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Re: [PPLetterpress] laser printer negs

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  • Dr P.B. Watry
    Gerald Sorry I ve been so quite on the PPLetterpress front, but I ve been snowed under recently with work associated with my proper job so silent on all the
    Message 1 of 26 , Nov 15, 2001
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      Gerald

      Sorry I've been so quite on the PPLetterpress front, but I've been
      snowed under recently with work associated with my "proper job" so
      silent on all the fronts that are interesting.

      Yes, we do have a Xante Platemaker, but haven't used it to generate
      film/polymer plates. In general it works very well, but I wouldn't want
      to buy one expecting the highest quality for expensive deluxe editions.
      For student use, it is probably a cheap and convenient option.

      In any case, I can see the process going entirely digital which means
      that film would not be used in the workflow at all. Has anyone out there
      tried DuPont's Cyrel and Flexo? Alternatively, Barco Digital Flexo? I
      don't know if you can mount Flexo plates on magnetic bases. Probably an
      entirely digital workflow would produce more consistent output (e.g. no
      fogging or dust and more consistent and smaller dot gain). I would
      expect that the equipment prices might be prohibitive to all but the most lavishly
      funded...

      Anyway, I'd be interested in any comments.

      Cheers

      Best wishes

      Paul
    • Gerald Lange
      Dear Paul My next door neighbors use flexo. The Bag Ladies. They print bags for mall stores and the like. The plates (not steel-backed) are taped to the
      Message 2 of 26 , Nov 16, 2001
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        Dear Paul

        My next door neighbors use flexo. The Bag Ladies. They print bags for
        mall stores and the like. The plates (not steel-backed) are taped to
        the cylinder. Extremely crude set up but also quite efficient for what
        they need. A few years ago flexo polymer went to water washout. But
        you need soft water and higher than normal heat for washout. Just not
        the same animal as sheet letterpress.

        I suspect you are right, the directive is to eliminate film. What do
        you thing we have, ten years or so, more or less? Do you think they
        will ever do direct to steel-backed polymer?

        Ger


        --- In PPLetterpress@y..., "Dr P.B. Watry" <Pwatry@l...> wrote:
        > Gerald
        >
        > Sorry I've been so quite on the PPLetterpress front, but I've been
        > snowed under recently with work associated with my "proper job" so
        > silent on all the fronts that are interesting.
        >
        > Yes, we do have a Xante Platemaker, but haven't used it to generate
        > film/polymer plates. In general it works very well, but I wouldn't want
        > to buy one expecting the highest quality for expensive deluxe editions.
        > For student use, it is probably a cheap and convenient option.
        >
        > In any case, I can see the process going entirely digital which means
        > that film would not be used in the workflow at all. Has anyone out there
        > tried DuPont's Cyrel and Flexo? Alternatively, Barco Digital Flexo? I
        > don't know if you can mount Flexo plates on magnetic bases. Probably an
        > entirely digital workflow would produce more consistent output (e.g. no
        > fogging or dust and more consistent and smaller dot gain). I would
        > expect that the equipment prices might be prohibitive to all but the most lavishly
        > funded...
        >
        > Anyway, I'd be interested in any comments.
        >
        > Cheers
        >
        > Best wishes
        >
        > Paul
      • Brian Molanphy
        gerald, the press at colorado college has a filmstar 2 developer. the xante accel-a-writer 8300 (circa 1996) was upgraded, but does not have the power of a
        Message 3 of 26 , May 11 6:03 PM
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          gerald,

          the press at colorado college has a filmstar 2 developer. the xante
          accel-a-writer 8300 (circa 1996) was upgraded, but does not have the power
          of a film maker 4, i expect. the system works ok for our undergraduates.
          after a year it has paid for itself in saving $12-15 per neg from the local
          service bureau.

          i wonder how someone could use the film star 2 developer fluid without the
          fim star 2 developer unit. the unit is nothing more than a basin for the
          fluid and two soft rollers, like wringers on an antique washing machine,
          that evenly squeegee excess fluid off the neg. it is overpriced. i suggest
          anyone interested buy first the agfa translucencies and the film star fluid
          (there are at least two kinds, get the one that suits your laser printer).
          see if you can't develop negs without the developer unit before dropping
          several hundred bucks for it.

          the developer fluid is nasty: 2-butoxyethanol. the laser printer and
          computer stuff is in the office/library, but the developer unit is out in
          the ventilated pressroom. with use, the clear, colorless liquid turns black,
          and eventually (100 negs per quart?) is no longer effective. i don't pass a
          neg thru the fluid anymore than three times, and usually at least twice. too
          often and the text begins to fill in.

          best, brian

          Date: Fri, 10 May 2002 19:40:42 +0000
          From: Gerald Lange <bieler@...>
          Subject: Xanté

          Xanté Corporation has recently sent to me some material on their FilmMaker 4
          laser printer and its accompanying FilmStar2 technology. The last time I
          looked at this combination I did not feel they were quite there yet. But I
          suspect they may now be as close as it is going to get.

          The FilmMaker 4 can generate at 2400dpi. Camera ready copy quality is
          1200dpi
          and the usual minimum for film negatives on imagesetters is 2400dpi. So in
          this regard Xanté has gone the full nine yards. I asked a technical support
          source there if there was thinking about going above this and he felt they
          would not as that is beyond current technical abilities of laser engines and
          there is no further call for b/w development compared to color.

