A little while ago we gave you an insider’s glance at how our sample requests are processed. Since it is part of our on-going mission statement not only to provide you with the highest quality products, but also to relate and bond with you as a company that has become a family, we thought we’d take you inside another highly integral aspect of our commitment to excellence… our Print Production.
Here at Fineline, we offer printed options for dozens of products we sell. If a customer is looking to spice up an event or brand themselves, we can print graphics in an array of colors and sizes onto their requested product! Sometimes, we can even print multi-colored logos, or on multiple sides!
We take a great deal of pride in this service, as it gives a personal, hand-crafted touch to a customer’s event! Just as before, let us show you some of the hard-work that goes into a printed order here at Fineline Settings!
As printing requires a special eye for detail, our Print Production Specialist is thoroughly trained in every aspect of the position, especially because a print job’s most important step is not the actual printing, itself. A print job officially begins with ink mixing. The inks that we use are food safe, and we thin them with a, well… thinning compound. We do this to find the ideal viscosity of the ink to assure it prints clearly and accurately on the surface of the product we intend to print on. Every job is different, and some products or logos require an ink consistency like honey, while others may require a thinned viscosity much like coffee creamer. Sorry for the weird analogy… but I guess it’s close to lunch time for me, and I’m hungry after all of this printing!
Once we are satisfied with the consistency, we pour the ink into our inkwell, which is lined with a ceramic ring that helps spread the ink evenly over the logo plate.
This is what we call the printing plate. It is gently but securely screwed to a metal base, and once we are sure there are no imperfections or dirt, we attach the inkwell carefully to the plate. This step is very important, as the metal base is magnetic, and if the plate is not attached to the inkwell with a quick flick of the wrist, it can cause the inkwell to jump and spill ink everywhere! Yes… this has happened to me, and our Print Production Specialist… and nothing ruins a nice pair of shoes… or a shirt… or pants… or your mood- like spilling bright red ink all over everything.
Once we have successfully avoided the above-mentioned mess, we bring the plate and inkwell to the actual print machine, and we slip the metal base onto the track, lock the inkwell into position, and attached the printing pad, and then we’re ready to start!
… Just kidding.
This squishy blue thing is our printing pad. Just like with ink viscosity, each print job requires a specific pad. It is a soft, rubbery material that picks up the ink from the plate and then transfers it to the product.
Now that we have set the machine up, now it’s time to test… and test… until we get the perfect print. From here we adjust the alignment of the machine, assure the air pressure which the machine functions on is regulated, and fiddle and fiddle until we are satisfied and getting a consistently ideal result. Some jobs are easier than others… while some can be… challenging. Regardless, we always get it done, whether it be ten cases… or two hundred cases!
Every item is printed, packed and labelled by loving hands. Yes, sure, it takes time… but patience is a virtue and exceptional quality is kind of our thing.
Perhaps the second most important step of a print day… is after we’re done printing. We set aside at least 30 minutes so that we can adequately clean up and get ready for the next day (as one print job often takes multiple days to complete). Our Print Production Specialist takes special care to clean every inch of the plate, the base, and the inkwell. Each piece must be cleaned thoroughly, as even a drop of dried ink (especially between the logo plate and the metal base) could cause irrevocable damage! We make sure that by the end of the day that all pieces are set safely away, and the machine and air compressor is shut off! All the while, looking forward to the next morning when we get to do it all again, refreshed, invigorated and excited to complete our jobs on schedule!
If you’re not just entertained by this insider sneak-peak, but also interested in how YOU can upgrade your events with a personalized printed item of your very own, then click the link below and one of our amazing printing experts will get in touch with you and help guide you through this process!
Thanks again for taking the time to join us on this little adventure, and we hope it helps you better understand the love and care that goes into every order we receive, from samples, to stock orders, and specially printed products! We hope you have the best day, and a wonderful holiday!