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SGIA 2010: Viva Las Vegas

Expo broke records, generated buzz, introduced new technologies.

What happens in Vegas definitely no longer stays in Vegas, certainly not when it comes to the digital-print marketplace.

The 2010 SGIA Expo (www.sgia.org) proved this in mid-October, whennearly 22,000 registered attendees hit the event floor (a show record), didtheir legwork for the latest information on new technologies, workflows, and products, and then returned home with that information to put all they learned to work in their own companies. It’s likely they also brought back to their shops some of the marketplace buzz generated by the show – attendees and exhibitors alike were decidedly optimistic about where the market was headed in the months ahead.

During their time at SGIA Expo, attendees took advantage of more than 25 educational sessions tailored to each sector of the specialty-imaging industry, as well as a first-ever Pre-Expo Business Development Conference where speakers discussed how to increase ROI and boost a shop’s bottom line. Also available to them were five sales-free interactive demonstration areas on the show floor for those seeking new market opportunities, including: Digital Apparel Production Zone, DSA Digital Signage Zone, Industrial Application Zone, PDAA Graphics Application Zone, and the Screen Printed Apparel Training Zone.

Meanwhile, on the 184,000-squarefoot SGIA Expo show floor, attendees were busy checking out products and wares from 487 exhibiting companies. We provide information on nearly 50 of those newly released technologies on the pages that follow.

If you missed the excitement at the 2010 SGIA Expo, it’s not too late to begin thinking about the 2011 edition of the show. It will be held at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, October 19-21.

JFX Plus Printers from Mimaki
Mimaki USA (www.mimakiusa.com) debuted its JFX plus series of LED UV-cure printers, including the JFX-1631 plus and JFX-1615 plus. The new machines feature a post-cure unit, and as a result, reports Mimaki, now offer a top speed of 254 sq ft/min (at 600 dpi), an 80% increase over the previous 1615/1631 models. Both machines feature a top resolution of 1200 dpi. The 1631 plus can handle media up to 65 x 126 in., while the 1615 plus can handle media up to 65 x 63 in.; both accommodate media up to 1.97-in. thick. Two inksets are available: Rigid (CMYK+W+Clear) and Flexible (CMYK+W). A roll unit is optional for continuous roll-media feeding.

3M New Media
3M (www.3mgraphics.com) introduced an array of new media updates, including:
• 3M Scotchprint Wrap Film Series 1080 is available in four matte colors – black, white, silver, and military green. These pressure-activated, 3.5-mil cast films are designed to provide dimensional stability and durability without the need for an overlaminate. The films feature non-visible air-release channels and 60-in. widths.
• Scotchcal brand Changeable Graphic Film IJ36-20 now features adhesive technology designed to improve removability and pliability in colder temperatures. The film applies easily and removes without heat (some heat may be required in colder temperatures), 3M reports, and is solvent and UV-print compatible; also features a lay-flat liner.
• 3M Wall Decorating Film IJ86E is a 6-mil changeable film designed for interior wall graphics using UV inkjet and UV screen printing. Its adhesive technology provides excellent adhesion but still allows sliding and repositioning of the graphic, the company reports. IJ86E is a non-PVC film made with less solvent and designed for use with UV inks.

Durst’s Rhotex 320
The Rhotex 320 printer from Durst (www.durstus.com) made its North American debut. Aimed at the soft-signage markets, the printer is available in 4-color standard or in an optional configuration of CMYKcm+light black and/or spot colors. The Rhotex 320 features Durst’s Quadro Array 30D AQ printhead technology, an inline ink dryer, an automated capping station that covers all printheads automatically when the sled is in “park” position to eliminate evaporation of the printer’s water-based inks, an integrated ink absorbing system to keep inks from penetrating through the media, and more. It offers P-O-P qual¬ity output at up to 775 sq ft/hr (645 sq ft/hr in High Resolution mode) and a top resolution of 600 dpi. See September 2010 for more information.

Neschen SolvoPrint Nolite 175 Media
Neschen (www.neschenbrands.com) made its first showing of SolvoPrint Nolite 175, a 7-mil matte polyester media for use with solvent, eco-solvent, latex, and UV-curable printers. Suitable for indoor and short-term outdoor projects, it features 100% opacity to remove shadows and image washout due to backlit conditions, edge-curl resistance, and a scratch-resistant coating. Applications include P-O-P displays, retail signage, tradeshow graphics, and display systems. Avail¬able in 36 x 98-in. rolls.

