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Technology

How to Make a Pad Plate

Author:Ivan Zhang

There are three kinds of pad plate: thick steel plate, thin steel plate, nylon resin plate.  Making the pad plate is the first step to begin pad printing technology.

1.Output Film
According to the digital artworks provided by the customer,the films are output by an imagesetter.Also,you can ask expert the prepress bureau to make films for you, and most of films for pad printing process is positive. 

2.Coating Emulsion
Coating FUJI emulsion by turning coating machine, dipping coating machine or spraying coating machine
       
3.Drying
Put the pad plate covered with emulsion into a drying closet at the temperature 120℃ for 5-10 minutes. 
        
4. Exposure
Put the pad plate coated emulsion covered with a film on the glass table of UV exposure machine, setting exposure time ,and start the  UV exposure machine.
        
5. Developing
Dip the pad plate into the jar full of FUJI developer liquid for several minutes till hidden image on the surface of emulsion is developed. Then blow it and remove water by compress air gun.         

6.Etching by Hand
Use one brush dipped with etching liquid and brush the hidden image 3-5 times so that hidden image is completely displayed. Some plants don't have a etching machine, please continuously take a brush to brush for 30-50 seconds. Because of etching operation only by hand, correct depth of pad plate mostly relis on the operator's experience. 
    
7.Etching by a Machine
For the precision etching and half-tone images,must use a spraying etching machine. Pad plate is put into an etching machine and is fixed by the magnet installed on the frame within PVC etching box. Set etching time and start the etching machine till the machine stop automatically.       

8.Blowing and Drying
Take a compress air gun to blow the pad plate and make sure withou etching liquid onto the pad plate.
       
9.Measure Depth
Standard depth is about 19-23 micron. Actual depth must be comply with the customer request. More etching time,more deep. Measure accurate depth with a depth measure meter.       

10.Package
Remove emulsion on the pad plate by Banana solvent.Clean it by clothes,then spray anti- rustiness onto it and put it into PA plastics bag. Pad plate has been completed.

Note:  Put pad plate into pad printer and you will begin to pilot run. With the development of market, nylon resin pad plate is already getting more and more recognition because of its capability to reproduce half-tone and shadow graphics. Nylon resin plate need one magnet installed on the pad printer