We offer both technical knowledge and business solutions that can help save time and money. From business consultation to commercial print trials and problem evaluation we will endeavour to enhance your business.
The key to our unrivalled offering lies within the know-how of our highly experienced Technical Business Support Managers, available to advise and support on aspects of your business across the UK. This team is backed by the merchant industry’s leading and best equipped laboratory.
If your business is in need of advice and support we can help you:
We can offer impartial advice on the efficiency of your print setup or on new materials. From design through to production and finishing we will help provide answers to potential problems before they occur.
We can help if you are planning to use a new or unknown substrate, attending trials to help overcome any problems and maximise your capability.
If you experience difficulties using substrate from Robert Horne contact us and we will assess and evaluate the problem and provide independent and impartial feedback.
A multitude of tests are available conducted on equipment that is independently accredited to BS EN 9002
- Used to express the weight of paper or board.
Measurement used is the weight of a single sheet one square metre in size. Expressed as grammes per square metre (g/m²).
- Measurement of the thickness of a single sheet.
Results expressed in microns (um).
1000 microns = 1 millimetre
- Quotient measured as a relationship between the thickness of the paper (in microns) and its weight (in g/m²) .
- The maximum tensile force that a test piece of paper will stand before it breaks. Measured in Newtons (N).
- The maximum uniformly distributed pressure, applied at right angles to its surface, a piece of paper will stand before it breaks. This can be carried out on a ‘dry’ or ‘wet’ sample to replicate certain production conditions.
- Tearing Resistance
- The mean force required to continue the tearing of an initial cut in a single sheet of paper. Results expressed as internal tearing resistance.
- Internal Bond Strength
- The maximum load that a paper or boxboard can withstand when loaded with a force that is directed at right angles to its surface.
- IGT picking resistance
- Test to measure the surface cohesion strength of a paper and assess its propensity to rupture during the printing process.
- Dennison Wax Pick
- Method using tack graded wax sticks to assess the surface strength of uncoated papers.
- Measurement of the tack force required to lift the top liner of a board away from the main body. This is carried out on an IGT Printability Tester using set pressures and velocity with a medium viscosity oil.
- Smoothness – Bendtsen
- Measurement of the amount of air escaping between the annular ring and the material surface. The results are measured in ml/min. The higher the reading the rougher the material.
- Bendtsen - used to check the flow of air through the substrate. Results expressed in ml/min. The higher the figure the more porous the sheet.
- Gardner 75° - measurement of light reflected by the substrate surface at an angle of 75º. Results expressed in Gardner gloss units. The higher the number the glossier the paper surface.
- Surface pH
- Surface pH is the degree of acidity or alkalinity of a substrate’s surface. The pH scale ranges from 1 to 14: 1 to 6.9 - acid 7.0 - neutral 7.1 to 14 - alkaline
- Surface Tension (Dyne)
- Test carried out on plastic surfaces to assess the ability of the surface to accept ink and give a good key to the surface.
- Microcontour surface wipe
- Wipe on then wipe off test ink to highlight the contours and defects in a paper surface.
- ISO Brightness
- Brightness is the reflectance of blue light. The higher the figure the greater the blue reflectance. Results expressed as a percentage.
- CIE Whiteness
- The whiteness of a substrate related to the entire visible spectrum. The higher the figure the whiter the substrate.
- CIE Colour
- Measurement of colour using the CIE L*A*B* colour space. This defines the values of the ‘colour’ of a paper - useful in matching and difference measurements.
- The percentage of light reflected from a paper surface. The greater the value, the more opaque the substrate and therefore the less the degree of show through. Results expressed as a percentage.
- Taber Stiffness
- Measurement of the force required to bend a strip of material to an angle of 15°. The greater the force required the more rigid the material and the higher the value. Results expressed in Taber Stiffness Units.
- Cobb (water absorbency)
- Measurement of the sizing of paper by water absorbed under specific conditions. Results expressed in g/m². The lower the result the harder the sizing and the more water repellent the paper.
- K+N Ink Absorbency
- A non-drying ink is applied in a thick covering to the paper surface and then wiped off after 2 minutes. The density of the stain is then assessed as a measure of paper absorbency. This is measured to give a K+N value.
- Oil absorbency test to determine how quickly a known amount of special oil is absorbed into a paper’s surface. Measured in minutes and seconds.
- Relative Humidity (Sword Hygrometer)
- Used to measure the relative humidity and temperature of paper inside a stack.
- Absolute Moisture Content
- An oven dry method to determine the amount of water within a paper sample. Expressed as a % of the sample weight.
- Wet Expansion
- Principle used to record the increase in length of a strip of paper when it is immersed in water.
- Digital Relative Humidity & temperature recorder
- Records RH and temperature at timed intervals in a press room or similar over a period of time.
- Creaseability of boards
- Carried out on small lab creasing platen using Chanel Matrix system to assess best set up or to recreate a creasing problem.
- Fold Splitting/Cracking (HSWO)
- Test using a Robert Horne designed piece of equipment that produces consistent folds using conditioned paper (cold folds) and heated paper (hot folds). A series of tensile strength tests are carried out and the retained strength in the fold is then calculated and assessed against previous data to determine the tendency towards splitting.
Ink on paper
- Ink Setting
- Test carried out by printing ink of known thickness onto a substrate using the IGT printability tester and then offsetting the printed ink onto unprinted material at timed periods using a transfer pad under a controlled pressure. The initial ink setting time can then be assessed as the point where ink no longer transfers. This is generally recorded in seconds.
- Ink Drying
- Test carried out by printing ink of known thickness onto a substrate using the IGT Printability Tester. The printed paper sample is attached to a PATRA Ink Drying Time recorder and the ink drying time assessed in hours.
- Ink Gloss
- Test carried out by printing a known thickness of ink onto a substrate using the IGT Printability Tester. The gloss level of the dry ink film is then measured using a gloss meter and recorded as a % related to 100%.
- Ink Rub
- A test to determine the ink rub resistance of a particular paper and/or ink sample. Carried out on a PIRA Ink Rub Tester.
- Mottle tendency
- Tests carried out using an IGT Printability Tester to predict the tendency of a particular paper to multiple impression or water interference mottle.
- Red Wipe Mottle
- A special ink application and removal test designed to predict the tendency of a paper towards mottling.
- Used to magnify areas of a substrate or any other matter. Often used in identifying a problem or the cause of the problem.
- Digital Photography
- Use in conjunction with microscope to produce magnified digitally printed images.
- Viewing light box
- D65 Artificial daylight – standard viewing conditions useful in comparing colour standards and shades of paper.
- UV light
- used to assess amount of OBA’s in paper, and sometimes as an aid to observing defects in a paper surface.