                                Message 15 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                                • 0 Attachment
                                  Amanda, you are most welcome.

                                  If you need more help, just post it here. I've started doing
                                  letterpress a few weeks ago myself. I bought a heidelberg windmill on
                                  ebay. But I'm a designer for a long time and have done prepress for
                                  offset for some years now. The prepress process for offset printing
                                  and for preparing photopolymer plates is not very different.

                                  Have a nice weekend
                                  Mirko

                                  Am 18.09.2009 um 15:24 schrieb Amanda Dimitrov:

                                  > Hi!
                                  > I cannot tell you how helpful your post was! I am saving this one!
                                  > Thanks again for this great advice and links!!
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > ________________________________
                                  > From: Visualpropaganda <visualpropaganda.01@...>
                                  > To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                  > Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2009 5:30:40 PM
                                  > Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] photopolymer plate newbie
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > Hello Amanda,
                                  >
                                  > Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop are the big names in the Graphic
                                  > Design Market. They have a lot of features. And they are quite
                                  > expensive.
                                  > But they are by no means necessary to make your design. You can do it
                                  > in Word if you have to (I wouldn't), you could even draw your designs
                                  > and have them scanned. But as Scott mentioned there are also a few
                                  > free vector and bitmap editing apps, that can give you most of the
                                  > main-features of Illustrator or InDesign:
                                  >
                                  > The Gimp (Bitmap/Picture- Editing): http://www.gimp. org/
                                  >
                                  > Inkscape (Vector): http://www.inkscape.org/
                                  >
                                  > If you need fonts for your designs, there are a lot of free fonts that
                                  > are really high quality and beautyfull. A good start to look for fonts
                                  > is:
                                  > http://www.dafont. com/
                                  >
                                  > If you want script fonts, check:
                                  > http://www.dafont. com/theme. php?cat=601
                                  >
                                  > Also a lot of font-designer give away some of their fonts for free.
                                  > For example
                                  > Jos Buivenga (exljibris): http://www.josbuive nga.demon. nl/index.
                                  > html
                                  >
                                  > I used Calluna regular, which he gives away for free for a card design
                                  > for my sister.
                                  >
                                  > Hope that get's you started. All the best
                                  > Mirko
                                  >
                                  > Am 17.09.2009 um 22:50 schrieb Scott Rubel:
                                  >
                                  >> I create almost everything with InDesign and sometimes Illustrator,
                                  >> when
                                  >> making plates. These programs allow me to manipulate type and render
                                  >> it
                                  >> about as close to the way it should be as you can get. You need at
                                  >> least
                                  >> Illustrator and a decent collection of fonts.
                                  >>
                                  >> Adobe's current licensing restrictions are pretty harsh, though. They
                                  >> won't both you if you only use one or two computers, but these
                                  >> programs
                                  >> are still expensive if you are just starting out and didn't plan on
                                  >> acquiring them. Even though I own all this stuff, I haven't been
                                  >> upgrading for the last couple of years, and if I had to start over I
                                  >> would consider some alternatives.
                                  >>
                                  >> For instance, I am pretty certain that Adobe Elements or Photoshop
                                  >> Lite
                                  >> may let me do all the tricks I currently do with Photoshop, and I
                                  >> would
                                  >> not miss whatever it is that is missing in the lite version.
                                  >>
                                  >> Also, I have been told about a shareware photo manipulator called The
                                  >> Gimp. Once again, I am passing along news I have not first hand
                                  >> knowledge of, but if I were starting out today, I'd play around with
                                  >> that before laying out the dough for Photoshop. <http://gimp. org>
                                  >>
                                  >> Similarly, I would try a shareware alternative to Illustrator, like
                                  >> Lineform or Inkscape.
                                  >> http://applezoom. com/2007/ 07/12/cheap- alternative- to-adobe-
                                  >> illustrator- for-mac-os- x
                                  >> I do not know how they handle type, though, so I look forward to
                                  >> hearing
                                  >> about all these from personal experience.
                                  >>
                                  >> --Scott
                                  >>
                                  >> amanda.dimitrov wrote:
                                  >>> Hi all,
                                  >>> I am new to the photopolymer plate making technology. I just
                                  >>> purchased a new base from Boxcar Press for my Kelsey 5x8 press. My
                                  >>> experience with letterpress thus far has strictly been in hand set
                                  >>> type and printing blocks that I have found on Ebay. I am so
                                  >>> excited to be able to create my own designs; however, I am having
                                  >>> trouble understanding which program(s) to use to make my designs
                                  >>> and how to get my designs to the platemakers. Do most of you create
                                  >>> designs using Illustrator or Photoshop? Then after the design is
                                  >>> created, do you PDF the document (I read on Boxcar Press that they
                                  >>> prefer PDF docs)? What if I wanted to create a simple design using
                                  >>> Word and then PDF that doc? Would that work as well?
                                  >>>
                                  >>> Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I have read many of these
                                  >>> posts, in addition to researching on Boxcar Press.
                                  >>>
                                  >>> Thanks so much in advance!!
                                  >>> ~A
                                  >>>
                                  >>>
                                  >>>
                                  >>> ------------ --------- --------- ------
                                  >>>
                                  >>> Yahoo! Groups Links
                                  >>>
                                  >>>
                                  >>>
                                  >>>
                                  >>
                                  >>
                                  >> ------------ --------- --------- ------
                                  >>
                                  >> Yahoo! Groups Links
                                  >>
                                  >>
                                  >>
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > ------------------------------------
                                  >
                                  > Yahoo! Groups Links
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                • Scott Rubel
                                  Oh, sorry, I only use the steel backed plates, so the sticky answer is for someone else to do. --Scott ... [Non-text portions of this message have been
                                  Message 16 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                                  • 0 Attachment
                                    Oh, sorry, I only use the steel backed plates, so the sticky answer is
                                    for someone else to do. --Scott

