Understanding the Basic Process of Offset Printing

Published: 03rd July 2008
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You may be hearing about this all the time, especially if you are scouting for the right printing company to process your materials. Offset printing is a popular choice among business owners to be used for print ads.

Offset printing or offset lithography uses the idea that oil and water do not mix. If you are curious how it all starts and end, here is an overview of the offset process.

1. The design of the material will, of course, come from you. Whether you are availing the service of a printing company for postcards, catalogs, business cards, posters and the likes, it should start from you.

You can input each element like the design, the text and other details of your materials using software like Microsoft Office Publisher to create the overall look of your project.

You then have to hand that over to your trusted printed company. They can check the material and tweak certain elements to suit your current project.

2. Films are being produced using imagesetter with high resolution. Films can be positives and negatives. This imagesetter is a computer output device that is large format. It can use a photographic paper or a bromide paper and expose the sheets to a laser light source.

After the film or the paper is developed, an image that is of high quality and is in black and white appears.

If you will be using more than one color for your material, a separate film will be needed for every ink to be used.

3. The films are then used to produce printing plates through a photochemical process. During this period, the plates are being exposed to light that has high intensity by using the films. After that, the materials are being treated chemically.

You will then have water absorbent areas that contain no image. This part will repel the ink.

4. There are printing companies that have adapted a modern method when it comes to offset. Instead of an imagesetter, a platesetter is used. This way, from the computer, the image is transferred directly to the plates.

5. Flexible plates are then attached to the plate cylinder that remains moist throughout the process. This way, the ink will only be absorbed by the image areas.

For each press process, the ink image is transferred to a rubber blanket cylinder and then to the paper. Such indirect technique is what defines offset. This rubber blanket balances everything. It preserves the fragile plate. And it adjusts to the texture of the surface of papers.

6. The printing process begins.

You may be knowledgeable with digital printing wherein the process can be accomplished right away. But despite the hassle-free kind of method that the digital technology provides, many business people still choose offset lithography.
Offset is known for its ability to come up with vibrant and closest to real colors. And the materials that have been processed through this will last longer.

Your materials will never go wrong when you have them made through offset printing. Now your only concern is for your project to be handled by the right printing company. And now that you have an overview of how this type of printing works, you will never look at a simple postcard the same way ever again.

This writing provides information to the readers about Offset Printing processes and the products and services provided with the use of this printing method. To know more about Offset Printing you may visit Wholesale Prints - Full Color Printing Wholesale

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