Sign & Digital Graphics

October '17

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G R A N D F O R M A T • October 2017 • 25 "It can be a steep learning curve depending on the level of shop that is getting into this," he adds. EFI has some unique technologies that help shops save money on textile printing. The main one is that its textile printers recirculate all of the ink that is used, recovering about 95 percent of the ink that would typically be lost in a purge, says Mike Wozny, senior product manager for EFI in Foster, California. "That could save customers thou- sands of dollars a year as a result of that," he says. There's also an environmental impact by recirculating the inks because the company is "putting 95 percent back into the primary ink tanks. That is tech- nology specific to EFI." The company also uses a high-res- olution printhead and medium viscos- ity inks, which allows the company to maximize every drop of ink it lays down. There is more pigment in it, more color and less water. "We can fill a grid in a couple passes and there is less chance of dot misplace- ment or error resulting in overlap," Wozny says. "That gives us, combined with printhead recirculation, one of the lowest costs of ownership in the market- place." Front end color management is a key to the soft signage market for con- sistent repeatable color, he adds. EFI is also expanding its color gamut by add- ing fluorescent magenta and yellow to its CMYK color palette. The fluorescent colors give extra color pop, which is in high demand in the signage and graphics market. EFI chose yellow and magenta because those are the colors most in demand as part of worldwide consumption of inks. EFI's grand format textile printers print direct and paper transfer, which "gives you the widest range of applica- tions. You can print or sublimate to mul- tiple substrates," Wozny says. EFI also offers two UV printers that can print to certain textile products along with the typical vinyl and paper. Many sign shops are buying this type of machine because they want to get into Kyocera, Ricoh Gen-5 and Ricoh Gen-04 printheads (left to right), used in various PrinterEvolution printers. (Image courtesy of Global Imaging, Inc.) The T3200 DS is one of three printers in PrinterEvolution's T Series line of digital textile print- ers. It is capable of printing to transfer paper or direct to fabric. (Image courtesy of Global Imaging, Inc.) Advancements in printheads and mechanical technology on grand-format textile printers have increased throughput.

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