          But what makes the FilmMaker interesting other than that it is a very high
          end
          laser printer is that it is capable of generating negatives. These negatives
          must undergo additional conditioning via the FilmStar2 technology, which is
          essentially a short chemical bath. Xanté does insist that only its film
          (actually made by Agfa) can be used for this system (also made by Agfa).

          The film is a matte with a somewhat cloudy transparency though Xanté has
          assumed me this will allow passage of UV in the same way that Kreene will.
          Since I have worked with similar negatives I believe this may be quite
          accurate. The film negatives they have provided look quite good. They do not
          have an emulsion side but that may not necessarily be a detriment as the
          toner
          itself (since the neg is not silver-based) has a certain capture quality.
          The
          normal minimum for opacity required of a silver-based negative is 3.5-4.0.
          The
          Xanté film is rendered at 2.2-3.5. The neg I examined does have an
          occasional
          pin hole but this is not anyway near as bad as some of the cheap
          silver-based
          negs I have worked with. The tech told me that some of their customers were
          increasing this density by running the neg through the FilmStar2 setup
          twice,
          boosting the density to 4.0.

          Will Xanté go further with this? Probably not. Will they advance their
          PlateMaker 3 system to water-washout photopolymer. Doubtful, though one of
          their color lasers does have the flat travel that would be required for
          this.

          The fully equipped FilmMaker 4 combo with add-ons costs about twice what you
          would pay for any other high end 1200dpi laser printer with add-ons. This is
          quite low compared to an imagesetter, but the question remains, as close as
          they may be - and there is a huge gap between the capabilities of a laser
          and
          an imagesetter - are they at a point where this would be of use to
          letterpress
          printers?

          Will this stuff work for our needs? I'm thinking it might in a number of
          situations, but I wonder about consistency. I know some folks on this list
          are
          using this combination. I'd be interested in knowing how successful it has
          been.

          Gerald
        • 9 Spotmonk Design
          Hi Everyone, I m new to the PPLetpress List. I have a Craftsman 6 x 10 and was wondering if anyone has experience with using/converting expandable trucks. Two
          Message 4 of 26 , May 12 9:57 AM
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            Hi Everyone,

            I'm new to the PPLetpress List.

            I have a Craftsman 6 x 10 and was wondering if anyone has experience
            with using/converting expandable trucks. Two main problems at hand: I
            need to lower the the noise the press makes when the rollers leave
            the rail and move to the inking plate and back; and my rollers are
            about 1/8 inch (the circumference) larger than my trucks. What I'm
            doing now is putting a piece of pressboard behind the chase but don't
            know if this is a good long term solution.

            Thanks in advance for your responses.

            Vivian



            Vivian Leung
            9 Spotmonk Design
            vivian@...
            T 201 795 1668
            C 201 925 3168

            <http://www.9spotmonk.com>
          • Katie Harper
            I just tried an experiment with exposing a photopolymer plate with sunlight on a cloudy day. My instructions (from Solarplate) say to expose 5-7 minutes on an
            Message 5 of 26 , May 12 2:41 PM
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              I just tried an experiment with exposing a photopolymer plate with sunlight
              on a cloudy day. My instructions (from Solarplate) say to expose 5-7 minutes
              on an overcast day. The first exposure was at 5 mins and there was nothing
              on the plate. I increased exposure to about 8 mins. and got some bare
              detail, but it quickly washed out. I have tried these exposures in the past
              with mostly good luck. So this has me a bit stumped. I'm wondering if my
              plates might be old, and if aging plates require more exposure? I have no
              idea how old these plates are, but my guess would be that they are almost a
              year old, if that makes a difference. They are the type with a steel back.

              Katie Harper
              Cincinnati, OH
            • Ed Inman
              They don t sound so old to me--but I would suggest at least 8 min. under direct sunlight. Overcast days are tricky--I gave up on using sunlight for this very
              Message 6 of 26 , May 12 3:07 PM
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                They don't sound so old to me--but I would suggest at least 8 min. under
                direct sunlight. Overcast days are tricky--I gave up on using sunlight for
                this very reason. My 750 watt setup of artificial light requires about 30
                minutes to expose a plate well, but for me the consistency is worth it--I
                just finished making a 100 lpi halftone from a B&W photo that when printed
                onto glossy paper looks every bit as good as an offset or laser halftone to
                me.
                Ed
              • Katie Harper
                Ed: Can you tell me more about your setup? How far do you have the bulb from the glass for your exposures? Do you have three 250 watt bulbs? Thanks. Katie
                Message 7 of 26 , May 12 3:15 PM
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                  Ed: Can you tell me more about your setup? How far do you have the bulb from
                  the glass for your exposures? Do you have three 250 watt bulbs?

                  Thanks.


                  Katie Harper
                  Ars Brevis Press
                  Cincinnati, OH
                  513-233-9588




                  > From: "Ed Inman" <edinman@...>
                  > Reply-To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                  > Date: Sun, 12 May 2002 17:07:30 -0500
                  > To: <PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com>
                  > Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] Aging plates?
                  >
                  > They don't sound so old to me--but I would suggest at least 8 min. under
                  > direct sunlight. Overcast days are tricky--I gave up on using sunlight for
                  > this very reason. My 750 watt setup of artificial light requires about 30
                  > minutes to expose a plate well, but for me the consistency is worth it--I
                  > just finished making a 100 lpi halftone from a B&W photo that when printed
                  > onto glossy paper looks every bit as good as an offset or laser halftone to
                  > me.
                  > Ed
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > To respond to this message or post a message to the membership:
                  > PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                  >
                  > Encountering problems?
                  > PPLetterpress-owner@yahoogroups.com
                  >
                  > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                  >
                  >
                • Ed Inman
                  ... from ... No, it is a single photo/AV type lamp that fits in an old Sun Gun from the 60s for making movies indoors. Such lamps are available from places
                  Message 8 of 26 , May 12 4:19 PM
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                    > Ed: Can you tell me more about your setup? How far do you have the bulb
                    from
                    > the glass for your exposures? Do you have three 250 watt bulbs?

