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Paint and Coatings

How Temperature Affects Your Color Measurements

We frequently get calls from customers who can’t figure out why their measurements vary, even when they’re using maintained devices. Why would a sample read one way one day, then slightly different another? Many times the culprit is thermochromaticity, and it becomes an even bigger problem as the seasons change.

Every kind of material changes color with temperature. These changes cause the material to exhibit a shift in reflected wavelengths of light, which can alter our perception. Often the color shift is so slight the naked eye would never notice. But if your job is to quality check color critical products, you need to fully understand how thermochromaticity can impact your color, your measurements, and your ability pass inspection.

Thermochromaticity spoon

This thermochromatic ice cream spoon changes from green to blue when it gets cold.

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Common Pitfalls That Cause Conflicting Measurements

Have you ever sent out a job that passed your inspection, only to have the customer reject it for out-of-tolerance color? You recheck the data and the instrument says the color passed the agreed tolerance… why is the customer saying it doesn’t? We get a LOT of these conflicting measurement calls in technical support.

The solution is simple – document a color control program that clearly defines how to assess color, then make sure everyone (including your customer) follows it. Today we’re sharing what you need to include in your program so you can begin working with confidence.

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Confidently shop for color-critical items with Color-Eye!

If you’re reluctant to buy clothing and home decorating products online or in the store because you’re not sure how the color will look when you get home, you’ll love X-Rite’s newest color-matching solution.

Color-Eye® uses a calibration card and smartphone app to help consumers shop for items that match or complement things they already have at home, like a paint color that looks great with the curtains, a handbag and shoes that coordinate with a special occasion dress, or a jacket that will match the pants already hanging in the closet.

Coloreye-03

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Colorimeter or Spectrophotometer: Which is best for you?

Color measurement devices are used to capture, communicate, and evaluate color. From cardboard packaging to food, laundry soap, carpeting and small plastic parts, color measurement devices help ensure the color being produced matches the color that was originally specified. They’re used behind the scenes in just about every industry where color is important, including plastics, textiles, paints, coatings, print and packaging.

when color goes wrong; xrite blog; pantone blog

There are basically two types of color measurement instruments: colorimeters and spectrophotometers.

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Are you using the right device for digital standards?

Whether you’re producing textiles, automotive parts, or plastic pieces, color needs to remain consistent or the final product will be rejected. Unfortunately, there are many ways for color errors to creep in during manufacturing.

Creating and using digital standards is one way to combat these errors. They can be used to accurately specify and communicate color, design layouts, and formulate colorants and raw materials. Digital standards give brand owners peace of mind that the color they communicate is the color that will be produced, and manufacturers the confidence to work faster and more efficiently.

To create digital standards, you need an accurate, repeatable master spectrophotometer. But with so many instruments on the market, how can you choose? Today we’re highlighting some of the features of our new Ci7860 so you can judge for yourself whether it’s the right instrument for you.

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Tips for Defining a Realistic Pass/Fail Tolerance

Did you read our blog: Are You Using The Right Tolerancing Method? If not, check it out. Today we’re taking the topic one step further to investigate how tolerances are chosen in different industries.

A pass-fail tolerance is the amount of color variation that is considered commercially acceptable. In part, tolerances are driven by customer expectations. While color tolerances are very tight in the automotive, plastics, and paint & coatings worlds, they can be much less strict in other industries.

car door color matching

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Tools to Help you Achieve Consistent Color

Consistent color is a journey.

A few weeks ago I blogged about the most common pitfalls people run into when starting a color program…

  • Wrong lighting
  • Less-than-perfect color vision
  • Inaccurate physical standards
  • Inconsistent device color measurement

…And introduced some inexpensive color tools to help overcome them.

 

But the journey doesn’t stop there. Even if you’ve been successfully managing color for years, advances in inks, dyes, and substrates are introducing new challenges, and many brands are asking for tighter tolerances. Getting color right is much harder than it used to be.

Today we’ll look at some of the more advanced tools available to help you take the next step toward more consistent color.

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Are you Ready for Computer-Aided Color Formulation?

How many trial and error steps does it take you to formulate a color? If you answered more than three, it might be time to enlist the help of a computerized solution.

Computer-aided color formulation can bring huge benefits to your business. Out of the gate, even beginners can hit color targets faster, saving time, money and expensive colorants. Once you’ve established an accurate process, you can expect to match 95% of your color requirements within a reasonable color distance on the first try! When you consider manual mixing takes an average of 12 tries to get it right, formulation software saves labs a lot of time and money during the development and production phases.

To learn more about the benefits, check out our blog “Fast Formulation is Key to Producing Color of the Year.” Today we’re demonstrating how a portable or benchtop spectrophotometer and Color iMatch software can help you formulate paint, plastic, and textile colors faster and with less waste.

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Labeling the way we see the world… in color

At X-Rite Pantone, we pride ourselves on our ability to help customers specify, communicate, formulate, and produce consistent color. You’re probably familiar with our major markets, like plastics, industrial coatings, and print & packaging. You may also be aware of the more “common” things we measure, like paint, printed surfaces, and textiles.

But, as you look for the emergency exit on a plane, watch a butterfly float by, or choose the freshest package of cheese from the grocer, do you consider the role of color? Today we’re stepping out of the box to highlight some very unique applications of our color management solutions to help you think about color differently.

Farmers use the Munsell Soil Color Chart to evaluate the suitability of soil for crops.

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