Gravure printing is mainly used for flexible packaging printing. With the development of gravure printing technology, it has also been widely used in paper packaging, wood grain decoration, leather materials, and pharmaceutical packaging.

What’s gravure printing?

Gravure printing is to make the entire surface of the printing plate filled with ink, and then use a special squeegee mechanism to remove the ink of the blank part, so that the ink left only in the mesh of the graphics part, and then transfer the ink to the surface of the substrate to obtain the printed products.

Gravure printing is a direct printing method. The ink level of the printed image is determined by the size and depth of the pit. If the pit is deep, the ink used more, the ink layer left on the substrate is thicker; on the contrary, if the pit is shallow, the amount of ink used is less, and the ink layer left on the substrate is thinner.

Plate

The types of gravure printing are divided into two categories according to the plate making method: engraved plate and corrosion plate.

  1. Engraved plate

The engraving plate is a pit that directly engraves the original image on the surface of the plate cylinder with a knife. According to the control method of the knives, it can be divided into a hand-engraved plate, a mechanical engraving plate, and an electronic engraving plate.

  • Hand-engraved plate

The hand-engraved plate is made by a technician using a knife to manually engrave the surface of the plate cylinder according to the original image, and the plate material can be made of copper plate or steel plate. Manual labor is heavy, plate making costs are large, and the time is long. However, the hand-engraved plate lines are clear, and the prints are highly layered and difficult to forge. Mostly used in the production of the printed plate for securities and high-quality art.

  • Mechanical engraving plate

The mechanical engraving plate is made by mechanically controlling the knives on the surface of the plate cylinder. It reduces the heavy work of hand-engraving, the plate making speed is faster than the hand-engraved plate, the time is shorter, and the plate making cost is also lower. Mainly used to make a printed plate for securities.

Due to the high cost of the above two plates and the long plate making time, the scope of use is limited. But all the things have two sides. The hand-engraved plate may be the best choice for anti-counterfeiting packaging. Because secret anti-counterfeiting is a major method of anti-counterfeiting packaging, the technicians can use the various methods to engrave some hidden notes in the process of hand-engraving gravure. The hidden marks on these hand-made plates are not easy to be found, and it is more difficult to distinguish on the printed products. This forms a secret anti-counterfeiting.

  • Electronic engraving plate

This plate is made by knives which controlled by an electronic device to engrave the surface of the plate cylinder. Using an electronic engraving machine, according to the photoelectric principle, controlling the knife engraved on the surface of the plate, and the area and depth changed at the same time.

2. Corrosive plate

The corrosive plate is made by etching a single ink pit on the surface of the plate cylinder by chemical etching according to the original image. The corrosion plate can be classified into an etched plate, a photographic plate, and a halftone dot plate according to the difference in the original image conversion method.

The etched plate is made by a plate using the method combining engraving and etching. That is, the shape of the original image is hand-engraved first and then made by etching.

The photographic plate is widely used in gravure printing, mainly used for printing products.

The halftone dot plate is mainly used for packaging and decoration printing etc.

Below is part of our plate and the process of our tissue paper printing for your reference. If you want to know more about gravure printing and tissue paper, please feel free to contact us sales(at)sunlightindustry.com.