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Gapen on UV

Gapen on UV

By Darren Gapen

About Darren

Darren has worked in the printing industry for 30 years and spent more than 12 years at two of the nation's leading high-end commercial printers: Bradley Printing in Des Plaines, IL, and Williamson Printing Corp. in Dallas, TX. During that time, he operated conventional and UV 40˝ sheetfed presses and also successfully managed a $15-million pressroom equipment transition. Darren also was Lead Press Instructor for Heidelberg, where he directed specialty equipment startups and was involved in all aspects of the printing process by teaching both instructor and pressroom employees.

In addition, he served as a troubleshooter for various printing companies in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. As operations manager for a start-up specialty folding carton company, he played a key role in achieving more than $6 million in sales within two years. Currently Darren is president of D.G. Print Solutions, a consulting firm that supports printing companies of all sizes. He specializes in growth development planning, pressroom color management and pressroom training through specialty print applications.


Got Lamps?

Can you imagine having the most used area in your home under construction and in semi working order for almost seven months? A couple of years ago my wife and I spent almost 30 weeks, mostly weekends, remodeling our kitchen while trying to keep our family functioning at a half way normal pace.

We had decided rather than replacing the builder’s grade cabinets we would add decorative trim and refinish them using an antiquing process that we had seen elsewhere in the past. Having the tools and knowledge, along with a very talented and creative wife, we established our design and went forward.

After endless hours of sanding, two coats of primer, three coats of paint, days of applying the glaze and an additional four coats of clear polyurethane, we completed phase one of the remodeling. This part of the project was done over a total span of four months, which again, involved mostly weekends.

Now I have a better appreciation of why the companies offering these services were so expensive. This antique process takes a great deal of patience, time and effort to accomplish the proper results. Most important are the many drying hours in between coats. You cannot obtain the dramatic effects you’re after without the prior application being thoroughly dry.

Consider what takes place when you are using the conventional print process or wet trap. Some of the ink film will transfer from unit to unit and from color to color. This results directly in a semi migration process. Now add the fact of the absorption that takes place within the stock. What’s your end product? Normal four-color process printed on an offset stock.

Those currently with UV capabilities would agree that the UV process over standard conventional printing lets you achieve better results while experiencing extreme hold out on offset substrates. This results in a much more vibrant product with a greater impact.

Drying in the delivery makes the product much more manageable for throughput in the bindery. However, to achieve the best outcome possible, dry trapping is the secret.

But remember, having the correct amount of lamps in place is the, “Solution.”

And for those of you wanting to truly test the solidity of your marriage, I encourage you to spend months with your spouse making the design decisions and together completing a project such as a full kitchen remodel.

Now going on 27 years of matrimony with numerous remodeling projects throughout, and “Forever” in this crazy business we refer to as printing, my wife still puts up with me.

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