Finishing Equipment and Accessories
A print provider's job isn't done when the graphic comes off the printer. To be competitive (and profitable) today, companies need to offer a range of finishing services to their customers"?services that provide one-stop shopping for your customers and are profit centers for your company. Besides the laminators themselves (see p. 60), finishing departments require a variety of other equipment and tools"? from large-format cutter/trimmers and seamers, to routers, welders, and more. Below is a listing of some of the companies that manufacture or are exclusive distributors of finishing equipment for wide-format applications.
Advanced Greig Laminators
Offers AGL Auto Trim II and III cutters in sizes from 28 to 64 in. wide. The Auto Trim features a self-sharpening rotary blade as well as sealed-edge trim and bleed trim with unlimited margins, and it automatically adjusts speed to follow the laminator. Auto Trim III also offers custom photo optics capable of penetrating opaque materials.
Its 36-in. Roll@Blade 3615 Roto Trimmer will cut media up to 2 mm thick.
Allen Datagraph Systems
The Allen DFS (digital finishing system) laminates, digitally die cuts, weeds, slits, and rerolls labels or decals up to 16 in. wide and 250 ft long. Also produces the i-Cutter with SmartMark, which automatically scans printed registration marks and launches a contour-cut process, accurately adjusting for scale and skew, with cutters from 24 to 60 in.
Makes several deckle and embossing tools for adding an artistic edge to fine-art prints.
Manufactures CNC (computer numerically controlled) routers, useful in finishing graphics printed or mounted on rigid media, including thick and dense materials like wood or metal. The 4000 table series handles materials up to 4 x 8 ft; other routers have working areas up to 10 ft wide.
Offers a variety of Azon precision vinyl cutters with widths from 25 to 49 in.
Manufactures the large-format Black Body portable infrared dryer, available in several sizes for image widths up to 90 in.
Offers the laser-powered Lumen Digital Cutting Center, with a 48 x 48 or 48 x 96-in. cutting bed.
Spain-based manufacturer that sells the SuperCutter 320, a 126-in. machine for cutting, trimming, and scoring heavy boards (up to 30 mm thick), including Kapa Block, foamboard, polystyrene, foamed PVC, acrylic, or glass. It uses a laser blade, which produces no dust or fumes.
Sells the CodaTrim 60-in. Precision Trimmer, rotary cutters up to 54 in. wide, CodaRack Floor Roll Holder (for 3 or 2-in. core paper or laminate media), cutting mats, and a cleaning roller.
This French company makes the ColorLock finishing system, which uses FIRST vinyl matched with compatible printers and a First Polymeric IR curing unit to provide scratch-, water-, chemical-, abrasion-, and graffiti-resistance without lamination. Main distributor is Sign Warehouse.
Offers the Accu-Cut CNC router with a 4 x 8-ft table.
Its DigiCutter is a large-format media trimmer. Also offers custom-designed sheeters, stackers, slitters, rewinders, and embossers.
Continental Milano Imaging Products
ProTect is an alcohol-based lamination spray that renders inkjet prints highly water- and-scratch- resistant, and also increases the lightfastness of a print up to five times, says the company. A 400-ml can covers up to 70 sq ft, depending on application.
Offers air-operated Straight-Line Cutters in custom sizes.
Offers laminator loaders and separators.
Produces a wide range of large-format cutters, available as both rolling trimmers and guillotines, up to 51 in. wide.
Offers five models of Ding vinyl cutters, which cut materials as wide as 50 in. and at speeds up to 14 in./sec.
Makes the Hot Press Heated Glass Top Vacuum Press for mounting graphics as large as 59 x 103 in., as well as the PlaqDecor system, which converts prints to plaques by mounting, laminating, and beveling the finished graphic (with the DES-1 automated edge-finishing system)..
In addition, it offers: the StraightLazer, which automatically projects a "level" registration light across onto any surface to quickly position prints using horizontal or vertical references; the Drytac Mule storage cart for holding rolled media; the Gator Scraper, a cleaning tool for loosening and removing embedded particles often found on foamboards; Dust Removal System (DRS) Roller, to remove dust and dirt from prints; cutting mats; Eraser Block, for removing adhesive residue from laminator rollers; and Squeegee Roller, a hand-held roller used to expel air trapped on the surface or around the pre-laminated edges of prints.
