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Re: Binding, Boxing &c. (Was "Packaging" the product)

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  • Gerald Lange
    Hi Paul Well, usually it is whatever the book demands. And what I can afford in the way of binding. The latter is actually a very important consideration here.
    Message 1 of 28 , Apr 4 1:28 AM
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      Hi Paul

      Well, usually it is whatever the book demands. And what I can afford
      in the way of binding. The latter is actually a very important
      consideration here. If you do an edition of 150 books and the binding
      cost is $100 per unit you are looking at a considerable outlay of
      dough-re-me. Binding is actually a signicant production expense,
      especially considering that the market for fine press books is not in
      any way what it used to be. I can easily see why most folks entering
      letterpress are not at all interested in doing books.

      Folks who produce books out of passion should probably not be taken to
      task for their efforts. Fragile, sturdy, simple, complicated.
      Hopefully appropriate.

      I currently have a book in production, well; it has been for some
      years now, on Moxon. I proposed to a very "innovative" and highly
      collectible fine press printer-publisher that I issue this, as Moxon
      would have, unbound in wraps. She freaked out. Apparently you can't do
      that. The collectors won't have it.$o much for "innovation." I'll
      probably do it the way I feel like anyway.

      I know this is of concern to you from a librarian's point of view but
      essentially if one is artistically constructing the book, it will
      stand on its own, or not. And that should be respected. If it is meant
      to go the way of all things, so be it. If it is supposed to stand with
      the cockroaches at the very end, well then, make it for them, and
      hopefully they will have learned to alter their "taste" in things by then.

      Gerald

      > What have you used to cover or protect pamphlets and books? Do you as
      > the printer emphasize sturdy or beautiful, or simple or complicated?
      > Have you regretted making something too simple or too complicated?
      >
      > Paul
      > Paul W. Romaine
      > romaine@p...
      > http://home.pipeline.com/~romaine
    • Paul W Romaine
      John: I ve purposely wanted to avoid bringing up the question with binding discussion groups, where this topic (and similar ones) has been discussed on many
      Message 2 of 28 , Apr 4 5:13 AM
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        John: I've purposely wanted to avoid bringing up the question with
        binding discussion groups, where this topic (and similar ones) has
        been discussed on many occasions. Most fine press printers will do
        some of their own "finishing" (which may include aspects of binding,
        such as pamphlet binding, but may include other activities). However,
        most printers need an outside person or firm to do edition binding and
        boxes, thus cost (as Gerald points out) becomes a practical issue in
        presentation. I raise the question on a listserv dedicated to people
        producing the innards of books and pamphlets because I'm less
        interested in the engineering marvels that one might find from
        binders. (I don't mean to disparage their work!)

        Gerald: historical verisimilitude of presentation has much to
        recommend it, and while Moxon would not have made a box or portfolio,
        printers sometimes have to make compromises to later taste or
        expectations or tradition. You could just charge extra for anyone
        unwilling to be historically accurate. :-)

        >Folks who produce books out of passion should probably not be taken
        to task for their efforts. Fragile, sturdy, simple, complicated.
        Hopefully appropriate.<

        I hope that the thoughtful collector (whether institutional or not)
        will look beyond the "packaging" when buying. But practical issues of
        things like shelving (so the book can be found) or fragility (adding
        to the cost of ownership) are also important. Unfortunately these
        sorts of issues sometimes "wag the dog" when it comes to collecting
        and buying.

        Jessica privately wrote me "There's a tricky line out there between
        gimmicks (pop-ups, wacky bindings, etc.) and structures that work well
        with content." I think here again, that word "appropriate" seems quite
        important. The best designs reinforce the text and its underlying
        meaning, but since you're not a gentleman of leisure running a
        hobbyist press, you need to take into consideration "market" issues.
        The best choices have good reasons, such as Trissel's decision to
        issue his book in unbound sections, printed single-sided (but I still
        wonder about the acrylic chemise--which, since I remember it, IS an
        interesting marketing device ;-) )....

        Paul
      • Gerald Lange
        Paul Yes, as you, I would like to hear more from fine press printer-publishers as well on this topic. But as we both well know, they don t participate. Which
        Message 3 of 28 , Apr 4 9:56 PM
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          Paul

          Yes, as you, I would like to hear more from fine press printer-publishers as well on this topic. But as we both well know, they don't participate. Which just drives us all back further and further.

          Re: Moxon. Well, unfortunately "they" were wrapped in something, so... I guess I need to print a wrapper of sorts and a nice label. But I've
          never had a customer complain about any particular binding even though
          I have issued books that quite needed better preservation support. The
          early printer-publishers kind of left that to the buyer. Doesn't sit well today so much but it's not exactly like a collector is going to pay any additional for the effort. Lucky enough if they buy the book.

          But, one of the very irritating things about what the fine press has
          been driven too is the marketing. And it verges on desperation. I don't in anyway discount that this has always been the case ever
          since Wm Morris sort of invented the concept. I note that early
          twentieth century fine presses regularly "over-subscribed" their
          publications. How did that exactly work?

          There is a point where a book does not warrant the binding it is given, especially if the binding is more designed as a marketing tool
          rather than to enhance the book concept. Which seems to more and more
          the example.

          On the other hand, there just aren't as many fine press book
          printer-puiblishers around anymore, and whatever is coming out, hey,
          give em grace for the effort. That, or we will all be driven to
          printing wedding invites, pounded hard (like "real" letterpress), until that fad goes away.

