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Categories: Book printing >> Support Center
Paperboard in Book Printing and Packaging Printing
Origin:Image Printing  Data: 3/5/2011  Keywords: Paperboard printing

No matter in book printing or packaging printing field, paperboard is one of the major raw materials.

It is the generic term covering folding boxboards, book covers, chipboards, straw boards and etc, for primary packages and corrugated and solid fiberboards for transit packaging. Cardboard is often erroneously used as a generic term for these materials but should be reserved to describe boards used for making cards of all kinds. There are many applications for paperboard, from simple cartons to more complex board structures for liquid packaging. It can be converted into fiber drums for bulk chemicals and combined with other materials to make containers for the transport and protection of heavy machine tools and dedicate instruments. Generally, in addition to its containment and protective qualities, paperboard has at least one surface suitable for printing.

Fibrous material is turned into pulp and bleached, to create one or more layers of board, which can be optionally coated for a better surface and/or improved visual appearance. Paperboard are produced on paper machines that can handle higher grammages and several plies.

Raw materials

Above mentioned fibrous material can either come from fresh sources or from recycled waste paper. Around 90% of virgin paper is made fromwood pulp. Today paperboard packaging in general, and especially products from certified sustainable sources, are receiving new attention, as manufacturers dealing with environmental, health, and regulatory issues look to renewable resources to meet increasing demand. It is now mandatory in many countries for paper-based packaging to be manufactured wholly or partially from recycled material.

Raw materials include:

  • Hardwood: Ca.05 inches (1.3 mm) (length) e.g. Birch which has short fibres. It is generally more difficult to work with; however, it does provide higher tensile strength, but lower tear and other strength properties. Although its fibres are not as long and strong as those in softwood, they make for a stiffer product defined by some stifness tests. Hardwood fibres fill the sheet better and therefore make a smoother paper that is more opaque and better for printing. Hardwood makes an excellent corrugating medium.
  • Softwood: Ca.13 inches (3.3 mm) (length) e.g. Pine and spruce which have typically long fibres and make superior paperboard in services where strength is important. Softwood makes excellent linerboard.
  • Recycled: Used paper is collected and sorted and usually mixed with virgin fibres in order to make new material. This is necessary as the recycled fibre often loses strength when reused; the added virgin fibres enhance strength. Mixed waste paper is not usually deinked (skipping the deinking stage) for paperboard manufacture and hence the pulp may contain traces of inks, adhesives, and other residues which together give it a grey colour. Products made of recycled board usually have a less predictable composition and poorer functional properties than virgin fibre-based boards. Health risks have been associated with using recycled material in direct food contact. Swiss studies have shown that recycled material can contain significant portions of mineral oil, which may migrate into packed foods.
  • Others: It is also possible to use the fibres of Straw, Hemp, Cotton, Flax, Kenaf, Abaca and other plant products


  • Chemical Pulping uses chemical solutions to convert wood into pulp, yielding around 30% less than mechanical pulping; however, pulp made by the kraft process has superior strength
  • Thermo mechanical pulp is a two stage process which results in a very high yield of wood fibres at the expense of strength.


Pulp used in the manufacture of paperboard can be bleached to decrease colour and increase purity. Virgin fibre pulp is naturally brown in colour, because of the presence of lignin. Recycled paperboard may contain traces of inks, bonding agents and other residue which colors it grey. Although bleaching is not necessary for all end uses, it is vital for many graphical and packaging purposes. There are various different methods of bleaching, which are used according to a number of factors for example, the degree of colour change required, chemicals chosen and method of treatment. There are three categories of bleaching methods:

  • Bleaching by delignification using chlorine gas, which is a method that has been largely replaced by procedures which are gentler to the environment such as the use of oxygen as a replacement for the chlorine gas.
  • Bleaching by oxidation using chemicals such as chlorine dioxide, hydrogen peroxide or sodium hypochlorite.
  • Bleaching by reduction using chemicals such as sodium bisulphite.


Multi-ply paperboard generally has higher creasing and folding performance than single-ply as a result of layering different types of pulp into a single product. In cases where the same kind of pulp is being used in several layers, each separate layer is treated and shaped individually in order to create the highest possible quality. The benefits of multi ply paperboard are for example its higher creasing and folding performance.


In order to improve whiteness, smoothness and gloss of paperboard,one or more layers of coating is applied. Coated paper is usually made up of:

  • a pigment, which could be china clay, calcium carbonate or titanium dioxide, usually a combination of two
  • an adhesive or binder as styrene-butadiene emulsions or starches and water.

Image Printing Packaging Limited try to introduce something useful about paperboard in custom book printing and packaging printing fields.

UP -- Terminology of Paperboard in Book Printing
Next -- Coated Paper in Book Printing and Packaging Printing
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As a professional book printing factory in China, Image Printing Packaging Ltd focus on book printing and packaging printing mainly for oversea and domestic customers. We are located in Shenzhen city, the book printing and packaging printing industrial center of China and even worldwide. Please be kindly note we offer a wide range of professional customed printing service with aggressive prices
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