GRA 420 Lecture Notes - Lecture 5: Uv Coating, Plywood, Microscope Slide
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Die Cutting, Mounting/ Laminating: Feb/12/2015
Steel Rule Die Cutting Dies
• What you might find a steel rule die: plywood (used to hold the shape. Does not hold any weight and
pressure. The steel rules goes all the way through the plywood. It is just there to maintain the shape).
Cushions/Bumpers (to push the paper out and make sure the materials do not get stuck and jam-up
In the die. Knife (sharp blade cuts all the way through the materials or cuts through what it is support
• There are two other types of rules beside knife. 2) Score knife: The scoring rule does not go all
the way through, it is slightly short than the knife therefore it doesn’t go all the way through and it is a
rounded knife, so it doesn’t cut into the actual material.
3) Perforating: only cuts through the material in little dashes, so it doesn’t go all the way through or
cut the entire line. It allows you to easily separate with your fingers.
• All these rules will have little nips in the entire straight line at every couple of inches. The reason for
the nips is because we don’t want all the pieces getting cut off and jam up in the machine so we want
an almost full sheet coming out of the device. The waste can be stripped off.
• In the steel rule there will be a notch that gets inserted into the actual plywood base. The notch is
there so the plywood does not fall apart. There is no glue involved in inserting rules in plywood.
• The optional piece is the counter. It is pieces of plastic/wood/metal that go on the outside of the
actual die/steel rule. So it creates a valley that the knife can come down in between to increase the
back pressure around the knife so it is easier to cut.
Making a Die
• The plywood is cut by lasers or by hand using a jigsaw. The slots are opened up so the steel rules
can be inserted. The steel rules can be hand made.
Inline Offset Cutting (Lithoperf)
• The two other dies can be used inline on an actual press.
• The sheet of steel has a die rules raised. The raised edges are sharpen blades or a score that is
wrapped around the actual impression cylinder of the press and it cuts through the back side. The
sheets run through the press for a second time. This is not done on wet sheets. The sheets are taken
off the press, dried, and put back on the press a second time. The counter would be the blanket
• The other type on press is a lithoperf. The lithoperf comes in rolls of steel with an actual die steel rule
in the middle. Of the three, one is a knife, perf and score. It is only about a centimeter wide and you
tape it down to an adhesive mylar/plastic (some kind of carrier) in such position that when you mount
it onto your impression cylinder (by gluing, it uses the blanket to add back pressure to cut it out.
Usually it is not done for complex images because you can not bend it easily. It does ruin the blanket.
• Sticking one flat surface to another using some kind of adhesive
• The laminate that we are talking about is plastic that is applied to a print.
• We are sticking a clear plastic film to adhesive print. Laminate protects the paper from debris,
moisture, friction, UV radiation, and environment. UV radiation fades the colour of print. There are
laminates that are designed to protect against UV radiation and fading to prolong the life of the print.
UV coating is not the same thing as laminating because UV coating is UV cured ink it doesn’t protect
UV radiation/light. UV laminate is something that protects against UV radiation.
• Laminate can add strength and stiffness. Like cards and some paper so it can be stiff enough to
stand on its own.
• You can use laminate to enhance surface of the print to make it glossy or matte. You can add
laminate so dry erase markers can be used.
• You can add texture. Example: bubbly texture
• It can enhance colour because the laminate actually focuses on the light coming off of the paper
and makes it look more vibrant.