Printing Technology

Printing on uncoated papers

Text by Metapaper

Printing on uncoated papers can be challenging. To help you and your print partners achieve the best results we have prepared some helpful hints and guidance.

As with all paper types the use of the correct ICC profiles is important. You can find an overview of our recommended profiles here. For SMOOTH and ROUGH we have developed our own profiles. You can find these in our download area.

In the print-industry everything must be done quickly! When using uncoated papers please do be aware of the longer drying time and allow yourself one extra day when planning and quoting. If this is not possible you can find printing partners in our database who offer offset with UV drying. UV-drying dries the paper immediately.

Drying time is not an issue with an HP Indigo press or with the common Dry Toner printing machines. For Riso printing please note that only very open and hard papers can be used. We would recommend our EXTRAROUGH followed by CRAFT and ROUGH.

Metapaper’s finest paper collection: EXTRAROUGH, EXTRASMOOTH, EXTRAROUGH RECYCLING, EXTRASMOOTH RECYCLING and EXTRAMATT have been manufactured specifically for HP Indigo. This also goes for our premium offset paper SMOOTH and ROUGH.

After several print-tests we received the following tips from the paper mill: When printing on the HP Indigo S5000 series we recommend the following settings for improved toner adhesion on substances above 200gsm:

  • Increase the pressure temperature: up to 158 ° C
  • Increase the print "Paper thickness Impression": 0.3 (default 0.2)
  • Increase the drying time: drying level 3 (default 0-1)

These settings also allow you to achieve optimal results when printing images with very high color coverage.

For the newer Indigo 7000 and 10000 series no changes to the default settings are necessary.

With uncoated paper it is possible to experience “roll-ups” if the paper is handled incorrectly. A roll-up can result from three possible cause:

  • edge damage.
  • mechanical stress when paper "slips" one above the other
  • surface strength is too low.

Roll-ups can be extremely damaging as they are often only noticed once the paper is on the printing press. The most common reason for roll-ups is a damaged edge; this is when the paper edge has been mechanically squeezed. Edge damage can occur:

  • during handling in the mill
  • during transport from the factory to METAPAPER
  • during handling in the METAPAPER warehouse
  • cutting in the METAPAPER warehouse or at the printing house
  • during the transport from METAPAPER to the print shop
  • during handling in the printing shop

At each stage of the process / channel the paper should be checked for edge damage. Paper with damaged edges should not be printed. Often it is enough to remove the damaged sheets.

A second reason for roll up’s can be the mechanical stress when paper is handled in the METAPAPER warehouse or at the printer. If a large layer of paper slides over another layer of paper this can result in mechanical stress where the lower sheet of paper can be damaged. Roll ups resulting from this cause can be extremely difficult to discover. Two techniques to reduce the risk and probability:

  • do not print the lowest sheet on the pallet – dispose of this sheet (this is called the bottom sheet).
  • paper should be handled by two people and moved in smaller stacks to minimize the mechanical stress on the paper

The two causes described so far cause roll up’s which are coming from the edge and moving into the centre of the sheet. The third cause, too low surface strength, can lead to roll ups within the entire sheet.

If you are unsure about the cause of a roll up you should certainly check surface strength (in the factory laboratory). Unfortunately it is often impossible to identify a clear cause so normally all partners are taken on board.

For questions contact us via

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