The Workflow presents the option to import and apply Substrates from a list directly. Learn more in this article about
- Which criteria are used to create Substrates during different steps in the process
- Which print systems contain predefined Substrate lists
- How to access Substrate lists linked with the print system and import them into the Workflow
- Which options you have in the Workflow for printing systems that do not contain predefined Substrate lists
Substrates are usually created in ERP systems and are managed, inventoried and administered in house. In ERP systems, Substrates are usually categorised as commodities and contain details such as: price, weight, packaging size, supplier, width, height/length, roll or sheet material, etc., and are used for cost projections and automated procurement of said Substrates.
In printing systems, Substrates must be created from a production point of view. Production parameters for example include, the print head distance, the UV power consumption, infeed/outfeed speed and drying power. The settings for specific Substrates are tested by the press operator and saved as a set of parameters. Specific settings for particular Substrates can have a profund impact on profiling and ultimately affect the reproduction quality.
With Workflow systems, Substrates have three distinct functions. The dimension of a Substrate serves as a template for the calculation of all Impositions, and certain properties of Substrates, such as the distortion resulting from UV output, must also be taken into account during rendering. The third function is to transfer the Substrate ID which is written into the job ticket for the Production Order so that the print job can be placed and prioritised in the queue by the press operator.
We can also establish that in the Workflow, Substrates need to be created and applied to a printer first and can then be used as necessary. The order in which we undertake these steps is important, the list below outlines the process in detail.
- Create a Substrate in the printer software – Create the Substrate first in the printer software and store the production parameters to be used for this. Make a note of the internal Substrate ID, which the print system automatically assigns.
- Label the Substrate – Choose the name of the Substrate in the printer software as you use it in your process. This can be the Substrate number or physical description created by the ERP system, this should either be a dimensional specification, or an internal description which fit the norms for your workplace.
- Create the Substrate in the Workflow – Create the Substrate in the Workflow either manually or by importing it from the Substrate list of the print system. Make sure that the Substrate names are identical. When you import a Substrate, the system automatically copies the description. If you create the material manually, make sure that all the details match exactly.
- Categorize the Substrate – Assign a category to the Substrate manually or If the printer software supports Substrate categories then these are also transferred during import. You can categorise Substrates as it fits your workplace structure.
- Connect the Substrate in the Workflow to the printing system – Connect the Substrate to the printer by linking the printing system to the Substrate Definition and entering the Substrate ID from the first step.
Define fallback values – Fallback mechanisms must be implemented so that the Workflow can complete tasks in automated environments if information is missing. You should define the following fallback mechanisms:
- A standard (default) Substrate must be defined for each Substrate Category.
- A standard (default) Substrate Definition must be defined for each Substrate.
- A standard (default) Color Policy must be defined for each Substrate.
- Optionally, the Substrate ID for the print system should be stored for each Substrate Definition. If no ID is assigned, a standard ID is assigned the number "999" for the Rho, Delta and P5 printing systems. This ID is visible when sending data to the printer.
Below we describe how to import Substrates (see list above point 3). The process of importing Substrates is slightly different for each printer and we have provided detailed descriptions as needed.
Tau printing systems offer you the possibility to import Substrates previously created in the printer software to the Workflow. It's important to note that the ZuniExtract service must be installed and running on the Tau printer. ZuniExtract monitors the Tau printer database and reports changes made to Substrates in the Workflow so that a current Substrate list is always available for import.
If you haven't already installed ZuniExtract, find out how in this article ZuniExtract for Durst-Tau printers.
To determine whether or not a Substrate can be imported from your Tau printer, please complete the following step:
- Select the Import and Manage tab  under Administration > Substrate .
Figure 1: The Import & Manage tab under the Substrate Overview sub-menu
- Under the Printer drop-down  select the desired Tau printer
- Then click on the Substrate drop-down . If the Substrate list hasn't been updated, we can assume that ZuniExtract is not currently available/running.
- If ZuniExtract is not available, we should see a red error number in the header bar by System Status .
Figure 2: Selecting a printer under the Import and Manage tab
ZuniExtract is not available
There are two main reasons why ZuniExtract may not be available. One possibility is the network connection to the Tau printer may have been interrupted or the ZuniExtract service may not be running. Simply restart ZuniExtract if it is no longer running in the background. After a few seconds, the service will start running, and the user can recheck the drop-down lists.
If you experience persistant problems, please contact Durst customer service.
- If ZuniExtract is working correctly, previously imported Substrates from the selected printing system are listed in the area Mapped Substrates  or the Substrates to be imported are displayed under the drop-down list .
- If Printer and Material are selected, the material can be imported.
Figure 3: Choosing a Substrate for the selected printer under the Import and Manage tab
We recommend not importing all Substrates
Press operators typically perform various tests to optimise their Substrates and print results. After extensive testing the Workflow may contain many variations of Substrates, this may ultimately lead to an unorganised Workflow. For the sake of simplicity we have decided not to preload all Substrates in the Workflow.
We recommend that you only import Substrates that are essential for production.
To import a Substrate into the Workflow, proceed as follows:
- Check specific prerequisites for importing a Substrate (see point 2.1).
- Select the printer  and the Substrate to be imported .
- Click on Import . When the Substrate has been successfully imported, the Substrate will be visible under the Mapped Substrates panel.
Figure 4: Importing Substrates tasks can be accomplished under the Import and Manage tab.
- As soon as you have imported the desired Substrate, you will find it under the Configure tab . Further information on the Substrate Category, Substrate and Substrate Definition can be found in this Overview article.
- The Substrate is now ready to profile.
Figure 5: Under the Configure tab we see the Substrate Category and the selected Substrate.
- Before you leave the Substrate Overview page you should:
- Select a standard (default) Substrate for each Substrate Category .
- Enter a standard (default) Substrate Definition for each Substrate as needed 
- Define a Substrate Definition for each Substrate and define a standard (default)  for the Substrate Definitions.
- Link Substrate Definitions to the printing system by clicking on Link to Printer .
Substrates cannot be used directly after importing
Please note that Substrates cannot be used for printing until that Substrate has been Profiled correctly and a Color Policy has been assigned to the Substrate. For information on how to Profile Substrates, see Generate a new Color Setup.
Completing the Substrate Definition
After importing and setting the fallback standards (defaults), Substrates can be used for Profiling. After Profiling, several Color Policies will be available for that Substrate. The user can select a default Color Policy for the Substrate under Administration > Substrate.
In contrast to Tau printers, Durst Rho, Delta, SPC and P5 printers do not currently offer predefined Substrate lists for the Workflow. All Substrates must be entered manually – and as with the Tau series – the user must create individual Profiles for professional results. For information on entering Substrates manually, see Create a new Substrate.