                    No, it is a single photo/AV type lamp that fits in an old "Sun Gun" from the
                    60s for making movies indoors. Such lamps are available from places like
                    bulbman.com or topbulb.com. I also have a second mercury lamp that I can use
                    in conjunction with the main lamp--but it frankly doesn't seem to help much.
                    I do try to angle the lamp from different directions during the burning
                    process to give strength to the base of the artwork. This is primarily
                    important when you are burning small type--to help keep things like tiny
                    dots over i's from being broken off when washing out and/or printing.

                    The setup is basically just an old Argyle rail type process camera from the
                    70s which I use to both make the negatives and burn the plates. It was being
                    thrown out by a shop going digital. I put extra foam rubber padding under
                    the frame glass to keep the negative and polymer plate tight against each
                    other when burning the plate. I use the lamp about four feet from the frame
                    and the plate gets pretty hot. I get steel-backed plates from a local
                    rubber stamp company that start out green and turn clear orange when the
                    image is fully burned so you know they are ready. I think they are made by
                    Jet USA.

                    If you have room to set up a darkroom call around to various offset shops
                    and you may be able to find a similar camera for very cheap since most
                    offset shops are now direct-to-plate from computers. You can also get
                    Arista lith film and the necessary A&B type developer from
                    freestylecamera.com in California and it is much cheaper than what Kodak
                    sells--only about 41 cents a sheet in the 8 x 10 size and it works like a
                    charm.

                    Ed
                  • mark baisi
                    Hello Brian, I have never seen the developer you are talking about. But physically it sounds to me like an old pmt developer. Those are quite cheap now, any
                    Message 9 of 26 , May 12 9:21 PM
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                      Hello Brian,
                      I have never seen the developer you are talking about. But physically it
                      sounds to me like an old pmt developer. Those are quite cheap now, any
                      chance one of those would work. I have never heard of this film and process
                      before and will definitly be looking into it up here(canada).
                      Mark

                      >>i wonder how someone could use the film star 2 developer fluid without the
                      >fim star 2 developer unit. the unit is nothing more than a basin for the
                      >fluid and two soft rollers, like wringers on an antique washing machine,
                      >that evenly squeegee excess fluid off the neg. it is overpriced. >
                      >best, brian
                      >


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                    • Gerald Lange
                      ... Today I received the Ampersand Resource Guide and there is an article in there by member Brian Allen titled Home-made photopolymer plate-making system.
                      Message 10 of 26 , May 13 10:21 AM
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                        Ed Inman wrote:
                        >
                        > You expose polymer with 40 Watt lamps? What exposure times do you use with
                        > this setup, Joel? Are you referring to regular purple looking
                        > "blacklights?" I didn't think such a low wattage setup would work very well
                        > even with hours of exposure. Can you give us a product descritption as
                        > printed on the bulbs you use and a little more detail as to your process?
                        >
                        > For what it's worth my cheapo homemade lamp setup is just a Sylvania "Sun
                        > Gun" that uses a 650 watt "DWY" halogen photo optic lamp. The lamps come
                        > with a warning that the bulb emits UV radiation and that you should not look
                        > directly into the fixture. You can usually find these used on ebay for $10
                        > to $15 and they will expose polymer very nicely in about 30 minutes time
                        > from about four feet back. I think both the original Sylvania Sun Gun and
                        > the Sun Gun 2 both use the same DWY lamp.
                        >
                        > Ed
                        >
                        > Joel wrote:
                        > >>> The UV bulbs can go into standard flourescent fixtures. The unit I have
                        > has four standard, 24", straight-from-the-hardware-store, two-bulb fixtures
                        > mounted in it and wired up so they all come on together. I think the bulbs
                        > are 40W.<<<

                        Today I received the Ampersand Resource Guide and there is an article in there
                        by member Brian Allen titled "Home-made photopolymer plate-making system." In
                        this he indicates he used a rack of 18" UV fluorescent bulbs (five are
                        pictured in a sketch) of "20 watt GE or Slyvania blacklight tubes."

                        Gerald
                      • Martin R Gutzmer
                        But the RIPOFF guys is they will not sell the fluid to just anyone - you have to have bought the unit from them. God Bless, Martin ... From: mark baisi To:
                        Message 11 of 26 , May 13 10:37 AM
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                          But the RIPOFF guys is they will not sell the fluid to just anyone - you have to have bought the unit from them.
                          God Bless,
                          Martin
                          ----- Original Message -----
                          From: mark baisi
                          To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                          Sent: Sunday, May 12, 2002 11:21 PM
                          Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] laser printer negs



                          Hello Brian,
                          I have never seen the developer you are talking about. But physically it
                          sounds to me like an old pmt developer. Those are quite cheap now, any
                          chance one of those would work. I have never heard of this film and process
                          before and will definitly be looking into it up here(canada).
                          Mark

