User's instructions, Polymetaal etching presses JSVE series

Perhaps you received your press through a transport company, in which case the press must be unpacked and the bed installed. Delivery includes;

  • the etching press, fixed on the stand (with or without casters)
  • the bed plate.

The presses in these series are driven by a 230 Volt AC electric motor (110 Volt is optional). The electromotor is connected with a wormgear. The wormgear is, via a shaft and a gearbox connected to the lower cylinder. The standard speed of the motor is 1400 R.P.M. An electric press must have some safety features:

  • de cannot run out of the press. Two end switches are situated under the bed, that make the motor stop directly when the end of the bed plate is reached.
  • The electric system includes fuses, which will be activated when the motor meets too much resistance during printing.
  • On both sides of the top cylinder, a safety roller has been placed. These rollers can be lifted to allow the printing sandwich to pass. The risk of accidents will be greatly reduced with this system.

The mechanical part of these presses is similar to the JSV-series. Hence follows here the continued instructions;
You should clean the rollers first. For safety reasons these rollers are packed with grease paper and plastic tape. Make a very small cut in the plastic tape which allows you to peal off this material. The rollers must be cleaned from grease with a solvent . The rollers must be clean and dry before use.


Put the bed in place. The bed fits between adjustable steel guides fixed to the side frames. The image to the right shows the guides in detail. The picture shows a cross-section of a side frame at the point where a guide strip holder is fixed in the side frame. In order to adjust the play between the guides and the bed, the guide strips must be moved. Just unscrew the small screws in the side frame (with a metric key) and readjust the position of the guide strips. You may use a small hammer to move the guide strips. After adjustment tighten the screws again.


The stand is always part of the delivery since the electric drive system is partly fixed to the stand. De stand consists however of square tubing and can be disassembled. The metric bolts M8x60 are used for connecting the tubing, and the bolts M8x70 are used for the connection between the stand and the press. The bolts M8x70 can only be inserted, "bottom up" into the stand and the side frames.

Use of the press
This presses are very well suited for printing intaglio (copper and zinc plates) as well as woodcuts and linocuts.
The following drawing shows the situation while printing from an etched or engraved metal plate. (intaglio)

The purpose of the felt is to press the paper into the small engraved lines of the plate, in order to accept ink.
Some people use cardboard shims under the pressure spindle (between the small moveable part and the bearing block of the top roller) to generate more "flexibility" in the press. For etching is has not much effect, but for printing woodcuts or linocuts it can be of help. It helps to compensate the irregularities of the wood's surface.

Printing woodcuts and linocuts with this press

The drawing shows a layer of felt. This felt has also the feature to compensate for irregularities of the woodcut or linocut. (differences in thickness). If the woud or lino should be perfectly plane, no felt was needed. Underneath the felt is a plastic layer (PVC) of appr. 5mm (0.2 inches) thick. This is only functional in combination with the felt. If the PVC layer should not be used, the felt would press the paper into the hollows of the woodcut or linocut. If you want embossing, very well. If not, prevent this from happening by using the plastic layer.

  • The bearings of this do press not need lubrication. (all ball bearings)
  • Each year the gearing wheels should be inspected. Take the cover off and check is there is still enough grease on them. If not, just use ball-bearing grease (available in any hardware shop)
  • The electromotor is maintenance free as well as the wormdrive. These components were designed for industrial use and have therefore a long life.
  • It is recommanded to use and store this press in a dry room, to prevent rusting. (For example, etching with aggressive agents should be done in a different room, for the same reason)