Unfortunately, no. While acceptable matches can usually be achieved, exact color matches cannot be guaranteed. Every printer and process has limitations to their color gamut. Satin digital CMYK generally has the smallest color gamut of all print methods. We recommend using Pantone Solid Uncoated Colors when trying to match a digitally printed graphic; these colors end in "U" (e.g., 249U or 4675U).
No. Files submitted to us in RGB will have to be converted to CMYK in order to print.
RGB is an additive process that uses Red, Green, and Blue light to achieve a color. It is considered additive because one must add all three colors together to achieve white. It is used for Monitors, TV's, Phone Screens, etc. Unfortunately, it is not physically possible to print in RGB because mixing Red, Green, and Blue ink (pigment) would actually create a kind of brown color, not white as it does with the light in your computer monitor.
CMYK, on the other hand, is considered a subtractive process because, in order to get white, one must remove all color to allow the white to show through from the substrate material underneath it all.
It's also important to consider that RGB has many more color possibilities than CMYK. Never will colors on your monitor or screen match printed CMYK colors exactly. If color matching is critical, we suggest you note Pantone Solid Uncoated Colors in your file and job notes. With these colors, we can compare the printed graphics to our Pantone Book Standards here and get as close as possible.
Since we are a Trade Only Printer, we do not handle artwork design services or alterations.
What are your minimum artwork requirements?
As a Trade-Only printer, we require print ready artwork. While certain products may have more specific requirements, all artwork must meet these basic requirements:
- PDF format
- Actual size (we do not adjust size)
- All fonts converted to outlines
- All images embedded
- Less than 150MB in size
How can I reduce my file size to be under the 150MB limit for upload?
When working in Illustrator, to reduce file size you can try cropping excess images that exceed the clipping mask (Object>Image Crop), removing excess vector points by simplifying the path (Object>Path>Simplify), deleting redundant or extra artwork outside of the artwork that is being printed, and flattening your artwork if you have multiple RASTER image layers. Check out our blog post about reducing your file size and download our printable PDF guide here.
Why do you have size limitations?
In short, it is a limitation of our production methods.
Our equipment is optimized to work with large sheets of material to produce typical size signs.
Nearly everything we do from printing to cutting utilizes what’s called a vacuum hold down system. This system uses tiny holes and vacuum pressure to literally suck material down while we print or cut it. If the material is too small, the vacuum is unable to hold it down, resulting in unpredictable quality and possible damage to our equipment.
Why do you have a maximum size on your products?
Our printers cutters, and even our material are all optimized to run the most common sizes of signs and stickers. We are unable to produce products that are larger than our equipment‘s maximum capacity.
Contour Cutting is the process of cutting along the edges of a printed design shape. While this process is relatively simple for rectangular shapes, it becomes more complicated when you add curves and lines of other more complex objects, cutting out the shape of a person, for example.
Click the video below for more information and to see our ZUND digital cutter in action!
Unbranded Customer-Safe video: https://youtu.be/HS77kEzFDas
No, we do not offer installation services. Application and installation of our vinyl is the sole responsibility of the end-user of the product. If you need help with applying vinyl, the video below will walk you through the process.
If you have customers asking about how to install a vinyl decal, you can send them an unbranded version of the video above.
Gene answers a few FAQs about how we install grommets, designing for grommet placing, and grommet color options.
→ Where do you put the grommets?
For Rigid substrates, such as 4mm corrugated plastic, unless grommet placement is specified in the design file, we will install the grommet, on center, 1" away from the edges of your sign. If you do specify, place small, 1/8" dots in your design file and leave us a note so we are aware. We always suggest grommets be placed 1" away from the edges of your sign.
For materials such as banners, which generally come standard with grommets, we will place grommets near the edge and space them every 2 to 3 feet along the edge of your sign.
→ What type of material can you use with grommets?
Just about any type of material we offer! With the more rigid substrates (such as 6mm PVC), we do this by pre-drilling a hole before we actually place the grommet. This process is a little more labor-intensive, and therefore a little more costly, but it is possible.
→ What color grommets do you offer?
We offer silver (or nickel), by default; however, we also stock a brass grommet. Our silver grommet is, by far, the most popular because of it's neutral color, but the switch to brass costs you nothing extra. You simply need to request it.
If you are in need of another color of grommet (e.g., white, clear, black, etc.), it is possible, but we would need to custom quote it as we would have to bring in several thousand at a time.
If you have any questions regarding custom options, please don't hesitate to ask. Worst case scenario, it may put you slightly out of budget, but we won't know until we check out your options!
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→ What is vector art?
Vector art is made up of scalable shapes and lines.
→ What are raster images?
Raster images are made up of a fixed number of dots (or pixels) and may be scaled down (to a point) but may not be scaled up (i.e., made larger than the original size) without loss of image quality.
→ What is the difference between vector art and a raster image?
A raster image (such as a photo) sized to 600x800 pixels is made up of 600 pixels (or small dots) across and 800 pixels from top to bottom. Trying to make this photo larger will only stretch those pixels, not add more, thereby losing the crispness of the original image.