                          >>i wonder how someone could use the film star 2 developer fluid without the
                          >fim star 2 developer unit. the unit is nothing more than a basin for the
                          >fluid and two soft rollers, like wringers on an antique washing machine,
                          >that evenly squeegee excess fluid off the neg. it is overpriced. >
                          >best, brian
                          >


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                          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                        • Gerald Lange
                          ... Dear Ed I d be guessing that point-of-focus or whatever it is called is less useful than a rack of lamps, though some folks report good results with
                          Message 12 of 26 , May 13 12:20 PM
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                            Ed Inman wrote:
                            >
                            > I think Brian once wrote something to that effect on the Letpresss group
                            > too.
                            >
                            > I'd be willing to give it a try but I'm admittedly skeptical. Regular
                            > 20-watt blacklights?? How long would you have to expose with such low
                            > wattage? I once tried using a series of old style Argon lamps that someone
                            > told me had good UV output and they just barely hardened the plate even
                            > after three hours of exposure. I didn't have much better luck with a
                            > 175-watt mercury lamp--another supposedly-good UV source.
                            >
                            > My 650-watt halogen Sun Gun will burn a harder plate in 15 minutes than
                            > either of these would in a whole afternoon--even though I typically let the
                            > plate expose for a full half-hour. I don't think there is a better $10
                            > platemaking system anywhere, haha.
                            >
                            > What replacement lamps and ballasts are called for in professional
                            > platemaking machines? This might be the best setup for a serious
                            > do-it-yourselfer.
                            >


                            Dear Ed

                            I'd be guessing that point-of-focus or whatever it is called is less useful
                            than a rack of lamps, though some folks report good results with halftones.

                            I know that Inge Bruggeman and Chip Shilling (both members here) have portable
                            suitcase like set ups that they use for workshops and the like. Also I think
                            Gene Becker sells some similar type of "relatively" inexpensive stand-alone
                            exposure unit.

                            Gerald
                          • Joel Benson
                            Katie, Why not use the UV fluorescent tubes that the manufacturers specify? I understand using what you have on hand (as opposed to going out and spending
                            Message 13 of 26 , May 13 1:40 PM
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                              Katie,

                              Why not use the UV fluorescent tubes that the manufacturers specify? I understand using what you have on hand (as opposed to going out and spending thousands on a new machine), but if you are going to construct a light source you might as well set up the fluorescent bulbs. You'll use far less electricity, don't have to worry about the heat from the bulbs, and you bring the exposure time down to three or four minutes. That time really adds up if you ever have to make a lot of plates!

                              Joel

                              Joel Benson
                              Dependable Letterpress
                              San Francisco

                              -----Original Message-----
                              From: Ed Inman [mailto:edinman@...]
                              Sent: Sunday, May 12, 2002 4:20 PM
                              To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                              Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] Aging plates?


                              > Ed: Can you tell me more about your setup? How far do you have the bulb
                              from
                              > the glass for your exposures? Do you have three 250 watt bulbs?

                              No, it is a single photo/AV type lamp that fits in an old "Sun Gun" from the
                              60s for making movies indoors. Such lamps are available from places like
                              bulbman.com or topbulb.com. I also have a second mercury lamp that I can use
                              in conjunction with the main lamp--but it frankly doesn't seem to help much.
                              I do try to angle the lamp from different directions during the burning
                              process to give strength to the base of the artwork. This is primarily
                              important when you are burning small type--to help keep things like tiny
                              dots over i's from being broken off when washing out and/or printing.

                              The setup is basically just an old Argyle rail type process camera from the
                              70s which I use to both make the negatives and burn the plates. It was being
                              thrown out by a shop going digital. I put extra foam rubber padding under
                              the frame glass to keep the negative and polymer plate tight against each
                              other when burning the plate. I use the lamp about four feet from the frame
                              and the plate gets pretty hot. I get steel-backed plates from a local
                              rubber stamp company that start out green and turn clear orange when the
                              image is fully burned so you know they are ready. I think they are made by
                              Jet USA.

                              If you have room to set up a darkroom call around to various offset shops
                              and you may be able to find a similar camera for very cheap since most
                              offset shops are now direct-to-plate from computers. You can also get
                              Arista lith film and the necessary A&B type developer from
                              freestylecamera.com in California and it is much cheaper than what Kodak
                              sells--only about 41 cents a sheet in the 8 x 10 size and it works like a
                              charm.

                              Ed



                              To respond to this message or post a message to the membership:
                              PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com

                              Encountering problems?
                              PPLetterpress-owner@yahoogroups.com

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                            • Katie Harper
                              This makes sense, but what type of fixture would one use? A regular fluorescent fixture? I have a light table with fluorescent tubes. Could that be adapted if
                              Message 14 of 26 , May 13 2:16 PM
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                                This makes sense, but what type of fixture would one use? A regular
                                fluorescent fixture? I have a light table with fluorescent tubes. Could that
                                be adapted if I got the right UV bulbs? Is there exposure information
                                available about times, distances, etc.?