          Gerald


          >
          > John: I've purposely wanted to avoid bringing up the question with
          > binding discussion groups, where this topic (and similar ones) has
          > been discussed on many occasions. Most fine press printers will do
          > some of their own "finishing" (which may include aspects of binding,
          > such as pamphlet binding, but may include other activities). However,
          > most printers need an outside person or firm to do edition binding and
          > boxes, thus cost (as Gerald points out) becomes a practical issue in
          > presentation. I raise the question on a listserv dedicated to people
          > producing the innards of books and pamphlets because I'm less
          > interested in the engineering marvels that one might find from
          > binders. (I don't mean to disparage their work!)
          >
          > Gerald: historical verisimilitude of presentation has much to
          > recommend it, and while Moxon would not have made a box or portfolio,
          > printers sometimes have to make compromises to later taste or
          > expectations or tradition. You could just charge extra for anyone
          > unwilling to be historically accurate. :-)
          >
          > >Folks who produce books out of passion should probably not be taken
          > to task for their efforts. Fragile, sturdy, simple, complicated.
          > Hopefully appropriate.<
          >
          > I hope that the thoughtful collector (whether institutional or not)
          > will look beyond the "packaging" when buying. But practical issues of
          > things like shelving (so the book can be found) or fragility (adding
          > to the cost of ownership) are also important. Unfortunately these
          > sorts of issues sometimes "wag the dog" when it comes to collecting
          > and buying.
          >
          > Jessica privately wrote me "There's a tricky line out there between
          > gimmicks (pop-ups, wacky bindings, etc.) and structures that work well
          > with content." I think here again, that word "appropriate" seems quite
          > important. The best designs reinforce the text and its underlying
          > meaning, but since you're not a gentleman of leisure running a
          > hobbyist press, you need to take into consideration "market" issues.
          > The best choices have good reasons, such as Trissel's decision to
          > issue his book in unbound sections, printed single-sided (but I still
          > wonder about the acrylic chemise--which, since I remember it, IS an
          > interesting marketing device ;-) )....
          >
          > Paul
        • LA. Book Arts
          Well, as Gerald points it out so nicely -it gets harder and harder to rectify the effort of printing books on the handpress and being able to at least get paid
          Message 4 of 28 , Apr 4 10:56 PM
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            Well,

            as Gerald points it out so nicely -it gets harder and harder to rectify
            the effort of printing books on the handpress and being able to at
            least get paid for it.

            I get more inclined to cut an inquiry off in the moment I catch someone
            as today who asked me to print a 60 page book in 100 copies on my
            handpress, with 5 etching, the paper is Lana laid.
            The first issue the person raised what why should she also have to pay
            money for the etchings if it costs more than printing letterpress per
            sheet and the binding should be only cost around 25 each, as she has a
            another person who can print the book and bind it for less.

            Well, honey go for it.

            If you looked at the website of parnassia.org, that is what I used to
            do:

            cast Monotype and keep Foundries busy, print on my Amos dell' Orto
            Albion, and bind the books by hand.

            And no -I don't do pamphlet and coptic and all this stuff, I have been
            proper trained at the bench and gained my Masterdegree and make proper
            Full Leather and Parchment bindings.

            I recently had a talk with an eminent binder who lamented the fact,
            that after having amassed a huge collection of hand finishing tools,
            this are the fancy handengraved brass tools which create a pattern in
            goldleaf on Leather, and than there is hardly a call for it.
            Duh, I have a similliar collection in my shop, everybody wants it and
            than we talk about Labor cost, suddenly it's good enough to have a
            magnesium plate made and stamp it.
            I still print on the handpress, instead of a lot of type I make a
            polymerplate, still print etchings and run a full time bindery. Alas
            the people I print for a very careful screened. They have to understand
            upfront how much that cost and being able to pay for it.

            But overall there are still a few who collect fine printing anf have
            the Taste and Education for it.
            But as the market is now so diluted and people don't understand that a
            coptic binding is not a structure which makes any sense in the western
            civilized world , the few remaining fine printers still have a few
            clients, but nothing really new is coming up.

            Packaging has only so much to do with it, as a qualified Master
            craftsman I can do whatever in any direction, as long as a printed
            sheet on handmade damped paper has to compete with an altered
            xeroxcopy, you are on the loosing end.

            And by the time theese "Printers"" realize they need more knowledge -
            we will be gone.
            charles




            ------------------------------------
            L.A Book Arts, Inc.
            The Custom Bindery
            Krause Intaglio
            310.360.7265
            www.Custombindery.com
            ------------------------------------
            On Apr 4, 2005, at 9:56 PM, Gerald Lange wrote:

