UV Printing vs Pad Printing

ONCE has more than ten years of manufacturing experience in the professional printing field. We have a deep understanding of UV printing and pad printing technology. This is a very professional article. You can gain a lot from it.

UV printing and pad printing are two different printing processes. Do you want to know everything about pad printing vs UV printing? This article is about UV printing vs pad printing. Everything you want to know can be found in this article.


Pad Printing vs UV Printing

We will introduce UV printing vs pad printing from the definition, application, printing effect, etc.

What is UV Printing

UV printing is a printing process in which ink is dried and cured by ultraviolet light. This printing process requires the use of a photosensitizer-containing ink with a UV curing lamp. The application of UV printing is one of the most important contents in the printing industry.

UV Printing Process

The growth of UV printing is driven by its value-added printing attributes. It offers several advantages in applications in the publishing, commercial, packaging and labeling markets. The reason for this can be seen in increasing user demands: not only paper and cardboard, but also a wide variety of substrates, including low- or non-absorbent materials (plastic, foil, metal and heat-sensitive materials).

UV ink has covered offset printing, screen, inkjet, pad printing and other fields. The UV generally referred to in the traditional printing industry is the printing effect process, which is to coat a layer of varnish (bright, matte, inlaid crystals, glitter powder, etc.) on a piece of printed pattern you want. The main purpose is to increase the brightness and artistic effect of the product and protect the surface of the product.

Advantages of UV Printing

  • Wide range of UV printing.

The printing range of UV printing is very wide. No matter what industry it is, as long as it is a flat material, UV printing can be used without any material restrictions. UV printing can be applied to wood, glass, crystal, PVC, acrylic, plastic, stone, leather and other surfaces.

  • UV printing is convenient and straightforward.

Whether it is a simple monochrome pattern or a color pattern, or a pattern with transitional colors, UV printing can be directly printed, and the operation is simple.

  • Meet personalized printing needs.

UV print can meet people’s individual needs to the greatest extent. The majority of designers can give full play to their creative talents, and the design samples can be modified arbitrarily on the computer. After the customer is satisfied, it can be directly produced.

Disadvantages of UV Printing

  • The cost of UV ink is higher.

The cost of color ink per square is 3-5 yuan per square. White ink has a higher density and a slightly higher cost, about twice as much as color ink.

  • Printing is slow.

The piezoelectric inkjet printing principle used in UV printing is mainly short-run digital printing. Compared with traditional silk screen printing, offset printing and other processes, the speed is slightly insufficient.

  • UV printer failure rate is high.

The early operation of UV printers is more troublesome and requires a certain amount of time to run in. The nozzle is also easy to damage, and maintenance is more troublesome. The failure rate of parts is also relatively high. Sometimes after-sales service cannot be maintained in time.

UV Printing Feature

  • Printing UV has a high gloss effect, and sometimes has a comprehensive effect on scratch resistance and scratch resistance.
  • The UV in printing has various special functions, touch and polished special graphic surface treatments.
  • UV in printing has high surface resistance (anti-friction and anti-scratch), especially for the covers of packages and publications.
  • UV print can speed up the job. Especially the short version, because in many cases UV printing can be processed right away.

Problems Faced by UV Printing

1.The price of UV ink

UV ink has the advantages of instant curing and good conjunctival properties. But it is relatively expensive, and a special UV blanket and UV ink roller must be used at the same time. This greatly increases the cost of the product.

2. Adhesion of UV ink

During the curing process, the internal components of the UV ink undergo cross-linking polymerization, and the volume changes instantaneously, resulting in large internal stress, which affects the adhesion of the ink to the printing material. Although this problem can be improved by treating or modifying the surface of the substrate, the fundamental solution is to find and develop UV inks with good adsorption, low shrinkage stress and low price.

3.Suitable fountain solution

UV inks are mainly used for non-absorbent printing materials. For different printing materials, the formulation of ink is different. Therefore, the fountain solution is required to have a wide range of adaptability to ensure the required printing quality.

