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How would a professional printer print the board?

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Joined: 12/31/1969

I'm thinking specifically of a monopoly type game. I have a copy of monopoly and it seems to be printed on paper and stuck on (similar to methods discussed here for home production)
What exactly would be the process of a professional printer? Would they print directly on the face of the board?
In what ways would home and professional production techniques differ? Is it simply a case of higher quality workmanship and printing equipment? Or is it a different way of working entirely which is only possible with specialised equipment? If so, please specify.

How would a professional printer print the board?

A printer will print on paper which will be glued onto a chip board or such. Often the back textured paper or printed paper will be attatched to the back, folded over to the front about 1/2" or more and then your printed design will be glued to the front over the back flap that comes to the front. The paper that is flapped over is to cover the chipboard that it all is mounted to and give a nice finish. Yes, printing through a printer can give a nicer finish and definately opens things up to paper with a weave pattern in it (called a linen finish) which can't be done effectively at home. The printer will also cut and fold the board.

All this is pretty time consuming to do on one's own. It is possible to do on your own, but would be very, very time consuming to do a run of any great size. Also with the amount of time one would put into it to do on their own, you'll make next to nothing / hour on this. Also remember there is the matter of creating a box for the board. By hiring a printer, you will get a standard level of quality and assurance that the glue will last – nothing more frustrating than to see paper begin to pull off the substrate a few months later when done by hand.

How would a professional printer print the board?

Are these services available from most printers or is there a specific subgroup of printers that offers this kind of chipboard binding ? What keywords would I look for in the Yellow Pages ?

How would a professional printer print the board?

The machinery for doing everything necessary for game board and box production are pretty specific to the task. I can't imagine that every printer out there would be able to do game components. I would stick with the printers that specifically handle games to ensure that you are getting the best for your money.

As an alternate, just about any printer can do the artwork for you (printed and cut to spec) including wrap artwork for the boxes (for an extra cost, dies can be set up to cut out the wrap artwork for you).

Chipboard suppliers will cut chipboard to spec in quantity, so you could have the pieces of your board and box precut to eliminate a majority of the work (one of the hardest parts is cutting the board).

Other things that just about any printer should be able to do for you: Print and trim cards (not all will be able to varnish or use playing card stock, but for a monopoly variant, that isn't necessary), print and trim play money, print and trim rules, etc.

Just remember, the first several hundred (thousand?) sets of Monopoly were hand made using silk-screening to print the boards and a printer to print and trim the rest.

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