Just about the most popular attributes of latte art printer recently continues to be the roll-out of cylindrical devices for printing items like water bottles. I think that cylindrical tools are offered as an selection for every printer with enough throat to allow for one. This brings at the very least two questions in the light: One, how user-friendly may be the software for setting up a cylindrical job and, two, do I need another specialized ink? Although metal water bottles could be successfully printed with a lot of UV inks, you will discover a different story with plastic containers that could be squeezed. These need a flexible ink, so a few of the printer manufacturers now offer an ink that stretches up to 200 percent.
The flexible ink option reveals other applications, such as printing banners. Magnetic signs are another possibility and some manufacturers have built their printers so you can find no paramagnetic (steel) parts that will affect printing a magnetic material.
Using the plethora of inks available, a major decision you need to make is determing the best ink for the applications. Inks can’t easily be changed so once an ink is selected you are pretty much saddled with it for that duration. Ink changes are possible should you thoroughly clean the printer, but this can be time-consuming and it is not suggested for job-to-job use.
Inks are generally specific on the manufacturer, and tend to be the print heads and rails (the bars the heads and UV light run using). Some companies manufacture their very own print heads and rails, although many others use assemblies from other inkjet manufacturers, like Ricoh and Epson. Dependant upon the print head, the printer could be competent at varying the actual size of the ink dot from less than a number of picoliters to just as much as 20 picoliters. By varying the dot size, the printers are better capable to manipulate ink density, which leads to sharper images and colors that smoothly differ from one shade to a different. Variable-dot printing is controlled by firmware from inside the printer and its software.
All UV printers have some form of RIP (Raster Image Processor) software to get and control these firmware options. Usually, the RIP software program is created by the producer for the specific printer and it has various functions, for example translating images out of your computer into raster images for the printer and enhancing color consistency. Although you may be unable to talk and understand RIPs in almost any great detail, you can observe the outcomes from the printed image, including vivid reds, bright white and the ability to smoothly transition in one color to a different. When you are thinking purchasing a printer, it’s essential to appear closely, compare results and request questions when you notice something which doesn’t look right. If it doesn’t look right on the demo, it won’t look right once you get it home!
So how is definitely the profit UV printers? What kinds of products produce enough return to ensure they well worth the $20,000 to $80,000 or higher investment connected to these devices? It couldn’t often be the opportunity to make one-up products as is the situation with sublimation. Clearly, UV is designed for the bulk production shop. Although one thousand water bottles might be personalized because they are printed, the actual contribution of your UV printer is printing a lot of products using the same imprint-what we should will call production.
One of the great things about UV digital printing is the capability to print detailed full-color images. Photo thanks to Mimaki USA. The VersaUV LEF-20 flatbed printer is offered from Roland DGA Corp. Marco Awards Group is distributing Direct Color Systems’ UV printers for printing on numerous types of items.
One new $80,000 printer reports it might print 225,000 flash drives in a 40-hour period. That’s plenty of flash drives and that’s where these printers shine. Obviously, most of us have no requirement to print countless flash drives per week, but that is why there are actually smaller machines. The secret is locating a printer that is just the right balance between what you are able afford and what you could justify with demand.
You will find lots of bells and whistles on these printers. Some are super essential to some users and never to others, while additional options are absolutely vital to only some. Finding out which features are essential to you personally and that happen to be not is not any easy task, and unless you can easily buy blind and locate a printer with every feature out there, it indicates a sensible buyer will probably do a little serious research before plunking down a pile of cash.
You can start by reducing those printers that are just way out of range price-wise and people who, for one reason or any other, are unsuited for your personal applications. Then you can start working on study the printers that have potential. It could be helpful to do head-to-head comparisons of printers you are looking for purchasing by using a chart just like the one accompanying this post. This implies traveling to a number of trade shows and arranging on-site demos. This, needless to say, slows the buying experience, but that is truly a a valuable thing. Getting pumped up about purchasing a printer and making a choice too rapidly is a lot like new car fever-it would probably bring on buyer’s regrets later.
The following is some terminology you have to know before considering purchasing any UV printer. First, remember that this post focuses specifically on UV flatbed printers. In the truest form, uv printer usually has a fixed print head and also the flat table holding the substrate moves under the print head during printing. Supposedly, this design reduces the potential of the substrate moving during printing. However, most desktop flatbed printers are of the hybrid construction where both the table along with the print heads move in one fashion or some other.
UV printers within this industry are technically UV LED printers. They utilize a multitude of LED lamps to create UV light that right away cures the ink in contact with it. This is highly advantageous because multiple layers of ink might be laid down and cured, which builds up the ink and fosters a 3D impact on the substrate. This relief printing is just how ADA tactile letters and Grade II Braille are produced using some of these printers, and also textured effects, like the dimples on the printed image of a basketball, and raised images. Some printers have the capacity to print clear or white ink concurrently as the CMYK colors, all in one pass, which may greatly boost the printer’s speed. Bi-directional printing is yet another feature which gives increased printing speeds.