                                Katie Harper
                                Ars Brevis Press
                                Cincinnati, OH
                                513-233-9588




                                > From: "Joel Benson" <joel.benson@...>
                                > Reply-To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                > Date: Mon, 13 May 2002 13:40:53 -0700
                                > To: <PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com>
                                > Subject: RE: [PPLetterpress] Aging plates?
                                >
                                > Katie,
                                >
                                > Why not use the UV fluorescent tubes that the manufacturers specify? I
                                > understand using what you have on hand (as opposed to going out and spending
                                > thousands on a new machine), but if you are going to construct a light source
                                > you might as well set up the fluorescent bulbs. You'll use far less
                                > electricity, don't have to worry about the heat from the bulbs, and you bring
                                > the exposure time down to three or four minutes. That time really adds up if
                                > you ever have to make a lot of plates!
                                >
                                > Joel
                                >
                                > Joel Benson
                                > Dependable Letterpress
                                > San Francisco
                                >
                                > -----Original Message-----
                                > From: Ed Inman [mailto:edinman@...]
                                > Sent: Sunday, May 12, 2002 4:20 PM
                                > To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                > Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] Aging plates?
                                >
                                >
                                >> Ed: Can you tell me more about your setup? How far do you have the bulb
                                > from
                                >> the glass for your exposures? Do you have three 250 watt bulbs?
                                >
                                > No, it is a single photo/AV type lamp that fits in an old "Sun Gun" from the
                                > 60s for making movies indoors. Such lamps are available from places like
                                > bulbman.com or topbulb.com. I also have a second mercury lamp that I can use
                                > in conjunction with the main lamp--but it frankly doesn't seem to help much.
                                > I do try to angle the lamp from different directions during the burning
                                > process to give strength to the base of the artwork. This is primarily
                                > important when you are burning small type--to help keep things like tiny
                                > dots over i's from being broken off when washing out and/or printing.
                                >
                                > The setup is basically just an old Argyle rail type process camera from the
                                > 70s which I use to both make the negatives and burn the plates. It was being
                                > thrown out by a shop going digital. I put extra foam rubber padding under
                                > the frame glass to keep the negative and polymer plate tight against each
                                > other when burning the plate. I use the lamp about four feet from the frame
                                > and the plate gets pretty hot. I get steel-backed plates from a local
                                > rubber stamp company that start out green and turn clear orange when the
                                > image is fully burned so you know they are ready. I think they are made by
                                > Jet USA.
                                >
                                > If you have room to set up a darkroom call around to various offset shops
                                > and you may be able to find a similar camera for very cheap since most
                                > offset shops are now direct-to-plate from computers. You can also get
                                > Arista lith film and the necessary A&B type developer from
                                > freestylecamera.com in California and it is much cheaper than what Kodak
                                > sells--only about 41 cents a sheet in the 8 x 10 size and it works like a
                                > charm.
                                >
                                > Ed
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > To respond to this message or post a message to the membership:
                                > PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                >
                                > Encountering problems?
                                > PPLetterpress-owner@yahoogroups.com
                                >
                                > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > To respond to this message or post a message to the membership:
                                > PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                >
                                > Encountering problems?
                                > PPLetterpress-owner@yahoogroups.com
                                >
                                > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                                >
                                >
                              • Joel Benson
                                The UV bulbs can go into standard flourescent fixtures. The unit I have has four standard, 24 , straight-from-the-hardware-store, two-bulb fixtures mounted in
                                Message 15 of 26 , May 13 2:58 PM
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                                  The UV bulbs can go into standard flourescent fixtures. The unit I have has four standard, 24", straight-from-the-hardware-store, two-bulb fixtures mounted in it and wired up so they all come on together. I think the bulbs are 40W.

                                  You'd want to mount the fixtures over whatever setup you are going to use to contact the negative to the plate. You need some kind of vacuum frame to get good contact for consistent, fine results. Ed Inman, in earlier posts, describes using the vacuum frame in his process camera, mine is homemade using a piece of scored formica and some Kreene.

                                  I think there is probably exposure information either in the archives of this list, or the resource folders. The fluorescent set-ups I have seen, both "real" and homemade, have the bulbs 2-4" from the plate material. I don't know how critical that distance is.

                                  Joel

                                  Joel Benson
                                  Dependable Letterpress
                                  San Francisco

                                  -----Original Message-----
                                  From: Katie Harper [mailto:knharper@...]
                                  Sent: Monday, May 13, 2002 2:17 PM
                                  To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                  Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] Aging plates?


                                  This makes sense, but what type of fixture would one use? A regular
                                  fluorescent fixture? I have a light table with fluorescent tubes. Could that
                                  be adapted if I got the right UV bulbs? Is there exposure information
                                  available about times, distances, etc.?


                                  Katie Harper
                                  Ars Brevis Press
                                  Cincinnati, OH
                                  513-233-9588
                                • Ed Inman
                                  You expose polymer with 40 Watt lamps? What exposure times do you use with this setup, Joel? Are you referring to regular purple looking blacklights? I
                                  Message 16 of 26 , May 13 5:15 PM
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                                    You expose polymer with 40 Watt lamps? What exposure times do you use with
                                    this setup, Joel? Are you referring to regular purple looking
                                    "blacklights?" I didn't think such a low wattage setup would work very well
                                    even with hours of exposure. Can you give us a product descritption as
                                    printed on the bulbs you use and a little more detail as to your process?

                                    For what it's worth my cheapo homemade lamp setup is just a Sylvania "Sun
                                    Gun" that uses a 650 watt "DWY" halogen photo optic lamp. The lamps come
                                    with a warning that the bulb emits UV radiation and that you should not look
                                    directly into the fixture. You can usually find these used on ebay for $10
                                    to $15 and they will expose polymer very nicely in about 30 minutes time
                                    from about four feet back. I think both the original Sylvania Sun Gun and
                                    the Sun Gun 2 both use the same DWY lamp.

