Sign & Digital Graphics

2013 Buyer's Guide

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ing it into a mold either mechanically or pneumatically. Also know as pan-forming. Topology—Physical and logical arrangement of a networked system. Thinner—Any liquid used to reduce the thickness of paint or ink. Touch Screen—Also called a touch-sensitive screen; a computer monitor attachment that can sense the location at which a viewer touches the screen to respond to a question or prompt in a script. Often used as part of an interactive kiosk. Three-D Engraving—Routing procedure where the tool bit can be moved independently along the upand-down Z axis while still traveling an X/Y axes tool path. Through-Cure—In UV-cure printing, when the level of polymerization is equal at virtually all depths of the ink film (versus surface cure, which occurs when only a film of the ink has been completely cured). Both cationic and free radical UV-curing systems require good through cure. Throughput—Actual speed of a printer or plotter in completing a job. Difficult to measure, but it represents the unit's ability to process information and print and/or cut an image. Thumbnail—A type of rough sketch before preparing a complete design. In digital imaging, a very small version of a larger file used for quick visual identification. Tiling—See Panel. Time Switch—A switch which utilizes a clock or timer to automatically turn on and off electric signs at set times. Time and Temperature Display—Among the first electronic devices to change copy, these popular signs alternate between showing the time and temperature. Some also display simple messages. Timeout—A time limit for an operation. If the timeout period expires before the operation completes successfully, some default or alternative action is taken. Titanium Dioxide—Pigment used to make white inks (both UV-curing and eco-solvent). TiO² is dense and heavy and has only recently been used in digital printing applications. Tolerance—The amount of acceptable difference between a known standard and a measured sample. Tone—The effect on a color brought about by blending it with another color. Tool In/Out—Command given by computer to router to place a bit into material to begin routing. Controlling the speed and angle of tool in/out makes for more-accurate routing and less chance of damaging the material. Traffic—In electronic digital signage , data being transferred over a network. Downloading of text and graphics represent low-bandwidth traffic, while streaming video is higher. Traffic Count—The estimated number of people who will see a sign in a given time period. Transfer Paper—A special paper used for the transferring of color images to substrates by using a heat press or similar device. Transfer Tape—Medium-tack adhesive-coated translucent paper, placed on weeded vinyl images still on the original carrier liner; the tack of the tape is stronger than the adhesion of the vinyl to the coated liner, so the image is pulled off the liner in a transfer to another surface. Transformer—In  neon displays, the mechanical or electronic component that transforms incoming  voltage (primary voltage) into a higher voltage (secondary voltage). Also an electrical component with two or more sets of wire windings separated by some insulation material. The windings are wound on a magnetic core to magnetically couple energy between the winding. Transformers only work with a changing voltage. They act as a virtual electrical short if you apply direct current (DC) to them. They may be designed to work on line frequency AC (50Hz or 60Hz) or high frequency (greater than 20KHz) in a Switch-Mode power supply. They provide voltage scaling and galvanic isolation. Translucent—The property of a substrate,  vinyl, paint or ink to allow the passage of some light through it without being completely transparent. Transistor—The electronic equivalent of an adjustable valve. Trapping—In screen printing, to overlap one color on another. Trapping may result in the creation of a third color in the overlap area. See also Bleed. Triple Message Sign—A type of sign consisting of rotating triangular louvers. The louvers turn in unison, showing three different messages as the three faces as exposed. Tube Colors—Tubing for neon signs is produced as a clear glass, or in colors. Different tube colors serve as filters that only allow the desired to color to shine through. In many cases the only way to achieve rich primary colors is through colored glass. Tube Diameter—The term often used to describe the width of a tube, expressed in millimeters. Typeface—The design of a given set of letters, numbers and symbols, without reference to size or width. See also Font. U UCR (Under Color Removal)—Color separation process in which black ink is used to replace cyan, magenta, and yellow (CMY) in shadow areas where the three inks overlap, since black (K) is the combination of CMY. (Similar to GCR.) UL (Underwriters Laboratory)—Private organization which tests electrical devices and their construction and certifies their safety. UV (Ultraviolet) Light—Part of the spectrum ranging from 185 to 450 nanometers. UV has both a negative and positive influence on the sign industry. When UV strikes certain surfaces, such as the phosphors in neon and fluorescent tubes, it is transformed into visible light. UV is also used for curing some screen printing inks and UV-curing inkjet inks. UV is also the prime cause of pigment failure in some paints and vinyl, especially red. UV-Curing—In certain inkjet printers, the process in which a lamp emitting ultraviolet (UV) light is used to transform monomer-based liquid inks (deposited onto a substrate via the printhead) into  polymer-based solid inks. Commonly used process in many digital flatbed printers. The ink chemistry employed can be either free radical UV curing (common) or cationic UV curing (not widely used). Underbase White—Printing application in which a solid field of white ink that is laid down to be overprinted with an image, as when printing onto a non-white surface. V Vacuum Forming—Taking a flat sheet of plastic material and giving it dimension by placing it in a mold, heating it until it's flexible and then withdrawing the air in the mold, creating a vacuum. See also Thermoforming. S I G N & D I G I TA L G R A P H I C S • SBGuide.indd 119 Mid-June 2013 • 119 5/31/13 12:38 PM

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