You may be intrigued to learn that Photopolymer dies are being substituted for magnesium foiling dies more often than not. But why and how does that work?
Well firstly, if you aren’t familiar with Photopolymer dies, they are UV sensitive plates with a water soluble resin backing. Once exposed to UV light the plate can be washed out to reveal the positive image/artwork and then used for letterpress printing. This can be a time consuming and costly process when you take into consideration the manpower, equipment and ingredients required.
Here at Profoil we offer very reasonable pricing and next day delivery on our 16g/1.63mm magnesium foiling dies as an alternative. Magnesium is a stronger material than polymer and with an etch depth of up to 1.2mm (artwork dependant) on a 16g/1.63mm mag plate, we will provide a crisp and bold impression each time. Magnesium will last longer than polymer too. When kept in the right conditions, magnesium foilers will last years and achieve up to 10,000 impressions, ensuring longevity and reusability. Whereas polymer dies will dry out and become brittle over time, alongside that the image will start to thicken and dull on any medium run.
Did you know mag is also recyclable? Check with your local council to find out where is best to recycle your blocks!
An important note when ordering magnesium for letterpress printing, the dies must have a 0% heat reduction – so these will be produced 100% to scale of the artwork supplied, so please make it known when ordering these are for letterpress and therefore no heat reduction is required.
Where finer detail or longer runs are required (anything up to and over 1 million+ impressions) we would recommend switching from magnesium to copper foiling dies. Copper is by far the superior material over mag and polymer for detail and achieves a first class result every time. The only potential drawback is etch depth as the maximum etch depth on copper is 0.8mm (artwork dependant).
Did you know Profoil also offers print room supplies, such as rubber based inks, roller cleaners, blankets and much more for the letterpress process. To view our range head to www.profoil.com or contact us on +44 (0)1473 707222.