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Printing Glossary

This glossary of printing terms was created by people working in today's printing industry and is brought to you by It has been revised and edited and we have rewritten some technical descriptions in every day language to help the non technical person. Any suggestions that you may have on how we can improve this glossary will be carefully considered. Please send your comments and any new definitions to us at

Wash Up

This means to clean ink or other liquids from the rollers, fountains, screens or other components of a printing press.


In typography, a quantity of type that is set but which is ultimately not used.
In printing, waste is characterized by sheets of paper (or other substrate) used to set up the press before the print run proper begins.


A design stamped in wet paper pulp as it is forming in a papermaking machine. Watermarks are created by running the wet paper web under a dandy roll, which is a wire-covered cylinder. The design to be pressed into the paper is woven in wire and attached to the wire cover of the dandy roll, decreasing the paper's opacity in the image area of the design, which becomes visible when the dried paper is held up to the light.

Web Press

A Web Press is a printing press that prints from large rolls of paper or other substrate, as opposed to a sheet-fed press, which prints from individual cut sheets. Gravure and flexographic presses are more commonly web presses. Presses used in offset lithography are either sheet-fed or web.

What kind of inks do you use?

All of our jobs are printed with four-color inks (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black, or CMYK). We are proud to be one of the environmentally-friendly Green Printers in California and do not use VOC's.

What kind of press do you use?

We use KBA, Komori, Heidelberg sheet-fed press with an aqueous coater and UV coater.

What paper stock do you print on?

For our Business Cards, Postcards, Rackcards, Press Kit, Bookmarks, Tent Cards and Collector Cards we print on 14-point glossy card stock with a UV coating (lamination) on the color side(s). All other products are printed on 100 lb glossy book stock with writable UV coating on both sides.

Woodfree Paper

Woodfree Paper is paper made with chemical pulp instead of real wood pulp. This type of paper is usually classified as calendered or supercalendered.

Work and Turn

Work-and-Turn is an imposition or layout in which a printing plate containing both the front and back of a sheet are mounted on the press at the same time and print on a double-size sheet of paper. Thus, half the sheet is the top printing, while the other half of the sheet is the "back printing." When half the required number of sheets have been printed, the printed sheets are flipped over (keeping the same gripper edge) and run through again. This will result in the respective back printing on both halves of the sheet. After cutting the printed sheets in half, the job will be done, and it required half the number of impressions that would have been required with standard one-up printing.


A Wove is paper manufactured without visible wire marks, usually a fine textured type of paper.

Wrong Reading

An image that is backwards when compared to the original. Also called flopped and reverse reading.