(October 15th, 2003, 1:17 am)
I hit enter AGAIN! Man. It's been too long since I've been on here.
ANYHOW. This is an update for what's going on in my life - if anyone cares. This post will go into my current life absorbers - Anime and Printing, as well as touch on a few minor things. I seem to have a knack for starting long threads, so maybe I can grab enough interest... HEh.
Ok. But first, I am back into writing again. I've decided to stop work on my current projects for now, and (since I only have bite-size sections of time) work on random short stories. I can write stuff out on my Palm while I'm at work, and currently that seems to work pretty well. Nothing finished yet, but I feel good that I've at least started.
Anime. Heheheh. As some of you know, I use Direct Connect ALL THE TIME, and even run a private hub for my friends. I am in the Baka United and CrazyCatGirl hubs, as well as the Otaku Anime hubs (when they aren't crashz0r3d). Also, I am in a couple mega-share hubs that I visit from time to time, simply because there's not a hub out there that doesn't require a share limit higher than my share, which is nearly 400gigs. :)
Anyhow. My anime collection is now pushing 180 gigs. I have complet series' of (to name a few):
Neon Genesis Evangelion (Seen this)
Trigun (Seen this)
Great Teacher Onizuka (Seen)
Cowboy Bebop (Seen)
Blue Submarine No. 6 (Seen)
Azumanga Daioh (Seen)
Vandread Stages One and Two (Seen)
Haibane Renmei (Seen)
Full Metal Panic! (Seen)
Macross Plus, both the four-part OVA (Seen) and the movie (not seen)
Other notable series mostly completed:
Macross Zero (Seen both released episodes, and I have both of them in 5.1 Dolby =D The things are nearly 400 megs each, for a 30-minute file)
Sentou Yousei Yukikaze "Battle Fairy Yukikaze" (Seen the first episode, have both released episodes. Both this and Macross Zero are BRAND NEW, with Macross Zero episode two being released maybe a month ago)
Last Exile (this is pretty cool, and also brand new... Studio Gonz's latest offering on the TV end, uses a TON of cell-shaded CGI. Looks very nice. Seen through episode 8)
And I have maybe half of Ruroni Kenshin and one-third of Kimagure Orange Road (Both are massive series, with Kenshin having something like 94 episodes and KOR having over a hundred. I've not seen any of either)
Also working on Outlaw Star, Wolf's Rain, Real Bout High School, Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex, Chobits, Several Macross series' and Excel Saga, just to name a few.
On the movie end, I have: (Items marked with an asterix I have seen)
Cowboy Bebop: The Movie "Knockin' on Heaven's Door" *
Mononoke Hime "Princess Mononoke" *
Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi "Spirited Away" *
Castle in the Sky
Jin-Roh: The Wolf Brigade *
Street Fighter Alpha - The Animation
Kiki's Delivery Service
Ghost in the Shell *
She and Her Cat *
Voices of a Distant Star *
Anyhow, before that gets too long (it already has, I know, I know...) A lot of these are in OGM format. It's not really a format, as such, but rather a "package" file. It allows you to have multiple video, audio and subtitle streams all in the same file, as well as chapters. It's so very very cool to watch my two-file Bebop movie in near-DVD quality video (encoded with DivX 5.03 and OGG audio) and be able to switch between English and Japanese without skipping a beat. You can do that with the subs, though, because they have to sync with the video.
Ok. Enough about that. Printing.
My old pressman finally left, and so I've been upgraded from helper to second pressman/helper. Heh. I am 21 years old with 9 months printing experience and I'm running on a 10 color Heidelberg Speedmaster. Guys, this is like being a mechanic on a Rolls-Royce at 14. Heidelberg makes the best sheetfed presses in the world, and the Speedmaster line is the flagship model. Capable of printing a 36x40 inch sheet at 12,000 impressions an hour while perfecting... This thing is amazingly fast. You would not believe how many sheets of paper this thing can use in an 8-hour day.
It's nearly 80 feet long and weighs over sixty-three tons. It draws 400 amps of current at 430v (I think, but it's a funny number so I'm probably wrong there). Computer controlled by a Celeron 850 running NT 4.0 Server with Service Pack 5, with a 15" touch screen LCD. I don't remember how much ram it has off the top of my head. I wanna say 256Megs, but I'm not sure.
Ok. Now. How does a press work? For help, because it's complex, go to: www.heidelberg.com/hq/eng/Images/16_2116.pdf and look at page 12. There's a nice diagram that will make everything clear.
