UCR

Printing & Reprographics



Printing Terminology


Term Definition

Accordion fold

 Bindery term, two or more parallel folds which open like an accordion. 

Against the grain

 At right angles to direction of paper grain. 

Alteration

 Change in copy of specifications after production has begun. 

Art board

 Alternate term for mechanical art. 

Author's corrections

 Also know as "AC's". Changed and additions in copy after it has been typeset. 

Back up

 Printing the second side of a sheet already printed on one side. 

Banding

 Method of packaging printed pieces of paper using rubber or paper bands. 

Basis weight

 Weight in pounds of a ream of paper cut to the basic size for its grade. 

Bind

 To fasten sheets or signatures with wire, thread, glue. or by other means. 

Bindery

 The finishing department of a print shop or firm specializing in finishing printed products. 

Blanket

 The thick rubber mat on a printing press that transfers ink from the plate to paper. 

Bleed

 Printing that goes to the edge of the sheet after trimming. 

Blind embossing

 An image pressed into a sheet without ink or foil. 

Blueline

 A blue photographic proof used to check position of all image elements. 

Board

 Alternate term for mechanical. 

Bond & carbon

 Business form with paper and carbon paper. 

Bond paper

 Strong durable paper grade used for letterheads and business forms. 

Break for color

 Also known as a color break. To separate mechanically or by software the parts to be printed in different colors. 

Brightness

 The brilliance or reflectance of paper. 

Bulk

 Thickness of paper stock in thousandths of an inch or number of pages per inch. 

Bulk pack

 Boxing printed product without wrapping or banding. 

Burn

 Exposing a printing plate to high intensity light or placing an image on a printing plate by light. 

Butt

 Joining images without overlapping. 

Butt fit

 Printed colors that overlap one row of dots so they appear to butt. 

Carbonless

 Pressure sensitive writing paper that does not use carbon. 

Caliper

 Paper thickness in thousandths of an inch. 

Camera-ready copy

 Print ready mechanical art. 

Carload

 A truck load of paper weighing 40000 pounds. 

Case bind

 A type of binding used in making hard cover books using glue. 

Cast coated

 Coated paper with a high gloss reflective finish. 

Chrome

 A term for a transparency. 

Coated paper

 A clay coated printing paper with a smooth finish. 

Collate

 A finishing term for gathering paper in a precise order. 

Color bar

 A quality control term regarding the spots of ink color on the tail of a sheet. 

Color correction

 Methods of improving color separations. 

Color filter

 Filters uses in making color separations, red, blue, green. 

Color key

 Color proofs in layers of acetate

Color matching system

 A system of formulated ink colors used for communicating color. 

Color separations

 The process of preparing artwork, photographs, transparencies, or computer generated art for printing by separating into the four primary printing colors. 

Comb bind

 To plastic comb bind by inserting the comb into punched holes. 

Composite film

 Combining two or more images on one or more pieces of film. 

Continuous-tone copy

 Illustrations, photographs or computer files that contain gradient tones from black to white or light to dark. 

Contrast

 The tonal change in color from light to dark. 

Copy

 All furnished material or disc used in the production of a printed product. 

Cover paper

 A heavy printing paper used to cover books, make presentation folders, etc. 

Crash number

 Numbering paper by pressing an image on the first sheet which is transferred to all parts of the printed set. 

Crimping

 Puncture marks holding business forms together. 

Cromalin

 Trade name for DuPont color proofs. 

Crop

 To cut off parts of a picture or image. 

Crop marks

 Printed lines showing where to trim a printed sheet. 

Crossover

 Printing across the gutter or from one page to the facing page of a publication. 

Cyan

 One of four standard process colors. The blue color. 

Densitometer

 A quality control devise to measure the density of printing ink. 

Density

 The degree of color or darkness of an image or photograph. 

Diazo

 A light sensitive coating used on printing plates. 

Die

 Metal rule or imaged block used to cut or place an image on paper in the finishing process. 

Die cutting

 Curing images in or out of paper. 

