Is My Paper Safe to Print On?


 

Laser Printing


WARNING:
Only paper based materials are allowed in A&AA lab printers! PLEASE DO NOT USE TRANSPARENCIES OR STICKY BACKED MATERIAL. These materials have the potential to damage the printer.


It should be safe to put any “paper” based material in a laser printer. You will want to stick with standard paper sizes (letter, legal, etc…)

Plastic based material like transparencies or mylar should never be used in a laser printer because they will melt, unless they are specifically manufactured for your model printer.

Thin material like trace will likely just jam in the printer and can be hard to remove.

Most laser printers will handle some thicker paper stocks. We would need to check the specifications of the desired printer to know if your paper would be able to used by the device. Probably safe to try anything up to 80 lb. card stock.

Coated material (inkjet paper, glossy paper, vellum…) usually doesn’t work well. The toner only sticks to the coating (not to the paper) and will rub off or leave toner in the printer which will show up on subsequent prints.

You should also be very careful with sticky back media. Only use sticky back media for use with laser printers. Even if media is suppose to work on laser printers, do not use sheets where any of the labels appear to be loose. A loose label coming off somewhere inside the printer typically results in a trip to the repair center.


 

Inkjet Printing


WARNING:
Only paper based materials are allowed in A&AA lab printers! PLEASE DO NOT USE TRANSPARENCIES OR STICKY BACKED MATERIAL. These materials have the potential to damage the printer.


Inkjet printers have much more flexibility. It is usually safe to use any “fiber” based material. Additionally, any material that is treated for the use with an aqueous inkjet printer should also be safe. If the material isn’t available pre-treated, there are coatings that can be applied to pretty much any material that will make the material inkjet compatible.

Material specially coated to work with inkjet printers will have better results. Untreated material can become “washed-out” and  “muddy” looking as the ink tends to bleed together and soak into the untreated material. With coated material, the ink remains on the surface and does not bleed together, giving a crisp more vibrant image.

Material coated with something other than an inkjet coating will usually not work well. Uncoated material that is non-porous like plastic or mylar also do not work well. With these materials, the ink does not bond with the material and runs together, resulting in ink running down the page as more ink is applied.

We can accommodate most requests to print on special material that you provide. If we can get a material to load we will print on it. The exception is plastic material, or material with similar properties, that we know will result in ink not bonding to the page. We do not allow these materials to prevent the ink from making a mess and taking the device out of service.


DISCLAIMER:  When using custom paper, A&AA Output Room staff will work to minimize any problems associated with setting up and testing.  The best way to achieve a desired result is to experiment and refine the process for your own needs. You are welcome to experiment using our equipment. Just remember you will be charged for any printing you ask us to perform. We will do our best to help you with any experimentation you wish to pay for.