Sign & Digital Graphics

May '17

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52 • May 2017 • S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S SPECIALTY IMAGING DIGITAL GRAPHICS Use a Primer Hutcheson says that Agfa suggest their customers to use a primer for the best outcome when printing onto glass. NGI Designer Glass is an Agfa customer that specializes in commercial, decorative glass, lamination and distributes these products worldwide. According to NGI's Sacks, "From all the testing and printing we have done, a primer of some sort is required for proper adhesion of the ink to the glass. The settings are similar to those settings used to cure non-porous materials requiring lamp settings at a higher level." Other Output Processes "Very often our Acuity flatbed series is used with an adhesion promotor (primer) to create some surface tension on what is typically a very smooth substrate," com- ments Roden. "However, one of our cus- tomers, Epo Glass in Warsaw, Poland, uses an Acuity LED 1600 to produce stunning results with a vacuum lamina- tion process," she adds. Roden says that with Epo's unique process the image is first printed onto a special roll media that is sourced direct from a manufacturer in Germany with white on the reverse. "It is then cut to shape and placed on the bed of the oven. A laminating foil is placed on top and then the sheet of glass on top of this. The oven is then switched on and cycles through a combination of heat and vac- uum. This unique process—which was established over many years of test- ing—was eventually patented by Epo. The print is ready after about 90 min- utes in the oven. "At the end of this time, the laminating film has dissolved," she explains. "Epo Glass has demonstrated that Fujifilm's Acuity LED and Uvijet LL printers work well with the patented process," she explains. More Tips and Tricks Mike DeRuiter, partner and opera- tor at CropMarks in Grand Rapids, Michigan, a shop using StratoJet print- ers, says it is very important to start with the right glass. "Not all glass is the same. For example, thinner glass, (i.e., 1/8") often times has more thickness variation. This variation will reduce the print image quality. Have the glass sup- plier identify the 'tin side' on each piece. Most people are not aware that one side is more even than the other; the 'non tin' side or also called the 'air' side is the right side to print on," he explains. DeRuiter adds that to ensure that the glass is free of any oils, it should be cleaned with isopropyl alcohol and a lint-free cloth. "Add a small amount of adhesion promoter to a lint-free cloth and evenly spread across the print area. I like to use a circular motion, similar to waxing a car." He cautions that since there a number of adhesion promoters Abstract translucent pieces created for local brewery in Washington D.C. (Image courtesy of Agio Imaging) Azul Imperial sample (Image courtesy of NGI Designer Glass) Image printed on the Stratojet's Shark EFB-2512. (Image courtesy of StratoJet USA)

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