Horizontal comparison of various methods of sticker printing

China's current self-adhesive label printing method is mainly based on letterpress printing, sheet-fed offset printing also occupies a certain proportion, flexo printing and other printing methods account for a small proportion.

Determined by the printability of the film label itself, flexo or gravure printing is undoubtedly the most traditional printing method. Therefore, label printing plants that already have flexographic printing machines can generally print both self-adhesive labels and film labels. Can companies that print labels mainly in relief printing, offset printing, or screen printing realize the conversion of printed materials without replacing equipment?

1. Embossed

It uses relief printing to print self-adhesive labels, and the printing plates are photosensitive resin relief plates. The printed labels have the advantage of full ink color, but now the level of relief printing equipment is quite different. Some of the rotary embossing machines have adopted professional oblique back, satellite or unit type sticker printing machines, so they cannot be generalized during the transformation.

Professional self-adhesive printing machines mainly based on relief printing have the ability to print film labels, but they need to contact the supplier to replace some related parts, such as adding a tension control system controlled by a servo motor, adding a film surface treatment unit, high-end Some machines can also add a precise registration system. In addition, the uv light source power should also be adjusted appropriately.

For companies that use round flat-top relief printing machines to print self-adhesive labels, if printing film labels, you can change the photosensitive resin plate to a high-elastic flexographic plate, use water-based ink or uv ink suitable for flexo, and change the nature of the ink to Adapt to substrate changes.

2. offset printing

Offset printing is the main method for printing paper stickers in Chinese label printing factories. The characteristics of offset printing are fine graphics and rich layers, suitable for mass printing, and the printing equipment can be used in one machine, suitable for the characteristics of the Chinese label market. However, sheet-fed offset printing is not suitable for printing films with no absorption on the surface, because film labels are mostly roll-to-roll printing, which requires volatile dry ink. Offset printing can print thicker plastic materials, such as in-mold labels and label hang tags, but the machine must be equipped with a UV curing device, which requires a large fee.

3. Flexo

At present, the quality of flexographic printed matter is no less than that of offset printing, and even has its unique features. This printing process has the advantages of simple machine structure, low cost, comparable printing quality to offset printing and gravure printing, and has the advantage of being thicker than the ink layer of offset printing products. Flexographic printing uses water-based ink and uv ink without polluting the environment.

However, due to the greater flexibility of the flexographic version, the tone reproducibility is different from that of intaglio and ordinary letterpress. The dots from the highlight to the middle tone of the flexographic printing increase greatly, the contrast of the printing is small, and the highlight layer is prone to faults. In order to make up for the defects of the layer when labeling, FM dots can be used in the highlight part, dark tone or amplitude modulation screen is called in the middle to improve the quality. A label printing plant without a flexo printing machine can introduce a laminated narrow-width flexographic printing machine dedicated to self-adhesive label printing, which is suitable for film label printing. Because flexographic printing presses use round die-cutting, die-cutting rollers are expensive, and the production cycle is long. They are only suitable for long-type jobs, and are not suitable for the characteristics of large domestic demand for short-label stickers. However, it is an easy-to-transform label printing equipment that can work online with film slitting, stitching, and sealing processes.

4. Gravure

Gravure printing adopts short ink path inking system for ink supply, web printing, high degree of automation, using solvent-based ink, the ink layer dries quickly, is the first choice for film printing. Generally, the speed of gravure printing machine is relatively high, and the rear end of many gravure printing machines is also equipped with a cylinder die cutting device, which can perform die cutting and indentation, and is suitable for the printing of various labels. However, due to the long gravure plate-making cycle and expensive plate-making cost, it is only suitable for large-scale label production.

5. Screen printing

Screen printing is the most adaptable printing method for substrates. At present, many screen printing factories use low-cost screen printing equipment to undertake the printing business of self-adhesive labels and film labels. The characteristics of screen-printed labels are thick ink color and strong three-dimensional sense. Film products can be printed with uv ink. In addition to the few types of rotary screen printing equipment that can be competent for roll-to-roll label printing, most screen printing equipment is semi-automatic flat screen printing machines, which can only print single-sheet products. The accuracy of overprinting is not high, which is not suitable for the production line. Film label production equipment. The post-press processing technology should also pay attention to the corresponding changes in the post-print processing of the label during the business transformation. For example, when printing the self-adhesive label, the post-press processing of the self-adhesive is divided into sheet processing and roll according to the application form of the label Paper processing.

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