Learning the ABC’s of WISPI Terminology

Wisconsin Screen Process Industry Terminology

Now that school is back in session, I thought it would be the perfect time to brush up on our ABC’s to highlight some of the terminology that we frequently use at Wisconsin Screen Process and The Sign Shoppe.  So here we go…


ANSI Colors – These are American National Standards colors for red, orange, yellow, green and blue that are used on safety decals.


Block out – When we just want to print a solid shape of color we call this a block out on the screen.


Computer Cutting – A file is sent to a plotter that is connected to a computer so parts can be kiss cut out of vinyl.


DPI –  Dots per inch, On digitally printed parts we recommend a dpi of 100 at full size for a high quality print.


Emulsion – A coating that is applied to a screen that creates the stencil for printing.


Film – Films are used to make the screen into a stencil to screen print parts.


Gang – When we screen print different parts together on a printing layout, we call this a gang.  Parts are ganged by using the same materials and colors.  Ganging parts on a layout can save you money!


Halftone – To reproduce photographic or shaded images, we use a halftone tone dot pattern to create shades and colors.


Ink – We use UV cured screen printing inks for the majority of our production, however the ink used in the digital printers is a solvent based ink.


Jigs – When customers have irregularly shaped parts that need to be printed on, we can build a jig to hold the part in place while printing.


Kiss Cutting – The material is not cut all the way through when cut; leaving the liner intact.


Layouts – A layout is created using a vehicle template to show how graphics will look when produced at full scale.


Mesh – Screen mesh comes in various counts for using on different substrates.


Nesting – Sometimes to save on material space, parts are nested on a layout; one part is placed in the negative space of another part.


Options – We have plenty of options from banners to vehicle graphics to lexan parts, to offer you for all of your graphics needs.


Premask – A paper tape with a mild adhesive that is used to transfer a cut graphic from its liner to the surface it is being applied to or to protect a graphic’s surface.


Quality – Wisconsin Screen Process and the Sign Shoppe make quality the number one priority in all the graphics we produce.


Reflective Vinyl – Vinyl material whose reflective properties are viewed at night when lights hit its surface.


Squeegee –  A rectangular wooden tool with a rubber end that is used to push ink through a screen to print an image on a substrate.


Thermal Die –  Parts can be cut to shape using a metal die that is heated and then pressed into vinyl material.


Ultraviolet – Inks are cured using a ultraviolet (UV) light.


Vacuum Table – The table on which a sheet to be printed rests is full of little holes that provide vacuum suction to hold the sheet in place.


  Weeding – When parts are kiss cut, the negative space is removed by hand or “weeded,” leaving only the finished graphics on the liner.


X-acto knife – A handy tool we use when weeding parts.


Yard – Rolls of material are most commonly measured in yards.


Zip File – Zipping your files compresses them making them more suitable for emailing.

And there you have it, the entire alphabet used in Wisconsin Screen Process and the Sign Shoppe’s lingo.  I hope this gives you a little more insight into the terms we use and what we do.  Is there anything you would like to know more about?  Please leave a comment and let us know!