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Rigid ROI

(August 2010) posted on Tue Jul 27, 2010

More than 45 sources of rigid print media.

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Ironically, the increased choices of rigid media available to print providers—and the related print technologies—have enabled print shops to be even more flexible in the types of jobs they take on and the variety of products they can produce. Plus, printing on rigid has simplified the printing and post-printing processes, cutting production time. The result from all of this: some very positive return on investment.

Finding the best rigid media, however, is not always the easiest task. Although there are far fewer suppliers of rigid versus standard vinyl, the number of sources and choices continue to grow. To help you narrow your selection, The Big Picture has compiled a list of manufacturers and exclusive distributors of print-ready rigid media that is at least 24-inches wide. More than 45 companies are listed here; keep in mind that, due to space, we typically only provide a sampling of a company’s rigid roster.

The Acriglas Clear Impressions line, designed to reproduce the look of patterned glass, is crystal clear and carries textures on one or both sides of the sheet. Nine new textures available (18 total) include: Brushed, Woven Silk, Mesozoic, Precambrian, Box Mini-Flute, Waffle Iron, Techno, and Morning Dew. Offered in standard sizes of 4 x 6 ft and in thicknesses from 1/8- to ½-in.

Advantage Distribution
The company’s Eco Advantage rigid media line includes: HD Board (made from 92% recycled material, FSC-certified) available in 48 x 96-in. sheets in 3/8- or 1/2-in. thicknesses; Outdoor Board (with printable white paper liner, FSC-certified) available in 49 x 72-in. sheets in 0.55-in. thicknesses; Earthboard (100% recycled content, compostable, biodegradable) available in 40 x 60-in. sheets in 0.80-in. thicknesses; and Eco Styrene (biodegradable, high-impact) available in 48 x 96-in. sheets in 0.2-, 0.3-, or 0.6-in.thicknesses.

Altuglas International
Available in a wide variety of thicknesses and sheet sizes, Plexiglas acrylic sheets and Tuffak polycarbonate sheets can be wide-format inkjet printed.

American Fiber Technologies
FiberBrite comprises a line of fiberglass-reinforced plastic (FRP) panels, all of which are compatible with solvent and UV-curable flatbed digital printing. The panels, available in a variety of sizes, sheets, and thicknesses, include: FiberBrite Original, ValuePlus, Survivor, and TuffStuff.

American Permalight
The photoluminescent PermaLight rigid media (PVC or aluminum) can be used with solvent and UV-curable flatbed printers. Available in various thicknesses in glossy or matte finishes.