FAQs

Ever wondered how and what techniques we use to print our materials?

Things to Consider
  • Is the label or tag being used indoors or outdoors?
  • The life expectancy required?
  • Maximum & minimum service temperatures?
  • Application temperature?
  • Will condensation be present at application? Specific adhesive required.
  • Application method - hands or machine?
  • Does the label need to be removable - if so - from what type of surface and material?
  • Does the adhesive need to conform to any standards e.g. BS5609?
  • Is a UL approved material required?

Glossary:
  • Thermal Printer - a device, usually connected to a computer, that via software prints fixed or variable data via the print head through the transfer of heat, using either a ribbon as in Thermal Transfer or by using a pre-coated Direct Thermal without a ribbon
  • Service temperatures - the highest & lowest temperatures the label will be exposed to expressed in degrees Centigrade.
  • Application temperature - at what temperature will the label be stuck onto the product - most important when chilled or frozen products are being labelled. If in doubt it always pays to find out first, ask for samples of different adhesives and satisfy yourself as to their suitability for your particular application.
  • Removable Adhesive - most “standard” water based, acrylic, removable adhesives are suitable for the majority of applications. However very smooth surfaces like glass & plastics require an adhesive with a lower release factor, this can also apply in the case of pre-printed items that have a very glossy finish.
  • BS5609 - Salt Water Immersion Test
  • Thermal Transfer - Printing with a ribbon onto “normal” papers, synthetics, cards & boards.
  • Direct Thermal - Printing without a ribbon onto pre-coated Chemi Thermal Paper and Card.
  • GSM - grams per square metre - the weight of the face material without adhesive or release liner.
  • Release liner - the backing carrier for the label & adhesive, also referred to as glassine, usually by it’s colour & weight, e.g. as in Honey (HG65), White (WG65) or Blue (BG65). For your information - the release liner is what makes self adhesive labels work, without it the adhesive would stick to the backing sheet, how does it work - it’s coated with Silicon so don’t ask for a label to stick onto a product that has a Silicon coating.
  • Direct Thermal Paper is available with 3 levels of coating. The coating is an indicator for durability and length of life of printed image and the type required is usually determined by the application, e.g. short life with minimum exposure to UV - Thermal Economy will probably be OK. For use in a freezer with maximum durability and life - you would be expected to use a full top coated material, with semi top coated taking the middle ground. If in doubt ask for samples of the different materials and satisfy yourself as to their suitability for your particular application.
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