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FLEXO Magazine : April 2011
Technologies & Techniques G7 Step-by-Step Flexographic Image Reproduction specifications and Tolerances (FIRST) supports near-neutral calibration (G7) as a concept. As such, it documents five steps in a near-neutral calibration approach to process color separations. Printers and prepress technicians should: 1. Specify a mono-pigmented CMYK ink set. (See table for FIRST recommendations.) 2. Print a gray-balance/near-neutral calibration target to collect the data necessary for near-neutral calibration. Make sure to print the target using the selected ink set under standard operating conditions. 3. Evaluate multiple samples. Use data collected from spectrophotometers on solid ink density, dot gain, print con- trast, L*a*b values, etc. 4. Apply the near-neutral calibration print curves to the image, instead of traditional dot gain curves. 5. Run the press under the same conditions as the near-neutral calibration test target was printed. Use a control target to monitor and regulate density, dot gain, trap, print contrast and ink color. “Having come from an offset background, G7 was almost a requirement,” says Spillers. “Now that I’ve been in the flexographic business for a while, it’s just as important to me as it ever was in offset. Granted, the challenges are different than the ones faced in offset, but flexography has improved so much in recent years, with much better technology, plates and presses. We are absolutely committed to ensuring the integrity of the brand’s visual identity when customers trust Revolution Labels to produce their packaging. That is the very essence of our success.” “Brand owners are asking for [G7],” says Fazzi, who notes that IDEAlliance has never done a major G7 marketing campaign. “It’s been more of a grassroots movement. When brand owners make a major buy, they demand consistency across product banners, point-of-purchase displays, wraps, signage and products. It’s all about brand recognition, so G7 helps maintain some consistency and color fidelity across all these different print processes and across all these different types of substrates.” For Mike Spillers, it’s all about the data, what it means to his customers and how it helps him compete. “ G7 provides invariable, empirical and quantifiable data that says to customers and print buyers, ‘Yes, we can achieve a common visual offset match of brand images and other print output.’ You can’t deny that’s a competitive advantage.” About the Author: Catherine Haynes is a member of the Technical Solutions Group for All Printing Resources. She has more than 15 years of experience in the printing industry and has been a certified G7 Expert for more than 2 years. At present, Haynes chairs FLEXO Magazine’s Editorial Advisory Committee. For more information, contact her at 847-913-5983 or firstname.lastname@example.org. FIRST Recommended Process Ink Pigments Reference Print Section 21.2 .2 Color Chemistry C.I . Ref L *a *b C ho Yellow Solvent Y14 90 -4 111 111 92o Water Y14 92 -6 101 101 93o UV Y13 92 -5 83 83 93o Magenta Solvent R57:1 & R52:1 46 72 9 72 7o Water 53 70 -4 70 357o UV 50 76 -1 76 359o Cyan Solvent B15:3 & B15:4 56 -41 -47 62 229o Water 59 -37 -45 59 230o UV 56 -38 -45 59 230o Black Solvent K7 21 1 3 3 -na- Water 16 0.8 1 1 -na- UV 16 0.2 5 5 -na- © tesa tape, inc. • 1-800-426-2181 • www.tesatape.com ISO 9001:2000 Certified • ISO/TS 16949:2009 Certified • ISO 14001:2004 Certified ® Introducing Speed and Efficiency for Your Print Crew NEW tesa SoftPrint® Plate Mounting Tapes tesa EasySplice® FilmLine PLUS Splicing Tape • Plate Mounting • Roller Wrapping • Splicing • Core Starting • Edge Sealing • End Tabbing • What Every Pit Crew Needs n Fast mounting n Splice at high speeds n Easy de-mounting n Improved adhesion n Superior print quality n Increased throughput For high-speed results, call 704-553-4698 IndustryLeading What Every Pit Crew Needs What Every Pit Crew Needs tesaFLEXO8x10.875PrintAd.indd 1 3/10/11 11:04 AM 30 FLeXO april 2011 www.flexography.org