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Old Jan 2, 2013, 9:16 AM   #1
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Default Laser Print Durability

Hi Folks

I'm looking for information on the durability of colour laser printing onto waterproof tyvak paper. I want to print thumbnail photographs onto tyvak paper which can then be cut up to produce record cards to go into archaeological small finds bags, which will then be deposited into long term storage.

What I need to know is what the lifetime of such printing might be. Ideally, as the paper should be stable indefinitely, I need to know if the photo will fade or not. Hopefully such printing will be permanent ie. 100 years or more.

I realise this might be quite a specialised question, so any suggestions of where else to direct my question would also be much appreciated if an answer cannot be found here.

Many thanks

Peter
Cambridge UK
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Old Jan 9, 2013, 11:15 PM   #2
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I haven't seen any figures on this, but the laser printing process fuses the toner pigments to the paper, and afaik, the print will last as long as the paper, unless it is continuously exposed to direct sunlight. For definitive information, I would contact the maker of the unit I was intending to use, as there may be differences in the toners used.

brian
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 6:26 AM   #3
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Hi Brian

Thanks for your reply.

Since posting I've been using some waterproof paper to produce field record recording sheets (printed on using a popular Dell colour laser that's a couple of years old) and have found that the black writing has come away from the paper on some sheets, although the colour adheres well on those same areas. I do appreciate that laser printers are designed for conventional paper and that my needs are a bit specialist, and while I had thought along similar lines to you, that bonding toner to a Tyvak type substrate might be very durable, it unfortunately now seems unlikely.

I've had no luck contacting Dell to get help with technical questions, although I suspect even if I did they would likely refer me to the paper manufacturer (who I've not been able to identify) and I suspect the paper manufacturer would likewise refer me to the printer manufacturer!

I'm hoping to talk shortly to an archaeological supplies company to see if they have any experience or advice regarding this and I'll post any developments as and when they arise.

Thanks again for your input.

Peter
Cambridge UK
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 10:05 AM   #4
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Peter;
I had assumed that you had already done some printing successfully, and were just concerned about service life of the prints. I can guess that the reason for the lack of adhesion is due to the same lack of porosity which makes the paper waterproof.
Having had lake charts that were printed on this material, I know that it can be done, but am not sure how. Perhaps contacting a firm which produces nautical charts would lead you to a solution.

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Old Jan 10, 2013, 11:50 AM   #5
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Oh yes, I have printed on this type of paper before in small batches (maybe 50 or 60 pages in total) without issue, and it looks like it was just one page from a batch of ten that this lastest time around has exhibited poor adhesion.

Thanks for the tip of contacting nautical map maker; I had not though of that.

I work for a leading manufacturer of industrial ink jet printer, in their UK R&D facility, but we have no experience of laser printing. In the past we have done tests on ink adhesion to a wide variety of substrates, but our lab that does that is unfortunately in the USA, we just design the machines here!
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