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Old 11-19-2007, 05:24 PM
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portraitpaintr portraitpaintr is offline
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replacement bed for etching press...

Hi Everyone,
I have been doing my printmaking with an old tabletop etching press discarded from a school and I just bought a partial etching press on ebay that is missing its bed but is slightly wider (16"). The bed on my first press was sagging in the middle and I solved the problem by putting in shims and a plexi cover. It's only 12" wide and I've been making small prints. The old press has rubber coated rollers which are not in perfect condition so I'm looking forward to the "new" press which has all metal rollers and has gears. The "new" press is also missing several of the turning spokes. I'm pretty handy so I'm hoping to solve all these problems. I would appreciate any advice or experiences others have had in rehabilitating presses. I'm thinking of trying MDF for the press bed. I did read somewhere that hardboard is denser and could be laminated with formica. To me, the MDF looks really strong and stable. I just want something that will function well...
Lynn
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Old 11-20-2007, 10:37 AM
charlesgmorgan charlesgmorgan is offline
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Re: replacement bed for etching press...

If I were you, I would use countertop material. Go to a kitchen cabinet shop and tell them the precise size you want, and they will cut it for you. It will not be very expensive. The countertop material has a formica-like substance bonded to an MDF core. It is waterproof and easy to clean if you get ink on it. Many commercial presses use beds of this material.

Sounds like a fun project ... good luck!!

Cheers ... Charles
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Old 11-20-2007, 02:17 PM
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boundstaffpress boundstaffpress is offline
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South East Colorado
 
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Re: replacement bed for etching press...

I would start by using melamine. Like counter top, it has a MDF like core, but has a hard surface on both sides. You can get this at any lumber yard. It is used to make cabinets.

Then I would start looking for a phenolic resin press bed. It absolutely won't compress. This is what my Blick press has, and what we used on our litho press when I was in school. I would imagine that you could buy a press bed from Richeson service center at some point.
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Old 11-20-2007, 03:40 PM
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Diane Cutter Diane Cutter is offline
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Re: replacement bed for etching press...

I don't have anything to add to Charles' and Justin's posts except to welcome you to the Printmaking forum. Feel free to start new threads when you have new work or issues you want to bring up. We look forward to another printmaker among our midst...

Diane
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Old 11-20-2007, 08:53 PM
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portraitpaintr portraitpaintr is offline
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Re: replacement bed for etching press...

Hey, Thanks for the quick replies!!

I thought when I signed on here I would be encountering strangers but I see fellow Baren forumers! Small world, indeed!!

Impatient me, I ran out today and bought some MDF for my smaller press and am about to try it out. It fit right in but I noticed that the little trick where I can make the pressure a certain way so that the blankets move and not the bed isn't working with the MDF. Having formica covering would solve that problem, I guess. I also did a really crazy thing with my sagging-in-the-middle metal bed. I saw some varnish that had spilled on the basement floor and I thought maybe if I had the bed really level I could pour varnish in and if it self levelled it would fill up the sagging area. I still think it's a good idea but I had some problems when I moved the bed before it was dry and got some sort of waves. It's still drying. Maybe it'll be better than it was.
Lynn
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Old 11-21-2007, 09:34 AM
charlesgmorgan charlesgmorgan is offline
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Re: replacement bed for etching press...

Blanket scoot is a common problem on smaller presses. The culprit is the small diameter roller on the blankets, which tends to exert too much lateral pressure on the blankets rather than just riding over them.

For a sagging metal bed, just try turning the bed upside down. Flipping a metal bed upside down periodically (e.g. once a month) helps prevent sagging.

Melamine and coutertop material are the same thing. The countertop material is just generally a little thicker. I often find old cabinets and countertops just sitting on the side of the street when folks are doing renovations. I pick up the countertop material for nothing. It cuts easily with standard wood working equipment. I cut it to size with a table saw. The sides and tops of cheaper furniture are made of melamine. You can often get such items for nothing. Just take a junk chest of drawers apart and cut the top or one of the sides to the desired size.

Just call me cheap, cheap, cheap ...

Cheers ..... Charles
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Old 06-19-2017, 10:49 AM
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Pegleg Pegleg is offline
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Re: replacement bed for etching press...

cheap cheap cheap
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