                                    susanne martin wrote:
                                    > What do you do about the sticky stuff that holds it to the base? I have only used my plates a few times for much shorter runs, I am worried about when the sticky won't stick any more.
                                    >
                                    > Susanne
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                    > From: scott@...
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > I can't give you a run number, but there's one plate I've used over
                                    > three years at probably 10,000 impressions, more or less.
                                    >
                                    > I could be off by a couple thousand.
                                    >
                                    > They should not wear out from age unless you are in high humidity.
                                    > When I first got started with polymers I had a batch that kept
                                    > disintegrating. For one thing, I didn't know back then that they were
                                    > water etched, being accustomed to metal plates. For another thing, I
                                    > didn't notice that they were on a table inches from an old brick wall
                                    > which the rain came down. The plates were getting bombarded with tiny
                                    > splatters at night when I wasn't there.
                                    >
                                    > --Scott
                                    >
                                    > On Sep 17, 2009, at 8:15 PM, matthew lamoureux wrote:
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >> What's the run length metal backed photo polymer plates are rated for?
                                    >> What's the longest run you've gotten out of a photo polymer plate?
                                    >> With proper storage and care what's the longest anyone has kept and
                                    >> used a plate?
                                    >>
                                    >> These are the question the gentleman I'm working on a project for
                                    >> is asking. He's skeptical about using plastic plates, but
                                    >> understands the cost saving compared to magnesium. I'm also trying
                                    >> to show him he won't need to make an investment in lots of type he
                                    >> he uses plates.
                                    >>
                                    >>
                                    >>
                                    >>
                                    >> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                    >>
                                    >>
                                    >>
                                    >> ------------------------------------
                                    >>
                                    >> Yahoo! Groups Links
                                    >>
                                    >>
                                    >>
                                    >>
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > _________________________________________________________________
                                    > Hotmail® has ever-growing storage! Don't worry about storage limits.
                                    > http://windowslive.com/Tutorial/Hotmail/Storage?ocid=TXT_TAGLM_WL_HM_Tutorial_Storage_062009
                                    >
                                    > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    > ------------------------------------
                                    >
                                    > Yahoo! Groups Links
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >


                                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                  • Peter Fraterdeus
                                    Sticky stuff comes off clean, the sooner the better. If you re going to store plates, get the sticky off the plate. Then use some fresh the next time ;-)
                                    Message 17 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      Sticky stuff comes off clean, the sooner the better.
                                      If you're going to store plates, get the sticky off the plate.
                                      Then use some fresh the next time ;-)

                                      (Boxcar sells rolls of it)

                                      P

                                      On 18 Sep 2009, at 12:16 PM, Scott Rubel wrote:

                                      > Oh, sorry, I only use the steel backed plates, so the sticky answer is
                                      > for someone else to do. --Scott
                                      >
                                      > susanne martin wrote:
                                      >> What do you do about the sticky stuff that holds it to the base? I
                                      >> have only used my plates a few times for much shorter runs, I am
                                      >> worried about when the sticky won't stick any more.
                                      >>
                                      >> Susanne
                                      >>

                                      Peter Fraterdeus
                                      Exquisite Letterpress from Slow Print Studios
                                      http://slowprint.com/
                                    • matthew lamoureux
                                      There s a double sided tape I think you use for adhesive mounted plates. We re planing on using metal backed plates on a bunting base so that won t be an
                                      Message 18 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                                      • 0 Attachment
                                        There's a double sided tape I think you use for adhesive mounted plates. We're planing on using metal backed plates on a bunting base so that won't be an issue. This is on a cylinder press and the guy was very happy to hear we could get upwards of 10,000 impressions per plate. We have some old X-ray storage cabinets to store them in and plan to wrap them in saran wrap. I guess we'll put them in some kraft paper too to be sure they're out of the light.

                                        If metal backed plates are stored vertically for a long time will they warp?