            >
            >
            > Paul
            >
            > Yes, as you, I would like to hear more from fine press
            > printer-publishers as well on this topic. But as we both well know,
            > they don't participate. Which just drives us all back further and
            > further.
            >
            > Re: Moxon. Well, unfortunately "they" were wrapped in something, so...
            > I guess I need to print a wrapper of sorts and a nice label. But I've
            > never had a customer complain about any particular binding even though
            > I have issued books that quite needed better preservation support. The
            > early printer-publishers kind of left that to the buyer. Doesn't sit
            > well today so much but it's not exactly like a collector is going to
            > pay any additional for the effort. Lucky enough if they buy the book.
            >
            > But, one of the very irritating things about what the fine press has
            > been driven too is the marketing. And it verges on desperation. I
            > don't in anyway discount that this has always been the case ever
            > since Wm Morris sort of invented the concept. I note that early
            > twentieth century fine presses regularly "over-subscribed" their
            > publications. How did that exactly work?
            >
            > There is a point where a book does not warrant the binding it is
            > given, especially if the binding is more designed as a marketing tool
            > rather than to enhance the book concept. Which seems to more and more
            > the example.
            >
            > On the other hand, there just aren't as many fine press book
            > printer-puiblishers around anymore, and whatever is coming out, hey,
            > give em grace for the effort. That, or we will all be driven to
            > printing wedding invites, pounded hard (like "real" letterpress),
            > until that fad goes away.
            >
            > Gerald
            >
            >
            >>
            >> John: I've purposely wanted to avoid bringing up the question with
            >> binding discussion groups, where this topic (and similar ones) has
            >> been discussed on many occasions. Most fine press printers will do
            >> some of their own "finishing" (which may include aspects of binding,
            >> such as pamphlet binding, but may include other activities). However,
            >> most printers need an outside person or firm to do edition binding and
            >> boxes, thus cost (as Gerald points out) becomes a practical issue in
            >> presentation. I raise the question on a listserv dedicated to people
            >> producing the innards of books and pamphlets because I'm less
            >> interested in the engineering marvels that one might find from
            >> binders. (I don't mean to disparage their work!)
            >>
            >> Gerald: historical verisimilitude of presentation has much to
            >> recommend it, and while Moxon would not have made a box or portfolio,
            >> printers sometimes have to make compromises to later taste or
            >> expectations or tradition. You could just charge extra for anyone
            >> unwilling to be historically accurate. :-)
            >>
            >>> Folks who produce books out of passion should probably not be taken
            >> to task for their efforts. Fragile, sturdy, simple, complicated.
            >> Hopefully appropriate.<
            >>
            >> I hope that the thoughtful collector (whether institutional or not)
            >> will look beyond the "packaging" when buying. But practical issues of
            >> things like shelving (so the book can be found) or fragility (adding
            >> to the cost of ownership) are also important. Unfortunately these
            >> sorts of issues sometimes "wag the dog" when it comes to collecting
            >> and buying.
            >>
            >> Jessica privately wrote me "There's a tricky line out there between
            >> gimmicks (pop-ups, wacky bindings, etc.) and structures that work well
            >> with content." I think here again, that word "appropriate" seems quite
            >> important. The best designs reinforce the text and its underlying
            >> meaning, but since you're not a gentleman of leisure running a
            >> hobbyist press, you need to take into consideration "market" issues.
            >> The best choices have good reasons, such as Trissel's decision to
            >> issue his book in unbound sections, printed single-sided (but I still
            >> wonder about the acrylic chemise--which, since I remember it, IS an
            >> interesting marketing device ;-) )....
            >>
            >> Paul
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > Yahoo! Groups Links
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
          • Jessica Spring
            I m working on plates with a solid pattern filled with thin rules. The first attempt worked fairly well except the far edges--obviously a vacuum problem. I
            Message 5 of 28 , Jun 2, 2005
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              I'm working on plates with a solid pattern filled with thin rules. The first
              attempt worked fairly well except the far edges--obviously a vacuum problem.
              I changed the kreene and it worked so well there is now a subtle but visible
              "plaid" where the vacuum lines produced more suction. Anyone have any
              suggestions to get rid of the plaid?
              Thanks,
              Jessica
            • Gerald Lange
              Jessica I m surprised to hear that there may be variance of vacuum in a platemaking machine. What is the manufacturer/model? Gerald ... The first ... problem.
              Message 6 of 28 , Jun 2, 2005
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                Jessica

                I'm surprised to hear that there may be variance of vacuum in a
                platemaking machine. What is the manufacturer/model?

                Gerald


                --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Jessica Spring <springtide@i...>
                wrote:
                > I'm working on plates with a solid pattern filled with thin rules.
                The first
                > attempt worked fairly well except the far edges--obviously a vacuum
                problem.
                > I changed the kreene and it worked so well there is now a subtle but
                visible
                > "plaid" where the vacuum lines produced more suction. Anyone have any
                > suggestions to get rid of the plaid?
                > Thanks,
                > Jessica
              • Jessica Spring
                It s a Polimero Interflex A4.
                Message 7 of 28 , Jun 2, 2005
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                  It's a Polimero Interflex A4.

                  > From: "Gerald Lange" <bieler@...>
                  > Reply-To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                  > Date: Fri, 03 Jun 2005 03:54:43 -0000
                  > To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                  > Subject: [PPLetterpress] Re: troubleshooting
                  >
                  > Jessica
                  >
                  > I'm surprised to hear that there may be variance of vacuum in a
                  > platemaking machine. What is the manufacturer/model?
                  >
                  > Gerald
                  >
                  >
                  > --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Jessica Spring <springtide@i...>
                  > wrote:
                  >> I'm working on plates with a solid pattern filled with thin rules.
                  > The first
                  >> attempt worked fairly well except the far edges--obviously a vacuum
                  > problem.
                  >> I changed the kreene and it worked so well there is now a subtle but
                  > visible
                  >> "plaid" where the vacuum lines produced more suction. Anyone have any
                  >> suggestions to get rid of the plaid?
                  >> Thanks,
                  >> Jessica
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                • Gerald Lange
                  Jessica Does this model have the kreene attached to a steel rod that you roll down? I ve found that vacuum is much more secure without the steel rod. I cut a
                  Message 8 of 28 , Jun 2, 2005
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                    Jessica

                    Does this model have the kreene attached to a steel rod that you roll
                    down? I've found that vacuum is much more secure without the steel
                    rod. I cut a sheet to fit the vacuum table and leave it at that. Seems
                    to prevent any vacuum problems.

                    But I really don't understand how the vacuum could pull down the
                    kreene stronger in one area of the plate than another. Or how that
                    would leave "plaid marks" on the plate itself. Especially, I guess, as
                    there is a film negative between the kreene and the plate.

                    Next question toward a solution I suspect is what type of film and
                    plate are you using? Or, are you sure this isn't an exposure or
                    washout problem? A low water level can cause the brushes to mark the
                    surface of a plate.

                    Gerald

                    --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Jessica Spring <springtide@i...>
                    wrote:
                    > It's a Polimero Interflex A4.
                    >
                    > > From: "Gerald Lange" <bieler@w...>
                    > > Reply-To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                    > > Date: Fri, 03 Jun 2005 03:54:43 -0000
                    > > To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                    > > Subject: [PPLetterpress] Re: troubleshooting
                    > >
                    > > Jessica
                    > >
                    > > I'm surprised to hear that there may be variance of vacuum in a
                    > > platemaking machine. What is the manufacturer/model?
                    > >
                    > > Gerald
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Jessica Spring <springtide@i...>
                    > > wrote:
                    > >> I'm working on plates with a solid pattern filled with thin rules.
                    > > The first
                    > >> attempt worked fairly well except the far edges--obviously a vacuum
                    > > problem.
                    > >> I changed the kreene and it worked so well there is now a subtle but
                    > > visible
                    > >> "plaid" where the vacuum lines produced more suction. Anyone have any
                    > >> suggestions to get rid of the plaid?
                    > >> Thanks,
                    > >> Jessica
                    > >
                  • typetom@aol.com
                    ... more suction. I m guessing you are using polyester-backed plates and the vacuum is sucking hard enough to distort the contact between the plate and the
                    Message 9 of 28 , Jun 2, 2005
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                      In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Jessica Spring wrote:
                      >there is now a subtle but visible "plaid" where the vacuum lines produced
                      more suction.


