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FLEXO Magazine : August 2009
and The Keys to Flexographic Excellence Image Slur & Impression What happens: FIRST says, Optimum (kiss) impression is the minimum necessary pressure to transfer ink from the anilox to the printing plate and from the plate to the substrate. Slur is a blurred printed image, caused by over impression and sometimes mechanical problems of the press. Slur is caused by the surface of the plate traveling at a different rate than the substrate or anilox roll. This surface speed differential shows as smearing of the halftone dots in the machine direction; the resulting oval shape of the dots causes excessive dot gain. Slur and impression targets quickly and easily indicate when the condition exists. TEST says, Don’t cut them off—use them! One of the single most important elements of fl exographic image quality is impression. However, it is important to remember that achieving a kiss impression needs to happen in two places: from the anilox to the printing plate and from the plate to the substrate. A quick visual way of monitoring both of these kisses is the use of the hexagonal target. The way it works is, when there is too much plate-to-substrate impression, the target will display an hourglass image in the web direction. And when there is too much anilox roll-to-plate impression the target will display a bowtie image in the web direction. For more information, see Section 20.4.8 (page 199) of FIRST 4.0. What is FIRST The intention of FIRST is to provide all participants in the fl exographic reproduction process with a common set of guidelines, tutorials and data that can be used as communication and production tools. The aim of FIRST is to create a common set of specifi cations and communication protocols for the industry. This platform should establish common communication and identify the responsibility of the provider(s). To order FIRST, call 631-737-6020 or visit www.ftastore.com. What is TEST TEST is the educational arm of the Flexographic Technical Association. The aim of TEST is to align all of the training materials available through the FTA with the guidelines, tutorials and data identifi ed in FIRST. TEST is focused on implementing new learning methodologies to reach out to a larger portion of the FTA membership. For more information on TEST, visit www.fl exography.org.