die plate make ready

On a thread I posted last week I was told to add make ready under the die plate. I understand make ready for printing and adding or subtracting to build to a level type high. With die cutting I am still fuzzy - sorry it is not making total sence. Up until now we are cutting into a steel jacket with no packing. It works but I want to make sure I dont harm the press or the die. Most of our stuff is 30 - 40 pt. Basically we keep adding pressure until we pop through the stock. At times we can see we dont have an even contact pressure. We wonder if we treat the jacket the way we treat a typan sheet can we add packing to create a balanced level type high - if you will - point of contact. Since cut rule is .900 vs print type high of .918 I wonder do I add the .018 difference to the 40pt I now start with for printing. I know I am over thinking this but I want to know the best way to approach it. There is “Just Get ur Done” and “Get Ur done right” I want to know I am doing this right and you who respond to my questions are the smart ones so again I pick your brains

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you can, in the future order your cut rule @ .918 high. for this die @ .900, I would get some .018 steel shim stock. Enough to cover the back of your cutting image. put it behind the die. The problem with clamshell presses is, using the impression control out to the extremes, either way on, or way off, changes the alignment of the platen to the bed.
Way ON will tend to cut the top. first. way OFF will tend to cut the bottom first.
If you add too much packing under the plate on the platen, it will become forgiving and your die will dent it permanently, perty much ruining it. Steel shim tape is available, and works well behind a die for spotting up specific areas.
Platen presses do not had the alignment problem, But you can still ruin a thin plate with too much makeready under it.

ericm - Thanks for the feed back. We have played with shim stock mostly chipboard behind the die. I never thoguth to try an old metal palte but that migh work as well. I like the idea of the steel shim. We had been looking at ideas to get a level die plate against a level cutting die. We felt at times we hitting hard on top of a die to get the bottom to work. With the heavy stocks we dont cut 100% of the way through but at times cant quite get the result we want. This will give us a little knowledge we can put to good use.