Printing technology has already been well developed and established. There are a variety of printing methods available for printing your personalized containers, such as lithography, flexography, rotogravure, silkscreen and digital printing, etc. But those are basically intended for paper as the substrate. When it comes to printing on rigid plastic boxes, things are quite different and some sophisticated printing methods may not apply.
There are 3 most common printing types applied to rigid plastic boxes:
Pad printing is a process to print text, graphics and images on irregular surfaces. It is now becoming an important special printing method. For example, text and patterns on the surface of mobile phones that we see everyday is actually accomplished through this printing method, and the surface printing of many electronic products such as computer keyboards, instruments, meters, etc., are all done by pad printing.
The pad printing process is very simple. It involves steel (or copper, thermoplastic) gravure plates and curved silicone pads. Dip the ink from the gravure plate and transfer it to the substrate in question (surface of custom plastic boxes). The printing process is done.
It is named so because it uses a screen that is comprised of a woven piece of fabric. The screen used in this process is selectively permeable, which allows some materials to pass through while restricting the others. Ink is pushed through the permeable portion, and the designs are printed on the required objects. This method is extremely advantageous because diverse materials like paper, fabric, glass, wood, metal, etc. can be reproduced. Other methods do not provide such a range of options. It can be applied to a small quantity as well as on a large number of units. Glass fragrance bottles, plastic tubes of body lotions, shampoos, soaps, hair oils and candy boxes etc. are most frequently printed with the help of this method.
Technically, UV printing is a process of surface treatment. UV printing is achieved through conventional printing processes like offset printing, silkscreen and pad printing etc. The difference between UV and conventional printing processes is: it uses special UV-curable inks and such UV inks dry through a photomechanical process (UV curing). Since the UV ink is cured instantly, your printed items can be handled immediately, increasing the rate of production. With UV printing on custom plastic boxes can achieve more precisely printed images with high abrasion & great impact resistance!