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Printing Lingo: What does C1S and C2S mean?

C1S is printing industry shorthand for "coated one side." Likewise, C2S means "coated two sides." These terms refer to coatings applied to paper by the paper manufacturer.

Why is Paper Coated?

Paper is coated to produce a smooth printing surface and to slow the absorption of ink. Basically, the coating acts as a barrier to help keep the ink on the surface of a printed sheet, as opposed to allowing it to seep into the paper fibers. This extra control results in sharper images and finer details.

Different Coatings yield Different Results

Coatings can be glossy, matte or dull depending on the application and the desired effect. The more sheen to the coating, the more brilliant and vivid the ink colors will appear when printed. The duller the coating, the more subdued the ink colors will appear.

Don't Confuse your Coatings

Bear in mind that C1S and C2S refer to a coating applied at the paper mill before your printer gets the paper and prints on it. Thus, it is not to be confused with various coatings your printer may apply after the printing process, such as UV or aqueous coatings, varnishes or laminates.

Do you have more questions about paper coatings? Whenever you have a question relating to printing just give us a call or drop us an email. We'd like to hear from you.

Take care! Keith

About the Author

Keith Beaty is the owner of Formax Printing Solutions in St. Louis, MO. Formax provides a complete array of offset and digital printing services. Specialty areas include book printing, full-color printing, laminated printing, map printing, plus mailing services. If you ever have a printing question or project you would like to discuss, Keith is always happy to help. He can be reached at 866-367-6221. Keith and Formax have been providing worry-free printing and related services since 1985.

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