                                    Ed

                                    Joel wrote:
                                    >>> The UV bulbs can go into standard flourescent fixtures. The unit I have
                                    has four standard, 24", straight-from-the-hardware-store, two-bulb fixtures
                                    mounted in it and wired up so they all come on together. I think the bulbs
                                    are 40W.<<<
                                  • Ed Inman
                                    I think Brian once wrote something to that effect on the Letpresss group too. I d be willing to give it a try but I m admittedly skeptical. Regular 20-watt
                                    Message 17 of 26 , May 13 6:34 PM
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                                      I think Brian once wrote something to that effect on the Letpresss group
                                      too.

                                      I'd be willing to give it a try but I'm admittedly skeptical. Regular
                                      20-watt blacklights?? How long would you have to expose with such low
                                      wattage? I once tried using a series of old style Argon lamps that someone
                                      told me had good UV output and they just barely hardened the plate even
                                      after three hours of exposure. I didn't have much better luck with a
                                      175-watt mercury lamp--another supposedly-good UV source.

                                      My 650-watt halogen Sun Gun will burn a harder plate in 15 minutes than
                                      either of these would in a whole afternoon--even though I typically let the
                                      plate expose for a full half-hour. I don't think there is a better $10
                                      platemaking system anywhere, haha.

                                      What replacement lamps and ballasts are called for in professional
                                      platemaking machines? This might be the best setup for a serious
                                      do-it-yourselfer.

                                      Ed

                                      Gerald wrote:
                                      > Today I received the Ampersand Resource Guide and there is an article in
                                      there
                                      > by member Brian Allen titled "Home-made photopolymer plate-making system."
                                      In
                                      > this he indicates he used a rack of 18" UV fluorescent bulbs (five are
                                      > pictured in a sketch) of "20 watt GE or Slyvania blacklight tubes."
                                      >
                                    • Brian Allen
                                      My homemade platemaking system was an attempt to mimic the expensive machines as closely as possible. The fluorescent units I used were single bulb ones, wired
                                      Message 18 of 26 , May 13 8:31 PM
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                                        My homemade platemaking system was an attempt to mimic the expensive
                                        machines as closely as possible. The fluorescent units I used were single
                                        bulb ones, wired together and fit as closely as possible (clearance between
                                        bulbs is about 1/2 inch) to get even exposure, just like the machines. I
                                        think the double units put the bulbs too far apart. I got the bulbs from a
                                        large lightbulb supply company in Denver. Big cities would have at least one
                                        such place. Clearance to the vacuum frame was 1.5 - 2 inches.

                                        My article is in the PCBA (Pacific Center for the Book Arts) journal
                                        "Ampersand" Resource Issue, which comes out every few years. I also put
                                        together the letterpress resource section. There are sections for
                                        bookbinding, paper, conservation, typography, and so on - 52 pages of
                                        addresses/links info for the book arts. Edited by Alastair Johnston.

                                        I'll see about putting my article in the PPL resource area, but you'd do
                                        better to buy the issue, for all the other great stuff in there - $15
                                        includes postage, and you can get one by sending a check made out to: PCBA,
                                        300 De Haro St., San Francisco, CA 94103. It's a volunteer organization, so
                                        be patient.

                                        Brian Allen
                                        Mountain View, California
                                        ----------
                                        on 5/13/02 10:21 AM, Gerald Lange at bieler@... wrote:

                                        > Ed Inman wrote:
                                        >>
                                        >> You expose polymer with 40 Watt lamps? What exposure times do you use with
                                        >> this setup, Joel? Are you referring to regular purple looking
                                        >> "blacklights?" I didn't think such a low wattage setup would work very well
                                        >> even with hours of exposure. Can you give us a product descritption as
                                        >> printed on the bulbs you use and a little more detail as to your process?
                                        >>
                                        >> For what it's worth my cheapo homemade lamp setup is just a Sylvania "Sun
                                        >> Gun" that uses a 650 watt "DWY" halogen photo optic lamp. The lamps come
                                        >> with a warning that the bulb emits UV radiation and that you should not look
                                        >> directly into the fixture. You can usually find these used on ebay for $10
                                        >> to $15 and they will expose polymer very nicely in about 30 minutes time
                                        >> from about four feet back. I think both the original Sylvania Sun Gun and
                                        >> the Sun Gun 2 both use the same DWY lamp.
                                        >>
                                        >> Ed
                                        >>
                                        >> Joel wrote:
                                        >>>>> The UV bulbs can go into standard flourescent fixtures. The unit I have
                                        >> has four standard, 24", straight-from-the-hardware-store, two-bulb fixtures
                                        >> mounted in it and wired up so they all come on together. I think the bulbs
                                        >> are 40W.<<<
                                        >
                                        > Today I received the Ampersand Resource Guide and there is an article in there
                                        > by member Brian Allen titled "Home-made photopolymer plate-making system." In
                                        > this he indicates he used a rack of 18" UV fluorescent bulbs (five are
                                        > pictured in a sketch) of "20 watt GE or Slyvania blacklight tubes."
                                        >
                                        > Gerald
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > To respond to this message or post a message to the membership:
                                        > PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                        >
                                        > Encountering problems?
                                        > PPLetterpress-owner@yahoogroups.com
                                        >
                                        > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                                        >
                                      • Silver MayKitten
                                        20 W. lamps may be small wattage, and only 24 long, but if your vacuum frame is only 23x33 any more length is wasted. You put one lamp every 6 of the width
                                        Message 19 of 26 , May 14 5:45 AM
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                                          20 W. lamps may be small wattage, and only 24" long, but if your
                                          vacuum frame is only 23x33" any more length is wasted. You put one
                                          lamp every 6" of the width of the frame about a foot away from the
                                          glass, and you get good coverage.

