Types of Printing Explained

Learn More About Logo Printing in Hot Stamp Foil, Flexo Ink, Screen Printing, and Digital Transfer Ink Printing.

 

Flexo Printing - Ink

Flexo Graphic Ink Printing Example

Ink printing for packaging is a Flexo type printing technique that uses a rubber plate to stamp the image of your logo or artwork on the box or bag. You can ink print on a broad assortment of our in stock bags & boxes.

 

  • Flexo Ink Printing is one of the most affordable types of post printing on packaging. It is a good quality print, but not the highest quality in comparison to Digital Process Printing.

  • Simple logos, limited to one or two colors, are recommended with Flexo Printing.

  • Flexo Printing uses a rubber stamp that is pressed onto the surface of the bag or box to apply the ink.

  • Matte Surfaces are the only surfaces that can be printed with Flexo Ink printing.

  • Gloss surfaces can not be printed with this method, due to the high possibility of the ink smearing on the slick surface.

  • Only one or two colors can be printed with this method, and each color needs it's own rubber plate which is printed separately.

  • Bounce Factor: Since two color printing requires each color to be stamped at separate times, a small bounce factor (or movement allowance) of 1/4 inch may occur between the colors of you logo.

  • Ink is not an opaque substance, and you can see through it. If you print ink over a vibrant or dark color of box or bag, it will appear either different in shade or color. Samples of your ink will require approval before production begins.

 

Foil Hot Stamp Printing

Foil Hot Stamp Feature

Foil Hot Stamp Printing is a method that uses color foils with heated metal plates to stamp which seals the image of your logo onto the packaging.

 

  • Hot Stamp Printing is also a very affordable type of post printing on packaging.

  • Foils are solid and opaque, which means that unlike Ink, you can't see through them. Foil printing offers more vibrant and crisp colors, especially when printing on color base boxes or bags.

  • Foil Hot Stamp Printing uses a metal plate that is heated to stamp the foil against the packaging.

  • Both glossy and matte surfaces can be Hot Foil Stamped.

  • Only one or two colors can be printed with this method. Each color needs it's own metal plate and prints separately.

  • Foil printing can overlap if you have a second color. The overlap needs to be minimal so that the foil does not damage or flake while printing the second color on top of the first color.

  • Bounce Factor: Since two color printing requires each color to be stamped at separate times, a small bounce factor (or movement allowance) of 1/4 inch may occur between the colors of you logo.

Screen Printing - Ink

Silk Screen Printing Feature

Screen Printing is an ink based printing application where your logo design is applied using a film onto a fine mesh screen pushing the ink through which transfers the image to the surface of the product.

 

  • Screen Printing is more precise and crisp than Flexo Ink Printing.

  • It is most often used on fabric, such as T-Shirt printing. For packaging, it used mainly on canvas and non-woven bags and totes.

  • Some of our manufacturers also use this method for printing items that would otherwise be damaged by using a Foil or Flexo stamping method with a plate striking the surface.

  • Corrugated boxes and certain textured boxes should be Screen Printed since they would and crush and damage with a stamping method.

  • Up to three colors can be Screen Printed since this is more of a precise method and has less movement when printing. Each color is printed separately and requires it's own screen.

  • Ink is not an opaque substance, and you can see through it. If you print ink over a vibrant or dark color of box or bag, the ink will appear either different in shade or color. Samples of your ink will require approval before production begins.

  • Bounce Factor: Since two or three color printing requires each color to be printed at separate times, a small bounce factor (or movement allowance) of 1/4 inch may occur between the colors of your logo.

Digital Transfer Ink Printing - Multi Color

Digital Transfer Ink Printing Feature

Digital Transfer Printing (aka Digital Printing) uses a heat transfer technique where the image is printed on a heated material and then pressed onto the product. Digital printing can use both 4 Color Process (CMYK) and Pantone Matching (PMS) depending on the product, which allows for photographs or full-color images to be printed.

 

  • Digital printing is the highest quality print, and also most expensive. Typically the print charges start at $3 per piece printed.

  • This method of printing gives the tightest registration of printing on a surface, meaning the individual ink dots that make up your image are extremely close together and "tight," which makes the colors and edges of your image or logo to appear more crisp and tight, as compared to Flexo Ink Printing.

  • Canvas, Non-Woven, Cotton, PET Plastic, and Non-Coated (Non-Glossy) paper boxes and bags can be printed using this method.

  • Items on our site that can be printed by this method is limited by the manufacturers that offer it.

  • Gloss surfaces can not be printed with Digital Ink printing, due to the high possibility of the ink smearing on the slick surface.

  • Four-Color Process Digital Printing Mixes all colors together based on the colors: CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black). It is similar to how a Laser Printer mixes the CMYK cartridges for printing.

  • Pantone Matching (PMS) Uses Spot Color Numbers that you provide to match the inks exactly.

  • Ink is not an opaque substance, and you can see through it. If you print ink over a vibrant or dark color of box or bag, the ink will appear either different in shade or color. Samples of your ink will require approval before production begins.

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