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Packaging Glossary

APPLIQUé – using a die to cut, apply and seal pieces of one material to the surface of another, effectively raising the finished artwork above the base layer.

AQUEOUS ADHESIVE – A water based (rather than solvent based) adhesive, designed to meet EPA requirements.

AQUEOUS COATING – A water (rather than solvent) based coating, designed to meet EPA requirements.

BACK CYLINDER – The cylinder against which the stock is squeezed to receive its printed impression.

BACK-UP – Print reverse side of sheet already printed on one side.

BLANKET – In offset lithography, a rubber surfaced fabric sheet attached to a cylinder which transfers the inked image from the press plate to the sheet being printed.

BLEED – When the image (work) extends beyond trim size.

BLEEDING – When a color or colors tend to spread into areas where color is not wanted.

BLIND PLATE – A plate with an area on it that has lost its ink receptivity.

BULK – The thickness of paper.

BURN – A common term used for plate exposure.

BURN OUT – A chemical reaction between the ink and the stock which causes a noticeable color change, i.e. red turns to light pink.

CASEMADE – (or Turned Edge) cover material glued to a board and turned at the edges to like a hard cover book.

CENTER MARKS – Marks, usually crosses, at the exact centers, left and right, up and down, of the trim size. Used for registering work.

CLEAR OVERLAY – a clear layer of film on the outside allows for the insertion of a printed cover sheet.

COATING – A layer, such as clay or acrylic, applied to base stock that serves as a printing surface. Also see TOP COATING.

COLOR KEY – A proofing system utilizing multiple light sensitive colored transparent films to create a multi-colored image. Used for checking content & registration (but not color)

COLOR SEPARATION – In photography, the process of separating full color originals into the primary printing colors (cyan, magenta, yellow) in negative or positive form.

COMBINATION PLATE – A press plate on which two or more different images have been exposed.

CONTINUOUS TONE – A photographic image which has not been screened and contains gradient tones from solids to while.

COPY – Any furnished material (typewritten manuscript, pictures, artwork, etc.) to be printed

COVER MOUNT – Flexible cover material, such as cloth or Type I. II, or III which can be mounted to binders board to form a case side for a hard-bound book.

CROMALIN PROOF – A proofing system utilizing layers of film with colored powder in place of ink.

CROP – To eliminate a portion of an illustration.

CURL – The distortion of a sheet of stock due to difference in structure or coating from one side to the other, or to the absorption or evaporation of moisture or ink.

CYAN – Blue color, usually process blue.

DEBOSS – Using a die under heat and pressure to press a graphic design into the surface of the product.

DELIVERY END – The section of the press which collects, jogs and piles the printed sheets.

DIGITAL PRINT – a full color copy from an ink jet or color laser printer directly from a digital artwork file.

DOUBLE BURN – Exposing the same section of a press plate, two or more times, using a different piece of film each time.

EMBOSSED – A pattern pressed into the backside of a surface to create a raised texture.

ENAMEL – A coated paper, or a coating material used on paper.

END SHEET – A piece of paper which covers the inside portion of the front and back cover of a hardcover book. It overlaps the turned under portion of the cover mount to give the inside cover a finished look.

ENTRAPMENT – Completely sealing the clear overlay after the printed cover sheet has been inserted.

EUROHINGE – a binder produced from a single board (rather than 3 separate boards for front, back and spine) for superior strength and durability. A special machine is used to score or compress folding lines into a single board. Available in Flat-back Eurohinge (two compressions), the softer Semi Eurohinge (4 compressions) and Round-back or Curved (multiple compressions). This method creates a stronger hinge and more contemporary look than the traditional flat-back style.

FEEDER END – The section of a press which separates the sheets, and supplies them properly positioned, to the press for printing.

FLAT SIZE – Overall measurement of a cover including bleed, turn-under, glue-foot, or any additional material needed over and above the trim size.

FLUSH LEFT – In composition, type set to line up at left (or right). OR RIGHT

FOIL STAMP – using dies, heat, pressure and colored foils, graphics are applied to the surface resulting in a shiny or metallic design.

FOOT – The bottom of a page or cover.

FORM – The assembly of images to be printed.

GHOSTING – A subtle repeat image, usually occurring in a solid or high tint value area. This phenomenon is caused by the absence of ink laid down in a contiguous congruent area.

GLUE FOOT – On a perfect bound book cover, this is the additional stock required to contain the excess glue during binding.

