UV printing

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This is a description of the principle behind UV printing and the associated processes involved in the front panel production.

Process principle

Generally, any bitmap or vector graphic can be used as a print template for UV printing. After having been applied to the material, the UV ink is tempered by means of UV light. To ensure the UV ink’s optimal adhesion to the material, the material is pre-treated by way of a special process in a plasma furnace.

The UV printing does not penetrate the material, but sits on the material surface. It is also highly scratch-resistant, highly UV-resistant and highly resistant to chemicals and many solvents.

Apart from the standard CMYK colours, white is also available for UV printing. This way, white lettering can also be printed and/or colour material can generally be printed on. First, white colour is applied below the graphic to be printed, followed by the application of the actual graphic.

The printing of the front panel is done before the front panel is processed further mechanically.

Source material

Generally, UV printing can be applied to any material. But we can guarantee optimal adhesion of the print only on anodized aluminium provided by us. Since white is an available print colour, coloured material can also be printed on.

Subsequent mechanical processing

After printing, the main plate can be transferred to the standard manufacturing flow, without any need for special precautionary or safety measures.

The only special aspect to pay attention to is the handling of the origin. Usually the origin for the milling machine must be set only to the extent that the panel can be cut cleanly out of the larger main plate.

By contrast, for a printed front panel, the origin of the milling file must be aligned exactly with the origin that was previously set for the printing process. Such origin is a mark that is printed as well. The milling machine must be able to detect it visually in an initial scan, so that it can be applied as the origin for the milling and/or engraving process.