                      I'm guessing you are using polyester-backed plates and the vacuum is sucking
                      hard enough to distort the contact between the plate and the negative, by
                      pulling the polyester material into the vacuum lines. I use steel-backed
                      plates. Never seen any such effect. I wonder if a thin support layer beneath the
                      plate material might solve the problem?

                      Pure speculation! but I'd guess it's such a subtle effect that it wouldn't
                      show on normal text or image areas. You wouldn't notice the plaid if the lines
                      had other irregular variations already! A solid pattern with thin rules
                      would test the limits of the system just about every way possible!


                      Best wishes. Let us know what you discover....
                      Tom

                      Tom Parson
                      Now It's Up To You Publications
                      157 S. Logan, Denver CO 80209
                      (303) 777-8951
                      http://members.aol.com/typetom


                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • Gerald Lange
                      Tom Interesting speculation but I doubt the vacuum is such, in any of these machines, to be able to pull a polyester-backed plate into the vacuum line. That
                      Message 10 of 28 , Jun 2, 2005
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                        Tom

                        Interesting speculation but I doubt the vacuum is such, in any of
                        these machines, to be able to pull a polyester-backed plate into the
                        vacuum line. That would sort of be a major engineering flaw. I process
                        both steel-backed and polyester-backed plates in my machine and I
                        can't imagine this to be the case. While polyester-backed plates are
                        certainly flexible (and a bit unnerving to those accustomed to
                        steel-backs), they are not flexible enough to be drawn down into that
                        thinly etched vacuum line, unless there is something wildly out of
                        wack with Jessica's vacuum pump!

                        Gerald


                        --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, typetom@a... wrote:
                        >
                        >
                        > In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Jessica Spring wrote:
                        > >there is now a subtle but visible "plaid" where the vacuum lines
                        produced
                        > more suction.
                        >
                        >
                        > I'm guessing you are using polyester-backed plates and the vacuum
                        is sucking
                        > hard enough to distort the contact between the plate and the
                        negative, by
                        > pulling the polyester material into the vacuum lines. I use
                        steel-backed
                        > plates. Never seen any such effect. I wonder if a thin support
                        layer beneath the
                        > plate material might solve the problem?
                        >
                        > Pure speculation! but I'd guess it's such a subtle effect that it
                        wouldn't
                        > show on normal text or image areas. You wouldn't notice the plaid if
                        the lines
                        > had other irregular variations already! A solid pattern with thin
                        rules
                        > would test the limits of the system just about every way possible!
                        >
                        >
                        > Best wishes. Let us know what you discover....
                        > Tom
                        >
                        > Tom Parson
                        > Now It's Up To You Publications
                        > 157 S. Logan, Denver CO 80209
                        > (303) 777-8951
                        > http://members.aol.com/typetom
                        >
                        >
                        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      • Jessica Spring
                        Tom & Gerald-- The plates are 94FL. I do have the steel bar at the bottom, so I can try taking that off, and for comparison I can try a steel-backed plate. The
                        Message 11 of 28 , Jun 3, 2005
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                          Tom & Gerald--
                          The plates are 94FL. I do have the steel bar at the bottom, so I can try
                          taking that off, and for comparison I can try a steel-backed plate. The last
                          bit of the mystery: my vacuum has a simple on-off switch and half the time
                          the button won't stay on. I've replaced the button itself, but the problem
                          remains, which Jet attributes to humidity. Hmmmm. I have to let it sort of
                          warm up, then it stays on. As Charles suggested, I think the vacuum is a
                          stinker (AKA "wildly out of whack") and this plate happens to reveal that in
                          a way I hadn't seen consistently with type.

                          Jessica

                          > From: "Gerald Lange" <bieler@...>
                          > Reply-To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                          > Date: Fri, 03 Jun 2005 06:02:55 -0000
                          > To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                          > Subject: [PPLetterpress] Re: troubleshooting
                          >
                          > Tom
                          >
                          > Interesting speculation but I doubt the vacuum is such, in any of
                          > these machines, to be able to pull a polyester-backed plate into the
                          > vacuum line. That would sort of be a major engineering flaw. I process
                          > both steel-backed and polyester-backed plates in my machine and I
                          > can't imagine this to be the case. While polyester-backed plates are
                          > certainly flexible (and a bit unnerving to those accustomed to
                          > steel-backs), they are not flexible enough to be drawn down into that
                          > thinly etched vacuum line, unless there is something wildly out of
                          > wack with Jessica's vacuum pump!
                          >
                          > Gerald
                          >
                          >
                          > --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, typetom@a... wrote:
                          >>
                          >>
                          >> In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Jessica Spring wrote:
                          >>> there is now a subtle but visible "plaid" where the vacuum lines
                          > produced
                          >> more suction.
                          >>
                          >>
                          >> I'm guessing you are using polyester-backed plates and the vacuum
                          > is sucking
                          >> hard enough to distort the contact between the plate and the
                          > negative, by
                          >> pulling the polyester material into the vacuum lines. I use
                          > steel-backed
                          >> plates. Never seen any such effect. I wonder if a thin support
                          > layer beneath the
                          >> plate material might solve the problem?
                          >>
                          >> Pure speculation! but I'd guess it's such a subtle effect that it
                          > wouldn't
                          >> show on normal text or image areas. You wouldn't notice the plaid if
                          > the lines
                          >> had other irregular variations already! A solid pattern with thin
                          > rules
                          >> would test the limits of the system just about every way possible!
                          >>
                          >>
                          >> Best wishes. Let us know what you discover....
                          >> Tom
                          >>
                          >> Tom Parson
                          >> Now It's Up To You Publications
                          >> 157 S. Logan, Denver CO 80209
                          >> (303) 777-8951
                          >> http://members.aol.com/typetom
                          >>
                          >>
                          >> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Yahoo! Groups Links
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                        • Gerald Lange
                          Jessica 94FLs are a tad softer than other plates, don t know if this is the culprit or not. I d recommend a hardness rating of 65-70 Shore D minimum. You might
                          Message 12 of 28 , Jun 3, 2005
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                            Jessica

                            94FLs are a tad softer than other plates, don't know if this is the culprit or not. I'd recommend a hardness rating of 65-70 Shore D minimum. You might also think about switching to a higher grade plate brand.