UV Printing Future

UV printing is a highly reliable process. UV inks are considered environmentally friendly because they do not pose problems with volatile organic component (VOC) solvent evaporation. Moreover, the color reproduction of UV in printing is high.

What is Pad Printing

Pad printing is one of the special printing methods. Pad print can print text, graphics and images on the surface of irregular-shaped objects. Now pad printed form is becoming an important special printing form. For example, text and patterns on the surface of mobile phones are printed in this way. The surface printing of many electronic products such as computer keyboards, instruments, and meters is completed by pad printing.

Pad Printing Process

Pad printing means that the substrate is an irregular shaped surface (such as instruments, electrical parts, toys, etc.), using copper or steel gravure, and casting a hemispherical pad printing head through silicone rubber. The method of transferring the ink to the substrate by pressing this to the layout to complete the transfer printing. Pad printers are mainly composed of a printing plate unit, squeegee, pad printing heads and printing table.

Since pad printers have obvious advantages in printing products with small areas and concave and convex surfaces, they make up for the shortcomings of screen printing technology. So pad printing technology is developing very fast.

Advantages of Pad Printing

  • The pictures and texts printed by pad print are exquisite, environmentally friendly, and can save production costs. And save ink, odorless and pollution-free.
  • It can be printed on irregular surfaces (concave and convex surfaces), and can also be printed on extremely small products.
  • The price of the pad printer is low, the operation is simple, and the printing technology is easy to master.

Disadvantages of Pad Printing

  • The area of the printed product should not be too large, and the product that is too large is not suitable for pad printing.
  • The ink layer of pad printing is relatively thin, and the quality of printing is limited by the pad printing head, ink, and steel plate.
  • The degree of automation of the pad printing machine is not high.
  • The oil basin type pad printer is open, so the printing smell is heavier.

Types of Pad Printing

Inks specially designed for pad printers are different from general solvent-based inks, water-based inks and UV-curable screen printing inks. Although pad printing inks and screen printing inks have some similar properties, they are quite different.

Unlike screen printing inks, pad printing inks dry faster. This is also the most prominent feature of pad printing ink. At the same time, the pad print ink is often printed on the film, and the pad printing ink is easily affected by some factors such as temperature, humidity and static electricity. Inks specially formulated for pad printing include one-component inks, two-component inks, bake-drying, oxidation, UV and sublimation inks.

Classification of Pad Printing

1. Classification by transmission method

According to the different transmission modes of the main movement of the pad printing machine, it can be divided into three types. Namely manual mechanical pad printer, electric pad printer and pneumatic pad printer.

2. Classification by printing color number

According to the number of printing colors completed in a printing process, pad printing machines can be divided into single-color pad printing machines, two-color pad printing machines and multi-color pad printing machines.

3. Classification by ink storage method

According to different ink storage methods, it is divided into oil basin pad printer and oil cup pad printer. The oil basin pad printing machine is a more commonly used form. The oil cup type pad printing machine has sealed ink storage, which is relatively environmentally friendly. Moreover, the oil cup pad printing machine can ensure the better stability of the ink during the printing process.


Conclusion About UV Printing vs Pad Printing

In printing speed, pad printing is faster than uv in printing. UV printing is a piezoelectric inkjet, which is mainly suitable for short-run digital printing and color printing of personalized custom patterns.

The effect of UV printing is slightly rougher than that of pad printing. If you look closely, you can clearly see the ink spots. But UV printing is much stronger than pad printing in terms of color reproduction and operation. UV printing does not require plate making and color registration, and it is formed at one time. The color can basically achieve the effect of close to 95% of pad printing and can play spot color, color, and gradient color. Moreover, the labor cost of printing UV is low, and the technical requirements are not high. One person can operate two UV printers.

All in all, the two different processes of UV printing vs pad printing have their own advantages, but with the diversification of products and the complexity of patterns, people are becoming more and more cautious about the choice of the two.

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