Electronic Gravure Cylinder Engraving Explained
Electronic Gravure Cylinder Engraving, also known as electromechanical engraving, is a technology widely used in the printing industry. Some people confuse it with laser engraving, which is not correct. If you are one of these people, this guide is for you. We have put together some of the crucial facts you need to know about this technology. Let’s start with understanding what this technology is.
What’s Electronic Gravure Cylinder Engraving?
Electronic gravure cylinder engraving is a technology that uses an electronically controlled diamond-stylus to etch cells on the gravure cylinder. Unlike laser engraving that uses a laser beam to engrave the gravure cylinder, this technology uses an electronically controlled diamond stylus. That’s the main difference between the two engraving processes.
How Does Electronic Gravure Cylinder Engraving Work
The working mechanism of the electronic gravure cylinder engraving is almost the as the laser engraving process. The image to be printed is scanned into the computer and digitized. The image can also be designed using the computer. The digital image is converted to halftone-like dots. Each of these dots has an electronic signal with ranging intensity depending on the lightness and the darkness of the image.
When engraving the gravure cylinder, the diamond stylus etches every cell on the cylinder surface. In the end, the image to be printed is engraved on the cylinder and ready for gravure printing. Do note that the gravure cylinder must be copper plated to provide the etching surface.
Factor To Consider During Electronic Gravure Cylinder Engraving
For proper electromechanical engraving, you need to get a few things right. Here are the most crucial things to consider:
Type Of Image Carrier
The image carrier layer is one of the crucial things to consider. The electronic engraving machine has specifications on the surfaces that it can etch. If you are not using an electroplated layer, you need to check whether the machine can engrave available material.
The intensity of the diamond stylus is one of the crucial factors to consider. Remember that the strength of the stylus determines, among many other things, the size of the etched cells. So depending on the kind of gravure printing you are doing, get the right stylus intensity.
Size Of Electronic Engraving Machine
Last but not least is the size of the machine. Depending on the size of the gravure cylinders you are working on, you need a machine that can handle all of them. So, take the issue of size seriously when buying.