Cover sheet vs release paper : LUSENET : B&W Photo - Printing & Finishing : One Thread

I recently bought my first drymount press (used), and had a heck of a time finding release paper. Finally, I found an old 6-sheet pack of Seal "Cover Paper", which someone in the store said is the same as "release paper" except thicker.

True or false? I did a small test using an old RC test print, using Colormount tissue, on some mat board, and all went fine. Still, it makes me vaguely nervous...

Cheers, \donw

-- Don Wilkes (, April 18, 2002


They actually are two different things. Release paper is almost like wax paper (without wax). You use it between the tacking iron and the adhesive to keep any glue from sticking to the iron (at least I use it that way). You still have to be careful not to get adhesive on the print. A cover sheet goes against the print surface when you actually squish the thing in the press. It keeps the texture of any boards in there from being impressed into the print, and keeps the print from generally getting messed up by the heat when against another surface. When I tack a print to it's board, I use a cover sheet against the print to keep the iron from leaving marks then as well. So, what that all sums up to is: release paper is used against the adhesive side, while a cover sheet is to protect the print. Of the two, the cover sheet is the more important. I suspect there are other substitutes for the release paper. Anything that the adhesive won't stick to could be used for that, which probably also includes cover sheet stock.

-- Chris (, April 18, 2002.

I just use a sheet of archival mount board instead of release paper. This ensures a more even heat distribution. Obviously, it needs to be replaced every so often. It probably would not hurt to use the cover paper on the print and then add a sheet of mount board on top of that. If you use mount board on top, make sure it is a competely smooth variety to avoid any imprint of texture from the mount board onto the print.

-- Michael Feldman (, April 19, 2002.

Thanks for all the tips, guys; it now makes a bit more sense. Curiously, though, the instructions with the Colormount tissue only speak of release paper -- they do not mention cover paper at all. I wonder if cover paper is an "older" product?

As for using mat board instead of cover paper, I think that might cause problems if there was a bit of drymount tissue peeking out the edge of the print. You could end up with a permanently bonded sandwich...

It'd be nice if I could get a small quantity of release paper for use at the tacking stage, but since the cover paper will do the job, it looks to not really be absolutely necessary.

Thanks again! \donw

-- Don Wilkes (, April 19, 2002.

Go to a framing shop and ask if they can spare some release paper. I did, and they have me a big honkin sheet of it

-- Wayne (, April 19, 2002.

I've never heard of cover paper. I use only release paper between the photograph and the platen of the dry mount press. Release paper is available in rolls from Light Impressions.

-- Ed Buffaloe (, April 20, 2002.

Wayne: I did just that, quite some time ago. What the guy in the fram shop gave me, though, was definitely not release paper -- it seemed more like the backing from some peel-and-stick stuff. I didn't have my press yet at that time, and when I tried to use an old non-steam iron to tack some tissue to a test pring using the stuff, it threatened to melt onto the iron. Now, it may have been release paper and I just had the iron's temperature up too high, but I have my doubts...

I'll have to make more of an effort to find another framing shop, I think.

I was prepared to bite the bullet and order a roll from someone like Calumet, but the price really put me off, especially when it's vastly more than I'd use for years. My local largish photo supply store says they can't order from Seal any more (I don't know why), so ordering from the States would be really pricey, what with the exchange rate (currently around 0.62), shipping, duty, and whatnot.

But hey -- this cover sheet stuff seems to be doing the job, so I'm happy... :}

Cheers, \dw

-- Don Wilkes (, April 22, 2002.

Don, I don't use a Cover Sheet when mounting prints. I find that the suface is too hard and can cause "dimples" in the print if there is a large enough piece of dust caught between the cover sheet and the print. I use a mat board as my top layer in the mount press. It is softer and has never left an imprint on the image. If you are worried about excess mount tissue sandwiching your print to the top mat you probably need to take the time to trim more off. There should be no mount tissue showing when you mount the print. Remember, you don't get a second chance. Joel

-- Joel Brown (, April 25, 2002.

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