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Патент USA US2133981

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0a. 25,1938.
Filed March 29, 1935
Iraq grim? *
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Patented Oct.
1938 1
Philip‘ A. Frazier, Oak Park, 111., assignor to
Frazier Processes Incorporated, New York,
N. Y., a corporation of New York
Application March 29, 1935, Serial No. 13,629
12 Claims.
(Cl. 101—401.1)
ing process and thus furnish a greater degree
of support behind the high spots or lands of the
mounted plate, to the end that the mounted plate
is adapted to provide a substantially uniform
impression in the printed areas despite slight in- -5.,
provision of novel means for and method of sup
accuracies in the press in which the plate is used
porting a relatively thin printing plate, such as and without make-ready, that is to say, the ac
the electrolytically deposited shell commonly used ' curate adjustment of all of the high spots of the
plate with respect to the press.
in making up an electrotype, in position to per
Another important object is to employ a resil- 10
10 form its printing function in such a way, that
ient. medium, including metal, as a backing for
the lands or high spots of the plate, which ac
My invention relates in general to the art of
printing, and more particularly to that phase of
printing concerned with the mounting of the
printing element.
The invention has, for an important object, the
complish the printinglby applying ink to the sur
faces being‘ printed, are supported relativelymore
a shell-like printing plate.
?rmly and rigidly than are the valleys or low
of latex and a metallic ?our to form a resilient
backing for a shell-like printing plate.
15 spots of the plate, to the end that the printing
‘ may. have sharp de?nition between the inked
Another important" object is to provide for
mounting a thin, shell-like printing element, such
20 as is used in electrotypes, yieldingly in printing
position, the plate being yieldingly supported
throughout its entire area, whereby printing pres
sure between the plate and the surface being
printed may be substantially uniform throughout
25 the area of the plate, to the end that the result
ing printing is of uniform texture.
Another important object is to provide for
backing a shell-like printing plate with resilient
' material, such as rubber, to improve the printing
:0 characteristics of the plate; a further object be,
ing to apply the rubber in substantially raw con
dition in order that the same may ?ow into the
crevices in back of the plate so as to provide a
backing at all points within the area of the
35 plate, and then vulcanize the rubber in order to
cure and solidify it in place.
Another important object is to provide for vul
canizing the rubber backing to v»'diii‘erent' degrees
of hardness in order to a?ord greater support
40 behind certain portions of the plate while permit
,- ting other portions of the plate to yield when
=- _
Another important object is to utilize a mixture
Another object is to provide a backing tor a
shell-like printing plate by applying a metallic
medium on the back of the shell to a depth su?i
cient to ?ll the depressions, then shaving the
backing medium and applying a resilient medium 20
behind the shaved material in order to provide
a resiliently mounted printing element.
Another object is to back a shell-like printing
element by spraying a metallic backing medium
upon said element.
Another important object is to provide a back
ing for a shell-like printing element by spraying
the back of the shell with liquid latex and then
curing the same in. position on the back 01' the
Another important object is to provide for
printing with an element including a printing
face formed by electrolytic deposition, which con
sists in applying resilient means behind said ele
ment while a print is being taken.
' Another important object is to provide for
backing a sheli-like printing plate with resilient
material, suchas rubber, to improve the print
ing characteristics of the plate wherein the re
silient material is hardened in certain areas to 40
a greater degree than in other areas whereby to
afford greater support behind certain portions ot
the plate; a further object being to harden the
rubber by di?erentially curing the same.
Another object is to accomplish the di?eren- 45
‘ a suitable adhesive in accordance with the design tial curing of the rubber by applying a medium
', oi'the printing ‘plate, dusting the printingsheet adopted to accelerate vulcanization in those areas
with a .rubber vulcanizing mediumrsueh as 8111-‘ of the sheet where greater sti?'ness is required.
printing pressure is applied.
Another object is ‘to provide for mounting a
‘printing plate on a rubber blanket, which con
45 sists in printing a sheet oi‘uncured rubber with
. 1*
phur, mounting the plate on the sheet so that the '
-' "5o dusted'design onthe sheet registers with the cor
responding design of the plate, and then vulcan
_ izing the sheet in place so that the dusted por
. tions, which are behind the lands orhigh spots
of the plate, become harder than the adjacent
_ 55 portions of the sheet as a result of the vulcaniz
‘Another important object is to accomplish dif- V
ie'rential hardness in the ?nished product by par- 50'
tially pre-curing the rubber at the places where
additional sti?’ness is required as by exposing the
sheet to heat or other rays through a screen. '
Another important object is to accomplish dif
ferential hardening of the rubber sheet by print- 55
ing the same with latex ink at the places where
additional hardness is desired.
