Color by the Numbers
The X-Rite implementation truly takes effect on press during the initial production run, when the reading and final can standard are established, Corelli said. “We do this a good 20 minutes after we start production so we have real, true, commercial production value. There are a lot of things that happen as the press warms up; for example, the rolls start to expand, there’s more distortion, and we have to adjust a bunch of things and then we know that its commercial and it shouldn’t move after that.”
Ultimately, all information about an approved graphic—including customer name, design name, and engraving number—is uploaded to the X-Rite server Crown maintains at its corporate headquarters in Philadelphia. Subsequently, each graphic within the Crown system is identified by a number that can be plugged into any Crown system to retrieve all of the specifications and requirements for that job, including color measurements.
Crown has lavished significant attention on implementing the X-Rite system. Training extends from production personnel and plant management to corporate quality staff, and is ongoing to involve new hires and personnel who move from one position to another. It also includes an element of color theory and visual color testing to determine whether production personnel are capable of making fine color adjustments when needed, Corelli said. After all, “Once the instrument tells you something is ‘too blue’ you need to be able to make the fix.”