Largeprinting.com creates wall, window, and floor graphics for The College Basketball Experience.
March Madness may be over, but America’s love for college basketball lasts all year, especially at The College Basketball Experience located at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri. The 41,500- square-foot building that opened last October features the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame as well as interactive stations where fans can practice rebounding, passing, three-point shooting, free-throw shooting, and, of course, slam dunking – all as if they were part of an actual NCAA game.
“It’s a high-energy, highly interactive place where casual and hard-core fans of any age can totally immerse themselves in the game of college basketball,” says Kevin Henderson, CEO of The College Basketball Experience.
To give the Experience a serious wow-factor, Largeprinting.com, a Kansas City, Missouri, print provider specializing in retail and P-O-P graphics, took on the challenge of creating wall, window, and floor graphics totaling approximately 1000 square feet.
All of the graphics were printed within 15 hours via the shop’s Fujifilm Acuity HS Advance printer, using newly introduced Fujifilm Sericol KA series inks. Largeprinting.com owner Sean Grams says he opted for the Acuity from his company’s multi-printer roster because “they needed to be able to print white ink, but also needed the durability of UV.”
Flexcon WallDeco and WindowDeco media were used throughout the Experience project; Flexcon Flexmark V 400 H Clear V-58 90 PFW was used in creating floor graphics for the “Beat the Clock” court, where fans test their hoops mettle by taking a shot from various positions – all with the clock ticking down.
For the six-goal Center Court section of the Experience (shown above), Largeprinting.com output window-panel graphics of dozens of basketball action shots from various collegiate games and championships, then installed them into separate window panes.
“We needed precise cuts for the panels to seamlessly overlap,” says Grams. “We printed oversized panels with bleed and had to cut these extremely accurately so they would exactly fit into the window panels.” Grams and crew turned to their Esko Kongsberg XP cutting table with i-cut software and multiple tool inserts to address this concern: “The Kongsberg allowed us to print registration marks that it would in-turn recognize through the i-cut software and trim within 1/32-inch accuracy. This could not have been accomplished by hand trimming the graphics.”
The install work posed another challenge as well: It took two installers two days to remove the building’s previous graphics, which were “stale and brittle, due to a poor choice of previous materials” says Grams.
The graphics were installed in September 2012 and will be part of the Experience for five years.