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FLEXO Magazine : October 2013
component replacement converted more aggressively, while CMYK images are converted less aggressively. This will get fingerprints up to color more quickly and consistently and result in better matching the proof to the printed piece. eLAstoMer FingerPrinting With laser-engraved elastomer sleeves, variables like dot height, dot shoulder, relief depth and shoulder angle can be controlled. Therefore, when fingerprinting for elastomer, it is normal to include target areas with slight variations of dot height and shoulder angle. Because elastomer generally prints sharper, include a target with a slight bump curve in the mid tone, which is usually a credible starting point. Push targets with the highest possible linescreen ruling and include text and reverse text down to one point. The result is usually a very clean print with high ink densities and very predictable dot gain, which allows printers to print highlights more consistently by reducing impression/pressure. tHe neXt iterAtion About 90 percent of the work for fingerprinting is done once the multichannel fingerprint is created. Proofs should be matched on press and with correct plate curves and proofing profiles, this should be very achievable. But there is always a need to evaluate live production. New projects may reveal deficiencies in the proofing process because of unforeseen color combinations or visual inconsistencies that were not detectable with stock images. This is especially important with the first few post-fingerprint jobs. Periodically providing printed material to a separator is key to continual improvement. It is vital to develop a proofing and printing process that, while consistent, can be adjusted slightly as new information about how the press lays down ink is discovered. Then, the goal is to run those jobs the same way, every time they are on press. n About the Author: Carey Color Inc. is a full-service digital imaging company headquartered in Sharon Center, OH, with locations in Illinois, Wisconsin and the U.K . It employs more than 75 experienced prepress craftsmen. Carey Color specializes in manufacturing laser-engraved plates and elastomer sleeves for the flexo, dry offset, emboss and inta- glio industries. It also provides prepress services for direct mail catalogs, packaging, flexo and dry offset in addition to commercial photography and offset platemaking. To learn more about how Carey Color can help in the fingerprinting process, contact 1-800 -555 -3142 or visit www.careyweb.com. ICC profiles are built to define the achievable color gamut of the press with a 4-color process. Remember to correlate the relationship between the input data and the printed result, and develop a proof that can match the press consistently. KeY 1. Linescreens above and below your standard linescreen 2. Tints or images with sufficient highlights, shadows, mid tones and solids 3. Barcodes with different BWRs 4. Slur charts 5. Small to large positive and reverse copy (down to one point in most cases) 6. Vignette gradation target 7. 100 percent – 1 percent left and right impression check 74 FLeXo OCTOBER 2013 www.flexography.org www.flexography.org OCTOBER 2013 FLeXo 75 1 2 3 5 4 7 6