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Inkjet Tip of the Week – Use Ink Wisely

In Ink and Fluids, Inkjet Tips, Knowledge Base by Mary SchillingLeave a Comment

Inkjet Tip of the Week – Use Ink Wisely.
Using a standard, default profile could be costing you money. When creating custom profiles, be sure to print profiling patch charts with different TAC settings such as 260, 240 and 220,  for high, medium and low ink usage options. Print efficiently and economically based on the customer’s needs, not default settings.

Run inkjet less & you’ll have HIGHER service costs.

In Inkjet Tips by Elizabeth GoodingLeave a Comment

Inkjet Tip of the Week: Run inkjet less & you’ll have HIGHER service costs.
Less running time means proportionally more service time with inkjet. Service time with high speed inkjet increases @ proportionally when run less than 1 full shift/day instead of 1+ full shifts per day. Learn about maintenance requirements for shut down and head purges.

Look at Quality Sideways

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Inkjet Tip of the Week: Look at Quality Sideways. After you lay those pages down and admire the depth of color you’ve achieved, or the super-crisp text, pick them up and look at them sideways. Is the paper flat or does it look like the surf’s up at Malibu? Great print quality is “dry flat” print quality without curl, waviness or mottle.   

You Can’t Compete on Cost Alone

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You can’t compete on cost alone.

Buying inkjet and lowering your prices won’t drive profit. Wrap inkjet with service improvement and new capabilities to drive more revenue and a higher margin.  

Make Samples Demonstrate “Best Practices”

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Make Samples Demonstrate “Best Practices.” Show your customers inkjet print samples that show the best practices for design, ink coverage, image complexity and quality and use of relevant personalization. Be your own object lesson and customers will learn how to use inkjet effectively.

Heavy Ink Coverage and Twice the Drying Power

In Books, Catalog & Magazine, Commercial Marketing Collateral, Customer Education, Devices, Direct Marketing, Drying, Finishing, Ink and Fluids, Inkjet Tips, Knowledge Base, Labels, Newspapers, Paper and Media, Service & Maintenance, Traditional Transaction Printing, Transitional Mail, Workbooks & Directories by Mary SchillingLeave a Comment

Printing from the first tower allows ink twice as long to dry helping reduce roller build up and print defects in finishing.

Get the Specs and Read Them

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Before signing your inkjet deal, get the specs for power, ceiling height, load-bearing, square footage, humidity and more. You may find that changes need to be made to your environment that add cost and delay installation. Measure (at least) twice before you buy.

Total Cost of Paper – TCP

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Inkjet Tip of the Week: Understand Total Cost of Paper to compare TCO
TCP=Cost per carton weight (delivered) + cost of priming or spot treatment + excess ink usage+ excess drying energy. Papers not formulated for inkjet often use more ink and require additional drying energy. Measure TCP to fully understand TCO – every machine/ink/paper combination is different.

Stop the (Ink) Bleeding

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Stop the (Ink) Bleeding. Check primed or inkjet coated print for color-to-color bleed/coalescence. Run test images w/ varying solid, single process & combined colors which touch or overlap. Create color areas > 4”x4” to see how ink volume of one image will spread or react to the primed/coated stock when touching another. If only printing pretty bitmap images, bleed effects can be hidden leaving print clarity surprises with solids and touching colors with hard edges.

Monitor Cross-Process Variance

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Monitor Cross-Process Variance. Run a weekly test print showing solid color bars across the web. Include 100, 75 and 30% individual process color bars of at least 3” depth across the entire web width. Testing will show how well your paper path is controlled and identify any jet or head variation causing solid area defects.

Paper Dust and Downtime

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Dust and Downtime
Uncoated papers with uneven surface formation can generate dust. Dust can buildup on paper transports and print heads causing jet-outs, reduced print quality, increased maintenance costs and downtime. If dust concentration is very high, it can have health consequences for workers – more downtime!

Test Gloss Carefully

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More inkjet presses can now print on offset gloss – but test carefully. The ink may adhere just fine, but gloss stocks can slip more easily (especially roll-fed) so check registration of fine images and rich blacks.

Check the Fine Print

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Most aqueous inkjet devices will have plugging and registration issues with rich black text at 9pt or smaller. If you need fine print, test the density of plain K ink and minimize the use of CM&Y. Some OEMs offer high density black.

How to Hide Banding

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If you see banding in continuous solid colors, ask the designer  if “mixing up” that continuous solid is possible. Adding random patterns to large solid colors makes cross process print head density shifts less visible when multiple heads across the web are used to produce the solids.

Compare Costs of Complete Solutions

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Compare Costs of Complete Solutions. Don’t conduct TCO or eliminate press options until you have configured a complete solution. An “expensive” press may look reasonable once you configure the “bargain” press with drying, priming, turn-bar, premium ink, software and finishing. Compare fair!

Understand Press Settings & Profiles

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A different profile is needed for each paper AND the press settings it will be run under. Speed, TAC and resolution factors can all affect color chroma, density, graininess, small text clarity and line raggedness. Differences at top speed can be dramatic on some presses.

Understand Job Productivity

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Not all presses will produce their top quality at top speed. Understand the impact of sheet size or web width, media type, ink coverage and actual production speed (not rated speed) on your achievable Images Per Minute (IPM). There are many other issues that impact overall productivity – but it starts at the press for each job.