Dot

 An element of halftones. Using a loupe you will see that printed pictures are made many dots. 

Dot gain or spread

 A term used to explain the difference in size between the dot on film v paper. 

Double burn

 Exposing a plate to multiple images. 

Draw-down

 A sample of ink and paper used to evaluate ink colors. 

Drop-out

 Portions of artwork that do not print. 

Dummy

 A rough layout of a printed piece showing position and finished size. 

Duotone

 A halftone picture made up of two printed colors. 

Dylux

 Photographic paper made by DuPont and used for bluelines. 

Emboss

 Pressing an image into paper so that it will create a raised relief. 

Emulsion

 Light sensitive coating found on printing plates and film. 

Eurobind

 A patented method of binding perfect bound books so they will open and lay flatter. 

Facsimile transmission

 The process of converting graphic images into electronic signals. 

Film rip

 See Rip film. 

Flat

 An assembly of negatives taped to masking materials for platemaking. 

Flood

 To cover a printed page with ink, varnish, or plastic coating. 

Flop

 The reverse side of an image. 

Foil

 A metallic or pigmented coating on plastic sheets or rolls used in foil stamping and foil embossing.

Foil emboss

 Foil stamping and embossing a image on paper with a die. 

Foil stamping

 Using a die to place a metallic or pigmented image on paper. 

4-color-process

 The process of combining four basic colors to create a printed color picture or colors composed from the basic four colors. 

French fold

 Two folds at right angles to each other. 

Galley proof

 Text copy before it is put into a mechanical layout or desktop layout. 

Gang

 Getting the most out of a printing press by using the maximum sheet size to print multiple images or jobs on the same sheet. A way to save money. 

Generation

 Stages of reproduction from original copy. A first generation reproduction yields the best quality. 

Ghost bars

 A quality control method used to reduce ghosted image created by heat or chemical contamination. 

Ghosting

 A faint printed image that appears on a printed sheet where it was not intended. More often than not this problem is a function of graphical design. It is hard to tell when or where ghosting will occur. Sometimes you can see the problem developing immediately after printing the sheet, other times the problem occurs while drying. However the problem occurs it is costly to fix, if it can be fixed. Occasionally it can be eliminated by changing the color sequence, the inks, the paper, changing to a press with a drier, printing the problem area in a separate pass through the press or changing the racking (reducing the number of sheets on the drying racks). Since it is a function of graphical design, the buyer pays for the increased cost. 

Gloss

 A shiny look reflecting light. 

Grain

 The direction in which the paper fiber lie. 

Grippers

 The metal fingers on a printing press that hold the paper as it passes through the press. 

Hairline

 A very thin line or gap about the width of a hair or 1/100 inch. 

Halftone

 Converting a continuous tone to dots for printing. 

Hard copy

 The output of a computer printer, or typed text sent for typesetting. 

Hickey

 Reoccurring unplanned spots that appear in the printed image from dust, lint, dried ink. 

High-bulk paper

 A paper made thicker than its standard basis weight. 

Highlight

 The lightest areas in a picture or halftone. 

Image area

 Portion of paper on which ink can appear. 

Imposition

 Positioning printed pages so they will fold in the proper order. 

Impression

 Putting an image on paper. 

Imprint

 Adding copy to a previously printed page. 

Indicia

 Postal information place on a printed product. 

Ink fountain

 The reservoir on a printing press that hold the ink. 

Keylines

 Lines on mechanical art that show position of photographs or illustrations. 

Kiss die cut

 To cut the top layer of a pressure sensitive sheet and not the backing. 

Knock out

 To mask out an image. 

Laid finish

 Simulating the surface of handmade paper. 

Laminate

 To cover with film, to bond or glue one surface to another. 

Layflat

 See Eurobind. 

Line copy

 High contrast copy not requiring a halftone. 

Lines per inch

 The number of rows of dots per inch in a halftone. 

Loupe

 A magnifying glass used to review a printed image, plate and position film. 

Magenta

 Process red, one of the basic colors in process color. 

