Who is Kustom? 

Kustom Koatings, part of the Kustom Group, formulates and manufactures overprints and coatings in oil based, aqueous, and UV chemistries that are used on the end of presses in most any printing method.

Oil- Based Litho Vehicles

Kustom Koating also has information about its most popular Lithomaster Overprint Vehicles here online:

Sheetfed Vehicles
Heatset Vehicles
Specialty Additives

Whether you need one of Kustom’s “go to” press-tested lines, such as our flagship Lithomaster, our Midnight Black Ink Vehicle, our Tuff Stuff Plastic Line, or you would like us to custom design a vehicle for your specific application, we can help. Give us a call for more information.


Oil-Based Litho Overprints 

Does Anyone Care About Oil-Based Overprints Anymore?

Kustom Group does, and we always will!  We are committed to this sometimes forgotten segment of our industry. Since Kustom opened in 1989, oilbased overprints have been a mainstay. We carry a full line of Sheetfed and Heatset oilbased overprint varnishes including high rub, non-yellowing, matte finish, chemical and heat resistant, waterless, wax free, pearlescent, and perfecting. Our Lithomaster Overprints use the same proprietary resin technology as our highly successful Lithomaster letback vehicles. That means consistent litho properties that hold up under the high-heat and high-shear conditions of today’s presses.  Our two-step manufacturing process protects the waxes and driers from the thermal stresses of elevated processing temperatures and helps insure a consistent product. Our quality control program includes viscosity, elasticity, and structure profiles measured on a rotational rheometer and in process oxidative dry testing.  We have the capability to pack into totes, drums and kits using your labels. Contact your Kustom Blending representative today.

We also have information about our most popular Lithomaster Overprint Varnishes here online: Oil-Based Litho Overprints


Oil-Based Waxes & Additives 

Kustom Group offers a wide variety of wax products and additives for lithographic applications, all designed to enhance the performance and appearance of your end products. Whether you need a wax compound to give rub resistance and added slip or one of our powerful additives to improve processing and end-use performance, our products and experience can help you create a system that meets your specific needs.

Most Popular Heatset and Sheetfed Wax Compounds

Most Popular Heatset and Sheetfed Addtives


Aqueous Wet-Litho Coatings 

Considered by many to be a mature market, interest in Kustom Kote water-based wet-litho coatings continues to grow. This is especially true in the world of high performance gloss, satin and matte products for a wide array of paper and non-porous substrates. Of growing interest is the “Wow Factor” that specialty effect coatings like Strike-Thru, Pearlescent, Soft-Feel and Sandy-Feel bring to the commercial and packaging litho markets. Creative printers want the latest and best!

Printers are always interested in creative downstream processes that require a primer for foil stamping, gluing, film lamination, writeability, UV coatability and imprinting. End-use requirements like heat resistance, chemical resistance, water resistance, controlled slide angle and ultimate rub resistance are also common requirements for high performance printing.

Check out our list of Kustom Kote Products: Aqueous Wet-Litho Coatings

This is the world we live in. Give us a call to talk about your water coating needs.


Ink Train Water Coating

Kentucky Shine is a unique press-applied acrylic based overprint that is applied through the last inking unit of a press.  This allows any sheetfed or web heatset offset printer the ability to produce jobs with the appearance of a water coating without using an in-line coating unit.  Kentucky Shine runs with the dampening system disengaged.  Kentucky Shine has a long history of performing well and exceeding customer expectations time and time again.

Kentucky Shine Press-Applied Overprints are available in gloss, satin and matte.  They exhibit fast drying, enhanced press stability and a tight body to minimize dripping through the fountain.  In addition, this product is ideal for printing on paper and paperboard substrates as well as protecting toner-based digital inks.  Do you want to achieve the effect of Soft-Feel coating but don’t have a coater on your press?  The new Kentucky Shine Soft-Feel Overprints look and feel great.  Just contact us and we can provide all the information you need to understand and run Kentucky Shine!

