Spotty Inking

I am sure there have been threads on this before so I apologize for any redundancy. I am trying to print some invites for my buddy and am having a problem with the inking. I am using rubber based ink and have not noticed this before, this is only my third project however haha. I have read about the ink tack being a problem with lettra and pulling fibers out so I am sure this is what is happening. I was wondering what tack reducers you guys use and how effective they are. Also in a shop I did an internship hat we used those blue shop towels with no problem on their Vandercook, I am wondering also if these could be causing a problem leaving lint on the rollers, I have not noticed it on them when I clean them but it may be there I guess? Any help would be greatly appreciated thank you all!

image: photo.JPG


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Your image doesn’t look inconsistent with printing on Lettra. Reducer will help you ink. The crudest reducer can be a couple drops of kerosene mixed in on a slab. Better are the paste reducers sold, or by the use of varnish or transparent white.

With the color you are printing, lint will not cause the image problems you see, but would create “hickeys” (fisheye spots) if you were trying to print lighter colors with a lot of transparent white in the mix.

747 Compound by Varn works excellent. Your rags are not the problem.

Lettra paper is an awful paper on which to print. It can be mildly improved by dampening, but if you want to print heavy papers you would be better off with Arches, Rives, Fabriano or Strathmore art and watercolor papers.


Thanks for all of the help ill try adding transparent white to it and see how that turns out.

I’ve had hell with Lettra too on Adana 8x5 and I think I get the same result. It’s a shame as Lettra is a gorgeous stock and it doesn’t take much to sink a decent impression into it for that letterpress and not potato print effect.

Yet to try reducers.

I did notice a slight improvement where rubber based ink was left of the press overnight and the next day the print was better. But once I started adding more ink during the run fresh from the pot the same problem returned.

Maybe I’ll try the ‘747 Compound by Varn’ recommended by Theo Bell - thanks!