Offset Printing: Things you need to know about it

by karen nodalo - Date: 2007-02-03 - Word Count: 479 Share This!

Offset printing is said to be the crème de la crème of the printing world.  And for very good reasons:

•Offset printing is capable of coming up with consistent high image quality that is sharper and cleaner which is by far better than what you can achieve utilizing letterpress printing. The reason for this is that the rubber blanket used in offset printing match up perfectly to the texture of the printing surface.

•The offset printing process is also applicable to a much wider range of printing surfaces such as smooth paper, wood, cloth, metal, leather, rough paper and others. This makes offset printing as a perfect printing solution to various print requirements.

•Unlike any other types of printing procedures, offset printing process involves quick and easy production of printing plates.

•The plates used for offset printing last longer compared to those used for direct litho presses. This is because in offset printing there is no direct contact between the plate and the printing surface---obviously no friction is produce that will wear out the printing plates.

Marvelous Beginning of an Extraordinary Printing Process

England is the birthplace of offset printing. It is in this same place where the first lithographic offset printing press was developed. The first ever developed lithographic printing press makes use of an offset cylinder which was covered with a specially treated cardboard which transfers the printed image from the litho stone to the surface of the metal.

Years of continuous development and advancement in the printing technology has changed the cardboard covering of the offset cylinder. It was changed to rubber which until now is being used.

An American guy by the name of Ira Washington Rubel was the first person to use the offset press to print on paper. The idea came to him after he observed that whenever a sheet of paper is not fed into the lithographic press during operation, the stone printed its image to the rubber covered impression cylinder instead. This results to the impression of the image on both sides with the direct litho on the front and with the rubber blanket on the back.

That was not the only thing that Mr. Ruble noticed. He also observed that the image found on the back of the sheet was also much sharper and clearer compared to the image produced through direct litho. To cut the story short that was the event that prompted Mr. Ira Washington Ruble to build a printing press that has the ability to print every image from the plate to the blanket and then finally to the paper.

By the way, after Mr. Ruble comes the Harris brothers who also developed an offset press which they use for their Harris Automatic Press Company. I was thinking of telling you about them also but then I thought why should I have all the fun…you people need also to research (LOL).

Karen Nodalo has graduated from the Bicol University specializing in Computer Science, she graduated with flying honors being one of the top notch students of the graduating class. She has been into writing for almost 5 years now, and has been into different topics. She has also been into student publications since her elementary years, giving her the much-coveted exposure that writers of her kind battles for.

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