Glossmeters work by emitting a ray of light at a predetermined angle, which is then reflected off the tested material. This reflected light is received by the glossmeter unit through a sensor and processed. The specular reflection is recorded and displayed on the glossmeter in gloss units (GU). It’s crucial to use the correct angle of incidence for surface testing to ensure accuracy. If you are measuring plastic, vinyl, or another low gloss surface, 85 degrees is appropriate. For high gloss surfaces, a 20 degree angle is appropriate.
Glossmeters have many uses, although the majority are for quality control. Industrially, glossmeters test marble surfaces to ensure gloss units meet appropriate requirements. Glossmeters also measure vehicle finishes, particularly to show customers the before and after data with regard to respraying or detail work.
The automobile industry frequently uses gloss meters as a coating on gloss paint is common application for the majority of cars. This serves to protect the car body and an attractive look. Gloss meters can detect damage on cars—chipping and flaking of paint isn’t always present to alert you to a problem. Glossmeters are also commonly used in the construction industry, typically for materials such as marble.
The printing industry also uses glossmeters regularly, specifically for advertising campaigns, promotional material, and posters. When creating certain campaigns, it’s useful to create a glossy printing effect for the effect of richness, particularly for brochures. A gloss meter is necessary to ensure the gloss printing is even and consistent, appropriate for customer distribution.
Erica Ronchetti is a freelance writer for Konica Minolta Sensing Americas, Inc. (KMSA), a wholly owned subsidiary of Konica Minolta Holdings USA, Inc., is the global leader in the industrial measurement of color, light and shape. Learn more about Glossmeters technology and 3D scanning by visiting us on the web.