Damon & Peets packing

I have a Damon & Peets platen press. The chase measures 6 and 1/2 by 10.
I have not replaced with new rollers as of yet so I have been inking a photopolymer plate of a logo that measures approximately 2 inches x 2 inches by hand. The plate is attached to a Boxcar base.
Here’s the rub: I get a very nice impression with only a sheet of mylar over the platen….no packing at all. If I pack the platen with any amount of paper (varying in size) I get an impression that lacks crispness.
Without packing I’m getting a very nice impression on simple
copy paper to thin coaster stock. I do not understand how “this” is happening.
I have this nagging feeling that without any packing under the mylar that I’m either damaging the platen…the plate…or both.
Let add that I am a “hobby printer”. I do this for fun and nothing else. Plus it gives me the satisfaction of collecting some old presses so that they’re not sold for scrap.
Any observations, hints, or suggestions are always appreciated.

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I it generally “normal” to have the platen backed off so it takes a bit of pressboard and several sheets of bond or book paper to bring it up to the proper height. Maybe your press has been mis-adjusted in the past, or the previous owner just wished to use very minimal packing as you are now.

If it is not taking inordinate pressure to make a good print, you certainly will not do damage to either oppress or plate operating as you are now. If, however, you really have to crank on the handle to get a good print, then you need to change the packing or the platen settings to get into adjustment.

There are many different ways to adjust the impression screws on presses. Just search the Archives for lots of good information in that regard.

John Henry

(edited — duplicate post)

You might also check to be sure you have the right match of base and plates — if you accidentally got a high base and plates that were made for deep relief base that might explain what you are dealing with. But even if that is the case you should be able to adjust the platen back some to compensate, as John suggests. It is possible to break something with too much pressure on some smaller presses — I don’t remember the structure of the Damon & Peets but 6-1/2x10 is not an especially big press. Better safe than sorry — if it’s broken, spare parts are nonobtainium.


John & Bob….
Thanks for the observations/recommendations.

John & Bob….
Thanks for the observations/recommendations.

A hard packing will produce a crisp impression. Softer packing (or softer paper) may not. Mylar can be embossed under pressure. I prefer oiled tympan for the best impression.

BTW - Damon & Peets was a manufacturer, but did not design their own presses. They made Gordons & Favorites, to name a few. A 6x10 is likely a “Favorite”