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FLEXO Magazine : July 2011
their clients. At this time, the file is stepped and built to convert- er specifications. Any other additional mechanical modifica- tions are made to ensure the best print results on press. Some other things considered here are blends, vignettes, and gradations. Bonus colors created from traps and over- prints are reviewed. In the case of flexible film applications, white plates and/or plates for substrate surface treatments need to be created. If the job requires special symbols such as barcodes, data matrix codes, or quick response codes; these are created and added using the appropriate specifications. Registration targets, print targets for slur and impression, printer’s marks, and specific press scales and tools are also added at this time. Most prepress providers will use prepress specific software to automate some of these tasks, such as trapping and adding marks to the job. On the color management side, the operator compiles information from the converter (either existing informa- tion or updated information from the characterization) and produces a profile for proofing that accurately simulates the press. This allows the prepress provider to predict the printed result. Other information, such as solid ink density (SID), tonal value increase (TVI), and color variation are also recorded. If a color target is available, it is reviewed at this stage. The continuous tone files are analyzed and adjustments are made based on the press data, the screening technology being used, and the converter’s capabilities. Some considerations here are total ink coverage, extreme highlights, and multi-channel, or expanded gamut separa- tions. All of these adjustments are based on specifications created for the specific converter that will produce the job. A color accurate or contract proof is produced for final convert- er and/or customer approval. The contract proofs can be a dot-for-dot representation of the print or continuous tone print, depending on the proofing system used. Regardless of the method, the most important thing is that the proof represents what is expected to occur on press. The mechanical production artwork and the color sepa- ration and re-touching work can be done simultaneously, although this may not be the case in every situation or with every prepress provider. Either way, once the mechanical and color work are complete, there is generally a quality checkpoint, where a completed ripped and trapped file can be checked electronically, or output at full size to be checked. The contract proof is also checked for quality and accuracy. This checkpoint relies heavily on specifications developed by the prepress provider. PLATE IT Upon final approval, the job then moves to the image car- rier stage. Once again, converter specifications and substrate play a key role in what type of image carrier is produced. The substrate, press, and print application determine the proper flexo plate material and caliper. WINDMOELLER & HOELSCHER CORPORATION PASSION FOR INNOVATION FLEXIBLE PACKAGING EQUIPMENT THAT MEETS THE DEMANDS OF AMERICA’S TOUGHEST CUSTOMERS 23 NEW ENGLAND WAY | LINCOLN, RHODE ISLAND 02865-8702 | Phone: 800-854-8702 | email@example.com | www.whcorp.com Nothing could beSweeter... SunshinePlasticsCorp.FTA2011AwardsGold&BestofShowGOLDAWARDGOLDAWARDGOLDAWARD ... than our customers’ success at the Flexographic Technical Association’s Excellence in Flexography Awards. In the wide-web category, 20 of the 25 winners were printed on W&H flexo presses - including the Gold Award & Best of Show. Sunshine Plastics of Montebello, CA printed this stand-out wrapper on a W&H 10-color press and has garnered 7 awards in the past year. Congratulations to Sunshine Plastics and all the FTA winners. W+H_SweetAd_Flexo_FINAL 6/28/11 10:42 AM Page 1 54 FLEXO july 2011 www.flexography.org Mark Trece technician readies files for package production, while taking time to document facts relative to the job.