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Pigment Inks and 2-Sided / Book Printing

Double-sided inkjet papers are a great way to produce great looking brochures, books, portfolios, and much more.  However, 2-sided printing with your Epson UltraChrome or other pigment inkjet printer has its pitfalls. 

Why the Problem?

When pigment inks dry, they leave a thin layer of ink dust on the surface or matte and cotton watercolor inkjet papers from pretty much any manufacturer.  Pigment inks do not fully sink into the coating of these papers.  Whatever is left on top of the sheet can be scuffed, smudged, or transferred to other sheets of paper.  This does not happen with glossy or satin photo papers.

What does this mean for 2-sided printers? 

Be careful what paper you pick for a 2-sided project and do some tests before making many copies.  Again, its not where the paper comes from – it’s the type of paper being used that compounds the problem. 

What to Look For

If ink transfer occurs, you can see a light impression of the photo or text from the opposite page transferred to the opposing sheet. Blacks and very dark colors are much more likely to transfer.

Minimizing the Problem

** Use interleaving sheets between pages. (Thin translucent material) 

** Try and avoid a photo facing a blank page. Ink transfer will be more obvious. 

** If possible, line up the facing photos as close as possible.  Transfer from photo to photo will be less obvious.

** If a photo does face a blank page, pick a photo with light tones and colors

** Use single sided photo or satin papers for your books. 

** Choose a double-sided luster like 50lb. Arctic Polar Luster Double-sided or the UltraProSatin® Duo 255

** Use dye inks.  Canon’s ChromaLife 100 ink is dye based and offers about triple the life of conventional dyes. 

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