The PRINTING United Alliance Glossary serves as an excellent industry terminology resource. It is the language by which we all communicate. Without it, universal understanding would be impossible.

To keep our constituents well informed about changes to the increasingly complex industry terminology, PRINTING United Alliance has developed this glossary of terms. Definitions are for general reference only. Usage may vary between companies, individuals, or national and country customs. The information presented is as accurate as the authors and editors can ascertain and PRINTING United Alliance assumes no responsibility for the use of information presented herein.
  • Course
    Horizontal lines or threads in woven material.
  • Covalent bond
    A bond where one or pairs of electrons are equally shared between two atoms producing a stable electron configuration and a very stable molecule. (The strongest of all molecular bonds).
  • Cover paper
    Large category of papers so named because they primarily serve the function of covering and protecting other printed matter.
  • Cover sheet
    A clear transparent overlay used to protect artwork from damage during handling.
  • Coverage (mileage) (spreading power)
    The amount of area a given volume of ink will cover when applied to a given substrate.
  • Covered recess joint
    A construction frequently used in V-shaped displays.
  • Covering power
    (1) The ability of an ink to hide the substrate and produce a uniform opaque surface; (2) The maximum ability of a lens to form a sharp focused image.
  • CPI
    Acceptable abbreviation for characters per inch.
  • CPSC
    Acceptable acronym for Consumer Product Safety Commission (US).
  • CQI
    Acceptable acronym for continuous quality improvement.
  • Cracking
    A breakdown in which cracks penetrate at least one coat of an ink layer and which may be expected to result ultimately in complete failure.
  • Crackle
    An intentional effect that is given to ware to heighten its age and give a particular design similar to broken or cracked glass.
  • Crank
    A refractory piece contoured to the shape of the back of a bisc plate to aid in keeping the piece flat during firing.
  • Cratering
    Small undesirable depressions (pinholes) in a dried ink film that can be deep enough to expose the substrate.
  • Crawling
    (1) A condition that occurs when a glaze becomes extremely viscous in the molten stage causing the glaze to collect in heaps; (2) Cohesive effect of ink into drops after printing onto a surface that the ink does not completely wet; (3) The pulling away of a coating from its original dimension, see creep.
  • Crazing (checking) (check)
    (1) A cracking that occurs in a fired glaze; (2) A random pattern of minute intersecting cracks in plastic or glass article; (3) Very fine hairline cracks in a dried coating or screen printed film.
  • Crease
    (1) A straight line fold; (2) A dent in wire cloth mesh.
  • Creaseability
    The ability to be creased or folded without the appearance of cracks, sharp lines or bending failure.
  • Creative Art for Screen Printing
    Archived SGIA Webinar: In this session, Dane Clement (Great Dane Graphics) will share some of his creative secrets for producing great artwork for screen printed apparel. He'll share ways for properly setting up and creating artwork using both vector and raster elements. Then learn the essentials for separating your artwork and printing out your separations to create stunning prints.
  • Creep
    (1) The lateral movement (cold flow) of an applied pressure sensitive label due to low cohesive strength; (2) The spontaneous spreading of liquid on a surface beyond the area for which it was intended; (3) Deformation or dimensional change with time of a plastic under load resulting from prolonged application of stress below the elastic limit.
  • Creeping
    The tendency of an insufficiently stretched screen mesh to move in the direction of the squeegee travel during the print stroke.
  • Cresol
    An isomeric phenol used to improve indirect stencil adhesion by attacking the nylon mesh causing it to be tacky and swollen. (Used very seldom as it weakens the mesh and has been found to be toxic).
  • Crimp
    (1) To fold and fasten a joint under pressure; (2) A wavy fiber or yarn structure in a fabric.
  • Crinkle
    A textural effect on enamel surface having the appearance of fine wrinkles or ridges.
  • Crizzle
    An imperfection of many fine surface fractures in the surface of the fired ink; (2) An imperfection of fine surface cracks in a glass article.