Notice there are 10 vertical towers. These are Units. Each unit has one color of ink, which is in a Fountain at the top. Notice that the circles, which are Ink Transfer rollers, at the top are all one color for each unit. The fifth unit has no color, because that's for a spot color, which I may get to later.
There are four colors (because this is four-color process, but there is also something called Hexachrome which uses 6 colors), which are Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and blacK (CMYK).
The bigger cylinders at the bottom are the impression and transfer drums. The big orange one is the perfector, which flips the sheet end for end, allowing the other side to be printed on.
The Feeder is on the right, called because the sheets are FED from that end, and the Delivery on the left.
Now. Take any unit, and starting from the top you have three cylinders. The topmost one is the Plate Cylinder. The plate is clamped to this, and ink is applied to the plate via the four FORM ROLLERS (touching the cylinder on the top). There is a small group of grey rollers to the right, and this is the DAMPENER, which applies FOUNTAIN SOLUTION to the plate.
I had better explain that before going on... The plate is photo sensitive aluminum (They have steel ones now, but those are REALLY new), and is basically developed like film. Image areas attract ink, and non image, processed areas reject ink. The fountain solution washes the excess ink off of the plate, so that there is only ink on image areas. There is a fine balance to be reached here, as you can probably guess.
Ok. Then, the plate cylinder touches the BLANKET (grey drum, second from top, under the plate cylinder). The blanket is a multi-ply rubber and cloth material that is slightly compressable and somewhat tacky to the touch. This takes the image off the plate, which reverses said image, but that's fine since the plate is normal reading order.
The blanket then makes contact with the third drum, the IMPRESSION CYLINDER. Well, it WOULD, except that the paper runs between the blanket and impression cylinders and accepts the ink from the blanket.
In the diagram you'll see rotation arrows and grey lines. The lines are where paper goes (actually they are sheet guides, but it's close enough).
This process is repeated four times, once for each color, and in the end you have (via build-up screens, or dot patterns), a full-color sheet. In this press, it's then perfected and the process is repeated on the other side.
Then it goes up the delivery, held at one end by a gripper bar, and dropped onto the PILE. There are powder sprays here that help absorb the ink and keep it from SET-OFF, which is ink that transfers to sheets above or below it from too much pressure being applied.
This is probably way over-simplified for you guys, but maybe not. The process is pretty complex. I'd love to talk about either of these things (Anime or Printing), but I have to go to bed now since I (duh) work tomorrow. I've been up far too late as it is.
Besides, this post is WAY WAY WAY long. :)
(October 16th, 2003, 9:50 pm)
Yes, way too long. Nice to know you're writing again. And btw, finish Rurouni Kenshin, it kicks ass.
(October 20th, 2003, 11:26 am)
Hey, you're a printer, that's cool. I worked on two or three small presses in high school.
The first machine i printed on was an old Heidelberg Degel, very old (like 40 to 50 years) and so very cool to work with ;) (here's a vague picture of one, i don't if you're familiar with this machine).
I also worked on a MOO (funny, i remember the type was MOO, but forgot if it was a roland or a heidelberg) which was a big clumsy one colour press, and another fancy (with electronics) one-colour machine i can't remember the name of (i think it was a japanese one).
Since i studied graphical science i didn't get much practical hours to actually work with the presses itself. I never got arround to doing more then two colours ;)
Good explenation of the printing procedure, it's probably still hard to visualise the whole proces if you've never seen a press though...
(October 20th, 2003, 4:37 pm)
He's back :D
ooh - nice anime collection - /me grabs escaflowne and runs off
got the first DVD of this - enjoyed it, but the tarot cards in it bothered me :/
Just bought the first Hellsing DVD - looks pretty good so far. Try and find Noir - that seems to be one awesome series from what I've seen of it so far.
As for the printing - Cool :D Must be doing well if you're getting promoted that quick :P hehe
Sounds interesting stuff (hve a friend who used to work in printing), but most of all - it's damn nice to hear you're back writing again :P
(October 20th, 2003, 6:00 pm)
I've made my own origional prints in an art class I took a couple years back. It was fun.
(December 28th, 2003, 12:00 am)
I think that I suck at plot. I can do style, world development, character development and I can put it all together with breathtaking polish - but I can't do plot or dialogue worth jack. *sigh*
Every story I start dies because I can't figure out what happens next. I thought short stories were easier. Ah well.
I posted my latest failure in the "Rough Drafts" section... If anyone can give me any ideas I'd appreciate it.
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