HP’s Certified for JDF Program
HP (www.hp.com) announced that it has created a new HP Certified for Wide Format Printing JDF Exchange program for third-party workflow solutions. HP certification ensures that workflow solutions exchanging JDF will interoperate properly with each other, enabling print service providers to easily build e-storefronts to market their services, take advantage of production-automation tools to reduce costs, and differentiate their service offerings. Several companies already have achieved certification through the program. HP is chair of the CIP4’s Wide Format Workgroup.

Agfa Debuts Jeti 3020 Titan Flatbed
The Jeti 3020 Titan flatbed from Agfa Graphics (agfa.com) is a high-production machine, designed and constructed using a modular format so that, as users’ demands increase, the printer’s color and speed capabilities can be extended. The Titan’s entry-level version incorporates 16 Ricoh Gen 4 grayscale printheads resulting in CMYK output at a native resolution of 600 dpi, able to deliver 1200 dpi for photorealistic image quality. The machine has a maximum print area of 124 x 79.5 in. and prints up to 1216 sq ft/hr in high-speed mode (370 sq ft/hr in quality mode). It can be configured, however, with up to 48 grayscale heads (boosting the maximum print speed to 2432 sq ft/hr in high-speed mode, 740 in quality mode); in addition, the standard CMYK configuration can be extended adding light cyan and light magenta for better image rendering; double white; white and clear varnish; or orange and green to extend the color gamut. The Titan can accommodate flexible and rigid materials up to 2-in. thick.

Array of New Media from Sihl
Sihl (www.sihlusa.com) premiered various new media at SGIA, including:
• Sihl 3166 ClearStick clear film with adhesive for aqueous inkjet printers; a 2-mil polyester film with an optically clear inkjet coating on the image side and an optically clear, repositionable adhesive with a thin opaque, white polyester release liner on the reverse side. Applications include P-O-P/P-O-S, event signage, and digital packaging prototypes. In 24- to 50-in. widths.
• Sihl 3182 Latex Backlit film compatible with HP Latex inkjet printers; a dimensionally stable 5-mil polyester film with a Latex ink-receptive matte top coat and a light-diffusing coat on the reverse side; can be used for short-term outdoor lightbox applications and does not require lamination. In 36-, 50-, and 60-in. widths.
• Two new white polyester films, 3198 Instant Dry Block-Out and 3199 Instant Dry White film for solvent, UV and Latex inkjet printers. Sihl 3198 is a 7-mil polyester film with a glossy instant-dry, ink-receptive layer designed to produce photo-quality, high-definition images; available in 36- and 50-in. widths. Sihl 3199 has the same unique ink receptive layer as 3198 but on a thinner, more economical 5-mil white polyester film base without the block-out layer on the reverse side; available in 54- and 60-in. widths.
• Sihl 3516 PolySol Pop-up 12-mil display film, compatible with solvent, UV, and Latex inkjet printers. A thick, dimensionally and color-stable polyester film with a textured satin print surface and a gray light-block layer on the reverse surface, for ultra-durable pop-up displays; 36-in. widths.
• Three new inkjet canvas products for use with aqueous inkjet printers, including Illumina Gloss Canvas 3185 (19-mil), Illustra Satin Canvas 3186 (19-mil), and Irradia Matte Canvas 3184 (15-mil). All three are available in widths from 13 to 50 in.
• Sihl 3176 QuickStick self-adhesive vinyl for aqueous inkjet printers; a 4-mil pressure-adhesive-backed media designed for a strong initial bond and zero residue after removal; in widths from 24 to 50 in.

Gandy Digital Introduces Pre8tor UV Flatbed
Gandy Digital (www.gandydigital.com) introduced the Pred8tor, a UV flatbed with a roll-to-roll option. The 5-color Featuring a cardboard box design consisting of 100% recycled materials, it replaces five 440-ml cartridges. The ink is housed within a foil bag and, once emptied, is disposed of. The foil bag can contain up to two liters of ink.

New Production Roll Arkwright Media
Arkwright Advanced Coating (www.arkwright.com) announced a new line of digitally coated inkjet media targeted for high-speed, production printers. The Production Roll line includes: 22150/22180 Light-Block Film Gloss (5-mil, 8-mil); 22340/22270 White Film Gloss (4-mil, 7-mil); 22450 Matte Backlit Film Gloss (5-mil); 70900 Latex Saturated Poster Paper, Satin (213 gsm); and two FSC-certified poster papers, 73686 Gloss Poster Paper (8-mil) and 73689 Satin Poster Paper (6-mil). All in widths ranging from 38 to 63 in., on 6-in. cores.