Makeready

 All the activities required to prepare a press for printing. 

Marginal words

 Call outs for directions on various parts of a business form. 

Mask

 Blocking light from reaching parts of a printing plate. 

Matchprint

 Trade name for 3M integral color proof. 

Matte finish

 Dull paper or ink finish. 

Mechanical

 Camera ready art all contained on one board. 

Mechanical separation

 Mechanical art overlay for each color to be printed. 

Micrometer

 Instrument used to measure the thickness of different papers. 

Middle tones

 The tones in a photograph that are approximately half as dark as the shadow area. 

Moire

 Occurs when screen angles are wrong causing odd patterns in photographs. 

Negative

 The image on film that makes the white areas of originals black and black areas white. 

Non-reproducing blue

 A blue color the camera cannot see. Used in marking up artwork. 

Offsetting

 Using an intermediate surface used to transfer ink. Also, an unpleasant happening when the images of freshly printed sheets transfer images to each other. 

Offset paper

 Term for uncoated book paper. 

Ok sheet

 Final approved color inking sheet before production begins. 

Opacity

 The amount of show-through on a printed sheet. The more opacity or the thicker the paper the less show-through. (The thicker/heavier the paper the higher the cost.) 

Outline halftone

 Removing the background of a picture or silhouetting an image in a picture. 

Overlay

 The transparent cover sheet on artwork often used for instructions. 

Overrun or overs

 Copies printed in excess of the specified quantity. (Printing trade terms allow for + - 10 % to represent a completed order.) 

"Ozalid"

is the name of a company that markets diazo process products and equipment that makes diazo blueline prints used primarily in the US by engineering and architectual firms. However diazo or "Ozalid" proofs are most often used in England, other European, Hong Kong, Korean, and Singapore by printers as the proofing means comparable to our Dylux, or Blueline proof. Submitted by Ernie Engle Date: Fri, 18 Sep 1998 15:15:14 EDT

Page count

 Total number of pages in a book including blanks. 

Pattern carbon

 Special carbon paper used in business forms that only transfers in certain areas. 

Perfect bind

 A type of binding that glues the edge of sheets to a cover like a telephone book, Microsoft software manual, or Country Living Magazine. 

Perfecting press

 A sheet fed printing press that prints both sides of a sheet in one pass. 

Pica

 Unit of measure in typesetting. One pica = 1/6 inch. 

Picking

 Printers nightmare that occurs as the surface of a sheet lifts off during printing. Generally a paper manufactures quality control problem. 

Pin register

 A standard used to fit film to film and film to plates and plates to press to assure the proper registration of printer colors. 

Plate gap

 Gripper space. The area where the grippers hold the sheet as it passes through the press. 

PMS

 The abbreviated name of the Pantone Color Matching System. 

PMT

 Abbreviated name for photomechanical transfer. Often used to make position prints. 

Point

 For paper, a unit of thickness equaling 1/1000 inch. for typesetting, a unit of height equaling 1/72 inch. 

PostScript

 The computer language most recognized by printing devices. 

Press number

 A method of numbering manufacturing business forms or tickets. 

Pressure-sensitive paper

 Paper material with self sticking adhesive covered by a backing sheet. 

Process blue

 The blue or cyan color in process printing. 

Process colors

 Cyan (blue), magenta (process red), yellow (process yellow), black (process black). 

Ragged left

 Type that is justified to the right margin and the line lengths vary on the left. 

Ragged right

 Type that is justified to the left margin and the line lengths vary on the right. 

Ream

 Five hundred sheets of paper. 

Recto

 Right-hand page of an open book. 

Reflective copy

 Copy that is not transparent. 

Register

 To position print in the proper position in relation to the edge of the sheet and to other printing on the same sheet. 

Register marks

 Cross-hair lines or marks on film, plates, and paper that guide strippers, platemakers, pressmen, and bindery personnel in processing a print order from start to finish. 

Reverse

 The opposite of what you see. Printing the background of an image. For example; type your name on a piece of paper. The reverse of this would be a black piece of paper with a white name. 

