U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: Photopolymer Photo Gravure Press Questions

Re: Photopolymer Photo Gravure Press Questions

Thanks for the info Jack. Didn't realize smaller rollers delivered more pressure, so it must be more to do with the evenness of the pressure. Larger rollers covers more area of the paper at once, if that makes sense, since it's not perfectly tangential relationship to the bed due to the blankets, etc.

You can certainly pull good prints on small presses depending on how good your plates are. Pulling standard intaglio prints is one thing, pulling photogravure can be very different, depending on how picky one is -- especially when working large.

As far as price range Robert, the prices you cite are really the difference between more of a hobby or student press and a professional one, and yes, 10K seems to be the entry point for even the smaller (new) Takach presses, most of which I believe are offered with a 10" drum (but you pay more for it). I'm constantly in the market for a good press for when my current studio situation is no longer an option.


Jack Brubaker wrote:
The physics (or engineering) of press rollers is interesting. The
larger the diameter the more rigid the rollers will be but the smaller
the diameter the more pressure per square inch for a given total
tension between the two rollers (which is limited by the strength of
the press frame and ability of the press rollers to remain acceptably
straight when under pressure). So the same press frame could print
with more pressure with smaller diameter rollers, but other problems
can enter into the problem with small rollers, flexing of the rollers
and "creep" of the paper on the plate due to the angle of the roller
both pushing down and forward on the paper as the paper is compressed
by the motion of the roller across the plate. Paper creep is only a
serious problem if printing multi-plate color images (each time the
paper is rerun through the press the paper will be stretched a little
more throwing off registration). Like in everything else there is no
"right " answer, just a good compromise between strength and price. It
is always nice to have the heaviest press one can afford but many
people are pulling fine prints with 4 inch rollers. I knew a
printmaker who made his living selling prints (not teaching) who used
a little A B Dick table top press and pulled fine prints. You might
want to start with a small press and move up when you find a "bargain"
big press, it does happen.


Jon Lybrook
Intaglio Editions