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The printer matters! Printing relies on thermal energy to melt the ink. Extensive print testing is conducted with a Datamax or Zebra printer with as many as 15 different ribbons tested on each top coated label material to find the best suited combination to offer to our customers. Must have compatibilities.
- Surface tension of molten ink- surface energy of the ink must match surface energy of the top coat.
- Viscosity of the molten ink
- Smoothness of the receiver surface
- Pressure to establish intimate contact
- Prevents the ability to make photocopies (Security)
- Dwell time for the physical effects to take place
Most Polyonics label materials are designed for thermal transfer printing.
Thermal Transfer- A thermal printing process utilizing a temperature sensitive ribbon that through heat and pressure is selectively transferred to a printable surface thus creating the desired image.
In addition to thermal transfer printing...
Polyonics offers select materials that can be printed with technologies listed below.
Dot Matrix - One of the first printing methods developed, dot matrix printing uses tiny round hammers to pound ink from a coated fabric ribbon onto a substrate Normally dot matrix printers use one or two column dot hammers - the more dot hammers on the print head, the higher the resolution.
Flexography - "Flexo" printing is the most common label printing method. Solvent, water and UV inks are available. Low cost plastic plates are used to transfer the ink to the label or tag surface. Many flexo presses allow the label manufacturer to print, laminate and die cut the label in line, and this makes it suitable for longer runs of labels.
Ink jet- Ink jet printing is the fastest growing of all printing techniques. Problems associated with ink jet's speed and outdoor durability are rapidly being addressed. New pigment inks that are replacing dyes promise greater outdoor durability. Over-laminates extend the chemical resistance of the printed image.
Laser- Laser printing uses a light source to generate an exact duplicate of the image it receives. A laser beam creates an electrostatic image that is then charged onto a photoreceptor; the electrostatic charges from the photoreceptor attract the toner to produce the printed image.