Make gravure cylinders

Business Sectors (Suites): Post Press
Developed by: Improve
Approved on: 26 Feb 2021


This standard is for printers preparing and transferring images to cylinders.

This standard covers:

  • preparing gravure cylinders
  • transferring images to gravure cylinders using film
  • processing gravure cylinders

It includes:

  • identifying what work you have to do
  • preparing equipment and materials for the job
  • operating equipment to transfer the image to the cylinder
  • dealing with problems which can arise when making gravure cylinders

When working with gravure cylinders it is important to make sure that the films match with artwork elements and imposition, matches expected quality requirements and the correct exposure values to produce required cylinder characteristics are:

  • complete
  • sharp and clean
  • the required resolution

Performance criteria

You must be able to:

Prepare gravure cylinders

  1. check that the job details you have are complete
  2. check that you have all the materials of the right type needed for the job
  3. match films with artwork elements and imposition
  4. prepare exposure units so that they will produce desired outputs for each job
  5. handle and load cylinders in a safe manner in accordance with organisational procedures
  6. position cylinders so that all image elements fall on the finished cylinder
  7. select and prepare the right masks in line with job requirements
  8. select exposure values which produce the required plate characteristics after processing
  9. check equipment is ready for image transfer
  10. expose the assembly in line with manufacturer's requirements
  11. pass the cylinder(s) for processing when it is ready

*                                                 *

Transfer images to cylinders

  1. load the processor in line with manufacturer's instructions
  2. handle and load materials in a safe and efficient manner in accordance with organisational procedures
  3. set and operate processor in a safe and efficient manner in accordance with organisational procedures
  4. keep up the supply of developer throughout each run so that runs are not interrupted
  5. check that finished cylinders meet your company's standard
  6. rectify faults within your area of responsibility so that the run is not unnecessarily delayed
  7. report faults and problems which it is not your job to rectify in accordance with organisational procedures
  8. keep waste to a minimum and dispose of it in accordance with organisational procedures
  9. report when the cylinder is ready for production in accordance with organisational procedures

Knowledge and Understanding

You need to know and understand:

  1. what details you need for the job
  2. the types of cylinders in use in your company, and the types of job for which they are used
  3. why it is important to check that the cylinder is clean and suitable for the job
  4. the range, use and limitations of processing materials and equipment
  5. your company's procedures for minimising waste
  6. the types of mask in use in your company
  7. the cylinder making methods and equipment in use in your company
  8. the safe light conditions for inspecting cylinders
  9. the risks associated with operating the equipment
  10. how to set up and operate the equipment
  11. your company's waste disposal procedures
  12. the common faults which can occur when making gravure cylinders, what causes them and how to correct them
  13. when you should correct faults yourself and when you should ask for help
  14. to whom you must report when there are faults, and when the plate is ready for production


Scope Performance

Scope Knowledge





Links To Other NOS

External Links

Version Number


Indicative Review Date

31 Jan 2024





Originating Organisation


Original URN


Relevant Occupations

Printers, Printing Machine Minders and Assistants, Printing Trades

SOC Code



machine, printing down frame, gravure cylinder, pre press, intaglio, gravure, cylinder development, publishing; artwork