Mounting Matters

by Chris A. Paschke, CPF GCF




The LA Framer – GLAC Newsletter June 2012

"Heat Sensitivity"


The interesting thing about being the mounting queen is that I am supposed to know what to do with digitals. That said I recently did a real number on a new book of my son's. He purchased a  music synthesizer along with a series of textbooks to accompany it. One of the books came with its cover badly creased—the lower right cover had been folded back and crunched. Very sad about one of his new books not being pristine he asked Mom if I could flatten it at least. "But of course," she said, "I can't heal broken paper fibers, but I can surely flatten it."


I had been recently flattening original artwork in my press—which I frequently do—so I was afraid my release paper might have a little paint residue on it. Rather than pull new release material for this quickie project I opted to use the back side of the release paper against the book cover since I wasn't mounting it, only flattening it. I slipped the single front cover into the front edge of my 210 mechanical press, release paper face up against the platen, and left it 5 minutes. Yes I did consider this was a digitally printed book with a glossy laminate finish, but never thought much about if it was a laser print or water-based laminate. Long story shorter when I removed the book the paper had fully, FULLY fused to the probable liquid laminate that had been used to coat it. As seen in photo 1 the blue release paper is alive and well and I was only able to peel off a little around the edges.   


I refused to bring the book back to my son looking like this…he thought Mom would fix it, not make it worse. So I pulled out my trusty bamboo knife (photo 1)—written up in "PSAs and Burnishers", PFM February 2012 and began to scrape it clean. A mere two hours later I had scraped all the silicone release paper off and thinned out the remaining layer enough to at least read the info through the haze.


Just like many mistakes we try to repair, the book looked much better before I "fixed" it for him. The good news was the cover was indeed flat, the bad news, it was now under a cloud of paper AND the crease still showed. I considered adhesive solvent but thought that might only add insult to injury so we stopped here (photo 2).





photo 1

Digital book cover with

release paper mounted to it.






photo 2

Book after Mom fixed it.








There is a lesson to be learned here. I have taught for years to know what you have before you put it under any heat. I didn't think it through. The book was soft and floppy, I knew it was a quick print digital but I didn't consider it as I would have a piece of "real" art. The bottom line is to never be mindless. Had I put the release paper face down against the laminate it would not have stuck to the coating, but it would no doubt have mottled the surface from the heat, and perhaps clouded the coating. This was only a book, but I shall be certain to think more before putting anything into my press again. And rest assured, if I don't know what it is…it isn't going in.


So much for being Queen.


Copyright © Chris A Paschke, June 2012



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Chris Paschke, CPF GCF

Designs Ink

785 Tucker Road, Suite G-183

Tehachapi, CA 93561