Vector art is made from a series of mathematical curves, points, and paths. Because vector art is not comprised of a certain number of dots (like raster images), it can be resized larger or smaller without loss of image quality due to it's mathematical base: the curves, paths, and points are simply recalculated to express the new size.
→ Why can't I send you a raster image for screen printed products?
We require 100% vector art for screen printed items due to the way the artwork needs to be setup for the screen printing process.
→ Can I send a raster image for full color products?
While we prefer vector artwork for digitally printed (full color) items as card card-body, as long as your raster image is high quality, large enough to print (i.e., the same size as your finished product), and saved as a PDF in a vector art program such as Adobe Illustrator, we will accept it.
→ Can I send a Photoshop file?
We do not accept Photoshop files for print as Photoshop is a raster image editing program. If you do not have vector art, we will accept a very high quality .jpeg or .png, but it must still be embedded into a vector art program and saved as a PDF.
We have many different materials to choose from. On the charts below, you can compare the qualities of each to better determine which of our materials would be best for your project.
Click the image to download our Substrate Guide PDF.
No. Your decals will come kiss cut (a light cut along the border of your decal which allows the decal to be peeled off of the backing material) and adhered to a quick release backing paper. If you have multiple parts, they will be kiss cut and remain unweeded.
If my design isn't a perfect square or rectangle, how do I determine the size to select from the Size dropdown menu when ordering?
Pricing is based on size. If you draw an imaginary rectangle around your shape, that would be the width & height of your product. The entire decal (including the vector cut path) must fit within this rectangle.
We do! When you add similar items into your shopping cart, we automatically calculate the price breaks per eligible product quantities for you. You will see how much you've saved above the total in your shopping cart! Take a look at the video below for a quick run through.
What are Reverse Arrows?
Reverse Arrows are directional arrows on a double sided sign. It's important that your customer be directed to the correct location no matter the side they're facing. For these designs, you will need to provide a front and a back version of your project with the reversed arrow in place.
For Screen Printed signs, a double sided arrow sign will require a screen change* to print the arrow in reverse on the opposite side of the sign.
*Arrow screen changes are charged per color if more than one color will need to be changed.
Halftones are a pattern of tiny dots that can simulate different shades of color using varing percentages of a single ink. Visually, halftones create the illusion of a continuous tone image by using spots of varying size and density to represent darker or lighter color values.
Halftones (lighter shades of screen printed color) are available but may incur an additional fee. Halftones may sometimes have unexpected results. If high quality prints are a serious priority, we suggest adding an additional print color instead. For example, gray can be printed 50% Black halftone or Medium Gray or PMS Matched Gray ink can be used.
What are your standard ink colors for screen printing? And what if I need a PMS color that isn't listed?
Colors on this page are a representation only. Although we strive to provide accurate representations of color, accuracy cannot be guaranteed.
Stock Screen Ink Colors
All pricing for screen printed products includes use of these colors.
Contact us for a printed color swatch sample pack!
If specific PMS colors are needed, Custom Pantone Color Matches are available for an additional fee on screen printed products. Please provide a PMS number from the “Solid Coated” (C) Pantone Book. We do not match based on CMYK or other color libraries. Please note that color accuracy cannot be guaranteed; however, satisfactory matches can typically be obtained.
Please check here for PMS colors that have been deemed similar to our stock screen ink colors.
Screen printing is still the most popular way to produce many of the signs you see. Most political, regulatory, and transportation signs are screen printed. Screen printed inks tend to be more vibrant and more glossy than digitally printed ink. They also tend to be more durable against fading and abrasion.
If your design uses three or fewer solid colors, and your customer needs at least 50 signs, consider selecting screen printed signs when available.
What is Variable Data?
Variable data printing is a form of digital printing in which elements such as text, graphics, and images may be changed from one printed piece to the next, without stopping or slowing down the printing process, using information from a excel spreadsheet. For example, a set of personalized signs, each with the same basic layout, can be printed with a different name, phone number and photo on each sign.
→ When to utilize Variable Data?
If your project includes one design, but you have text elements or photos that will be different from sign to sign (e.g., names, titles, player numbers, phone numbers, etc.), this would be the ideal use of this process.
→ Important Points to Remember:
- Your artwork must be able to accommodate the longest and shortest name/version. We will not adjust the text size.
- Due to the production process, your job will not be kept in order, kitted, bundled or sorted at all unless we custom quote these services.
- Unfortunate, sorting variable data products isn't something we are able to do at this time. Our high speed, low cost process for production is very efficient. This allows us to pass those cost savings onto our clients.
- We do have some clients that choose to have their orders shipped to them first, so they can sort them before handing it to the end user.
→ What do we need from you?
- An Excel Spreadsheet that includes the list of names and/or numbers you wish to change from sign to sign.
- The Master File you want printed, including the vector cut path, if applicable, saved as a .PDF file.
- The Font File in .tff format (we cannot use .dfont files).
Follow the link below to learn how to set this process up for your project.