                            Gerald

                            --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Jessica Spring <springtide@i...>
                            wrote:
                            > Tom & Gerald--
                            > The plates are 94FL. I do have the steel bar at the bottom, so I can try
                            > taking that off, and for comparison I can try a steel-backed plate.
                            The last
                            > bit of the mystery: my vacuum has a simple on-off switch and half
                            the time
                            > the button won't stay on. I've replaced the button itself, but the
                            problem
                            > remains, which Jet attributes to humidity. Hmmmm. I have to let it
                            sort of
                            > warm up, then it stays on. As Charles suggested, I think the vacuum is a
                            > stinker (AKA "wildly out of whack") and this plate happens to reveal
                            that in
                            > a way I hadn't seen consistently with type.
                            >
                            > Jessica
                            >
                            > > From: "Gerald Lange" <bieler@w...>
                            > > Reply-To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                            > > Date: Fri, 03 Jun 2005 06:02:55 -0000
                            > > To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
                            > > Subject: [PPLetterpress] Re: troubleshooting
                            > >
                            > > Tom
                            > >
                            > > Interesting speculation but I doubt the vacuum is such, in any of
                            > > these machines, to be able to pull a polyester-backed plate into the
                            > > vacuum line. That would sort of be a major engineering flaw. I process
                            > > both steel-backed and polyester-backed plates in my machine and I
                            > > can't imagine this to be the case. While polyester-backed plates are
                            > > certainly flexible (and a bit unnerving to those accustomed to
                            > > steel-backs), they are not flexible enough to be drawn down into that
                            > > thinly etched vacuum line, unless there is something wildly out of
                            > > wack with Jessica's vacuum pump!
                            > >
                            > > Gerald
                            > >
                            > >
                            > > --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, typetom@a... wrote:
                            > >>
                            > >>
                            > >> In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Jessica Spring wrote:
                            > >>> there is now a subtle but visible "plaid" where the vacuum lines
                            > > produced
                            > >> more suction.
                            > >>
                            > >>
                            > >> I'm guessing you are using polyester-backed plates and the vacuum
                            > > is sucking
                            > >> hard enough to distort the contact between the plate and the
                            > > negative, by
                            > >> pulling the polyester material into the vacuum lines. I use
                            > > steel-backed
                            > >> plates. Never seen any such effect. I wonder if a thin support
                            > > layer beneath the
                            > >> plate material might solve the problem?
                            > >>
                            > >> Pure speculation! but I'd guess it's such a subtle effect that it
                            > > wouldn't
                            > >> show on normal text or image areas. You wouldn't notice the plaid if
                            > > the lines
                            > >> had other irregular variations already! A solid pattern with thin
                            > > rules
                            > >> would test the limits of the system just about every way possible!
                            > >>
                            > >>
                            > >> Best wishes. Let us know what you discover....
                            > >> Tom
                            > >>
                            > >> Tom Parson
                            > >> Now It's Up To You Publications
                            > >> 157 S. Logan, Denver CO 80209
                            > >> (303) 777-8951
                            > >> http://members.aol.com/typetom
                            > >>
                            > >>
                            > >> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > > Yahoo! Groups Links
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                          • Harold Kyle
                            ... Well you finally stirred me to write with this comment! Re: softness . The hardness of the 94FL is 62 shore D so I think you d have a hard time seeing the
                            Message 13 of 28 , Jun 3, 2005
                            • 0 Attachment
                              On 6/3/05 1:22 PM, "Gerald Lange" <bieler@...> wrote:
                              > 94FLs are a tad softer than other plates, don't know if this is the culprit or
                              > not. I'd recommend a hardness rating of 65-70 Shore D minimum. You might also
                              > think about switching to a higher grade plate brand.

                              Well you finally stirred me to write with this comment!

                              Re: "softness". The hardness of the 94FL is 62 shore D so I think you'd have
                              a hard time seeing the difference between it and your recommended range of
                              65-70. The difference is insubstantial. Also, should you want a harder
                              plate, Jet makes a 94HFL that has 80 shore D. We at Boxcar Press have a job
                              shop running the popular "deep impression" printing exclusively from the
                              94FL. The plate's printing shows no evidence of "softness".

                              Re: "Higher grade plate", Gerald, your opinion of Jet 94FL plates are of
                              less quality will not be borne out in a side to side test of the material. A
                              rep selling Toyobo Printight visited Boxcar Press' shop earlier this week
                              and we proofed a test plate of Printight KF95 next to the Jet 94FL material.
                              The Jet plate showed more detail and, at the same time, exhibited less gain;
                              this is with a rep selling Printight monitoring the processing. After
                              extensive testing, I've come to conclude that the only plate that gives the
                              94FL a run for the money is the BASF WH95. The cost difference between these
                              plates makes the 94FL much more desirable option. I would be happy, by the
                              way, to scan a proof of the side-by-side comparison of Printight and Jet
                              plates when I get a chance.

                              Re: Jessica's platemaking "plaid" problem. I'm problem solving this with the
                              manufacturer of the machine, who apparently can furnish a vacuum table
                              adaptor to make the grooves less noticeable. I want to get more information
                              before I promise you that this is possible. Apparently, the adaptor is a
                              "diamond-plate" material that sits in the vacuum table. I'll post to the
                              list to let you know when I have more information. The problems you're
                              experiencing, though, appear to be from the platemaker and not the plate.