Kentucky Shine Press Instructions

You can also check out our most popular Kentucky Shine Overprints here: Ink Train Water Coatings


Digital Coatings and Overprints 

Kustom Group has developed a series of overprints and coatings to work successfully over a wide variety of digital printing applications. These products include Kustom Kure UV coating, Kentucky Shine aqueous overprint varnish and Lithomaster oil-based overprint varnish. All of these chemistries can be used to meet the needs of the digitally printed piece. All too often the industry has focused on UV coatings as the product of choice to protect the digital print, but there are more options that will satisfy the needs for many of the print jobs. The use of a typical litho press is not often considered, but it can be used because of the development of these new products. Purchasing new UV coating equipment and learning about UV isn’t necessary.

The newest development is a series of Lithomaster overprint varnishes which are applied by any litho press. These products use the ease of litho printing to enable many specialty effects that require spot varnishing with close registration. These products are typical oil based sheetfed overprint varnishes that will successfully print over digital printing.

Kentucky Shine is a water-based overprint that has all the properties of a typical aqueous coating when applied over digital printing. It is easily applied by a dry offset process thru the ink unit of any offset press which is readily available in most print shops.

We also offer Kustom Kure UV Coatings that are specially formulated to adhere to the most difficult toner prints.

You can see a list our Kustom Kure Coatings here: Digital Coatings & Overprints


Special Effects Coatings and Overprints 

Specialty effect coatings and overprints continue to gain popularity as printed media attempts to distinguish itself from others.  Kustom Group can assist you in making that distinction.  We formulate and produce coatings and overprints with various effects in multiple technologies for all platforms.  Soft-Touch or Soft-Feel, Sandy, Strike-Thru and Textured coatings are available to enhance the tactile experience of print.  We have coatings with pearlescent and metalized pigments for sheen and luster.  Reticulation Strike-Thru is an economical way of contrasting print to make effects stand out.  Kustom Group prides itself in its ability to make modifications and meet your specific needs.
Specialty Product Index: List of Specialty Products (including recommended application volumes)
Soft Feel: Aqueous and UV Coating, Heatset and Sheetfed Kentucky Shine

Sandy: Aqueous and UV Coating, Heatset Kentucky Shine

Tactile: UV Coatings

Effect Pigment: Aqueous, UV and LED Coatings

Strike-Thru: Aqueous and UV Coatings, Oil-based and UV Overprint Varnishes
Running Guides:

Strike Thru

Soft Touch

Sandy Feel


Flexo Coatings 

We fully understand that Flexo printers require a high level of performance for their packaging and label markets.  Beyond the day-to-day UV and water coatings that bring basic gloss and protection to the job is another group of end-use requirements.  This includes coatings that exhibit controlled slide angle and rub resistance.  There can also be a need for heat, wet block, chemical and many other resistance properties.

Special effects like pearlescent and Soft-Feel are increasingly popular with creative folks.  There can be a lot to talk about when considering Kustom Kure UV and water coatings for the wide array of sophisticated paper, board, film and foil substrates used for flexo printing!  You can contact us to discuss your coating needs for POP display, preprint corrugated, narrow-web label, specialty folding carton and specialty wide web printing.

Check out our most popular flexo water-based and UV coatings: Flexo Coatings


Energy Cure Coatings and Overprints 

Today, the term “Energy Cure” means so much more than UV – now it includes H-UV and LED.  Interest in Energy Cure coatings and overprints continues to grow.  Beyond the everyday world of gloss, satin and matte products is the “Wow Factor” that specialty effect coatings like Strike-Thru, Pearlescent, Sandy-Feel, Dry-Erase, Raised UV, etc. bring to litho, flexo, screen and off-line coater jobs. Let’s also include creative downstream finishing processes that require a UV primer for foil-stamping, gluing, embossing, laminating and imprinting. We can even help with UV coatings to protect toner-based digital print or ink jet inks.

