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FLEXO Magazine : July 2009
DESIGN 1. Selecting the Appropriate Symbology The type of bar code selected depends on many factors including the Application Standard, where it will be scanned and how it will be printed. The designer must defer to the customer to identify which bar code type to use. Some of the common bar code types printed flexographically include: U.P.C. --Version A and Version E (including add-on and composite component) GS1-128 (formerly known as UCC/EAN-128) EAN 8 (including composite component) EAN-13 (including add-on and composite component) ITF-14 (Interleaved 2-of-5 also referred to as Code 25) Code 128 (full ASCII character set supported) Code 93 (full ASCII character set supported) Code 39 (supported with and without check code) MSI (including option to display data) JAN 13 (variation of EAN 13 used in Japan) JAN 8 (variation of EAN 8 used in Japan) Plessey (hexadecimal character set) Telepen (including compressed numeric mode) 2D Codes Codabar (both USS and Traditional format supported) USPS 4CB (United States Postal Service Intelligent Mail Barcode) 2. Designing for Printability and Symbol Contrast Substrate Considerations Texture & Porosity: Bars and spaces are most accurately produced on smooth substrates with high ink holdout. The rougher, more textured and more porous a substrate, the greater the potential for printing bars with voids and/or printing specks in the spaces, either of which can reduce scanning rates. Textured and more porous stocks also tend to increase bar edge roughness, bar growth, and bleeding. Any of these substrate characteristics can negatively influence scanning rates. Color & Transparency: Bar codes scan most successfully with an opaque white background that provides white spaces and quiet zones with the maximum reflectance possible. When printing on a transparent or colored substrate, a solid, light-colored (white is optimum) background, with maximum opacity, is recommended in the area where the bar code is to be located. Special consideration for the background ink formulation and press setup (anilox, double bumps of background color and mounting material selection, etc.) may be necessary in order to achieve maximum opacity. Please consult your product manufacturer, printer/separator for direction. UPC-A UPC-E EAN-8 EAN-13 3.3.2a: Bar Code Type: The type of bar code depends on many factors including where it will be scanned and how it will be printed.
Sustainable Spring 2009