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Senefelder's Liquid Asphaltum

Senefelder's Liquid Asphaltum is a tar product used as an acid resist in etching and inking base in lithography. Senefelder's Liquid Asphaltum preserves and protects etched plates against oxidation and scratching.

Etching and Intaglio

According to the manufacturer, Graphic Chemical, Senefelder's Liquid Asphaltum is primarily used for the preservation of plates from corrosion, rusting and scratching. It dries to a hard surface. Asphaltum is frequently used as a ground, a stop out varnish and even as a coating for the backs of plates prior to immersing in an acid bath.


The same asphaltum used for these etching purposes is the same liquid asphaltum used by lithographers in their work. Senefelder's asphaltum is buffed onto the litho surface before being rolled up in black ink. Senefelder's Asphaltum is used in lithography as a base for roll up ink to adhere. This process is an essential step and requires an oily ink such as Graphic Chemicals Roll Up Black or Charbonnel Noir A Monter ink and a Leather Inking Roller. The surface of the plate is kept damp with a litho sponge. This process allows the ink to adhere to the asphaltum base only in areas of the image that are receptive to ink in The ball grained plate or litho stones is then wiped clean water and shop towels to remove excess asphaltum.

Senefelder's Liquid Asphaltum

Available in pint quart and gallon cans.

Item# 540091 pint
Item# 540092 quart
Item# 540093 gallon
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