What is the difference between raster and vector?

Raster based artwork such as photos, or flattened artwork (from Adobe Photoshop) are made up of tiny squares (pixels) and depending on your resolution and/or final output size desired, the file could have a low quality end result. Any raster elements you wish to use should have a high enough resolution (DPI) before considering them for your large format product.

Vector based artwork such as illustrations or clip-art style elements (from Adobe Illustrator) is made with mathematical calculations, and can be scaled up to any size without losing quality. Keep in mind that any effects used in Adobe Illustrator are raster based and have transparency - this greatly adds to file size and you must have correct settings in your "Document Raster Effects Settings" to ensure best output for these effects. If you're doing a photo-quality print on a 36" x 48" poster, and leave the raster effects settings at default 72 DPI - you may see tiny squares in your drop shadows, as opposed to a smooth shadow.

Which program do you recommend for best quality output of my order?

While it is not mandatory, we prefer Adobe formats (such as PDF) - if you're using a program outside of Adobe, it will have to be exported from whichever program is being used as one of the following file types - PDF, JPG, or TIF - prior to uploading.

Do you print using any Spot or Pantone colors for large format printing?

We only print large format products in 4 color process (CMYK). If you use Spot or Pantone colors, please have them converted to process colors prior to uploading your file.

What size are your Grommets? How far apart do you typically place them?

We use #2 grommets, they are 3/8" and brass in color. Grommets are placed in all 4 corners, and from there they will be placed every 24" as necessary.

Do you offer double-hemming on any of your outdoor products?

We do not sew our hems. Our outdoor products utilizes a hot air welding system that is far stronger than a standard sewn hem, making the need for double hemming a thing of the past.

How can you offer such low prices?

Most printing companies run individual jobs on one sheet. We will utilize the maximum square inch of the sheet by impositioning jobs together dispersing the fixed cost of a job between several projects and then we pass the savings on to you.

How do I store my banner for later use? Is there any maintenance or cleaning required?

When you are done displaying your banner - in order to maximize your future usage, you must keep it clean, dry, and in a dry cool place while it is not in use. Your outdoor vinyl banner will probably get pretty dirty from all the elements during it's time being displayed. The best method of cleaning your outdoor vinyl banner is to lay it flat (if possible) on a clean area, table or floor. It is recommended that you use a mild dishwashing liquid and luke warm water to rinse. Do not use any harsh abrasive or petroleum type cleaners. Clean and dry each side before storing. You must ensure it is completely dry prior to roll up and storage. Any wetness left on the banner will cause mildew and may ruin some of your banner over time.

Once your banner is completely dry - roll it up with the image outward - to avoid any cracking of the printed side. Do not roll your banner super tight or super loose - this will allow for some breathing room while it is stored. Place your banner back in box and store it flat, not vertical. If it is standing up vertically, it may wilt and warp causing wrinkles over time.

How many H-Stakes do I need for my sign?

2-step H-Stake: Typically used for 24" x 18" and smaller. For signs larger than 24" x 18" we recommend using 2 separate H-Stakes.

Do you colormatch?

We do not colormatch.

How should I care for and store my 30mil Car Magnets?

Magnets are not always shipped flat, so it is highly recommended to lay them flat on the hood or roof of your car in the sun for a couple of hours before use. This will help evaporate any moisture build-up that accrued during shipment, if any, and it will help your magnets maintain a flat profile. You may want to keep them in a flat box or on a flat surface at all times and only handle them when cleaning and installing, to help maintain their flatness. We recommend you keep your magnets clean on both sides, as well as the placement area on your car door or area of your choosing must also be clean and free of oils, dust, dirt, and other build-up. It's a good idea to take your magnets inside your home or garage away from the elements and lay them flat in a cool dry place, while not in use. You can clean your magnets with a soft moist cotton cloth with water, no abrasive cleaners. It's recommended that you do not stand them up on their side, as they may wilt and might not lay completely flat on the surface of your car door after wilting. These suggestions are to help the longevity of your magnets.

Why is the ink chipping off the edges of my rigid prints?

The reason you might have chipping on some edges of your product is most likely due to the heavy ink coverage that you used in your artwork. Once your prints are cut down, there are chances that if you used dark colors at the cut lines - there will be some chipping that occurs after the cutting process. The Ultra-Violet Curable (UVC) inks we use on our rigid substrates differ from other common types of inks. Our UVC inks do not dry, however, they solidify after a tenth of a second of exposure to intense UV Light. This UVC ink is formed into a mechanical bond to the substrate surface whereas a solvent printer heats up the media being printed upon to allow the solvent to actually penetrate the substrate, leaving the ink embedded in the media. While we do our best to avoid an imperfect product being shipped out, there are occasions that in the packaging and shipping process that these imperfections surface due to friction and rubbing, are then ultimately beyond our control. To avoid issues with ink "chipping" off the edges of your printed piece, avoid heavy ink coverage on the edges. Any color bleeding off the edge of the printed piece should be below 140% TAC.

What do you recommend to clean smudges or gunk off of my banner or yard signs?

For areas covered with ink it is recommended to use soap and warm water. For non-ink areas it is recommended to use a household ammonia based window cleaner or similar. It is always a good idea to test in a non-conspicuous area to test to make sure your cleaner will not melt or otherwise harm your banner or yard sign. We suggest using your best judgement when using cleaning products as we will not reprint or replace any banner or yard sign damaged by improper cleaning techniques.

FAQ - large format printing

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