How to Mount a Flexo Plate

Hi I'm Zach Blackburn I'm an instructor flexography here at Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte North Carolina today we're going to learn how to mount a plate for a comm coca dead prez.

Before you get started you need to gather up the materials that you're going to need you're going to need a pan black sharpie a blade your plate that is trimmed down nice and neat you'll need a cylinder that is the the correct repeat length that matches your plate you're going to need your sticky back and you're also going to need your plate mount.

Before we begin we need to find the center of our plate.

Our our mount has a ruler on it and I just measure from bare to bar bare bar and I find the center of it my marking on the backside of the plate with my black sharpie.

Just a little black marks all you need and actually I'm going to the next thing I want to do is take my cylinder with the gear side to my left put it on and tighten it up. All right.

Now we're ready to put the sticky back onto the cylinder what's important that you do at this point is you identify the score line the score line is there because that's where you're going to cut on it whenever you put the blade to the cylinder you want to make sure that it is going in that score line otherwise you'll scratch the cylinder and damage it.

I take my sticky back and I peel off just a little bit and you don't have to but it up right against the gear I see people wanting to put it right up against the gear all the time but it's totally unnecessary.

What I'm going to do is I come here and you see how I got it see how I have it but it up right against the cylinder.

That's what I want and I'm gonna just stick it down right beyond that score line there and what I'm gonna do is I'm I'm going to trim off right at that score line with my blade my cell now I'm just going to roll it on and I'm keeping it pushed right up against the cylinder that keeps it straight.

As I'm going on I'm just kind of working it on and then I came back around to that score line.

Again I use my ruler and we want to cut again on that score line.

We have a nice smooth seam right here butts right up against each other nice and even and it does not overlap perfect.

At this point I'm going to peel the top layer off of the sticky back to expose the stickiness. All right, one little trick that I like to do is I just take my finger and I want to rub it right on the scene by doing that it takes a little bit of the stickiness off the seam.

If I if I put the plate on and I have to peel it back up it won't peel the sticky back up with the plate.

It just kind of smoothes it out there. All right.

What I need now is I need a I need a horizontal line going across it just a little bit above where my where the seam is for my sticky back.

I grab my pen and I just go ahead and put that line on it now you need a real fine line there.

Don't use your Sharpie whenever you do this. All right, the next thing I'm going to do is I'm going to mark the center point of the press it's not the center of the cylinder and that throws people off it's not the center of the of the cylinder it's the center of the press and what you do is you take your ruler you bump it right up against the gear right up against it not on top of it and you're going to put a mark at 4 and 1/16 now our ruler has a little mark right there where that is.

It's just past the four mark it's a little marks there all you need now to actually get the plate mounted on there you line up the center mark that we made earlier and then you use your register marks as your guide.

You're going to say the horizontal line in that register mark on the top is going to line up with that line.

I line the register marks up with the line and I line my Center mark up to the center mark on my cylinder and I just stick it down now what I got to do is I need to roll it on to see how well I did now I'm not really like kind of sticking it down hard right now because I'll probably have to make some adjustments you get it the first try you're awfully good and I did not I use my bear bars as a guide and in what has happened is the tail that I wrapped around is a little bit on this side.

I need to bring it this way.

What I'm going to do is I'm just going to peel it up I'm not going to peel it up all the way and.

Since the tail was a little too far this way I'm gonna as I'm pulling it around I'm going to tug on this corner to kind of pull it this way.

I just pull a night-sky see how I'm just going to tug in she's got a tugging in this direction they didn't need to move far just a little bit now it looks like I got it lined up pretty even there.

If I'm happy where it is I double check both sides and make sure that there's no overlap it's looking pretty good I got a little bit of a gap there because well the plate wasn't trimmed perfectly straight but that's. Okay, it's not really going to show up too much and I just examine my bare bars to make sure that the line just keeps lined up and if I'm pleased with that I usually have a roller handy and I can just roll out the air bubbles on it nice and good. All right, the last thing that we do once we've got it ready to go is I'm gonna take my sharpie and I'm gonna peel it up peel up the edge just a little bit I'm talking about just a very small amount and we're going to take the sharpie and I'm gonna put it on the underside of the plate now what the Sharpie actually does on the underside of the plate is it helps the plate on the edges adhere to the sticky back better I don't know the chemistry behind it if anybody knows put that in the comic comments that'd be awesome but for some reason it'll it adheres to the sticky back a little bit better.

I just put it on there I give a little blow.

It dries before I stick it back down and then I stick it back down and then just repeat on the other edge.

Pretty easy to do and just believe it or not this does help quite a bit because one of the the biggest problems that that we have especially on a longer run is that the ink will start getting up under the plate and it makes it peel off.

But by putting a little bit of the black sharpie there for some reason it just sticks better and it sticks longer and there's less of a problem of the plate peeling off.

There we go our plate is now mounted and we're ready to go the last thing that I'm going to do is I'm going to clean up after myself throw away all straps and now I'm ready to start printing you.

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