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Tx3-1600 Stretches Mimaki

64-in. piezo-electric textile printer

Big Picture

Mimaki's new Tx3-1600 textile printer supports printing on stretchable and thin fabrics. The 64-in. piezo-electric drop-on-demand printer utilizes 9- or 11-color acid or reactive dye (acid"? CMYKcm, gray, blue, red; reactive"? CMYKcm, gray, blue, orange, red, golden yellow) inks. Inks are in two 1-liter tanks (conventional 220-ml Tx2-1600 can also be used) that can be replaced, even during operation, through a convenient toggle switch. And the Tx3- 1600's Ink End detection function allows users to reduce waste by allowing ink to be used to the last drop. In addition, the ANR (Automatic Nozzle Recovery) system monitors ink squirting and automatically cleans heads as needed.

Featuring Epson printheads, the Tx3 offers print speeds up to 290 sq ft/hr, resolutions up to 720 x 720 dpi, uni- and bi-directional printing, and 2- to 16-pass print modes. The printer is compatible with RIPs from Ergosoft, Shiraz, and DigiFab.

The new Tx3-1600 differs from Mimaki's Tx2-1600 in that the Tx3 will print on stretchy and thin materials without a paper backing. In addition , the Tx3 is designed as a production textile printer, capable of printing 24/7, whereas the Tx2 is meant more for proofs and short-runs.

The Tx3-1600 also includes Tx Link Design software (Mac and Windows) for textile design; Tx Link Color Book/Tx Link Book Editor (Windows) to generate color-replacement files for variable color scheme printing; and Tx Link Print (Windows) for printing various design repeat patterns.

The supply mechanism is capable of feeding large-diameter heavy fabric, as well as stretchable and thin fabrics. Tension can be adjusted depending on the fabric's weave, thickness, and stretchability. In addition, the Tx3-1600 features a conveyor belt that does not pull the fabric; a washing mechanism for the conveyor belt; a wrinkle removal roller that stretches the fabric outwards, thus reducing wrinkles; and a drying mechanism to reduce reverse-side bleeding.

Price: $120,000, US deliveries are expected to begin in Feb. or March 2005. (Mimaki: www.mimakiusa.com)

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