Another important object is to provide a curved
printing element having improved printing char
Numerous other objects, advantages, and in
herent functions of the invention will become
apparent as the same is more fully understood
from the following description, which, taken in
10 connection with the accompanying drawing, dis
closes a preferred embodiment of the invention.
Referring to the drawing:
Figure 1 is a perspective view of a relatively
thin printing plate and resilient mounting layers,
15 the parts being shown in exploded or disassem
bled relationship;
Figure 2 is a perspective view of a printing
plate mounted in accordance with my present
Figure 3 is a vertical section taken substantially
along the line 3—3 in Figure 2 ; and
Figure 4 is a similar section illustrating a modi
?ed form of the invention.
It has long been apparent that the most satis
factory printing surface for letter press and other
commercial printing is provided by the electro
lytically deposited copper shell commonly used
in the fabrication of electrotypes. The copper
shell is comparatively thin and ?exible and re
30 quires support means to maintain the same ?rmly
in place in order that the same may be used as
a printing element. Such a shell is ordinarily
?nished by backing the same with a layer of
usually metallic material, such as lead or a suit
35 able alloy, after which the electrotype is ?nished
by bringing all of the high spots of the plate into
a common plane, which is exactly parallel with
the back of the electrotype.
My present invention relates more especially
40 to improvements in the backing of shell-like ele
ments in the provision of electrotypes and, in
general, comprises the application of a resilient
backing on the shell to the end that the printing
surface of the same is rendered self-aligning dur
ing the printing operation, whereby the ?nishing
of the electrotype to bring all of the high spots
of its printing surface into alignment does not
require particular accuracy, care, or skill so that
the labor and cost of providing a mounted print
ing element in accordance with my present in
vention is considerably reduced.
I accomplish'these advantages by backing the
thin printing element having a certain degree of
?exibility and having the design to be printed
formed in the face of the plate. I contemplate
particularly an electrolytically formed shell of
the character commonly used in the fabrication
of electrotypes. The parts are assembled by
placing the plate ll face down on a flat surface, 10
such as is provided by a smooth steel plate. The
back of the plate, if desired, may be coated with
a suitable adhesive, the main function of which
is to prevent corrosion of the plate during the
curing of the rubber layers. The rubber layer 15
l5, which remains resilient after vulcanization, is
placed upon the back of the plate II, and the
fabric sheet iii, if used, is superposed upon the
sheet I5. Finally, the rubber sheet H, which
becomes hard after vulcanizing, is assembled in
a stack. The steel support plate may then be
placed in a suitable press having a heated head.
This head is then lowered into contact with the
sheet ll, so that the rubber of both layers l5 and
I1 becomes heated and softens to a degree such
that the material of the layer l5 oozes into all of
the interstices and depressions in the back of the
plate if. The two sheets of rubber also become
fused together with the fabric I8 therebetween.
The function of the fabric is simply to lend 30
strength and rigidity in the ?nal structure.
I may substitute, for the layer II, a layer of
any material which may be adhered to the layer
l5 during the vulcanization of said layer l5 and
which becomes or remains hard after vulcaniza
tion is completed. For example, the layer l1
may comprise a metal plate if desired.
After the layer l5 has softened, the heated
head of the press is again lowered to squeeze the
parts together. to the exact desired thickness of
the ?nal assembly, and the application of heat is
continued until the rubber becomes cured or vul
canized. After that, the press is cooled. The
heating and cooling of the press may best be
accomplished by injecting steam into the head 45
during the vulcanizing process and then directing
cold water into the head in order to cool the same
and the rubber. With such an arrangement, but
a few moments will be required to properly cool
the assembly.
The plate may then be removed and its edges
trimmed, as with a saw.
then ready for proo?ng. No ?nishing is required,
rubber, in order to obtain a printing element
having all of the qualities of an electrotype and,
in addition, the advantages of a resilient back
ing,.by means of which the printed impression is
of more uniform intensity throughout the area of
the element due to the fact that a resilient back
as the plate is ?nished to correct thickness in the
press and possesses all of the ?nished qualities
of an electrotype, since the high spots or lands are
in type high relationship with respect to the rear
a tri?e too high to yield during the printing op
eration and come into alignment with the other
lands of the element. The yielding character of
the backing, moreover, permits the edges of the
lands, which, in an electrotype, tend to print more
heavily than the land ‘portions within the edges,
to yield and thus eliminate any tendency toward
“edge printing”.
