Impression depth

No matter how I set the platen or how much packing I add, I cannot get a deep impression like I like.

If the bolts are too right, the arm won’t lock. So I loosen them, just enough so the arm will lock down, but then the impression is super faint. If I add a sheet or two of packing, the arm won’t press down and lock.

What am I doing wrong? When I say lock, I just mean that locking sensation of having to push just a bit harder to have the platen meet the chase.

I use photopolymer plates too if that makes a difference.

Thanks in advance!

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Tight* not right

The larger area you try to print the more pressure it takes to get a print, try smaller things till you get a feel for your press. Also try harder or softer packing, your 5x8 wasn’t made for the heavy impression everyone wants today.

Some people have good luck dampening the paper before printing to help get more depth in the impression. Can you post a photo? How big is the image area? You might have to cut your photopolymer plate into smaller pieces and print part of it at a time. It would be more printing, but one way to get a deeper impression.

Dampening paper is a huge help with impression, in my experience it also helps the paper take more ink, giving you a more saturated print without adding more ink or hitting it twice.

For dampening Lettra, I use a tip I found on BP and soak one out of every three sheets in a stack, then stick them in a plastic bag over night with a bit of pressure on top.