GRAIN DIRECTION – Refers to the machine direction of the paper. Cracking is minimized when fold is with the grain of the paper.

GRIPPER – Metal fingers which hold the sheet in place while going through the press.

GRIPPER EDGE – Edge of the sheet held by the grippers.

GUIDE – Device which positions sheet sideways while going through the press. There are pull guides and push guides.

GUIDE SIDE – Side of sheet contiguous to the guide.

HALFTONE – The reproduction of continuous tone artwork, such as a photograph, through a crossline or contact screen which converts the image into dots of various sizes.

HEAD – Top of cover or page.

HOLD OUT – That property in stock which prevents ink from soaking into the stock. Enamel stock has a high hold out. Offset stock has very little hold out.

HICKEYS – Blemishes on a printed sheet caused by the presence of foreign material such as lint, fiber, and coating particles in the ink This foreign matter usually comes from the surface of the stock being printed.

INK FOUNTAIN – The trough which contains ink to be fed down through the inking rollers to the press plate.

INK TACK – Relative stickiness of an ink at printing film thickness.

JOG – To align sheets of stock into a neat pile.

LACQUER – A clear top coating applied to a printed surface for protection as well as for appearance.

LAYOUT – An accurate drawing or plan of a proposed printed piece.

LIGHT TABLE – A translucent glass topped table with fluorescent bulbs under the glass.

LITHOGRAPHY – Method of image transfer. Complete term is photo-offset lithography, shortened to offset. Works on chemical principal that water and ink will not mix.

“M” WEIGHT – Weight per one thousand sheets of stock.

MAGENTA – Red color, usually process red.

MAKE READY – Preparing a press to run. Includes putting in press plates, putting ink into fountains, registering colors to one another, and adjusting colors to proper levels.

MIGRATION – The spreading or wicking of a color into an area where it is not wanted. (See BLEEDING)

MOIRE – Undesirable screen pattern in color process printing caused by incorrect screen angles of halftones.

MOTTLE – Color, brightness, or glossy spots due to non-penetration of the ink normally caused by stock irregularities.

NEGATIVE – Photographic image on film in which black values represent areas which have no ink coverage; solid ink coverage areas are completely transparent. Plate ready negatives are right reading emulsion down (See RRED).

OFFSET LITHOGRAPHY – The process where the ink is transferred from plate to a blanket and from blanket to the material to be printed. Commonly referred to as “offset.”


OPACITY – That property of a sheet of stock which minimizes the “show-through” of printing from the back side or the next sheet.

OPAQUE – To paint out areas on a negative not wanted on press plate, or to paint in work on a positive that is wanted on press plate. In stock, the property which makes it less transparent.

OPAQUE INK – A special ink that conceals all color beneath it.

ORANGE PEEL – A condition that results when an excessive amount of adhesive is used in laminating film to a sheet of stock. The surface resembles the texture of the skin of an orange.

OVERLAY – In art work, a transparent or translucent covering over copy where color break instructions or corrections are marked.

OVER PRINTING – Double printing; printing over an area thai has a” ready been printed.

PERFECTING PRESS – A press which prints both sides of stock at the same time, with one pass through the press.

PERFECT BOUND – A method of binding books, sometimes called adhesive binding, in which the signatures have been converted to individual pages by cutting, milling, or sanding off the folded edges while being held in a clamp. They are attached to a paperboard cover with an adhesive.

PERFORATING – A row or rows of die-cut slits punched through a printed sheet to facilitate the separation of a portion of the sheet.

POINT – 1/1000th of an inch thickness. 80 pt board is .080 inches thick.

POSITIVE – A photographic image on film in which the black values represent areas that have ink coverage, and the transparent areas are void of ink. Plate ready positives are right reading emulsion down (RRED).

PRESENSITIZED PLATE – A metal or paper press plate that has been coated with a light sensitive coating.

PRESS PROOF – In color reproduction, a proof to indicate the appearance of a color subject printed on press.

PROOF – A trial impression.

RGB – Red Green Blue format used to create color on computer monitors.

RRED – Right Reading Emulsion Down (plate negatives)

REAM – Five hundred sheets of stock.

REGISTER – Fitting of two or more printed images on a sheet of stock in the proper alignment to each other.

REGISTER MARKS – Usually crosses applied to original copy prior to shooting final film. Used for positioning (registering) the various color films to each other.

REVERSE OUT – The color of the stock, usually white, is the image surrounded (formed) by the color or colors being printed.