To illustrate my invention, I have shown on the
drawing a- printing plate H mounted on a resil
ient backing l3, comprisingva sheet of special
vulcanizing rubber I! which retains its resilience
after being vulcanized, and‘a second rubber sheet
I‘! adapted to become hard and rigid upon vul
75 canization. If desired, a sheet of woven fabric
The mounted plate is
printing plate with resilient , material, such as
ing will permit those parts of the plate which are
I! may be interposed between the rubber sheets
l5 and I1.
The plate H may, of course, be any relatively
most surface of the rubber layers. Except for
proper line-up in the press, no make-ready is ‘
necessary, which results in cutting the idle press 60
time in half. In addition, printing presses of the
character having reciprocating beds may be op
erated at higher speed when carrying the rubber
backed printing plates made in accordance with
my present invention, because of the greatly re
duced total weight carried in the press, as com
pared with the weight carried by the press if
loaded with electrotypes backed with metal in
accordance with prevailing practice.v ' '
If desired, a suitable rubber cement may be 70
applied to the back of the shell ll before the
layer I5 is assembled thereon, and cement may
also be utilized between the layers II, II, and II,
if desired. I contemplate also the application of
the layer I! as a solution of latex painted, I
sprayed, or otherwise applied directly on the back
of the shell ll.
1 I may also substitute resilient material other
than rubber for the layer l5 and any suitable
resilient material that can be adhered to the
back of the shell may be utilized for this purpose.
I particularly contemplate the use of resilient
spongy material, which may be made by mixing
flour of lead, or of a. selected alloy of lead, with
tin and/or zinc and/or antimony with a quan
tity of latex so that the metallic ?our is uni
formly distributed throughout the latex. The
accordance with the teachings of my present in
vention as a part of the mounting of the printing
element ll on'the resilient backing l5. When
it is desired to cause any part of the plate to
provide for increased impression in any part of
the plate as mounted, the face of the shell II,
at the places where increased-impression is de
sired, is treated with a suitable adhesive ink and
an impression made upon the underside of the
sheet I5, as at 29, before the same is assembled 10
in stacked position on the plate. The printed
surface of the rubber sheet is then dusted with
sulphur or other vuleanizing medium and the
surplus removed so that thevsheet l5 contains a
metal is selected so that its melting point is
lower than a maximum temperature permissible
in vulcanizing the latex. The solution is applied ' layer of sulphur adhering thereto in such a posi 15
as a layer to the back of the shell and the coated tion that when assembled on the back of the
plate II, the treated areas of the sheet l5 register
shell placed in a vulcanizing press, which is oper
ated at a temperature such that the latex is with those portions of the plate II at which in
cured during‘the vulcanizing process and the creased impression is desired. The layer " may
metallic ?our is also fused so that, after cooling, then be applied and the assembly cured in a 20.
a spongelike metallic skeleton frame is formed press, as heretofore described.
giriilughout the cured rubber layer behind the
I have found that vulcanizing temperatures of
' from 300° centigrade upwards are desirable be
cause this range of temperatures permits the use
of any'well known alloy of lead, tin, zinc or anti
mony. I have also found that by using a mix
ture of tin and lead foil in equal parts and vul
canizing at a temperature as high as 390° centi
grade, an excellent backing is produced. These
examples are given by way of illustration only
and are not intended to limit the scope of my
It is desirable to select a metal or an alloy
having a melting point somewhat below the tem
perature applied to the mixture in vulcanizing
the latex in order that the metallic conduit may
'iuse at vulcanizing temperatures and form the
spongy metallic mass. The selected metal should
have a melting point considerably above the tem
peratures to which the electrotype is submitted
in the printing press since it is undesirable to
have the spongy mass soften during the printing
operation. There are, however, many alloys hav
ing suitable characteristics with respect to melt
ing temperatures which may be selected for the
purpose, but I prefer to employ lead or suitable
alloys of lead; with tin and/ or zinc' and antimony
may be added to improve the character of the
alloy. It will be understood that the resilient
metal and rubber material may be substituted
for either or both of the layers l5 and I1.
Rubber-backed printing elements may be made
?at, or curved to ?t rotary presses, the same
procedure being followed in the fabrication of
curved plates as heretofore described, except that
the'plate and rubber layers are assembled, com
pressed,‘ and cured between cooperating curved
surfaces of suitable shape.
