Paper & Board: Types

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Paper and Card Types

Properties of materials are key to understanding the best materials for the job. The paper types you will see will vary in terms of weight and appearance.

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Common papers and board are:

  • Tissue paper.
  • Newsprint paper.
  • Photocopy paper.
  • Photo quality paper.
  • Carton board.
  • Mount board.
  • Cartridge paper.
  • Corrugated card.
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Tissue paper

  • Tissue paper is available in a variety of sizes and colours.
  • They can be sold in ply form and toilet roll.
  • The paper is 10 - 35 gsm and it is highly absorbent.
  • Can be used for packaging and protection.
  • It is also used for arts and crafts but is mainly used for kitchen and toilet roll.
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Newsprint paper

  • Slightly off white colour.
  • Very thin and slightly rough to touch.
  • The paper is 45-55 gsm and it is lightweight.
  • It is uncoated which keeps the cost low.
  • It is commonly used for commercial printing for newspapers and some advertising.
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Photocopy paper

  • The paper is very smooth and comes in standard sizes.
  • The quality is good and unless specified can be supplied in brilliant white.
  • The paper ranges from 70-150 gsm, the weight of the paper is usually reflected in the price.
  • One of the most commonly bought papers for inkjet, laserjet printers and general use.

Paper and Card Types

Properties of materials are key to understanding the best materials for the job. The paper types you will see will vary in terms of weight and appearance.

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Photo quality paper

  • This paper has a very fine smooth finish and is often glossy.
  • The glossy coat is commonly on one side only.
  • The paper ranged from 120- 260 gsm, some printers cannot take the thickest paper and need the correct tray settings to accommodate this.
  • The paper is often used for photographic prints, presentation boards and greeting cards.
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Carton board

  • This is naturally brown or white, it can be coated or uncoated and is a versatile material.
  • It can be printed on one or both sides.
  • The weight of this material has been changed from gsm to microns.
  • Carton board can vary from 200- 1500 microns.
  • This material can be foil lined to hold liquids and foods.
  • Carton board is often used for food containers, packaging and point of sales stands.
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Mount board

  • It has a high-quality finish usually on one side.
  • It is very thick and rigid which helps to produce frame mounts.
  • Mount board cuts well so you achieve a high-quality finish.
  • Mount board can vary from 500 - 2500 microns.
  • Mount board can be used for mounting of art or photography work.
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Cartridge paper

  • It has excellent absorbing qualities yet leaves good pigments of colour on the surface.
  • The surface of the paper will not warp.
  • It has a desirable texture for artists that use cartridge paper.
  • Colours such as pure white and ivory are available.
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Corrugated cardboard

  • Made to take the impact and hold a heavyweight.
  • The corrugated pattern functions very well because it can take force from a variety of angles.
  • The corrugated cardboard can be doubled up and it will take even more weight.

Jump to other topics

1Core Technical Principles

2Paper & Board: Specialist Technical Principles

3Timber: Specialist Technical Principles

4Metal: Specialist Technical Principles

5Polymers: Specialist Technical Principles

6Textiles: Specialist Technical Principles

7Designing & Making Principles

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