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Size matters - first heating test

Posted by Dave Bull at 8:31 AM, July 29, 2010

This thread about paper sizing is continued from here, and started here.

The delivery man knocked at the door this morning - as the 'just in time' system keeps ticking along. He brought the solution for the question of how to heat the sizing mixture in its tray. This should do it:

That doesn't tell you much I suppose, so let's get it unwrapped ...

Yes, a new Zojirushi table hot plate. It all fits together into a nice package for storage: ribbed steak grilling tray, grease catching tray, some other parts I can't really identify well, and ... a flat griddle, with 2cm raised edges!

No use for the steak stuff (not today, anyway!) so I put those parts aside, and set up the plain tray. After filling it with water, I put two small wooden 'feet' in, stood my own new tray on top with three litres of water inside, and then fired it up, using the 'warming' setting (as low as it would go).

It didn't take more than a few minutes for the whole system to stabilize ... at just around the perfect temperature for what I want!

I had been a bit afraid that it wouldn't go low enough, but this will do very well. After watching it for a while, I think this is going to be relatively easy to control - I will have to 'top up' the water in the bottom tray frequently as it evaporates, but the system soon brings that up to temperature, without affecting the upper mixture too much.

So this will do for now. On the 'to do' list for next time I'm in Akihabara will be picking up a small microcontroller unit with a thermocouple. That will let me 'set and forget', so I don't have to watch the thermometer all the time. (Although after letting this test run for a couple of hours today, it really does seem quite stable just as it is.)

Sometime later this afternoon, there is supposed to be a delivery of some unsized paper that I'll be using for the first tests. I don't want to waste any of my normal printing stock (from Iwano-san) until I get the rough hang of how to use that brush. Until then, I'll use the time making up a pile more of the hangers (I'll need about 60 of them, as that's how many sheets of paper I plan to be running in each sizing batch), and continuing with the left-over book printing work from yesterday. (Ichikawa-san will be picking all that stuff up tomorrow evening, so I have to get busy to play my part in the 'just in time' game ...

This thread about sizing continues here.


Following comment posted by: Dave on July 29, 2010 5:08 PM

As part of the preparation for these tests, I have been collecting information on the sizing procedure from a number of the books on my shelf here.

I thought it might be worthwhile putting it 'out there', so have prepared an info dump page over in the Encyclopedia section of the site. I'll add to it as I find more info, and then, once I have a bit of my own experience under my belt, will prepare a 'how to' page ...

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