My present‘ invention, of course, applies to
printing plates for reproducing type 2| as well as
pictures or illustrations 2!. In order to properly
print illustrations, it is desirable to provide ‘for
greater impression on the solids or high spots 25
than on the low spots or high lights 21. This is
usually accomplished on a letter press by means
of overlays under the tympan. However, in other
‘ presses, and particularly in multi-color presses,
During the curing operation, the sulphur treat
ed portions of the layer l5 become relatively
harder, as at_3l, than the remaining portions of *
said layer, so that,'in the ?nished element, those 25
portions of the plate ii, in which increased im
pression is desired, are relatively more ?rmly
backed than are the remaining portions of the
plate. When a printing impression isv made, the
more ?rmly backed portions of the plate provide 30
increased impression in the corresponding areas
of the resulting print. ‘
I may also provide for backing up certain por
tions of the shell more ?rmly otherwise than by
differentially vulcanizing said parts with sulphur 35
as a vulcanizing agent. For example, I may
apply additional strips or patches of relatively
hard rubber behind the parts of the shell re
quiring additional backing ,before. the layer I5
is applied, or I may partiallypre-cure the layer 40
ill by exposing the'same to heat or other rays
through a suitable screen formed in accordance
with the parts of the shell requiring the addi
tional backing. In this way, those parts of the
backing, which are to be assembled behind shell 45
parts requiring additional support, are given a
preliminary partial curing so that, when vulcan
ization is completed, such parts are relatively
more ?rm than adjacent parts and will furnish
the desired additional support.
I'may accom- ' 50
plish the same result by inking the layer i5 with
a suitable latexsolution providing accelerator
means to speed up the vulcanizing process at the
places where applied.‘ These expedients may, of
course, be utilized where the layer I5 is applied 55
directly to the back of the shell H or may be
employed in conjunction with an adhesive ap-'
plied'between the shell II and the layer and also
may be employed where the back of the shell is '
sprayed with latex before the layer I5 is applied. 60
I may also sti?fen the shell prior to the appli
cation of the resilient layer "by spraying or
otherwise applying a metallic backing 33 on the
shell H as shown in Figure 4. Such a backing 33
may comprise an alloy of lead with zinc and/or 05
tin, or any one of said' metals and may be» ap
plied to any desired depth- upon the back of the
shell. I prefer,>however, to apply the material 33
on the shell to a depth suf?cient to rather more
it is usually necessary, since several plates are
than fill the hollows behind the high spots‘ or 70
required in‘ printing the same impression, to make
lands 2| and 23.
the necessary adjustment as a make-ready in
After the layer 33 has been applied, the backe
the plate itself. This, under the requirements of
shell may be finished in the usual manner to '
prevailing printing practice, ‘is a somewhat ex
bring the high‘spots or lands into alignment on
the printing surface of the plate. This process, .
pensive proceeding, but may be accomplished in
however, may be greatly simpli?ed if the overall ‘ tions in registration whereby the resilience of the ,
thickness of the layer 33 is kept relatively small. layer corresponds throughout the area of the ele
The ?nishing operation also need not necessarily ment with the character of the printing surface of
said element.
be performed with great accuracy since the resil
4. The method of mounting a relatively thin
$1 ient backing thereafter applied will permit the
shell to print uniformly as heretofore described shell-like printing element on a backing compris
without being carefully ?nished.
ing a resilient layer of rubber, which comprises
After the ?nishing operation has been com
pleted, the back of the layer 33 may be shaved
10 down to make the same substantially ?at and
parallel with the printing surfaces of the high
spots or lands. After this, the resilient layer i5
may be applied. This layer may be of rubber
or a resilient metallic material of the character
15 heretofore mentioned. The layer I5 may be ap
plied in any of the modes heretofore described,
that is to say, may be applied as a solution of
latex, sprayed or otherwise applied, behind the
layer 33 and then vulcanized. The layer I‘! may
20 be applied behind the layer l5, or may be omitted,
if desired. Alternately, the layer l5 may simply
comprise a suitable resilient cement applied to any
desired or suitable thickness, and I have found
that the layers l1 and 33 may be connected to
25 gether with a resilient layer l5 therebetween
merely by coating the surface of each with latex,
clamping the parts together and heating to vul
canize the latex.
It will be understood from the foregoing that
30 my invention broadly comprises the provision of a
resilient blanket behind a printing element of the
character mentioned and the invention is not nec
essarily restricted to the particular mode of ap
plying such a resilient blanket. On the contrary,
the invention consists broadly in the provision of
any resilient blanket behind the printing element
or electrotype during the printing operation in
order that the printing element may yield in or
der that the resulting print may be uniform
throughout its entire area.
