Plastic is a highly versatile material that can be customized and Plastic Printing as desired. However, the printing process can be slightly complex when it comes to plastics. Plastic printing often demands specially prepared inks, ink curing, and material topcoats every so often for good ink adhesion.
Printing onto plastic materials enables companies to create a variety of distinctive, also, premium quality products ranging from folders and ring binders to pens and signage.
Knowing which plastic printing method will work best for your application might be challenging. Here are some of the most common methods of plastic printing for you to explore and ultimately choose the one that is ideal for you:
Methods of Plastic Printing
Digital Inkjet Printing
Rapid and pioneering advances in digital print technology have greatly expanded the scope of what can be accomplished. One such advancement is digital inkjet printing, which allows you to print high-quality colored images on a variety of plastics. Since this procedure requires minimal setup, it’s suitable for one-off printing or short production runs.
Digital inkjet printing can be used on a variety of plastics, ranging from thin self-adhesive vinyl to large plastic products.
Screen printing is a conventional printing technology that is suited for a variety of purposes. Block stencils are used on a soft silk mesh in this process. Afterwards, ink is pushed through the stencil to transfer the design to the specified material. It is then dried under a UV light to lock in the color. Although colors can be vibrant, image quality isn’t known to be the best with screen printing. Vector graphics, which copy and transfer better, can be used to combat this.
Pad printing is one of the simplest processes to print plastic. All you have to do is engrave your desired image on a silicone plate which is then flooded with ink and wiped clean. Ink is left only in the etched area. The ink surface becomes sticky which causes it to cling to the printing pad, sealing that side of the ink film and as a result, the pad is pressed onto the product leaving the image behind.
Pad printing is an excellent method for printing a two-dimensional picture directly onto three-dimensional objects like promotional golf balls, rulers, and bottles. Single color pad printing print is cost-effective but multiple colors are also an option.
UV Litho printing for Plastic Printing
This is the printing method that can produce images with possibly the highest definition and quality in a wide range of colors. The UV Litho printing process implies the utilization of UV drying units which cause the ink on the surface of flexible substrates to dry out. This printing technology has several advantages that help you achieve high-definition images. Also, the images can be obtained in a wide range of colors.
The initial setup process can be slightly time-consuming and quite costly but since the run-ons are quick, it is affordable compared to production runs that take longer.
Flexography printing, often known as flexo printing, is a modern version of letterpress that can print on practically any substrate, including plastic, metallic films, cellophane, and paper. With this method, you can print both images and words on vinyl.
Flexo printing is a swift and economically efficient method for printing on thin and flexible services like plastic bags, vinyl labels, and food packaging among several others. Although flexo printing produces superior quality prints, it cannot produce images in such high resolution as litho UV printing and inkjet printing. Laser Printing This is a digital printing method that uses electrostatics.
This is a digital printing method that uses electrostatics.
The printing process is completed by the perpetual back and forth movement of laser beam on a negatively charged cylinder. For plastic printing, you can use a typical office laser printer. Simply double-check that the materials you’re printing are compatible. Otherwise, the fuse unit in the printer may become excessively hot, causing the plastic sheets to melt.
As you can see, plastic printing can be done in a variety of ways but only one of these print methods is usually best suited to the task at hand. So, it’s important that you choose wisely.