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Ok to use a drop of Oil-Based Metallic ink to Rubber Ink as a drier?

Someone passing through my shop once mentioned that I could add a drop or two of some metallic oil-based ink that I inherited with my press as a drying agent method. Aside from potentially changing the color, is this correct information?

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um, I don’t know that it WOULDN’T work, because I haven’t tried it, but I’m thinking it’d be better to stick to actual drier.

HA! That’s what I was/am thinking. This was a desperation post as I do not have any drier on hand and I was hoping to print today. Is there anything that I can find at a local art store that would work with rubber based inks? I know that you’re in the Brooklyn area too do you know of any locations in the NYC area that would carry a drier?

with my back against the wall I have used Japan drier which you can usually buy at an art store. use a very small amount.

If you go to an art supply store like NYCentral, you can probably find it there in the printmaking section. If you need drier and you’re in NYC, you can come up to Haven Press and I’ll sell you a small amount at cost in a glass jar. By small amount, I mean enough for a year for most people who print 2-3 times a month.

And Cobalt drier is kind of a common thing to keep on hand, it’s the general use people keep around, but in my humble opinion, if you want the best stuff for the process get 3-way drier from Van-Son.

Cobalt drier should be available from local art stores.


could I take you up on the offer to stop by and purchase a small amount? if so will you be around the rest of this week?

Cobalt drier and 3-way drier are the most common driers available from printing suppiers and inkmakers. Adding metallic ink as a drier is frankly idiotic. If you are actually interested in the various aspects of printing as opposed to merely putting a digital design onto paper the quickest way, you would do better to begin making contacts within the industry rather than thinking internet sources are definitive.
The amount of bad information amplified on the internet is truly staggering. EVERY ink maker will tell you, if asked, to choose the right ink for the job rather than get an ink and then try to modify it for the job.

You’re very right that I need to be careful about the advice that I read here on the internet. Interestingly, the information about adding the drop of metallic ink came from someone in my area who is highly respected and has years of experience printing and using these machines. He’s hardly an idiot. The irony is that I wanted information and help from contacts within the industry and so sought him out as a because of his reputation.

I will agree that there is a ton of bad info on the internet, but sometimes people are just sharing what works for them (however idiotic it may sound to people who have an industry standard that works for them, or just think something is the right way to do it because they were shown, or whatever). Sometimes it’s the blind leading the blind down an alley of mistakes to ‘satisfactory’ results or whatever is ‘good enough’.

Caveat, I’m guilty of practically persecuting people for habits or methods that I view as bad/poor, and pushing my own agenda/methodology, but that’s part of being an instructor right? One teaches what one knows to do.

At the end of the day, whatever gets the job done is what works for you and if you are pleased with the results then you have obtained a personal satisfaction… But it doesn’t always mean that the right/easiest/best/efficient path was followed to get there. There’s kind of a line to walk across and you’re on one side or the other- ‘any which way you can’ or ‘the accepted method’.

I didn’t read through all the responses, but let me tell you first hand. I tried this last week and it was a disaster. The ink was so greasy and off that it smeared all over the plate and wouldn’t take an even print. It didn’t add any metallic sheen, it just made it all muddy. Avoid this.

I should mention, I have in the past (in a pinch) mixed oil and rubber ink without much of a problem. Just be careful, not all oil or rubber inks are the same even within their own class. In my case the drying time was worse, and the few prints I tried were horrendous.

Also, the metallic ink on its own in really quite nice. It just didn’t get along with the rubber base.