Printing and finishing recommendations
Printing job Preparation: Astralux is produced to be dimensionally stable at 50 % U.R. 21-23 °C. Care should be taken to avoid extremes of humidity and temperature, in the print room. Keep in mill wrappers for as long as possible and protect from extremes of hot and cold.

Offset Litho:
This is the most popular process for the printing of Astralux. In addition to giving you excellent print quality, Astralux runs cleanly on press. In our experience best results are obtained by using: minimum quantity of ink, minimum printing pressure, minimum dampening solution and transparent inks so that the gloss of the Astralux surface is preserved. Dampening solution is advisable to keep the PH buffered and not to go below 5. It is recommended to use isopropyl alcohol in the standard quantity.

Gravure and Flexography:
These methods of printing rely on surface smoothness, which is vital if good printing quality is to be achieved. Astralux’s ultra smooth surface will give you superb results. Flexography is especially popular for printing self-adhesive labels.

Used extensively for the printing self-adhesive constructions, the compressibility inherent in Astralux makes it ideally suited to the letterpress process. Keep cylinder pressures light especially when printing the reverse side.

Astralux’s polished surface offers an ideal platform for silkscreen printing.

Digital printing:
Astralux white 215 gsm and 250 gsm perform well with hp indigo by RIT, USA. Extensive tests proved that Astralux has excellent performance in dry toner printing machines.

Inks normally used for coated papers can also be used for Astralux thanks to its microporous absorbant surface.

Matt Inks:
these are inks, which by obstructing the passage of light inhibit the surface gloss thereby achieving special effects. They can be used in all circumstances.

Metallic inks:
These inks require certain precautions. These are inks that on Astralux enhance gloss and coverage since the metallic pigments of which they consist are evenly spread on the smooth surface.

U.V. Inks:
can be used on Astralux without any problems. These inks have a photo sensitive polymer as their base which, when exposed to Ultra Violet rays polymerizes and dried quickly.

Foil blocking:
The surface smoothness makes Astralux very responsive to foil blocking and stamping.

The heat generated during normal processing should have no adverse effects on Astralux so it makes an excellent choice for this conversion method.

The glossy surface of Astralux does not require varnishing. Varnishing is performed in all those cases where the surface needs to be protected in preparation for subsequent applications. U.V. varnish should be selected with care so as to obtain the same performance both on the printed and unprinted areas. This is an increasingly popular varnishing system with Astralux, the final gloss effect will be produced by the varnish.

Film lamination:
You’ll get good results with all plastic films: cellulose acetate, polypropylene, PVC etc. This process produces high quality results. Before laminating the main precaution is to eliminate any drying powder during the printing process.

Astralux doesn’t need particular glues.

The surface of Astralux is flexible and extensible so go ahead and use the full range of embossing and die stamping techniques. The surface is resistant to cracking and dies varying depths can be used successfully.