Blog

Thermal negative film (TNF) vs. Photopolymer plates (PPP) - Let me help!

This transparency and plate...
...made this.

I've posted quite a bit lately about photopolymer plates and about how others are having trouble creating clean, crisp plates since TNF has been discontinued.  Because I have always had grand success without TNF, I'm having trouble understanding the problem.  Please help me help you.  Oooohhhh, again.....how coachy of me:)

I'd like to offer my help in this way:   If you've tried the following...
  1. printed from a laser printer onto transparencies made for lasers...
  2. used metal backed plates (my preference: WLW shallow)...
  3. exposed them for 30 seconds under a UV manicurist type lamp...
  4. washed them away using a soft toothbrush...
  5. re-exposed for 2-4 mins...
...and you're still unsuccessful, please do the following.  Send me the file that you are printing off to create your plates.   I will make one and report back to you.  I know that when you're used to doing something one way, changing can be stressful.  If Whole Lotta Whimsy stopped selling their shallow, metal backed plates, I would be VERY stressed, but would have to adapt.   Try to remember that when one door closes, another opens.  Maybe this is a blessing in disguise, and the speed, reduced cost and ease of making plates without TNF will lead to great advances in your work.

I'm asking you to first do the 5 steps above only because they will give you the best results.  I used to use an ink jet printer and plastic backed plates with success as well, but my needs were not the same then, and my lines not quite as fine.  My current process works like a charm for me every time.

I will post any results on the blog so that others may benefit.  

Leave a comment