Minimum line thickness.


MvdL

New Member
Hello.

I'm designing a brand, including a text-logo in classic calligraphy style (Copperplate-like) in Most parts of the writing are thin.

I did a logo in a similar style before and did a digital proof print in black to see how it'd look at different sizes. It looked good and there was no problem with lines not being printed clearly. The thickness of the thinnest line was 0,049pt.
Business cards were digitally printed with the logo and all was well too.

It did stay with me however vaguely remembering reading somewhere once that too thin lines can oppose a problem.
It could be that it was more of a problem years ago then it is now, seeing technology has progressed. Or perhaps it's because of the difference between digital and offset printing? With things like trapping.

I'm hoping to gain from your experience and insights.

Thank you in advance.
 

sprout

Active Member
It’s not just print on paper you have to consider when designing a logo. What if the client wants their logo embroidered on a t-shirt, for example? There are no hard-and-fast rules, I’m afraid.

To say, if you print above this weight, you’ll be fine, just won’t work. There are too many variables The same weight as positive image and as negative space will have two different outcomes because of ink spread / dot gain. Printing spot colour vs cmyk will make a difference. What you can, or rather, should do if you need finer lines, is to have at least two versions of the logo, so for small sizes you compensate so that visually, they have a similar feel. Only testing and experience will give you a sense of how much you need to adjust by.

With the logo you tested, go back and look at the negative spaces. Although they physically printed OK, look at the negative spaces. Depending on what the logo is, optically, you’ll probably find the negative spaces could do with some sort of compensation At very small sizes.

As some sort of non-scientific, blunderbuss benchmark. unless I needed them to feel particularly delicate, I wouldn’t usually make leader lines on diagrams less than 0.25pt.

Sorry, there’s no easy answer. (‘Other opinions are available.’)
 

hankscorpio

Moderator
Staff member
For litho print i would not go below 0.125pt.

For digital it can vary. Depending on equipment and substrates.
 
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