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Best paper choices to eliminate smudging of ink jetted print projects

What types of paper stock should be used to eliminate smudging of print projects that have ink jet personalization?

There are really several answers to this question. The issue could be with the type of printer or the type of stocks. There are two main ink jet technologies: alcohol based and water based. The alcohol based ink jets will stick without smearing to almost any substrate including plastic. The water based ink jets can smear on coated stock. In addition, print jobs that are varnished or Aqueous coated can also be an issue. Also, water based ink can smear if the piece gets wet, for instance during mail delivery.

Here are a couple of options to consider:

  • Hewlett Packard has specifically formulated inks that can reduce the amount smearing that occurs when using coated stocks, but this does not completely eliminate the problem.

  • So as a general rule of thumb, uncoated stocks are better, as coated stocks increase the amount of smearing.

  • A coated one-side (C1S) sheet may be the ideal solution in that it has a coated side for your images and an uncoated side for addressing and mailing.

Answered by Chris Konkel, VP Data Processing, EU Services. Chris may be reached at or 301-795-6307.

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