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Guide To Preparing Rotogravure Cylinders For Laser Engraving

Guide To Preparing Rotogravure Cylinders For Laser Engraving

The engraving of the gravure cylinder is one of the best technologies to have been invented in gravure printing. It has made the creation of the printing image very easy and fast. But laser engraving rotogravure cylinders is a process that takes several steps. These steps are designed to maintain the quality of engraving and the health of the operator.

In this guide, we have put together tips for preparing laser engraving rotogravure cylinders. Here are the main factors that you need to consider:

Cleaning Machine and Cylinder

One of the things you need to consider is cleaning everything that will be involved in the engraving. Laser engraving is very sensitive to any material, and like dust particles or anything other than the substrate, it will affect the quality of the print. That’s why it is recommended that you clean both the lenses and the cylinder before you start with engraving. There are special cleaning fluids and rugs to avoid scratches.

Masking the Substrate

One of the mistakes that people make and damaging the print work is the failure to mask the substrates. Laser engraving rotogravure cylinders results in the production of smoke. In most cases, the smoke affects the areas around the engraving. The blackish soot around the engraved surface can affect the quality of the print work. That’s why a layer of masking is highly recommended to alleviate this problem. A masking tape will fix the problem. Remove the mask after the engraving work has been done.


The setting of the laser engraving machine should be done before the printing work. The kind of material usually determines the settings is being engraved. For the rotogravure cylinders, the printing material varies from rubber, leather to thick acrylic. Apart from that, these materials have varying thicknesses, a factor that would affect the machine setting. Make sure that you have done the presets correctly to ensure that you are getting the most out of the machine.

Test Cuts

Once you have the machine ready for engraving, you need to start with the test cuts. This is a very important factor to consider if you want to get the most out of the engraving. Ensure that you have run the tests with the material used on the gravure cylinder. The runs will enable you to learn where there could be problems in the system. Fix them before the actual laser engraving rotogravure cylinders.