                              Re: Jessica's platemaking button problem. I'm sorry I didn't touch base with
                              you about this sooner. I remember calling you several months ago to let you
                              know that I may have found the possible problem, but I guess we never
                              touched base. Apparently, the powder-coating of the steel might have made
                              the opening for the vacuum switch too small. The extra pressure on the
                              switch causes problems in it working properly. You can file the opening to
                              be a little wider see if the switch works better.

                              Sorry not to be able to write sooner. I should be loading my trailer right
                              now for a press move...

                              Harold

                              Boxcar Press
                              Fine Printing / Digital Letterpress Supplies
                              Delavan Center / 501 W. Fayette St. / Studio 222 / Syracuse, NY 13204
                              315-473-0930 phone / 315-473-0967 fax / www.boxcarpress.com
                            • Gerald Lange
                              Harold My comment about higher grade plate brand had nothing to do with Toyobo. Neither Jet or Toyobo are what I would consider top grade plates. But they are
                              Message 14 of 28 , Jun 3, 2005
                              • 0 Attachment
                                Harold

                                My comment about higher grade plate brand had nothing to do with Toyobo.
                                Neither Jet or Toyobo are what I would consider top grade plates. But
                                they are both adequate for most letterpress applications. I've run my
                                own comparison tests of these particular brands as well and my suspicion
                                is that these differing plates need differing exposure and washout times
                                to provide optimum detail and subsurface strength, so it is essentially
                                misleading to compare them or any other plate brand in the manner that
                                you suggest.

                                But the hardness rating of a plate has less to do with how deep your
                                impression can be than it does with ink acceptance and transfer. Any
                                photopolymer plate, no matter brand or hardness or thickness or relief
                                depth, is going to splay under increased printing pressure (that is self
                                evident to any seasoned printer). And "gain" is a normal consequence of
                                increased impression with the letterpress process. If folks need deep
                                impression without splay they would be better off going with a copper
                                photomechanical engraving mounted on a metal base. There is a technical
                                reason for the limitation of thickness and relief (and hardness) in
                                regard to letterpress formulated plates.

                                Just out of curiosity, would you have switched brands if Toyobo had
                                surpassed the Jet in your comparison test?

                                Gerald
                                Good luck with the press move.



                                Harold Kyle wrote:

                                >On 6/3/05 1:22 PM, "Gerald Lange" <bieler@...> wrote:
                                >
                                >
                                >>94FLs are a tad softer than other plates, don't know if this is the culprit or
                                >>not. I'd recommend a hardness rating of 65-70 Shore D minimum. You might also
                                >>think about switching to a higher grade plate brand.
                                >>
                                >>
                                >
                                >Well you finally stirred me to write with this comment!
                                >
                                >Re: "softness". The hardness of the 94FL is 62 shore D so I think you'd have
                                >a hard time seeing the difference between it and your recommended range of
                                >65-70. The difference is insubstantial. Also, should you want a harder
                                >plate, Jet makes a 94HFL that has 80 shore D. We at Boxcar Press have a job
                                >shop running the popular "deep impression" printing exclusively from the
                                >94FL. The plate's printing shows no evidence of "softness".
                                >
                                >Re: "Higher grade plate", Gerald, your opinion of Jet 94FL plates are of
                                >less quality will not be borne out in a side to side test of the material. A
                                >rep selling Toyobo Printight visited Boxcar Press' shop earlier this week
                                >and we proofed a test plate of Printight KF95 next to the Jet 94FL material.
                                >The Jet plate showed more detail and, at the same time, exhibited less gain;
                                >this is with a rep selling Printight monitoring the processing. After
                                >extensive testing, I've come to conclude that the only plate that gives the
                                >94FL a run for the money is the BASF WH95. The cost difference between these
                                >plates makes the 94FL much more desirable option. I would be happy, by the
                                >way, to scan a proof of the side-by-side comparison of Printight and Jet
                                >plates when I get a chance.
                                >
                                >Re: Jessica's platemaking "plaid" problem. I'm problem solving this with the
                                >manufacturer of the machine, who apparently can furnish a vacuum table
                                >adaptor to make the grooves less noticeable. I want to get more information
                                >before I promise you that this is possible. Apparently, the adaptor is a
                                >"diamond-plate" material that sits in the vacuum table. I'll post to the
                                >list to let you know when I have more information. The problems you're
                                >experiencing, though, appear to be from the platemaker and not the plate.
                                >
                                >Re: Jessica's platemaking button problem. I'm sorry I didn't touch base with
                                >you about this sooner. I remember calling you several months ago to let you
                                >know that I may have found the possible problem, but I guess we never
                                >touched base. Apparently, the powder-coating of the steel might have made
                                >the opening for the vacuum switch too small. The extra pressure on the
                                >switch causes problems in it working properly. You can file the opening to
                                >be a little wider see if the switch works better.
                                >
                                >Sorry not to be able to write sooner. I should be loading my trailer right
                                >now for a press move...
                                >
                                >Harold
                                >
                                >Boxcar Press
                                >Fine Printing / Digital Letterpress Supplies
                                >Delavan Center / 501 W. Fayette St. / Studio 222 / Syracuse, NY 13204
                                >315-473-0930 phone / 315-473-0967 fax / www.boxcarpress.com
                              • David Wall
                                ... Oh come on . . . I haven t been following this thread up until now, so maybe I ve missed something---but this sounds like a bunch of baloney. I consider
                                Message 15 of 28 , Jun 3, 2005
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                                  > But the hardness rating of a plate has less to do with how deep your
                                  > impression can be than it does with ink acceptance and transfer. Any
                                  > photopolymer plate, no matter brand or hardness or thickness or relief
                                  > depth, is going to splay under increased printing pressure (that is
                                  > self
                                  > evident to any seasoned printer). And "gain" is a normal consequence
                                  > of
                                  > increased impression with the letterpress process.  If folks need deep
                                  > impression without splay they would be better off going with a copper
                                  > photomechanical engraving mounted on a metal base. There is a
                                  > technical
                                  > reason for the limitation of thickness and relief (and hardness) in
                                  > regard to letterpress formulated plates.