                                          MayKitten
                                          --- Gerald Lange <bieler@...> wrote:
                                          > Ed Inman wrote:
                                          > >
                                          > > I think Brian once wrote something to that effect on the
                                          > Letpresss group
                                          > > too.
                                          > >
                                          > > I'd be willing to give it a try but I'm admittedly skeptical.
                                          > Regular
                                          > > 20-watt blacklights?? How long would you have to expose with
                                          > such low
                                          > > wattage? I once tried using a series of old style Argon lamps
                                          > that someone
                                          > > told me had good UV output and they just barely hardened the
                                          > plate even
                                          > > after three hours of exposure. I didn't have much better luck
                                          > with a
                                          > > 175-watt mercury lamp--another supposedly-good UV source.
                                          > >
                                          > > My 650-watt halogen Sun Gun will burn a harder plate in 15
                                          > minutes than
                                          > > either of these would in a whole afternoon--even though I
                                          > typically let the
                                          > > plate expose for a full half-hour. I don't think there is a
                                          > better $10
                                          > > platemaking system anywhere, haha.
                                          > >
                                          > > What replacement lamps and ballasts are called for in
                                          > professional
                                          > > platemaking machines? This might be the best setup for a
                                          > serious
                                          > > do-it-yourselfer.
                                          > >
                                          >
                                          >
                                          > Dear Ed
                                          >
                                          > I'd be guessing that point-of-focus or whatever it is called is
                                          > less useful
                                          > than a rack of lamps, though some folks report good results with
                                          > halftones.
                                          >
                                          > I know that Inge Bruggeman and Chip Shilling (both members here)
                                          > have portable
                                          > suitcase like set ups that they use for workshops and the like.
                                          > Also I think
                                          > Gene Becker sells some similar type of "relatively" inexpensive
                                          > stand-alone
                                          > exposure unit.
                                          >
                                          > Gerald
                                          >
                                          >


                                          =====
                                          Pagan, Pagan, what are you finding?
                                          Yours is the road that winds lonely and far,
                                          Strange are the shadows that round you come creeping,
                                          Still through the clouds is the glint of a star!

                                          From the book, Charge of the Goddess
                                          BY: Doreen Valiente

                                          __________________________________________________
                                          Do You Yahoo!?
                                          LAUNCH - Your Yahoo! Music Experience
                                          http://launch.yahoo.com
                                        • Katie Harper
                                          While we re on the subject of home lamp setups, I have another question for those who use such setups. I would like to set up something for quick n dirty
                                          Message 20 of 26 , May 14 6:17 AM
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                                            While we're on the subject of home lamp setups, I have another question for
                                            those who use such setups. I would like to set up something for quick 'n
                                            dirty platemaking--I will still use the pros for the important work, but
                                            occasionally need to have a plate right away, and if it doesn't contain
                                            small type or fine detail, would like to be able to make it here in my shop.

                                            I inherited a small NuArc vacuum frame a couple of weeks ago, but it has no
                                            vacuum pump. Can I get one somewhere and hook it up?


                                            Katie Harper
                                            Ars Brevis Press
                                            Cincinnati, OH
                                            513-233-9588
                                          • Lee and Barbara Mason
                                            Katie, My vacuun failed to work for awhile, turned out I had moved the machine and it was no longer perfectly level....so simple and so hard to figure out what
                                            Message 21 of 26 , May 14 6:40 AM
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                                              Katie,
                                              My vacuun failed to work for awhile, turned out I had moved the machine and
                                              it was no longer perfectly level....so simple and so hard to figure out what
                                              was wrong. However in the mean time, I used a piece of foam with the plate
                                              on top and glass on top of the plate..the contact was as good as the vacuum
                                              and it worked well as the glass was pretty heavy. Of course this would not
                                              work for units that flip over.
                                              Barbara
                                              ----- Original Message -----
                                              From: "Katie Harper" <knharper@...>
                                              To: <PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com>
                                              Sent: Tuesday, May 14, 2002 6:17 AM
                                              Subject: [PPLetterpress] Home Setups/Vacuum


                                              > While we're on the subject of home lamp setups, I have another question
                                              for
                                              > those who use such setups. I would like to set up something for quick 'n
                                              > dirty platemaking--I will still use the pros for the important work, but
                                              > occasionally need to have a plate right away, and if it doesn't contain
                                              > small type or fine detail, would like to be able to make it here in my
                                              shop.
                                              >
                                              > I inherited a small NuArc vacuum frame a couple of weeks ago, but it has
                                              no
                                              > vacuum pump. Can I get one somewhere and hook it up?
                                              >
                                              >
                                              > Katie Harper
                                              > Ars Brevis Press
                                              > Cincinnati, OH
                                              > 513-233-9588
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              > To respond to this message or post a message to the membership:
                                              > PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                              >
                                              > Encountering problems?
                                              > PPLetterpress-owner@yahoogroups.com
                                              >
                                              > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                            • Harold Kyle
                                              ... Katie: I have several used vacuum pumps laying around here. If you d like more info you can contact me off-list. Harold ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ Boxcar Press Fine
                                              Message 22 of 26 , May 14 7:09 AM
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                                                On 5/14/02 9:17 AM, "Katie Harper" <knharper@...> wrote:
                                                > I inherited a small NuArc vacuum frame a couple of weeks ago, but it has no
                                                > vacuum pump. Can I get one somewhere and hook it up?