Impala Hybrid from Polytype Americas
Polytype America Corp. (www.polytypeamerica.com), exclusive distributor for the SwissQPrint printer line, introduced the Impala hybrid UV printer to North America. It uses an 8-color ink¬set (CMYKcmk+W)+varnish, supports drop sizes from 12 to 42 pl, offers resolution up to 1440 dpi, and print speeds up to 1441 sq ft/hr in flatbed mode (high-print quality is 387-720 sq ft/hr at 720 and 360 dpi). Maximum print area is 5 x 8 ft. The company also showcased several new print modes for the Oryx UV flatbed printers that increase the maximum print speed to 828 sq ft/hr in draft mode.

StarLam 1600R Laminator
Clearstar LP (www.clearstarcorp.com) released its redesigned StarLam 1600R roll-to-roll liquid laminator. The new model features rotating metering rods, a self-contained cleaning system and an advanced drying technique. The 1600R can handle media up to 64-in. wide and offers speeds of 1 to 4 ft/min.

Drytac Artsafe 200 Mounting Tissue
Drytac (www.drytac.com) showcased its Artsafe 200 mounting tissue, a high-quality, buffered, acid-free, non-yellowing, stable and safe adhesive for fine-art prints, posters, photo, and clippings. Artsafe 200 mounting tissue is supplied on a special “carrier release” paper, and can be used for small and large prints. A single-sided version (with adhesive on one side of the buffered tissue) is also available for use as a heat-set repair tissue.

New Overlaminates from Arlon
Arlon (www.arlon.com) showcased its new Series 3220L (Luster) and Series 3220S (Satin) overlaminates. These multipurpose, 2-mil cast-vinyl laminates are recommended for vehicle wraps and for any type of outdoor digitally printed signage. Available in 30-, 36-, 48-, 54-, and 60-in. roll widths. The company also launched three new banner products: DPF 303 smooth, blockout, double-sided banner, a 13-oz white scrim polyester available in matte and satin; DPF 308, an 8-oz white fine-hole mesh banner that comes with or without a PVC liner; and DPF 310BB, a 9-oz white, black-back flexible polyester scrim banner with blockout properties.

Fisher Textiles’ Three New Fabrics
Fisher Textiles (www.fishertextiles.com) added three new fabrics to its Enviro-Tex Plus fabrics line for dye sublimation and UV printing: ETP 9372 Reclaim Soft Knit (FR), ETP 9373 Reclaim Heavy Knit (FR), and ETP 9374 Reclaim Open Knit (FR). All are eco-friendly and are made from 100% Repreve yarn and 100% post-consumer waste. All are 122-in. wide and meet NFPA 701 flame requirements.

A Faster Inca Onset S20
Inca Digital (www.incadigital.com) showcased its faster Onset S20, which now boasts an additional 15% speed boost (a 24% increase since its initial launch). The printer’s new high-speed mode lets users print graphics at speeds ranging from 1600 to 3330 sq ft/hr, the company reports, and offers resolutions from 600 to 1000 dpi. The new print mode is standard on all new Onset S20s; existing S20 units can get a free upgrade. Fujifilm (fujifilm.com) is the exclusive Inca distributor.

New i-cut Suite From EskoArtwork
EskoArtwork (esko.com) showcased its new i-cut Suite, targeted specifically for companies that operate a large-format digital printer and/or digital finishing system, and require professional tools to streamline their workflows. The Suite comprises vari¬ous modules, including i-cut Preflight for efficient PDF preflighting and editing, i-cut Layout for interactive layout and nesting, and i-cut Vision Pro control system for precise and accurate die-less cutting. Users can also add supplementary modules: a structural design module; a graphics preparation module, and a true shape nesting module for irregular shapes. The company’s Kongsberg XP-Auto, an extended new version of the XP cutting table, also received its first US showing. The XP-Auto can handle a wide range of materials from high-density, rigid sheets to flexible materi¬als; maximum sheet size is 91 x 142 in.

InteliCoat Magic GFPhoto-240 Paper
InteliCoat Technologies (www.magicinkjet.com) introduced Magic GFPhoto-240, a heavyweight 240-gsm photo-realistic paper specifically designed for solvent, eco-solvent, latex, and UV-cure printers. The 8-mil, satin paper boasts a bright white surface, very high color gamut and saturation, and is aimed at high-resolution graphics, posters, and displays. Available in 30-, 50-, and 60-in. widths.

Visual Magnetics’ PolyPeel Magnetic Receptive Film
Visual Magnetics (www.visualmagnetics.com), developer of the Visual Magnetics Graphic System, introduced its new PolyPeel magnetic-receptive film. The 3-mil magnetic-receptive satin polyester film boasts a highly magnetic coating on the back, which allows for the printing of images that will hold magnets through the surface of the film. This allows a user to place magnets directly on a printed image, and the image can be removed at will. PolyPeel’s removable adhesive adheres to most smooth surfaces, the company reports. Applications include menu boards and the temporary placement of any magnetic-receptive removable panel. PolyPeel is available in 54-in. widths and is compatible with UV-curable, screen, HP Latex, solvent, and litho printing platforms. The film is made from 25-50% post-consumer soda bottles.