                                  Oh come on . . . I haven't been following this thread up until now, so
                                  maybe I've missed something---but this sounds like a bunch of baloney.
                                  I consider myself an appropriately seasoned printer and I've never
                                  found "splay" to be of any more consequence with photopolymer than it
                                  is with metal type---which is to say, no consequence at all. If we were
                                  using plates similar in durometer to hard rubber stamps I can see where
                                  it would be a factor, but I highly doubt that any splay in the plates
                                  that any of us use would be noticeable unless you were either
                                  deliberately abusing the plate---by which I don't mean simply "deep
                                  impression"---or you were somehow measuring in microns---in which case
                                  ink squeeze and the amount of ink on the rollers would obliterate any
                                  reliable evidence of splay. Perhaps this phenomenon is a factor in
                                  flexo printing of screened images in cases where precise color matching
                                  of prepress proofs and original artwork is important, but it certainly
                                  doesn't play any significant role in letterpress printing from polymer
                                  plates.

                                  Dave

                                  ________________
                                  David P. Wall
                                  The Applecart Press, LLC
                                  14 Maine Street, Box 43
                                  Brunswick, ME 04011
                                  Tel. 207-373-1690
                                  Fax 207-373-1691
                                  www.applecartpress.com
                                • Gerald Lange
                                  David This kind of surprises me. I guess I ll have to respectively disagree. There are techical reports I could dig up concerning quantitative compression and
                                  Message 16 of 28 , Jun 3, 2005
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                                    David

                                    This kind of surprises me. I guess I'll have to respectively disagree.

                                    There are techical reports I could dig up concerning quantitative
                                    compression and pressure measures of photopolymer plates which I would
                                    assume have more weight than "our" experiential wisdom or ad hoc
                                    tests, but clearly, what a waste of effort that would be.

                                    Gerald


                                    --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, David Wall <applecartpress@y...>
                                    wrote:
                                    > > But the hardness rating of a plate has less to do with how deep your
                                    > > impression can be than it does with ink acceptance and transfer. Any
                                    > > photopolymer plate, no matter brand or hardness or thickness or
                                    relief
                                    > > depth, is going to splay under increased printing pressure (that is
                                    > > self
                                    > > evident to any seasoned printer). And "gain" is a normal consequence
                                    > > of
                                    > > increased impression with the letterpress process. If folks need
                                    deep
                                    > > impression without splay they would be better off going with a copper
                                    > > photomechanical engraving mounted on a metal base. There is a
                                    > > technical
                                    > > reason for the limitation of thickness and relief (and hardness) in
                                    > > regard to letterpress formulated plates.
                                    >
                                    > Oh come on . . . I haven't been following this thread up until now, so
                                    > maybe I've missed something---but this sounds like a bunch of baloney.
                                    > I consider myself an appropriately seasoned printer and I've never
                                    > found "splay" to be of any more consequence with photopolymer than it
                                    > is with metal type---which is to say, no consequence at all. If we were
                                    > using plates similar in durometer to hard rubber stamps I can see where
                                    > it would be a factor, but I highly doubt that any splay in the plates
                                    > that any of us use would be noticeable unless you were either
                                    > deliberately abusing the plate---by which I don't mean simply "deep
                                    > impression"---or you were somehow measuring in microns---in which case
                                    > ink squeeze and the amount of ink on the rollers would obliterate any
                                    > reliable evidence of splay. Perhaps this phenomenon is a factor in
                                    > flexo printing of screened images in cases where precise color matching
                                    > of prepress proofs and original artwork is important, but it certainly
                                    > doesn't play any significant role in letterpress printing from polymer
                                    > plates.
                                    >
                                    > Dave
                                    >
                                    > ________________
                                    > David P. Wall
                                    > The Applecart Press, LLC
                                    > 14 Maine Street, Box 43
                                    > Brunswick, ME 04011
                                    > Tel. 207-373-1690
                                    > Fax 207-373-1691
                                    > www.applecartpress.com
                                  • Harold Kyle
                                    ... I m sorry--I thought that was the plate that you preferred. Would a higher grade be BASF? Are there any other plates that you consider top of the line? ...
                                    Message 17 of 28 , Jun 3, 2005
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      On 6/3/05 5:45 PM, "Gerald Lange" <bieler@...> wrote:
                                      > My comment about higher grade plate brand had nothing to do with Toyobo.
                                      I'm sorry--I thought that was the plate that you preferred. Would a higher
                                      grade be BASF? Are there any other plates that you consider top of the line?

                                      > so it is essentially
                                      > misleading to compare them or any other plate brand in the manner that
                                      > you suggest.
                                      The test I did showed that the Printight plate gained more with less detail.
                                      To get more detail I would have had to increase exposure, causing more gain.
                                      I relied on the rep selling Printight to dial in the right numbers. But I
                                      agree that this is a slippery issue, and best left up to the printer's
                                      judgement. I'm stating my personal preference and standing up for it based
                                      on tests I've done. The differences between brands are minimal but when I
                                      print I have the attitude: "I need all the help I can get." I really wish I
                                      could afford BASF plates, and I might consider using them more if they
                                      didn't smell so much!

                                      > Just out of curiosity, would you have switched brands if Toyobo had
                                      > surpassed the Jet in your comparison test?
                                      We sell Printight plates alongside Jet and BASF plates, so we're very
                                      familiar with the Printight brand in relation to the competition. We prefer
                                      them for intaglio processing. The pricing is comparable with Jet plates, so
                                      yes I would be tempted to switch brands if I felt the plates were equally
                                      sharp on the letterpress. The Printight salesman hasn't given up--we may be
                                      troubleshooting the gain issues soon. For now, I'm sticking with the plates
                                      that I know are going to give the best results.

                                      I'll be back on Monday! The trailer's loaded up and ready to go.

