Sign & Digital Graphics

February '18

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34 • February 2018 • S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S DIGITAL PRINTING AND FINISHING DIGITAL GRAPHICS ink systems that will not only help keep them producing high-quality output but also help to ensure that deadlines con- tinue to be met. What are the most important main- tenance issues to consider in wide- format inkjet printing? David Conrad, director of sales and marketing, Mutoh America, Phoenix, Arizona, says that believe it or not, daily maintenance is often an overlooked aspect of maintenance with wide-format printers today. "Like changing oil in your The Nyala LED model offers a roll-to-roll option. (Image courtesy of swissQprint) EFI's Mark Goodearl says operator training is key. Also, substrate use, environment and adherence to a maintenance schedule are important. Pictured EFI VUTEk 5r. (Image courtesy of EFI) Basic main- tenance, like keep- ing the printheads clean and properly greasing moving parts is criti- cal to the longev- ity of your printer. Pictured: Mutoh ValueJet 1624. (Image courtesy of Mutoh America) car every 3,000-5,000 miles, the simple maintenance involved in keeping the printhead clean and the moving parts properly greased is critical to the lon- gevity of your printer." Carmen Eicher, vice president, swiss Qprint, Elgin, Illinois, explains that routine maintenance is important to maintain optimal performance of the printheads. "If maintenance is not prop- erly completed, residual ink may cause permanent nozzle outages and require a printhead replacement. The nozzle plate should be free of deposits which can be visible if the nozzle plate becomes coated and appears opaque and non-reflective." Kevin Currier, business develop- ment manager, Digital Products at Novus Imaging (an M&R Company), Moultonboro, New Hampshire, says the maintenance schedule is of high value in almost any printer situation. "In our case, the schedule is integrated into the soft- ware so the operator is always aware of it. There is also a feature to allow super- visors to add additional tasks and any customization they require." "Typically both wide- and grand- format printer manufacturers provide in-depth maintenance guides including shift-based, weekly, monthly, and annual procedures for best performance," says Mark Goodearl, senior ink product manager, E F I Inkjet, Meredith, New Hampshire. "Within these, two key areas for callouts are cleaning (jet faces, capper station, anti-static bars, belts and rollers) and lubrication (rails, carriage drive, winder bearings, media bars)." Goodearl points out that operator training, substrate use, environment and adherence to a maintenance schedule are all important factors to keeping these machines running in tiptop shape. "For example, grand-format printers are designed for a constant-duty cycle in demanding environments," he says. "Their design should be more robust than a typical small-format printer (i.e., powerful drive motors and high-pre- cision parts) to ensure sufficient time between failure in a continuous cycle environment."

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