Q: How do you maintain paper registration when printing on plastic?

A: Anybody who’s ever printed on plastic knows that this material introduces a whole new set of challenges. Two of the main issues are avoiding distortion and maintaining ink adhesion.Printing on plastic requires UV light so that the ink penetrates the material from top to bottom and sticks to the plastic.Running that UV light generates a lot of heat. That causes the back cylinders to heat up tremendously, which can easily distort the paper registration.That leaves you with two choices. Stop the press to allow time for the cylinders to cool down. The other option is to sacrifice adhesion of the ink to the plastic.At Edison, one of our two Rapida 205 81” presses is outfitted with a plastics package. The package includes special “chillers” to cool down the back cylinders and keep the plastic from distorting and to maintain plastic registration.

Q: We use window signage in our national chain of retail stores. Some of our store managers want the signage to stick on the outside of the window and some want it to stick it to the inside of the window.Do you have a solution for us?

A: You would benefit from a flexible solution like static cling. Static cling is similar to the tinting on a car window.What you are doing is printing an image onto a vinyl film.The film comes with a white paper backing which protects the “sticky” side of the film.To affix the signage to your window, simply clean the window with soap and water, peel the paper off the back, press it firmly against the glass, and squeegee out the remaining air.The great thing about this product is that it can be set up for right reading or wrong reading, depending on your positioning.In order to position the signage on the inside of your window, the image is printed in reverse onto the film with the white on top.This enables you to have the printed image and the static cling on the same side.