Any market where public health and safety is at stake will see an increased use in label signage such as traffic, safety, health, chemical, lockout signage. Durability is for sure an important aspect as you want to read the sign in 10 years time. Also the fit to the situation (reading distance defining the size of the label) or mentions of the precise substance. GHS standard has defined specific symbols to inform upon the situation. This means that the content of the signage is defined, however the size can vary based upon the circumstance e.g. a sign applied to the pipes in a factory. They can be very long, contain unique information per pipe and need to last for several years.
Self-adhesive labels as such (aka ‘pressure sensitive labels’ or PSL) are made by printing onto a laminated construction of 3 layers: a release liner (otherwise known as the backing paper, carrier or glassine), a layer or adhesive and the facestock material. The laminate is printed and then converted in a roll containing the requested number of labels per roll. A web-fed process brings a high label application speed on the packaging line and allows for more embellishing processes. In addition, its flexibility of application is enormous, either during or after the filling process and on any type of surface/container just by taking another glue.
Here you can see a self-adhesive label signage sample printed on a Xeikon PX3000 digital press.
- Print dimensions: 100 x 100 mm
- Substrate: Synthetic substrate to ensure conformability of the label on the container and provide a uniform gloss
- Toner/Ink: CMYK PantherCure UV ink
- Finishing: Xeikon DCoat series, offline die cut
The Xeikon PX3000 has been the press of choice due to the durable characteristics of the PantherCure UV inks and the unlimited repeat length for any size of labels.
The durability performance of the label is tested on labels printed on a Xeikon PX3000 press, with PantherCure UVinks and Sutbstrate Avery Dennison TRANSFER PET WH TOP - S8002 - BG42WH (BJ330)
| ||Durability requirements ||Durability performance of label* |
|Scratch resistance ||++ ||+++ |
|Heat resistance ||++ ||+++ |
|Chemical resistance ||+ ||+++ |
|UV exposure ||++ ||+++ |
|BS 5609 Section2& 3 certification ||No ||No |
|UL, CSA certification ||Yes ||Yes |
* + = medium durability, ++ = high durability, +++ = very high durability
What is the value of digital printing?
Label signage orders don’t come in large volumes as they are bespoke for a specific situation (factory, construction site, ship, chemical plant,...). The content of the image can vary (e.g. due to language, specific substance flowing through a pipe, sitting in a barrel) but the symbols are the same through the global standards. Hence the business is mainly short run work. At the same time the substrate is relative expensive which does not match with the short run as any type of waste will add up to the cost.
Furthermore digital printing with Xeikon offers:
- instant ability to alter the label size
- printing of multi-variants in one go
- prevention of costly substrate waste
- maximizing the production through digitalizing manufacturing
Which is the preferred digital press for self-adhesive label signage?
The Xeikon PX3000 digital printing press. Our digital inkjet label printer using PantherCure UV inks and X800 workflow
- PantherCure UV inks: being scuff, water, chemical resistant without the need for additional converting steps such as lamination or UV varnishing
- full LED & mercury curing: ensure an in-depth curing of the PantherCure UV ink
- X800-workflow designed for last stage customization (size, content,…) in a tightly controlled process to automate the job handling
- UV inkjet: digital replacement for flexo and screen printing, providing that special tactile feel and glossy look
Which is the preferred digital production solution?
Below you can see our solution for label signage, the Xeikon PX3000 digital printing press for digital label printing.