Ink problem?

Hi there,

I am having some issues with ink coverage and I cant figure it out why.

I print on Arab Crown platen press with polymer plates Flint / Nyloprint - WS 1,52 mm (metal base, hard) and I use Van Son rubber based inks. The press is set on European type high 23,56mm - so my base (22,2mm) and plate (1,52mm) are in correct high. I believe the high of my rollers is set properly and condition of rollers is pretty good.

What I tried first is as little inks as possible - so no over inking. Next I tried to rise my roller high with thin paper strip attached to rails. I also tried different paper stock but always the same weight to see if it makes any difference. I also tried increased and decreased packing, repositioned form in a few different ways

I am running out of ideas and any help, comment would be much appreciated.

I am attaching few photos where you can see the inconsistency.

Thank you so much for any tips!

image: 19840552_10155459191108554_106828270_o.jpg


image: 19850739_10155459191073554_472858803_o.jpg


image: 19875968_10155459191023554_2092073623_o.jpg


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You didn’t mention what paper you are using, and that makes all the difference. What I am seeing seems to be poor ink “lay down” on some of the letters (the whiteness inside of some strokes).

I would check the stiffness and tack of the ink you are using—you may need to cut the stiffness/tack with reducer, or a dash of transparent white or mixing varnish and try again with the same ink load (or perhaps a wee bit more?).

Duplicate post

Hi Mike,

Thanks for the comment. The inks are pretty new and I thought the density should be ok. I will try to reduce it and see how it goes.

There is another issue which happens always on top of the print. I have attached another photos in more detail. I get this ink bits where is not printing area. It looks like something is moving. You can see it mainly on A and M.

And I have been using Fedrigoni cotton papers.

Thank you in advance.

image: 19850858_10212992439433157_1066874911_o.jpg


image: 19840499_10212992439313154_1805706983_o.jpg


is the top of the T where there is a problem a front edge of rollers coming down , or a trailing edge of rollers returning to ink disc? Have you tried printing so letters are vertical? Are you printing slowly or treadling quickly, doing a print to run off between a finished print? Do you have good proofs on a more standard paper? Is your paper a fairly hard or soft sized cotton paper?

Hi Jonathan,

Thank you for the answer.

The issues on M, A and T is when the rollers are coming down. If I flip the polymer it will do the same thing with first line of the text - top line. I am treading fairly normal but would say little faster but not slow. I can use any paper and it will do the same thing. I noticed when I use soft cotton its worst, I had good print (but not perfect) on Fedrigoni Materica which is only 15% of cotton (see sample).

I cant get my head around it.

Thank you for all your advice.

image: 19875738_10155459190908554_682221958_o.jpg


hi, I’m not familiar with the press your using but I see these two issues fairly often. On the kluge that I run I would resolve the inking issue by sliding a sheet of paper under the printing plate or the base holding the printing plate. This should help fill in the light areas by getting better contact with the roller. You might have to remove a sheet of packing from the platen side to keep the pressure constant.
The ink smearing issue is often caused by the paper your printing on being curled or not being flat against the platen at the moment the printing plate contacts the paper. As the printing plate comes into contact with the paper it meets the paper while the paper is out away from platen and pushes it flat smearing the ink. I resolve this issue by using a peice of cardboard attached to the frisket that pushes the paper flat to the platen before the printing plate makes contact. The cardboard frisket also helps to prevent the paper from sticking to the printing plate as it pulls away from the plate.
As I said I’m not familiar with your press so I’m not certain if you could set up the frisket in the same way I do but here is a pic of a frisket setup to keep a curly sheet of paper flat while printing.

image: Frisket.JPG


Hello Bruce,

Thank you for all the suggestions.

I realised I have been using bad tympan sheet - just thin plane paper which curves - never stretched enough. I believe this was wrong choice which could curve the paper and caused all the smearing. However I was able to source some mylar today and its on its way. Hopefully this will help.

When it comes to friskets I havent tried that yet. To be honest I am not using them the way I should. They just sit pushed away from the form. Its time to do it.

Thank you guys.

Hi guys,

Thank you for all the comments. I used your tips and its been all sorted now. Thank you.