It is thought that the invention and numerous
of its attendant advantages will be fully under
stood from the foregoing description, and it is
obvious that numerous changes may be made in
the form, construction, and arrangement of the
various parts, without departing from the spirit
or scope of my invention and without sacri?cing
any of its attendant advantages, the forms here
in described being simply selected embodiments
for the purpose of illustrating the invention.
Having thus described my invention, what I
printing the rubber layer in uncured condition
with an adhesive medium in accordance with the
design on the printing surface of said element,
thereafter dusting upon the printed surface of
the layer a curing medium adapted to control the
resilience of the layer and thereafter curing the
layer and mounting the plate thereon in position
such that the corresponding portions of the ele
ment and of the cured layer are in registration.
5. The method of mounting a relatively thin
shell-like element, which consists in applying a
resilient backing to the element and then dif
ferentially hardening the backing opposite var
ious localized areas of the element to a rela
tively greater degree than opposite the remaining
areas and applying a support of uniform resil
ience behind the differentially hardened backing.
6. As a new article of manufacture, a. unitary PS
printing member comprising a thin printing ele
ment, a backing of resilient material secured to
said printing element, and a substantially non
resilient ?lling layer between the backing and the
printing element, said ?lling layer entering and
?lling the depressions on the back of the printing
'7. A unitary printing member as set forth in
claim 6, wherein the ?lling layer comprises a
metallic material applied to the back of the print
ing element and shaved to provide a flat surface
to receive the resilient backing.
8. As a new article of manufacture, a printing
member comprising a relatively thin element hav
ing a printing surface, certain areas of said sur
face requiring more printing pressure than other
areas, a backing for said element comprising a
yielding layer of resilient rubber, and a layer of
relatively less resilient rubber behind the yield
ing layer.
9. As a new article of manufacture, a. printing
member comprising a relatively thin. shell-like
metallic element having a printing surface on one
side, certain areas of said surface requiring more
printing pressure to print evenly than other areas,
and a resilient backing secured on the other side
claim as new and desire to secure by Letters
Patent is as follows:
1. The method of mounting a relatively thin
of the element, said backing providing yielding
support of less resiliency behind the areas of the
shell-like printing element, which consists in ap
printing surface requiring increased printing
plying a resilient backing to the element and
10. As a new article of manufacture, a. printing
then hardening the backing opposite various
member comprising a relatively thin, shell-like
localized areas of the elementv to a relatively
metallic element provided with a printing sur
greater degree than opposite the remaining areas.
2. The method of mounting a relatively thin
face on one side, certain areas of said surface re
shell-like printing element on a backing com
than other areas of said surface, and a. backing
quiring more printing pressure to print evenly
prising a resilient layer, which consists in treat
secured to the other side of the element, said
backing being adapted to provide relatively firm
ing the layer in order to alter its resilience in ac
cordance with the impression-making surface of support behind the areas of the printing surface
the element and then mounting thev element on requiring increased printing pressure andrela
the treated layer so that the corresponding por
tively more yielding support behind the areas of
tions of the element and layer are in registration. said surface requiring less printing pressure.
3. The method of mounting a relatively thin
11. As a new‘article of manufacture, a printing
shell-like printing element on a backing com ‘member comprising a relatively thin shell-like
element having a metallic printing surface on one
prising a resilient layer of rubber, which com
70 prises printing the layer with a. substance adapt
side, certain areas on said surface requiring more
printing pressure to print evenly than other areas
, ed to alter the resilience of said layer in accord
ance with the design on the printing surface of on said surface, and a backing comprising a layer
said element and then mounting the element on of rubber vulcanized differentially in different
the printed layer with their corresponding por
localities, whereby certain localized areas under
lying the areas of said printing'surface requiring
more printing pressure are relatively less resilient
than other areas in the layer.
12. As a new article of manufacture, a unitary
ment but thicker'than said element, adapted to
force said ?exible printing surface, under print
ing pressure into intimate and even contact with
a surface to be printed upon, not co-planar with
printing member adapted to be used in letterpress
said printing surface, by locally bending said ele
or relief printing, comprising a relatively thin and
?exible metallic element having a printing sur
face, a backing therefor of resilient material, of
said backing to said metallic element.
substantially the same area as said metallic ele
ment to conform to said surface to be printed
upon, and a ?lm of adhesive material securing ~
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