Oracal Introduces New Media
Oracal USA (www.oracal.com) showcased OraJet Series 3951HT High-Tack cast PVC digital media. Designed for “hard-to-stick,” rough or textured, low-energy plastics or substrates, the 2-mil 3951HT is aimed at long-term, solvent inkjet printable graphic applications 2011requiring a gray, permanent adhesive, the company reports. Available in a gloss finish, 54-in. width, and lengths of 25 and 50 yds.

Fotoba Dreamcut XLD-170 From Colex
The Fotoba Dreamcut XLD-170 made its US show debut, from the company’s North American distributor, Colex (www.colex.com). The XLD-170 is designed to work with rolls and sheets up 67-in. wide and 35-mil thick; it offers a max linear speed of 50 ft/min. Features include: self-squaring, automatic tracking of image edge, adjustable cutting lengths, self-sharpening blade, and more. It can handle polycarbonate, photo paper, vinyl, self-adhesive vinyl, PVC, film, duratrans, TDF, canvas, laminated or encapsulated prints, and other media.

Express-Jet Printers by Lawson
Lawson Screen & Digital Products (www.lawsonsp.com) debuted its Express-Jet line of inkjet printers. The Express-Jet Graphic is a 5-color (CMYK+W) wide-format flatbed inkjet printer that features a moving table and scanning head and supports a maximum print size of 58 x 72 in. Top speed is 410 sq ft/hr and maximum resolution is 1200 dpi. It utilizes pigmented aqueous inks.

The Express-Jet/ASI is an industrial direct-to-substrate printer that uses UV LED curing and is engineered to handle ad-specialty applications. It offers 5 colors (CMYK+W) and resolutions up to 1200 dpi. Maximum print size is 18 x 18 in., although the XL Print Option allows for 20 x 30 in.

MacTac’s New B-free Gruv Line
MacTac Graphic Products (www.mactac.com) expanded its Imagin B-free portfolio with the introduction of its new Imagin B-free Gruv pressure-sensitive media. The B-free Gruv line features three products:
• Intermediate GV529BFD, a 3-mil gloss white, soft calendered PVC film ideal for quick turnaround time on installation to a variety of substrates. It offers ease of installation for short- to medium-term indoor and outdoor advertising and signage, such as point-of-purchase (P-O-P), tradeshow and museum graphics.
• High-performance GV729BFD, a 2.8-mil gloss white vinyl designed for use on flat or simply curved surfaces such as indoor and outdoor signage, displays and P-O-P, as well as partial vehicle wraps.
• Ultra-conformable GV929BFD, a 2.1-mil gloss white vinyl designed for long-term outdoor and permanent vehicle markings on flat, curved, complex and riveted surfaces, such as full and partial vehicle wraps, bus wraps, museum signage, and more.

TS-300 Hybrid from Teckwin
Teckwin (www.teckwin.com) showed its TS-300 printer, a hybrid UV printer that offers 7 colors (CMYKcm+White) and an eight-zone vacuum bed. Top print speed is 900 sq ft/hr, and the TS-300 can produce prints up to 60 x 97 in. (flatbed) and 72-in. wide (rollfed). It can handle media up to 2-in. thick. A Teckwin-edition Caldera RIP comes bundled with the printer.

Avery 900 Supercast Opaque Films
Avery Graphics’ (www.averygraphics.com) new Avery 900 Supercast Opaque films feature the company’s Supercast technology and are intended for screen, thermal-transfer, and/or cut technologies (not inkjet). The 2.1-mil Avery 900 films offer various adhesive options – Permanent, Hi Tack, and Permanent Long Term Removable adhesives – and a range of Kraft, Sta-Flat, and Easy Apply liners. Enhanced conformability allows the films to stay down over deep channels, complex curves, and rivets without the need for applying primer, Avery reports, making them good choices for fleet graphics, wraps, outdoor and architectural signage, and public transportation. The films are high gloss.

CET Color’s FK512-X Printer
CET Color (www.cetcolor.com) showcased its 4 x 8-ft UV flatbed printer, the FK512-X. The printer offers a 14-pl drop size, white ink, and varnish capabilities, a scalable platform from 6 head to 16 head configurations, and an ink-tank capacity of 3 liters. Maximum print speed is 800 sq ft/hr, with a top resolution of 720 x 1440 dpi; it can handle media up to 3-in. thick.
 

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