Can somebody in the USA please tell me what Mylar® exactly is. An acetate, a polyester? I would like to get the equivalent in Europe, but nobody seems to know what I’m looking for. Has it got a matt or a glossy surface?
Thanks in advance.

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Actually, I got a bit further by Googling and found out what it is, and that it is manufactured by Dupont. But I still would like to know more about the surface of it, when used as a drawsheet on a Vandercook.


All of my sources say polyester ( It’s an unclouded, transparent, gloss sheet, and comes in multiple thicknesses.


Thank you Kelly for that information. Since I posted, I’ve been in touch with a company in France, but they only sell 150-metre rolls of it, 25 in. wide. Another company in Great britain sells 25-metre rolls in different widths. I’m checking that out.

You might try an art supply store, especially one that caters to art prepared for printing, though there may not be much of that any more. Mylar is (was?) often used for overlays because it is much more dimensionally stable than acetate. But it all depends on how much you want. For a Vandy drawsheet you don’t need much and may never have to replace it!


Try contacting plastic distribution centers, Laird , Piedmont, Professional Plastics, AIN, these guys get it and then sell to the end users.

a roll 24 in wide by 1,000 ft long is 50 bucks plus shipping. you can order down to 200 ft long. it is often called “embossing film”.

New York Central Art Supply sells Mylar in individual sheets (the ones I have are 45 x 60 cm). They ship worldwide. 25 meters sounds like enough for 5 lifetimes (or 50 Vandercooks). See page 161 in the catalog: and for ordering info.

Hello Thomas.
I use Grafix Dura-Lar Clear sheet films in .002, .003, .004, .005, .007 and .010 for the hard packing of my Korrex Berlin cylinder. I get them from Dick Blick at Here’s the link:

All the Best.
- Pierre Ranger
Atelier Locomotive

Mylar is often used in the Book and Paper Concervation field. If all esle fails a conservation supply company would probably sell it off the roll.

In much of my early life, I was a photogrammetrist with a engineering/mapping firm. Our draftsman and photo lab used film from Agfa Gevaert as well as Dupont. These came in rolls 40 inches wide, most being used as overlays as was mentioned earlier on this thread. Cost was astronomical, but with the advent of digital processes in mapping much of this material lies semi-dormant in old mapping and drafting companies’ storage rooms. If located, I doubt it would be difficult to commandeer 5-10 feet of the material.
Another source, which has almost totally disappeared, are old x-ray films. Helps to personally know the people in charge as medical records’ offices would usually prefer to permanently dispose of such items than give them to a stranger who says he’s using it as backing material in a letterpress process. Not sure if x-ray film sizes or thicknesses would be accommodated on a cylinder proof press but they certainly work well on a iron handpress.

I used Mylar, for many years, for hand painting Artwork to be used as colour seperations for screenprint editions.

Thank you all, I think I’m getting closer to getting/finding some. All this information is much appreciated…