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Study of Future of Polyester Printing Plates Now Available

Press release from the issuing company

ALEXANDRIA, VIRGINIA – The Graphic Arts Marketing Information Service (GAMIS) of Printing Industries of America, Inc. (PIA), recently announced that their study The Market Potential for Polyester Printing Plates: 2001-2005, which gauges the performance of this emerging plate technology is now available for sale. While conducting the research exclusively for GAMIS, William C. Lamparter, principal, PrintCom Consulting, Waxhaw, North Carolina found numerous examples of printers producing quality process color work, tight register, and heavy coverage products with polyester plates. These findings are significant in dispelling outdated stories abound about plate stretch, inability to register, plates flying off the press because they would not properly lockup, and a variety of other performance-related problems. Many of the performance negatives about polyester plates may have been true at one time, but today those stories are unfounded. These old tales have inhibited the penetration of polyester plates into the markets that could best use the technology. A basic conclusion of the study is that the plates are suitable for a wide range of work -- up to about 25,000 impressions depending on the condition of the press and the quality requirements for a specific job. Polyester plates were found to be suitable for use on a wide range of presses and for most printed products including those with half tones, screen tints, and heavy coverage. Printers’ widespread adoption of CtPoly is clearly being inhibited by the lack of information about the product, and more importantly, as a result of the abundance of misinformation and misunderstanding about silver polyester digital capable plates. Although suppliers of polyester plate material and many press manufacturers stress the suitability of the product, they further indicated there are suitable press lockups for both metal and polyester. In some cases where automated presses benefit from using polyester plates, the measure still hasn’t caught on with many printers. An increasing number of printers in the next five years will be forced by their customers to become virtually 100 percent digital. In the same time, camera direct plates will be replaced either by silver based polyester plates made in an imagesetter, or on dedicated CtPoly platemakers as well as on the digital image (DI) press. The results of this study clearly show that many printers, particularly those operating small format offset equipment, are overlooking the opportunity to adopt computer-to-plate technology through the use of digital polyester printing plates. "The Market Potential for Polyester Printing Plates: 2001-2005," was distributed exclusively to GAMIS members in the spring. It is now available for sale. Price is $1,000 for PIA members, and $2,500 for non-PIA members. A full table of contents and ordering details can be found at www.gamis.org. For more information on about GAMIS membership, contact Jackie Bland, GAMIS executive director by phoning 703/519-8179.