Offset press

An offset printing press is a complex machine with several key components that work together to produce high-quality printed materials. Here are the main components of an offset printing press:
Feeder - The feeder is the part of the press where the sheets of paper or other printing substrates are loaded. It feeds individual sheets or a continuous roll of material into the press at a consistent pace to ensure smooth and accurate printing.
Dampening System - The dampening system is responsible for applying water or a water-based solution to the non-image areas of the printing plate. This ensures that these areas repel ink, while the image areas accept ink. Modern offset presses often use a continuous dampening system that maintains a consistent water supply.
Ink Fountain - The ink fountain is where the ink is stored and distributed to the ink rollers. The ink is typically oil-based or UV-curable ink and is precisely metered to maintain consistent color throughout the print run.
Ink Rollers - The ink rollers are a set of rollers that distribute ink evenly across the ink fountain roller. These rollers transfer the ink to the plate's image areas. Ink rollers are carefully adjusted to ensure proper ink coverage and distribution.
Plate Cylinder - The plate cylinder holds the printing plate, which contains the image or design to be printed. The plate is typically made of aluminum or polyester and has a surface treated to attract ink and repel water in the appropriate areas.
Blanket Cylinder - The blanket cylinder is a rubber-coated cylinder that receives the inked image from the plate cylinder. It transfers the image to the printing substrate (usually paper or another material) as it passes through the press.
Impression Cylinder - The impression cylinder is responsible for pressing the printing substrate against the blanket cylinder. This pressure allows the ink to transfer from the blanket to the substrate, creating the printed image.
Delivery System - After the impression cylinder, the printed materials are conveyed to the delivery system. This can include a stacker, conveyor belts, or other mechanisms for collecting and organizing the printed sheets as they exit the press.
Drying Unit - Inks used in offset printing are typically solvent-based or oil-based and need to be dried before the printed sheets can be handled or further processed. A drying unit, often equipped with heaters or UV lamps, helps evaporate the solvents in the ink to set it on the substrate.
Control Panel - Modern offset presses are often equipped with computerized control panels that allow operators to monitor and adjust various parameters, such as ink flow, registration, and press speed. These panels make it easier to fine-tune the press for optimal print quality.
Ink Agitators and Recirculation Systems - Offset presses often include ink agitators and recirculation systems to keep the ink in the fountain well-mixed and at the correct viscosity for printing.
These components work together in a precise and coordinated manner to produce high-quality printed materials with accurate color registration and consistent ink coverage. Offset printing presses come in various configurations and sizes, from small single-color presses to large multi-color and sheet-fed or web-fed presses, depending on the specific printing requirements.

(Our in-house Heidelberg offset presses)

(A general construction of an offset press)