Dual Edge Ripper
Makers of the Dual Edge Ripper for adding a deckle edging to fine-art prints.
Manufacturer of industrial laser cutting/ marking systems for rolled and flat materials that can cut, kiss cut, or score a range of media from paper to plastic to plywood. Its continuous-feed cutting system uses lasers to cut a variety of rolled, non-metal materials up to 60 in. wide and up to 0.5 in. thick.
Produces the Kongsberg XL for large-format creasing, cutting, and plotting, especially for the packaging market. The Kongsberg DCM Series of digital die-cutters (designed for low-volume runs of in-store displays, dimensional promotions, and packaging and prototyping applications) features an automatic load and unload mechanism and accommodates a family of quick-change creasing, cutting, crushing, and special-purpose knife tool inserts.
Manufactures a variety of cutting equipment, including the wall-mounted Fletcher 3100 Multi-material cutter, which cuts materials (such as PVC, aluminum, hardboard, and glass) up to 63 in. long and 0.4 in. thick. The PC series (40, 60, or 120 in. long) comprises lightweight cutters for substrates (vinyl to foamboard) up to 0.5 in. thick. The PCT 40 is a 40-in. cutter designed for use with laminated foamboard; it will cut media up to 0.25 in. thick. Also offers the Fletcher Edge in 24 or 42-in. lengths.
Manufactures CNC large-format cutting solutions, routers, and engravers as large as 166 x 80 in. The LX machine is a basic model, available in either 41 x 41 in. or 49 x 49-in. versions. The Pro, Stealth, Cobra, and Values routers range from 61 x 62 to 166 x 80-in. working areas.
Produces longitudinal, stationary, and suspended high-frequency machines for welding PVC and PU materials.
Offers Digitrim Digital Print Cutters (36 and 62 in.), which can sense cut marks printed between digital images, and the X/Y Autodigitrim for 32-in. rolls of images. Also offers Rollcut 61 and 72-in. cutters, which have the ability to cut on both X and Y axes at a speed of up to 10 m/min on various media up to 0.5 mm thick.
Offers several ProTrim cutters (40 and 60 in.), electric horizontal and vertical cutters; also offers a PCR Roller, a 12-in. wide roller used to clean dust particles from images prior to lamination.
Gerber Scientific Products
Manufactures Gerber Sabre routers, which include a cutting area of up to 53.5 x 101 in. with a maximum media depth of 4.4 in.
Features Hyatts Dual-Drive Routers with working areas up to 50 x 100 in. and cutting speeds up to 700 in./min.
Produces equipment to make lenticular displays, including a pivoting vacuum light table and a machine to align, laminate, and die cut digitally produced lenticular images automatically.
Makers of the Jacquard SteamJet I and II short-run fabric production steamer, and the Vertical Steamer.
JTE Machine Systems
Makes customized RF (radio frequency) stationary or traveling seaming machines.
Manufactures a wide variety of large-format cutters, including Excalibur, Javelin, Practik, Technic, and Sabre. Also offers the Big Bench, a table that can hold several large-format cutters.
Produces several series of CNC routers, including the Mach One S series, which offers a working area of up to 60 x 144 in.
Makes spray-on Krylon Preserve It! spray laminate for digital photos and fine-art prints.
Manufactures LaserPro laser engravers, including the Neptune large-format engraver.
A division of Graphic Laminating, its products include automatic sheet feeders, a high-speed Finish Line Cutter to be used with Ledco laminator systems, and a Roller Cleaning Kit.
Produces ProMAG and PowerMAG magnetic sheet for mounting graphics.
Mikkelsen Graphic Engineering (MGE)
Developed the i-cut system, an automated digital die-cutting sheet and roll-feed system. Its cutters and feeders come in 12 sizes"?ranging from the 31 x 31-in. for cutting smaller OEM decals and overlays, to 86 x 118 in. for cutting large P-O-P graphics and outdoor signage. Materials from thin paper to 1-in. corrugated cardboard can be processed. Available with 11 tool options for creasing, scoring, routing, engraving, and laser cutting. Also offers i-cut sheet feeder.
