Calculating ink coverage based on weight

Ed asks,

“We are creating a program to quote customer requirements as quickly and accurately as possible but we are stuck with ink / printing issues.

Is there a conversion that may help us translate grams of ink to square centimeters / inches of printing?”

Your ink supplier should be able to tell you how many sq. in. or sq. cm. a pound or gram of ink will cover. This will change depending on the viscosity, substrate, anilox roll volume, ink manufacturer and ink type. So in your calculator (estimator) you may want to provide the option to select from a pre-programmed list of inks, or allow the estimator to enter a pounds per inch or grams per centimeter variable.

Then of course you’ll need to know the sq inches of coverage for each color. You could simply calculate the area of the sheet and then assign a light, medium, or heavy coverage variable to simplify the calculation of inches of coverage.

UPDATE: Roger Poteet, Poteet Printing Systems, has reached out to share their experience and knowledge with us through the Poteet Ink Estimator complied and provided by Poteet Printing. I also want to thank Andrew at Compass Packaging for sharing his knowledge and experience with the Poteet Estimator in the comment below.

– Ralph

2 Responses to “Calculating ink coverage based on weight”

  1. Andrew Dubos Says:

    We recently purchased a Ink Kitchen from Poteet and I have a very accurate “ink mileage calculator” that was given to me by the company. If anyone is interested in this excel sheet you may reach out to me. I am not sure it will be as accurate against inks made from different vendors due to everyone uses their own “Vehicles” but its worth a try.

    • Ralph Says:

      Thank you Andrew for sharing your knowledge and experience, and for the review of Poteet’s ink mileage calculator! At the same time your comment came in Roger sent us a copy of the spreadsheet to share. Further proof that great minds think alike! Thanks again for following and sharing your knowledge through Ask Ralph. I look forward to future contributions.
      Kindest regards,

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