Ink Types: Solvents

 In Reprographics

In our last installment, we discussed “aqueous coatings.” In case you missed it, we’re breaking down printing technology based on ink types. We can separate the different large format technologies into the following categories:

• Aqueous
• Solvent
• UV
• Dye sublimation
• Pen/Plotter
• Latex

Simply put, the term ‘solvent’ refers to any ink that is not made with a water base. Relatively inexpensive, solvent inks’ best application is for printing products that are to be used outdoors. Why? Because solvents have the ability to adhere to non-absorbent materials.

Watch out for: “eco solvents”! Although the name seems to imply a “green” or sustainable composition, these inks are actually made from ether extracts taken from refined mineral oil. These are not necessarily “ecologically sound products.”

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