Energy Cure Coatings and Overprints

LED Coatings and Overprints

H-UV Coatings and Overprints


Energy Cure Waxes and Additives 

Kustom Group offers a wide variety of wax products and additives for Energy Cure lithographic applications, all designed to enhance the performance and appearance of your end products.  Our wax compounds are suitable for use in all types of Energy Cure inks and coatings, UV wood finishes and OPV’s.  Attributes include improved slip, anti-blocking, water resistance, mar/rub resistance, and a Nestle Compliant PTFE Compound.  These products are all dispersed into a “wet out” UV-compatible system, which makes them easy to incorporate in production without the dust hazard.  Our line of powerful Energy Cure Additives will help improve processing and end-use performance.

Energy Cure Wax Catalog

Energy Cure Additive Catalog

List of Most Popular Photoinitiator Blends


Energy Cure Ink Vehicles 

Adhesion.  Pigment wetting.  Fast cure. Controlled rheology for press performance.  These are properties that every ink maker looks for in an energy cure ink.  And in the rapidly-expanding and ever-changing world of energy cure inks, balancing those properties can be a challenge.  At Kustom Group, we can help you meet those challenges with our diverse Kustom Kure litho and flexo vehicle lines that include grinding/flushing vehicles, free flows and gels, as well as our photoinitiator blends.  Our knowledgeable technical staff has a variety of backgrounds and a wealth of experience to help you achieve your energy cure ink goals.

We also have information about our most popular Kustom Kure vehicles and photoinitiators here online:

For UV Flexo
For UV Litho
For UV Hybrid
For LED Litho


Screen Coatings 

Traditionally screen coatings have been the more economical alternative to lamination. Today printers are using screen coatings to create a diverse range of printed pieces, in particular specialty pieces that are designed to stand out and catch your eye.

Kustom Group has created the Screen Catalog to include many of these specialty screen coatings, including color shift, glitter, and tactile (raised, rubber feel, sandy feel and soft touch) as well as gloss, satin and matte options for use over a variety of inks and stocks.


EU Products 

We have received requests from customers within the EU for access to Kustom formulated products. We have resolved this issue with some of our products with our partner Umicore in Belgium, who are producing products using Kustom formulations using EU-sourced raw materials so as to have no issues with REACH. Many customers have need for the same product globally, and so they are interested in knowing that they can get product both within the EU and outside.

To help all with their searches, we have developed a downloadable product catalog.  Individual Technical Data Sheets are below.


Conventional Sheetfed Ink Vehicles 

KB-1016 EU Maximum Adhesion, Structured Sheetfed Vehicle for Plastic Substrates
KB-1098 EU Sheetfed Gloss Varnish
KB-1104 EU General Purpose, Structured Sheetfed Vehicle
KB-290 EU Mineral Oil Free, Structured Sheetfed Vehicle
KB-406 EU Premium Pigment Dispersion Vehicle for Plastic Substrates
KB-480 EU General Purpose Pigment Dispersion Vehicle







Conventional SheetfedInk Additives

KB-103 EU #3 Body Linseed Alkyd for Pigment Wetting
KB-173 EU Structured Linseed Alkyd
KB-112 EU Soya based alkyd with good pigment wetting
KB-724 EU Anti Oxidant
KB-767 EU Ink Bodying Additive
KB-791 EU Water Pick-Up Reducer






Conventional Sheetfed Overprint Bases 

KB-3170 EU General Purpose Sheetfed Overprint Base
KB-8700 EU Food Compliant Sheetfed Overprint Base


Heatset Web Offset Overprints

KB-3731 EU Gluable, UV Coatable, Heatset Overprint


Wax Compounds

KBW-TF100 Linseed Based Polyethylene Compound for Inks for Plastic
KBW-TF100S Polyethylene Wax Compound for Compliant Sheetfed Inks
KBW-TF75S Polyethylene Wax Compound for Compliant Sheetfed Inks
Over time, as we add products to our EU product portfolio, we will add their technical information to this product catalog.