ROUTED HINGE – A binder or case made from a single piece of board where approx 85% of the board thickness is removed in one or more straight lines by a router, creating the folds for a hinge. Routed hinges are stronger than 3 separate boards, but weaker than Eurohinge.

SBS – Solid Bleached Sulphate (paperboard) is a heavy layered durable and rigid form of paper used in packaging.

SADDLE WIRE – To fasten booklet by wiring it through the middle fold of the stock.

SCANNER – An electronic machine used to make color separations.

SCORE – To impress or indent a mark with a wheel of a rule to facilitate folding.

SCREEN ANGLE – The angle at which the various color halftone screens are positioned in relation to each other in film making.

SCREEN PRINTING – using color separated artwork, a silk screen is produced for each individual color. Opaque ink is forced through the porous screen onto the surface. Offset printed

SCREEN TINT – Halftone having a uniformly continuous dot pattern, i.e., 50% screen is half dot and half open.

SCUM – In offset lithography, a greasy film which sensitizes non-image areas on a press plate causing the plate to accept ink.

SETOFF – In presswork, when the ink of a printed sheet rubs off or marks the sheet above at the delivery end.

SHEETWISE – Print one side of a sheet with one form or plate. SKID A platform support for a pile of sheeted stock. SPINE Back bone of a book.

SPIRAL BOUND – Bound with a spiral wire inserted through holes punched along binding edge of a book.

STEP & REPEAT – The process by which the same film or several films are exposed multiple times in precise positions according to a predetermined layout.

STET – A proof reader’s mark, indicating that the copy so marked should remain as is.

STOCK – Paper or other kinds of material to be printed.

STRIPPING – Positioning film copy according to a predetermined design before making plate ready films.

TOP COATINGS – A lacquer, plastic coating or U.V. coating applied over ink for protection against scuffing or fading.

TRANSPARENT INK – Ink which permits previously printed color to show through; the two colors blending to produce a third.

TRAPPING OF INK – The ability of ink to print properly over another ink in either a wet or dry state.

TRIM MARKS – Marks placed on copy and films to indicate the edge of the finished size.

TRIM SIZE – The finished size of the printed piece.

TURN UNDER – That portion of a hard-bound cover mount that folds around the edge of binders board and is partially or completely covered by the end sheet:

UP – The imposition of images on a sheet, i.e., “4 up” would indicate that an image would appear in 4 positions on the sheet and occupy the entire sheet.

WASHUP – The process of removing and cleaning out inks from a press in preparation for making ready on another job.

WEB – A continuous strip of stock coming from a roll.

WEB PRESS – A high speed press which prints a continuous strip of stock from a roll.

WORK & FLOP – Printing the second side of a sheet by turning it over from gripper to back. The guide side of sheet remains the same, but the gripper side moves to the opposite side of the sheet.

WORK & TURN – Printing the second side of a sheet by turning it over left to right. The gripper side of the sheet remains the same, but the guide side of the sheet moves to the opposite side of the sheet

Media Formats

Blu-ray (recordable) – A high capacity rewritable optical disc that holds 2 hours of high-definition video or 12 hours of standard video.

CD – Audio (Prerecorded) – “Compact Disc” is an optical disc, read by laser, containing audio tracks of prerecorded music.

CD-R (Recordable Once) – An optical disc, read by laser, designed to store electronic data files installed once by the user. Cannot be erased or rerecorded.

CD-ROM (Prerecorded) – Read “Only Memory” An index or reference data document that is prerecorded on a compact disc and accessed through a computer.

CD – RW (Recordable Multiple Times) – A CD-RW “Read/Write” can be recorded upon and rewritten over a thousand times and read on Multi-Read CD ROM drives or CD-RW compatible Audio CD Players.

DVD (Prerecorded) – “Digital Versatile Disc” (formerly Digital Video Disc). Same physical size as a CD but contains 7 times more data capacity than a CD on a single side. DVDs can also be double sided or dual layered.

DVD-R (Recordable Once) – Optical disc capable of having data written onto it once in the user’s environment. Significantly larger capacity than CD-R.

DVD-RW (Recordable) – A rewritable DVD.

ENCRYPTION – Prevents unauthorized duplication of content.

OPTICAL DISC –  A direct access disc written and read by light (laser). Read only optical discs are recorded at the time of manufacture and cannot be erased or rerecorded.

MASTER DISC – See Optical Disc


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