Rip film

 A method of making printing negatives from PostScript files created by desktop publishing. 

Saddle stitch

 Binding a booklet or magazine with staples in the seam where it folds. 

Scanner

 Device used to make color separations, halftones, duo tones and tri tones. Also a device used to scan art, pictures or drawings in desktop publishing. 

Score

 A crease put on paper to help it fold better. 

Screen angles

 Frequently a desktop publishers nightmare. The angles at which halftone, duo tones, tri tones, and color separation printing films are placed to make them look right. 

Self-cover

 Using the same paper as the text for the cover. 

Shadow

 The darkest areas of a photograph. 

Show-through

 Printing on one side of a sheet that can be seen on the other side of the sheet. 

Side guide

 The mechanical register unit on a printing press that positions a sheet from the side. 

Side stitch

 Binding by stapling along one side of a sheet. 

Signature

 A sheet of printed pages which when folded become a part of a book or publication. 

Silhouette halftone

 A term used for an outline halftone. 

Skid

 A pallet used for a pile of cut sheets. 

Specifications

 A precise description of a print order. 

Spine

 The binding edge of a book or publication. 

Split fountain

 Putting more than one ink in a printing fountain to achieve special color affects. 

Spoilage

 Planned paper waste for all printing operations. 

Spot varnish

 Varnish used to hilight a specific part of the printed sheet. 

Stamping

 Term for foil stamping. 

Stat

 Term for inexpensive print of line copy or halftone. 

Step-and-repeat

 A procedure for placing the same image on plates in multiple places. 

Stet

 A proof mark meaning let the original copy stand. 

Stock

 The material to be printed. 

Stripping

 The positioning of film on a flat prior to platemaking. 

Substance weight

 A term of basis weight when referring to bond papers. 

Substrate

 Any surface on which printing is done. 

Text paper

 Grades of uncoated paper with textured surfaces. 

Tints

 A shade of a single color or combined colors. 

Tissue overlay

 Usually a thin transparent paper placed over artwork for protection uses for marking color breaks and other printer instructions. 

Transfer tape

 A peel and stick tape used in business forms. 

Transparency

 A positive photographic slide on film allowing light to pass through. 

Transparent copy

 A film that light must pass through for it to be seen or reproduced. 

Transparent ink

 A printing ink that does not conceal the color under it. 

Trapping

 The ability to print one ink over the other. 

Trim marks

 Similar to crop or register marks. These marks show where to trim the printed sheet. 

Trim size

 The final size of one printed image after the last trim is made. 

Under-run

 Production of fewer copies than ordered. See over run. 

Up

 Printing two or three up means printing multiple copies of the same image on the same sheet. 

UV coating

 Liquid laminate bonded and cured with ultraviolet light - Environmentally friendly. 

Varnish

 A clear liquid applied to printed surfaces for looks and protection. (UV coating looks better.) 

Verso

 The left hand page of an open book. 

Vignette halftone

 A halftone whose background gradually fades to white. 

Wash-up

 Removing printing ink from a press, washing the rollers and blanket. Certain ink colors require multiple wash-ups to avoid ink and chemical contamination. 

Waste

 A term for planned spoilage. 

Watermark

 A distinctive design created in paper at the time of manufacture that can be easily seen by holding the paper up to a light. 

Web

 A roll of printing paper. 

Web press

 The name of a type of presses that print from rolls of paper. 

Wire O

 A bindery trade name for mechanical binding using double loops of wire through a hole. 

Wire-O binding

 A method of wire binding books along the binding edge that will allow the book to lay flat using double loops. See Wire O. 

With the grain

 Folding or feeding paper into the press or folder parallel to the grain of the paper. 

Work and tumble

 Printing one side of a sheet and turning it over from the gripper to the tail to print the second side using the same side guide and plate for the second side. 

Work and turn

 Printing one side of a sheet and turning it over from left to right using the same side guides and plate for the second side. 

Wove paper

 A paper having a uniform unlined surface with a smooth finish.

 

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