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Postpress operations consist of four major processes:
Cutting, folding, assembling, and binding. Not all printed products, however, are subjected to all of the processes. For example, simple folded pamphlets do not undergo binding.
There are many additional lesser postpress finishing processes such as varnishing, perforating, drilling, etc. Some types of greeting cards are dusted with gold bronze. Printed metal products are formed into containers of various sizes and shapes. Many metal toys are prepared in the same manner. Containers may also be coated on the inside to protect the eventual contents. Other substrates may be subjected to finishing processes that involve pasting, mounting, laminating, and collating. There are also a number of postpress operations unique to screen printing including die cutting, vacuum forming, and embossing.
A limited number and volume of chemicals are used in postpress
operations. The major type of chemicals used in postpress are the
adhesives used in binding and other assembly operations. Because chemical
usage is limited, only a brief overview of each of the four major
postpress operations is provided.
In-line finishing, an automated process that links the press directly with postpress operations, is also discussed.