                                      Harold


                                      Boxcar Press
                                      Fine Printing / Digital Letterpress Supplies
                                      Delavan Center / 501 W. Fayette St. / Studio 222 / Syracuse, NY 13204
                                      315-473-0930 phone / 315-473-0967 fax / www.boxcarpress.com
                                    • LA. Book Arts
                                      All, the problem she has is with the machine, the machine doesn t seem to have a gage for vacuum pressure, so basically she has no way of knowing if she has
                                      Message 18 of 28 , Jun 3, 2005
                                      • 0 Attachment
                                        All,

                                        the problem she has is with the machine, the machine doesn't seem to
                                        have a gage for vacuum pressure, so basically she has no way of knowing
                                        if she has enough or what.
                                        The exposing of a plate with Film is a very critical stage of
                                        platemaking, a good vacuum, a good piece of Film and it's smooth
                                        sailing. I just made 65 9.5 x13 inch plates (WH 94) for a book project
                                        the other day.
                                        If you have no way of measuring your action it is very difficult to
                                        repeat it over and over.

                                        charles


                                        www.custombindery.com
                                      • Gerald Lange
                                        Harold I actually prefer the BASF, especially for halftones or very fine detail though I am not sure I have quite figured out the correct washout for them as
                                        Message 19 of 28 , Jun 3, 2005
                                        • 0 Attachment
                                          Harold

                                          I actually prefer the BASF, especially for halftones or very fine
                                          detail though I am not sure I have quite figured out the correct
                                          washout for them as they never seem finished to me. The surface
                                          texture is ideal, but yes, they do stink and crud up the bath. I like
                                          plates that indicate by color, surface and subsurface, which both the
                                          BASF and the Toyobo do. For some reason I think it helps clarify
                                          things for me.

                                          There are probably a lot better plates out there, BASF is getting to
                                          be rather old technology I'd think (maybe that's not bad though).
                                          Would appreciate any info you discover in this regard.

                                          You might like this: When I first started buying photopolymer plates I
                                          went to visit my processor and discovered a completely different plate
                                          on his press (a BASF). I asked him why he didn't sell those to his
                                          clients. He didn't miss a beat, "Because my customers are too f***ing
                                          cheap."

                                          At any rate, I keep profiles on clients as to their needs and
                                          expectations and often process plates based on various formulas I have
                                          used. I think the Toyobos require much less exposure and much more
                                          washout (than the reps tell you) to get to finer detail and better
                                          substructure. I've run Jets at the same formula and they are not quite
                                          there. So I assume they have their own configuration. But I don't use
                                          them or sell them so don't know what that would be.

                                          Once again, good luck with the move.

                                          Gerald

                                          --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, Harold Kyle <harold@b...> wrote:
                                          > On 6/3/05 5:45 PM, "Gerald Lange" <bieler@w...> wrote:
                                          > > My comment about higher grade plate brand had nothing to do with
                                          Toyobo.
                                          > I'm sorry--I thought that was the plate that you preferred. Would a
                                          higher
                                          > grade be BASF? Are there any other plates that you consider top of
                                          the line?
                                          >
                                          > > so it is essentially
                                          > > misleading to compare them or any other plate brand in the manner that
                                          > > you suggest.
                                          > The test I did showed that the Printight plate gained more with less
                                          detail.
                                          > To get more detail I would have had to increase exposure, causing
                                          more gain.
                                          > I relied on the rep selling Printight to dial in the right numbers.
                                          But I
                                          > agree that this is a slippery issue, and best left up to the printer's
                                          > judgement. I'm stating my personal preference and standing up for it
                                          based
                                          > on tests I've done. The differences between brands are minimal but
                                          when I
                                          > print I have the attitude: "I need all the help I can get." I really
                                          wish I
                                          > could afford BASF plates, and I might consider using them more if they
                                          > didn't smell so much!
                                          >
                                          > > Just out of curiosity, would you have switched brands if Toyobo had
                                          > > surpassed the Jet in your comparison test?
                                          > We sell Printight plates alongside Jet and BASF plates, so we're very
                                          > familiar with the Printight brand in relation to the competition. We
                                          prefer
                                          > them for intaglio processing. The pricing is comparable with Jet
                                          plates, so
                                          > yes I would be tempted to switch brands if I felt the plates were
                                          equally
                                          > sharp on the letterpress. The Printight salesman hasn't given up--we
                                          may be
                                          > troubleshooting the gain issues soon. For now, I'm sticking with the
                                          plates
                                          > that I know are going to give the best results.
                                          >
                                          > I'll be back on Monday! The trailer's loaded up and ready to go.
                                          >
                                          > Harold
                                          >
                                          >
                                          > Boxcar Press
                                          > Fine Printing / Digital Letterpress Supplies
                                          > Delavan Center / 501 W. Fayette St. / Studio 222 / Syracuse, NY 13204
                                          > 315-473-0930 phone / 315-473-0967 fax / www.boxcarpress.com
                                        • Gerald Lange
                                          Hi Charles No vacuum gauge? How did you find that out? Geez, this was all sort of a big waste of time then wasn t it? If it does nothing else, a gauge will
                                          Message 20 of 28 , Jun 4, 2005
                                          • 0 Attachment
                                            Hi Charles

                                            No vacuum gauge? How did you find that out?

                                            Geez, this was all sort of a big waste of time then wasn't it? If it
                                            does nothing else, a gauge will tell you when vacuum is iffy, and, if
                                            it reveals release during exposure, your plate/s just went south. Kind
                                            of an important feature.

                                            Gerald


                                            --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, LA. Book Arts <livres@a...> wrote:
                                            > All,
                                            >
                                            > the problem she has is with the machine, the machine doesn't seem to
                                            > have a gage for vacuum pressure, so basically she has no way of knowing
                                            > if she has enough or what.
                                            > The exposing of a plate with Film is a very critical stage of
                                            > platemaking, a good vacuum, a good piece of Film and it's smooth
                                            > sailing. I just made 65 9.5 x13 inch plates (WH 94) for a book project
                                            > the other day.
                                            > If you have no way of measuring your action it is very difficult to
                                            > repeat it over and over.
                                            >
                                            > charles
                                            >
                                            >
                                            > www.custombindery.com
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