To make plain line cuts, follow the foregoing instructions to the point where the plate is first placed in the acid bath omitting the rosin dust. Go through the same manipulation until you get a depth of about one quarter the thickness of the zinc plate.
Now the sides of the lines will need protection. As the plate lies in the bath remove the dissolved zinc from it with a camel hair brush. Occasional brushing in like manner is advantageous all through the etching process. Then quickly rinse the plate in water, dry, remove composition from lines with alcohol and clean plate free from grease with lye. With a roller put a smooth medium coat of job ink on a smooth, solid, heavy cardboard, lay it on a perfectly level surface, then lay the cut face down on the inked surface of the card and with a rolling pin, or something equally round and true, roll with considerable pressure across the plate in different directions until you see by examination that the faces of all the lines have taken ink; then apply the dragon's blood and in removing the loose powder that is not held by the ink, brush gently both ways across the plate, and both ways from end to end, until all is swept from the etched surface.
Between the lines that are close together the powder will remain, as it ought if you brush gently, for further etching is not necessary at such points. Now heat the plate well until the powder and ink fuses and you see a little smoke rising from the plate; thebeat causes the fusing composition to flow down the stres of the lines which protect them. When the plate has cooled, in spots where the ink has caught in any of the open etched places, scratch it out with a sharp pointed penknife, then varnish the back of the plate and continue etching. When the dark coating on the plate can not he removed with a gentle touch of the brush, it is safe to add a little more acid to the bath; and when the bath gets thick and slimy it is best to throw it away and use fresh.
This time go about half through the zinc, then clean the cardboard, apply the dragon's blood and heat plate as before; then varnish the back and proceed to etch again until there is but a thin shell left. Next, clean both sides of the plate and trim up to about 1/8 in. of the part occupied by the line work and mount on a block. When mounted, cut out with the point of knife all open places as large as the end of your thumb and larger.
To make a plate from a type form, take a fresh, well inked impression on smooth paper, saturate paper in water, drain the water off and transfer by pressure to cleaned zinc, same as in making other transfers. Give the transfer the dragon's blood treatment, next the rosin dust, then heat the plate and proceed to etch the same as in making a lithotint cut. Fresh impressions from cuts can also be transferred and etched in this manner.
A lithotint cut can be given a second and deeper etching by the re-inking process. When a design for a cutis not well covered with line work, the plate should be made in the lithotint style which, like a half-tone is solid printing surface, there being no white or open spaces to cut out. During the progress of the etching if you notice any weak point that is liable to cut away, dry the plates; with pencil, brush and asphaltum var-nish, carefully touch it up, dry a little and continue etching.
To make a cut from a photo, draw with India ink right over the outlines of the photo outlines, dry, and proceed as with an ordinary drawing. Dragon's blood is preparation of rosin nature, which may be purchased at any druggist's.