When customers come to us with dead fronting projects, they are usually looking for two requirements:
- They want their icons to be as dead-fronted as possible. They should be near-invisible when not activated.
- When backlight, the icons should be as evenly lit as possible with no shadows due to trapped or bleeding color.
Our unique blend of industry expertise, dead front and graphic overlay experience, and sophisticated printing technology keep our customers coming back for repeat projects.
Color that appears in a backlit dead front panel commonly comes from the color within the graphic overlay itself, not the light behind it. The dead front icon must be transparent and allow light to shine through, therefore illuminating the icon, while the surrounding overlay must remain opaque and undisturbed by the backlight.
With screen printing, it’s standard that the transparent and opaque inks overlap, causing a shadow around the border of the dead front icon when backlit. However, our digital printing capabilities allow us to do 1:1 registration of color. This means that we can bring the dead front color right up to the background with no overlap or shadowing.
Our digital printer, the HP 5600 Indigo, uses a technology called “One Shot,” which allows for perfect color to color registration with no overlap in backlight images and symbols in dead front panels.
Hiding icons in a black panel is fairly simple, but it’s much more difficult to hide icons within a white panel. Not only are we able to dead front graphics on a black background, but our team has also perfected dead fronting onto a white background. For products using a white overlay, we use translucent ink and a colored backlight, which creates a crisp and readable finish on a white background.
For nearly every dead front panel project we do, we use a hybrid process of digital and screen printing techniques, which allows us to precisely layer colors into the overlay. The panel starts with digitally printed base colors and is then layered with translucent or opaque screen-printed pigment.
At the onset of our digital journey we worked with our ink vendor to create our own line of ink that works perfectly within this unique hybrid process. As a result we are one of the few partners who utilize the benefits of both digital and screen printing for full production quantity parts.
We know that you might want to feel and interact with our work before committing to a project with us, which is why we’ve put together a variety of samples to send to you, free of charge.