Makeready—the process of preparing your press to print well—is a fine balance of plate height and pressure. Whether you use traditional metal type, photopolymer plates, or experimental blocks, it’s important to know what the correct range of plate height and packing is and how to get there with precision. After two hours with Dafi Kühne, live from his studio in Switzerland, even experienced letterpress printers will gain a new understanding of the mechanics of their cylinder press. Stop guessing and learn how to approach press makeready with intention. Once you understand the rules, you too can work with unorthodox materials in utterly original ways!
Dafi Kühne will explain (from various camera angles and with lots of examples) what is actually happening when you adjust press packing vs. when you adjust the height of your plate. He’ll show various ways to precisely measure the height-to-paper, explain the recommended tolerances, and why you don’t want to inadvertently mess with them. He will then demonstrate how he marries precise makeready and unconventional materials in his award-winning letterpress poster work. This class will focus mainly on cylinder proof presses, but some aspects (especially block makeready) work similarly on a platen press. You’ll learn:
All participants will receive an illustrated handout for reference and notetaking.
This workshop consists of a demonstration and interactive Q&A, with no advance preparation or supplies necessary to participate.
This class is suited for beginning to advanced letterpress printers who wish to gain a deeper understanding of printing mechanics. To get the most out of this class, some letterpress printing experience is helpful.
All of PiP’s letterpress classes are live and unrecorded — we find it’s a lot more fun and interactive this way. They are closed captioned using Zoom’s Live Transcription feature; to make the most of this tool, update to the most recent version of Zoom.
Visit our FAQ page to learn more about PiP’s class policies.