Printer ribbons perform functions similar to the function of an ink in conventional printing. Printer ribbons are generally used in thermal transfer printing technology. In thermal transfer printing technology, a multi-layered ribbon in rolled form, is placed in-between a printhead and a substrate or print media. Strutually a printer ribbon is made of many layers. The top layer is a transparent film, the subsequent layers are inks and on the opposite side of the ribbon a protective layer known as blackcoating is applied.

During thermal transfer printing process, heat from a printhead is applied to the backside of a printer ribbon i.e the blackcoating surface, the wax or resin that is coated on front side of the ribbon melts and transfers the ink elements from front side of the ribbon to a substrate or print media. There are various types of print media such as textile materials, cards, synthetics, paper among other materials. A printer ribbon is used for marking price of a product, expiry dates, composition of a product, batch number and other relevant product information.

Printer ribbons are important as they are used in all industries where marking and labelling is requied. Without good quality print on a labels, it is difficult to trace a product along its life cycle. The lable of a product is the only link among a manufacturer, distributor, dealer, retail and finally end-users. Among various printing process, thermal transfer printing is a prefered method for printing labels in industry. The quality of a label depends on printer, print media and last but not the least on the type of printer ribbons we choose.

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In full wax printer ribbon, the ribbon is coated with an ink made of wax which has a low melting point. This is the most common and widely available printer ribbons in the world. These ribbons are also known as resin-enhanced wax thermal transfer ribbons. Wax ribbons are generally used in general printing, retail labeling and others. In full resin ribbons, the ribbons are coated with pure resin which has a high melting point. Full resin printer ribbons dissolve in a print media and the final printout is very durable in nature.

They are generally used in apparel and textile labelling, durable products labelling among others. Among printer ribbons, full resin printer ribbons are most expensive. The wax-resin ribbons are coated with a mixture of wax and resin and have a melting point in between full resin and full wax printer ribbons. They are generally used in automotive labeling, export-import industry among others. Printing of full wax printer ribbons are less durable than full resin printer ribbons.