All UV printers use CMYK ink sets and today most also have white and clear. A number of also offer the option of light cyan and lightweight magenta (Lc, Lm). Today’s UV printers have got a multiple-
channel print head for dispensing ink, typically made up of six or eight channels. As an illustration, an eight-channel print head is normally create so there may be one channel each for CMYK plus two channels for clear and 2 channels for white inks. With regards to a printer using Lc and Lm, a pair of the eight channels can be configured to dispense this ink (e.g. white and/or clear ink channels).
Direct Print Metallics Plus is really a coated metallic aluminum substrate designed specially for printing with UV/UV-LED inks. Photo courtesy of Johnson Plastics.
Again, this really is a choice you will have to make, but a majority of users can easily do without the Lc and Lm, and merely count on the CMYK to make a stunning image. White is, obviously, the difficult color. Because white ink needs to be opaque, it is actually typically very thick which presents problems with clogging paper heads rapidly. To make up just for this, most printers include some sort of circulation (agitation) system. This is important. Some printers circulate merely the white and clear inks while others circulate (or agitate) all the ink colors. Regardless, anything through the experienced is usually to print something daily along with your printer if at all possible. These printers are made to be used often and long idle periods can lead to some painful lessons. Mimaki printers include a feature termed as a “nozzle recovery system” to check nozzles and, in line with the manufacturer, automatically identify and recover clogged print heads. I have got no personal exposure to this feature, however it seems like a fantastic one.
Inside the comparison chart, I actually have included the weight and size of each printer. These machines are huge as printers go and are generally heavy. A few will not move through an individual 36″ wide door plus some are extremely heavy that wooden floors will need to be reinforced before installing the printer, so know about this.
Upon asking one UV printer distributor what advice he will give to newbies, he said that you should understand that these printers require significantly more attention and maintenance than sublimation printers or laser engravers. These are highly technical and require an operator who can cope with their idiosyncrasies. Just attracting a UV printer and letting anyone and everyone operate this is a disaster waiting to take place. Likewise, consider preventive maintenance. Many of these printers possess a year or two warranty but next, you will be about the hook for print heads and other replacement parts which may be many.
Ink has been mentioned but it is deserving of another note. Some companies offer only one sort of ink so it is vital that you realize the capabilities of that particular ink. Can it stretch? Does it stay with glass (even with an adhesion promotor)? Could it be fade resistant for exterior use? What sort of color pallet is accessible? Others offer multiple inks that cope with each of these issues but, as i have said, you can’t just swap inks without notice to.
Typically, you must choose a single multipurpose ink for each printer so you must decide exactly what kind of substrate you need to print on prior to lie down the bucks. True, you may switch inks if you want to, but this is a costly and involved cleaning process so make your right decision initially.
Printing speed is additionally deserving of note. The numbers might mislead anyone looking strictly in the charts and comparing speed. Print speed might be measured in lots of ways, and a lot printer manufacturers publish the pace numbers in ways that means they are look the best (nothing wrong with this). The thing is, those numbers don’t compare “apples to apples” ever since the numbers might vary wildly when you compare draft mode (720 x 720 dpi) with production mode (1440 x 1440 dpi or higher). Speed also varies when white is added being a base or clear is added as being an overcoat. Additional factors also play into this mix so “seeing is believing”-another good reason to look fulfill the printer in person before making a decision.
The throat of any printer, or even the height of the item it may accommodate but still print on, goes a long way in determining the price. The smaller the throat, the minus the printer is probably going to cost so, once more, try to determine which you might print. If all you intend to print is flat acrylic as an illustration, you can find by using a 2″ thick throat capacity, although keep in mind that would prevent you from ever printing on anything cylindrical since the smallest associated with a printer for your is approximately 4″. Alternatively, paying for a printer that could handle 15″ substrates for no reason at all would have been a waste of capital. The same holds true with substrate weight capacity. One printer contained in the chart is capable of handling around 220 lbs., but a majority of are equipped for only a few pounds. Naturally, forcing a printer to use substrates near or beyond its rated capacity is sure to shorten the life span of the textile printer.
Lots of the bells and whistles related to UV flatbed printers are exactly like sound systems in cars-it basically comes down to personal preference. Digital readouts, 05dexqpky control panels, one basic design or another, even color of the cabinet may be pure preference nevertheless they still play into the buying formula and they are, therefore, important.
One of the major applications for UV printing is ADA-compliant signage. Photo thanks to Direct Color Systems.
Finally, as well as perhaps most important of, is service and support. I actually have already mentioned that these printers require some tender loving care. They are often somewhat finicky and they definitely require ongoing maintenance. This means what you can do to contact someone for help when things don’t go how they should is imperative! This isn’t something which can be added to a chart. It needs to be learned the tough way. But that doesn’t mean you can’t figure out which companies or distributors give good service and which ones don’t. People are usually delighted to “spill the beans” about any organization that isn’t living up to its promises. Just ask your profits representative for your telephone numbers of countless of their customers who are able to be references. Quick responses to calls of help, quick shipment of repair parts and supplies and, of course, friendly, supportive service are invaluable for the UV experience to become a pleasant one.
Age of digital printing has arrived and it is definitely upon us. Technology in this particular market consistently develop. It’s really incredible what to do using this equipment. When you haven’t considered digital inkjet printing for your business, maybe you should. It could possibly mean an additional step in the direction of diversification. Regardless of whether you’re not ready to take the digital printing plunge, look it over. Who knows? It could be a profitable element of your future.