Manufacturers of hot-air rotary welding and hot-wedge welding machines for the bonding, sealing, and fusing of thermoplastic and industrial fabrics.
Produces CNC routers, including the MT Pro series that can accommodate media up to 60 x 156 in.
Neolt USA/Digital ES
Neolt USA makes a large variety of manual and electric cutters and foam trimmers for both rigid and flexible media from 30 to 205 in. Its Power Trim Plus has a cutting width up to 142 in. and cuts materials up to 0.09 in. thick. Distributed by Digital ES.
Features a variety of cutting systems up to 40 in. wide, which will cut paper, card stock, cardboard, foils, and more.
Makers of ProEDGE edging systems for the installation of a narrow edging around wide-format graphics, which can hide a miscut or corner/edge damage.
Sells the StarTrim rotary 62-in. trimmer, which cuts a variety of inkjet media. Also sells the StarCart 12-Roll Stock Cart.
Offers several large-format CX and SX cutters for media up to 50 in. Its EGX-600 is a benchtop computerized engraver that can accommodate materials up to 24 x 16 in. and 40 mm thick (1 9/16 in.).
Offers a variety of scoring and perforating machinery. Its Champion 990 ETR System is available in 24 and 30-in. models, and can score, perforate, and slit; it's designed to be used with up to 20-pt board and coated materials.
Manufactures customized sheeting machinery from 30 to 60 in. wide and up to 25 mil thick.
Cut flexible or roll materials with this company's Eurocut (for materials up to 26 in. wide and 2 mm thick), Professional (for materials up to 54 in. wide and 3 mm thick), or Technical/Powertech (for materials up to 99 in. wide and 4 mm thick) models. The Technical or Powertech are best suited for high-volume use, especially with thick boards. The wall-mounted Sawmaster (for materials up to 49 in. wide and 10 mm thick) is best for cutting rigid sheet materials up to 10 mm thickness. The company will soon release its new Autosheeter, a 61-in., high-speed automatic sheeter for rollable substrates up to 2.5 mm thick.
Seal Graphics Americas
Produces a variety of Seal cutters such as its MultiCut Wall Mount System (with a vertical cutting up to 60 in. and up to 0.5 in. thick), EasyCut (40 and 60-in. width, 0.5 in. thickness), and AccuCut Table Mount System (60 to 100 in. wide, up to 3/8 in. thick).
Manufactures the Triad Thermal Wedge Welding system, which can weld PVC, PE, PP, urethane, and many other flexible membranes. It welds 12 to 14-oz material at approximately 20 ft/min.
Features Rhino 180 Fat Mat cutting mats (up to 6 x 12 ft).
Manufactures grommet presses, including its Model 405 Bench Press and Model 479, as well as grommets.
Makes several vinyl cutters that will accommodate a variety of roll and sheet materials from 24 to 63 in. wide and up to 0.04 in. thick. They cut at speeds up to 56 in./sec.
Offers four series of large-format Techno CNC routers (that range up to 59 x 144 in.) as well as laser cutters that cut media up to 50 x 96 in.
Features Perimeter Trim System, a decorative edge-protection system for mounted graphics; it works with a variety of substrates.
Produces the UltraSeamer, an RF welding machine for seaming together flexible materials, and can be used for overlap or butt seams. UltraRolls Roller laminating tables are for easy application of self-adhesive films or overlaminates to substrates up to 2.25 in. thick.
Makes Vision CNC routers with working areas up to 24 x 48 in. and Large-Field Laser cutters to handle applications up to 5.5 x 12 ft.
Manufactures CNC routers, laser cutter, and engraving systems. Routers in its Rebel series cut up to 100 x 150 in. Newest products include EX laser cutter (with cutting area of up to 36 x 51 in.), and G/X laser cutting system (up to 51 x 51-in. cutting area).
The new FC3600 heavy-duty cutter is able to cut rigid and thick materials as fast as 23.6 in./sec. It can cut a wide variety of substrates such as corrugated cardboard, paper, film, vinyl, leather, plastics, polycarbonates, and styrene up to 1.2 in. thick.