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Glossary of Printing Terminology


Back Up
To print on the reverse side of a printed sheet

A defect in the print of a graduated tint.

Base Board
Board intended for coating or laminating.

Base Paper
Name given to the base sheet for off machine coating, or paper intended to be converted, e.g. by a coating process or by impregnation. The term is sometimes also used for paper to which a layer of other material (aluminium, plastics) is bonded.

Basis Weight
The weight of paper defined in grams per square meter (g/m2)

Bible Paper
Very thin printing papers. Originally made specifically for Bible and prayer books, this grade of paper is also used for other commercial purposes, such as dictionaries, where many pages are required with an overall low volume. Bible paper is also known as India paper.

The Process of holding pages together to form booklets. The are different methods including: Wiro Binding, Comb Bindind, Saddle Stitch, Perfect Binding & PUR.

A substance that will decompose as the result of action by bacteria and other living organisms.

Biological diversity in nature, at all levels of living organisms. Man influences the biodiversity mechanically through construction, cultivation and raw material supply, and chemically through (for example) municipal waste industrial emissions. Modern silviculture tries to preserve the biodiversity of nature.

Energy generated from renewable biomass i.e. living plants and plant components.

Bitmap Image
A graphic image file comprised of fixed dots. As you increase the size of the image, the number of dots remains the same, they just get bigger. Thus a bitmap is ‘resolution-dependant’.

Defect associated with calendared paper occurring as unintended local areas of apparently darker or greyer colour due, for example, to the paper being too damp when passed through the calendar.

Blade Coated Paper
Paper coated by a process in which the freshly applied wet coating is smoothed and the excess removed by a thin, flexible metal blade that bears on the coated surface.

Blanket Cylinder
The cylinder on a litho printing machine, covered with a rubber (or similar) blanket, which conveys the image from the plate to the sheet.

Blanket to Blanket Machine
A printing machine in which the blanket cylinders act as opposing impression cylinders, so allowing both sides of the web or sheet to be printed simultaneously (or perfected).

The part of a printed image beyond the area to which the finished sheet will be cut.

Blind Embossed
A logo, text or deign that has been relief stamped into a sheet of paper, onto which no printing ink has been added.

Blue Angel
The German eco label and the oldest of the eco labels in use. A jury chooses the product groups and decides on the criteria for awarding the label. The authorisation to use the Blue Angel is signed by the German RAL eco labelling unit, which covers its costs by application fees and charges. Criteria for the awarding of the label have been fixed for many product groups.

A term applied to paper above an accepted weight. The substance when paper becomes known as board varies a great deal between manufacturers and can vary from as low as 180 g/m2 to as high as 250 g/m2. The lower substance definition usually refers to boards in the graphic sector.

Book Jacket Paper
The term applied to the printed dust cover or wrapper used to cover books or similar publications; usually a high quality coated grade in the higher substance range.

Broke Paper
Any pieces of paper arising at any point in the papermaking process that are suitable only for re-pulping, e.g. wet paper removed from the papermachine, dry paper arising as trimmings, or faulty paper. The re-used material, which never leaves the mill, is not regarded as recycled.

A black and white positive or proof on photograph ic paper. Traditionally made by contact printing negative film onto white photographic paper (bromide paper) this term also encompasses positives made by (Contact Transfer) (CT) or photomechanical Transfer (PMT) methods. Now seldom used.

A term applied to the substance, thickness and feel of a paper

Bulky Paper
Paper that appears to be thick in relation to its grammage.

Bulk Packed on Pallets (BPOP)
A method of packing paper in which the sheets are not wrapped in parcels but stacked on the pallet, tabbed at the required intervals to indicate quantity and over wrapped.

Bull’s Eye
A flaw in print caused by dust preventing contact between the paper and the printing surface.