What do printers need from a blanket?

The humble printing blanket is a crucial component in offset printing. A printing blanket’s thick rubber-coated fabric wraps around the printing cylinder of an offset printing press to transfer ink from the printing plate to the substrate (such as paper or cardboard) with precision and consistency. The rubber surface of the blanket conforms to the texture of the printing plate, ensuring that ink is transferred accurately onto the substrate, resulting in high-quality printed materials. Additionally, the blanket protects the printing cylinder from wear and tear, extending its lifespan.

The blanket is the lynchpin of successful offset printing. In a market that increasingly expects crisp, quality designs and complex, fast-turnaround jobs, your choice of printing blanket can make all the difference.

Having just launched two new dayGraphica® printing blankets to help offset printers cut complexity and reduce inventory from blanket selection, we'll run you through what to look for when investing in this vital print consumable.

High performance

When it comes to achieving outstanding print, blanket performance matters. After all, if blankets cannot manage consistent ink transfer from plate to substrate, the resulting print will not appear uniform and could suffer from streaks, smudges, or uneven colour density.

dayGraphica® 4300 and 7100 are designed with the latest technology to ensure quality printing every time. Consistent thickness and surface texture across both products provide uniform ink transfer. This helps avoid defects like ghosting1 or uneven coverage and means the blankets suffer less from piling2, helping to maintain outstanding printed output and accurate colour reproduction. 

Fast sheet release means the blankets can run at the highest possible speeds, improving pressroom productivity. High compressibility further improves ink transfer between the plate, blanket, and substrate. As a result, even distribution and sharp image resolution are easy to achieve.

Built to last

Enhanced efficiency is a key driver across the print sector, and blanket durability and longevity are more important than ever in Sheetfed Offset printing. Blankets must be able to withstand prolonged use on high-speed presses without suffering from premature wear and tear. 

Our dayGraphica® blankets achieve this thanks to next-generation carcass technology. dayGraphica® 4300 and 7100 feature enhanced construction that ensures high smash resistance and rebound characteristics, prolonging the blanket's lifespan. Resistance to edge marking and face picking helps maintain dot reproduction, while high embossing resistance means these blankets can be used for multiple print runs, reducing the need to store multiple consumables. This has the added benefit of increasing the number of impressions per blanket, resulting in fewer changes, reduced downtime, and lower cost to print.

It's not enough just to be hard-wearing; print blankets also need to offer exceptional chemical resistance. Offset printing exposes blankets to various pressroom chemicals, like fountain solutions and washes, which can corrode the surface over time, reducing print quality. dayGraphica® UV blankets are designed to be chemical and swell-resistant, and help to maintain surface integrity minimising degradation which may be caused by photoinitiators in inks.


Today's Sheetfed printers often find themselves needing to use a wide variety of substrates and inks. Printing blankets must work with everything a pressroom might throw at them, delivering consistent results without compromising print quality or ink adhesion, regardless of how they are being used. dayGraphica® 7100 offers the flexibility required to achieve this – the blanket is designed to work with conventional and UV inks, cutting the complexity from blanket selection and reducing the need to store multiple consumables. It also works with various substrates, granting untold flexibility when working on creative designs.

When cost is a concern, dayGraphica® 4300 helps printers reduce their overall cost to print without compromising on print quality or blanket longevity. Expertly balancing performance and cost, dayGraphica® 4300 provides excellent gauge stability and superior ink transfer while benefiting from good smash recovery from paper and board damage. Its dense carcass is made from the highest quality woven fabric to ensure a stable printing base.

However, it's no use buying a new blanket to cut complexity if it is not easy to install, adjust and maintain. Thankfully, dayGraphica® products are simple to use and make changeovers quick and hassle-free, significantly reducing downtime during press setup and maintenance.

dayGraphica® printing blankets set the standard for what these products can achieve. To find out more about which dayGraphica® solution is right for your business, contact your local Flint Group representative or email sheetfed@flintgrp.com 


1Ghosting: Image from a previous job visible in print
2Piling: Build-up of ink on printing blanket