                                        Matthew "LAMMY" Lamoureux
                                        Full Metal Press - Operis servo a specialis nundinae


                                        Where the press is free and every man able to read, all is safe.
                                        Thomas Jefferson


                                        When Benjamin Franklin exited the Constitutional Convention, he was asked by a woman, "Sir, what have you given us?" He replied, "A Republic, Ma'am, if you can keep it".




                                        ________________________________
                                        From: Peter Fraterdeus <peterf@...>
                                        To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                        Sent: Friday, September 18, 2009 1:22:55 PM
                                        Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] Run length of Polymer plates



                                        Sticky stuff comes off clean, the sooner the better.
                                        If you're going to store plates, get the sticky off the plate.
                                        Then use some fresh the next time ;-)

                                        (Boxcar sells rolls of it)

                                        P

                                        On 18 Sep 2009, at 12:16 PM, Scott Rubel wrote:

                                        > Oh, sorry, I only use the steel backed plates, so the sticky answer is
                                        > for someone else to do. --Scott
                                        >
                                        > susanne martin wrote:
                                        >> What do you do about the sticky stuff that holds it to the base? I
                                        >> have only used my plates a few times for much shorter runs, I am
                                        >> worried about when the sticky won't stick any more.
                                        >>
                                        >> Susanne
                                        >>

                                        Peter Fraterdeus
                                        Exquisite Letterpress from Slow Print Studios
                                        http://slowprint. com/







                                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                                      • Gerald Lange
                                        Matthew The claim for photopolymer under ideal conditions is something like 1,000,000. The only time I ve detected wear is when I printed a couple of thousand
                                        Message 19 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                                        • 0 Attachment
                                          Matthew

                                          The claim for photopolymer under ideal conditions is something like
                                          1,000,000. The only time I've detected wear is when I printed a couple
                                          of thousand sheets on a paper impregnated with tiny bits of bamboo.

                                          I remember Pat Reagh telling me of a job he did on 10,000 sheets of
                                          Mexican bark paper that went through three sets of the plates.

                                          Normally, though, the stuff is quite resistant to wear.

                                          Best way to store them is in zip lock bags. A trick is to breathe into
                                          the bag before closing. That provides moisture and carbon dioxide (which
                                          revitalizes photopolymer).

                                          Store in a cool dark area away from electric devices, lights, motors,
                                          etc. Ozone, combined with high temperture, is their enemy.

                                          I've been printing with steel-backed plates for about two decades now
                                          and they do not curl in my experience. You can store them vertically
                                          without concern.

                                          Gerald
                                          http://BielerPress.blogspot.com

                                          matthew lamoureux wrote:
                                          > There's a double sided tape I think you use for adhesive mounted plates. We're planing on using metal backed plates on a bunting base so that won't be an issue. This is on a cylinder press and the guy was very happy to hear we could get upwards of 10,000 impressions per plate. We have some old X-ray storage cabinets to store them in and plan to wrap them in saran wrap. I guess we'll put them in some kraft paper too to be sure they're out of the light.
                                          >
                                          > If metal backed plates are stored vertically for a long time will they warp?
                                          >
                                          > Matthew "LAMMY" Lamoureux
                                          > Full Metal Press - Operis servo a specialis nundinae
                                          >
                                        • bielerpr
                                          Something further on this, as it was addressed earlier. In terms of longevity, photopolymer does not last long, though proper care during printing and storage
                                          Message 20 of 23 , Sep 18, 2009
                                          • 0 Attachment
                                            Something further on this, as it was addressed earlier. In terms of longevity, photopolymer does not last long, though proper care during printing and storage can extend the life. Essentially, if you touch the photopolymer surface and it does not respond with tackiness, the printing advantage is gone. You might as well be printing on acetate.

                                            As Peter suggested, hang on to your film negs if you have any intention of regenerating. With proper storage, film negs tend to last for years. I have some that are at least a decade old and still retain their color and emulsion tack.

                                            Gerald
                                            http://BielerPress.blogspot.com

                                            --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Gerald Lange <Bieler@...> wrote:
                                            >
                                            > Matthew
                                            >
                                            > The claim for photopolymer under ideal conditions is something like
                                            > 1,000,000. The only time I've detected wear is when I printed a couple
                                            > of thousand sheets on a paper impregnated with tiny bits of bamboo.
                                            >
                                            > I remember Pat Reagh telling me of a job he did on 10,000 sheets of
                                            > Mexican bark paper that went through three sets of the plates.
                                            >
                                            > Normally, though, the stuff is quite resistant to wear.
                                            >
                                            > Best way to store them is in zip lock bags. A trick is to breathe into
                                            > the bag before closing. That provides moisture and carbon dioxide (which
                                            > revitalizes photopolymer).
                                            >
                                            > Store in a cool dark area away from electric devices, lights, motors,
                                            > etc. Ozone, combined with high temperture, is their enemy.
                                            >
                                            > I've been printing with steel-backed plates for about two decades now
                                            > and they do not curl in my experience. You can store them vertically
                                            > without concern.
                                            >
                                            > Gerald
                                            > http://BielerPress.blogspot.com
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