                                                Katie:

                                                I have several used vacuum pumps laying around here. If you'd like more info
                                                you can contact me off-list.

                                                Harold

                                                ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
                                                Boxcar Press
                                                Fine Printing and Binding ~ Digital Letterpress Supplies
                                                640 Fellows Avenue ~ Syracuse, NY 13210
                                                315-473-0930 ~ phone and fax
                                                www.boxcarpress.com
                                                ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
                                              • Joel Benson
                                                Hi Ed, Sorry for the slow reply here- yes, they are called Blacklights on the bulbs, but they aren t purple-looking like the incandescent blacklights. They
                                                Message 23 of 26 , May 14 10:41 AM
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                                                  Hi Ed,

                                                  Sorry for the slow reply here- yes, they are called "Blacklights" on the bulbs, but they aren't purple-looking like the incandescent blacklights. They cost me about $15 each, I think. I'll look at the product numbers when I get home- though I think it is a pretty standard Phillips bulb. I use about a 4 minute exposure time for fine type, 30 to 45 seconds for big solids or halftone screens.

                                                  I don't think it is the wattage that makes the difference so much as the specific wavelength of UV that the bulb gives off. I think the lamps you are using probably emit a large amount of light at one end of the UV spectrum and a lesser amount at the other end, which happens to be the end that the polymer is sensitive to. I remember a discussion of this with details about the wavelengths on either this list or LETPRESS, but I don't have it saved anywhere.

                                                  It sounds like there is a lot of leeway in exactly how far the bulbs need to be from the plate material. Silver May Kitten has the bulbs a foot away, Brian Allen has his 1.5-2" away and much closer together. That seems to define a range of acceptability. Using a Stouffer scale would tell you how long your exposure needs to be for whatever set up you construct.

                                                  Joel

                                                  Joel Benson
                                                  Dependable Letterpress
                                                  San Francisco

                                                  -----Original Message-----
                                                  From: Ed Inman [mailto:edinman@...]
                                                  Sent: Monday, May 13, 2002 5:15 PM
                                                  To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                                  Subject: Re: [PPLetterpress] Aging plates?


                                                  You expose polymer with 40 Watt lamps? What exposure times do you use with
                                                  this setup, Joel? Are you referring to regular purple looking
                                                  "blacklights?" I didn't think such a low wattage setup would work very well
                                                  even with hours of exposure. Can you give us a product descritption as
                                                  printed on the bulbs you use and a little more detail as to your process?

                                                  For what it's worth my cheapo homemade lamp setup is just a Sylvania "Sun
                                                  Gun" that uses a 650 watt "DWY" halogen photo optic lamp. The lamps come
                                                  with a warning that the bulb emits UV radiation and that you should not look
                                                  directly into the fixture. You can usually find these used on ebay for $10
                                                  to $15 and they will expose polymer very nicely in about 30 minutes time
                                                  from about four feet back. I think both the original Sylvania Sun Gun and
                                                  the Sun Gun 2 both use the same DWY lamp.

                                                  Ed

                                                  Joel wrote:
                                                  >>> The UV bulbs can go into standard flourescent fixtures. The unit I have
                                                  has four standard, 24", straight-from-the-hardware-store, two-bulb fixtures
                                                  mounted in it and wired up so they all come on together. I think the bulbs
                                                  are 40W.<<<




                                                  To respond to this message or post a message to the membership:
                                                  PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com

                                                  Encountering problems?
                                                  PPLetterpress-owner@yahoogroups.com

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                                                • David Goodrich
                                                  Vivian, You are wise in inquiring before trying the Morgan Expansion Trucks. I tried some on my Columbian No 2 and found there was not enough space for them.
                                                  Message 24 of 26 , May 18 5:40 PM
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                                                    Vivian,
                                                    You are wise in inquiring before trying the Morgan Expansion Trucks. I
                                                    tried some on my Columbian No 2 and found there was not enough space for
                                                    them.
                                                    I suggest you contact Fritz Klinke at NA Graphics, who stocks them. He
                                                    can be reached at nagraph@.... He can probably tell you whether or
                                                    not they will fit. If they fit, they will solve your problem.
                                                    You also might want to post an inquiry to the Letpress Discussion Group.
                                                    I suspect more of their people use platen presses than the PPL group.

                                                    Sorry not to have responded sooner. I have been away the past week.

                                                    David

                                                    -----Original Message-----
                                                    From: 9 Spotmonk Design [mailto:vivian@...]
                                                    Sent: Sunday, May 12, 2002 12:57 PM
                                                    To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                                                    Subject: [PPLetterpress] Expandable Trucks


                                                    Hi Everyone,

                                                    I'm new to the PPLetpress List.

                                                    I have a Craftsman 6 x 10 and was wondering if anyone has experience
                                                    with using/converting expandable trucks. Two main problems at hand: I
                                                    need to lower the the noise the press makes when the rollers leave
                                                    the rail and move to the inking plate and back; and my rollers are
                                                    about 1/8 inch (the circumference) larger than my trucks. What I'm
                                                    doing now is putting a piece of pressboard behind the chase but don't
                                                    know if this is a good long term solution.

                                                    Thanks in advance for your responses.

                                                    Vivian



                                                    Vivian Leung
                                                    9 Spotmonk Design
                                                    vivian@...
                                                    T 201 795 1668
                                                    C 201 925 3168

                                                    <http://www.9spotmonk.com>


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