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FLEXO Magazine : February 2014
The third factor that contributes to the challenge is tonal compression, due to high dot gain that makes dot per- centages greater than 60 percent print close to solid. This reduces the dynamic range available for color composition and tonal differentiation, which in turn motivates a designer or prepress team member to avoid subtleties that, if too close in color/tonal range, would be lost. They lean toward graphics and designs as contrasted as possible. A final issue to take into account is the durometer of the flexo plate, which influences ink transfer and also durabil- ity, since non woven materials are more abrasive than most other standard substrates. CODE NAME: PENTACHROME To improve density and expand color gamut without increasing potential rubbing problems, we developed a way to reinforce the vibrancy of colors by using custom builds that mix together spot and process inks in a special way tailored to maximize strength and satu- ration on non woven substrates. The basic concept of Pentachrome— which is still a work in progress—is utilizing color builds made of a given set of five inks composed of CMY plus two spot colors that are chosen based on the original graphics and/or included in them already. The main difference with other multicolor systems for expanded gamut is that Pentachrome has been adapted to the specific needs of the non woven substrate by mutually reinforcing spot and process colors. Image 3 displays the end result of Pentachrome: On the left is the initial non woven printing. On the right, Mick- ey ’s shoes are printed in orange and yellow and his pants in orange, magen- ta and yellow. The difference is also visible at the microscope level. Image 4 shows the fibers in Mickey ’s pants, which, on the right, get more color and coverage when mutually reinforcing spot and process colors using Pentachrome. IMPLEMENTING PENTACHROME— STEP 1 The first step is to print a specially designed color chart on the non woven substrate (See Image 5) which has two purposes: • To be scanned using a spectropho- tometer and appropriate software in order to build an ICC Profile of the substrate and inks under specific press setting and condi- tions. This color profile is to be used to preselect the appropriate color builds using specific software tools • To be used as an actual color book, printed on the real substrate for final visual confirmation of the cho- sen color builds and/or fine tuning them according to the desired final appearance of the graphics. This tool is especially important in Image 3: Comparison between standard surface impression on non woven (left) and color reinforcement using Pentachrome (right) www.flexography.org FEBRUARY 2014 FLEXO 41