The most versatile of printing processes
Graf3 runs a serigraphy division hosting two automatic serigraphic machines (format: 70 x 100 cm). The division provides for hot-air oven drying, and also hosts UV ovens.
The serigraphic process provides for a form of direct printing(direct contact between die and support). The printing die consists in an aluminium frame and silk fabric to which a polymer is added which, when exposed to light, hardens and clogs those parts through which the ink must not pass (i.e. non-image areas).
The advantages of serigraphic printing consist most surely in the fact that large quantities of ink may be applied to all types of material (including very thick materials).
As with offset printing machines, the machines include a feed unit, termed sheet feeder (a set of register components, grip and fence, which position the sheets uniformly throughout the print run). The sheet then passes under the frame to which it adheres, thanks to the action of a suction table. Here, a doctor blade, positioned above the frame, squeezes the ink deposited on the frame through the fabric onto the support. The fabric allows the ink to pass through only those parts which are not clogged by the polymer (i.e. images).
Following this stage, according to material and ink type, the grips retrieve the sheet and transfer it to the hot-air or UV drying ovens.
The sheet is ready for further processing in a matter of seconds (new colour steps, cutting, template production etc.).