Printing

Canon Canada in March introduced the Océ Arizona 1300 series of high-productivity mid-volume UV true flatbed printers, delivering prints up to 568 square feet per hour and high-density prints up to 380 square feet per hour.
Whether it’s an event poster, indoor or outdoor signage, vehicle wrap, storefront decal, tradeshow graphic, wall mural or architectural drawing – to name a few – we can find wide-format printing all around us. Also known as large-format printing, it is a print application that remains a top marketing solution. In this report, Simpson Print and PNH Solutions explain how printing companies can leverage wide-format technologies to keep pace with six top marketing trends.
The Acuity LED 40 series with instant-on LED curing is the newest addition to Fujifilm North America Corporation, Graphic Systems Division’s Acuity platform.
Mutoh America describes its new DH-21 dye-sublimation ink as a high-load performance ink designed to achieve high-density colours with less ink consumption.
This May swissQprint will present a new dedicated roll-to-roll printer at FESPA in Munich, Germany. Technical specifications for the new product will be kept under wraps until the grand reveal at the tradeshow. The UV roll-to-roll printer will be called Karibu, the company says, and will complement the existing swissQprint flatbed range.
Epson has begun shipping its new high-speed, wide-format SureColor T-Series plotters – the Epson SureColor T3170 24-inch desktop printer and the SureColor T5170 36-inch floor-standing printer.
Roland DGA Corporation has launched the VersaUV LEF2-200 20-inch benchtop UV flatbed printer for full-colour graphics and textures, including finishes such as simulated embossing, on a range of materials and objects up to 3.94 inches thick.
Xaar has celebrated the ground-breaking technologies of its Xaar 5601 printhead in a special event for over 300 of its U.K. staff. The Xaar 5601, based on the Xaar’s silicon MEMS thin film platform, is the culmination of over eight years of research and development. The technology platform, the company explains, represents a major step forward in digital inkjet printing and has created a foundation for Xaar’s thin film printheads of the future.
PrintAction consulted a number of print experts for their thoughts on sheetcut production inkjet press advancements, challenges and why commercial printers should invest. 
Meteor Inkjet, an independent supplier of electronics and software to drive industrial inkjet printheads, is enhancing its software portfolio with the integration of the Harlequin Host Renderer to provide high-speed printing of a variety of native file types including PDF and PostScript.
ThINK 2018, held September 5-7 in Boca Raton, Fla., demonstrated once again the power of bringing together the print community to share innovations and best practices. With Canon Solutions America as the executive sponsor, thINK is an independent community of Canon Solutions America Production Print customers, vendors and print experts. This year’s conference featured 25 sessions and valuable networking time, providing educational opportunities and hands-on learning for newcomers and veterans alike.
Fujifilm North America Corporation, Graphic Systems Division has announced the third generation J Press 750S, available in North America by the end of the year, generating 3,600 B2 sheets per hour, for both static and variable jobs, with a maximum sheet size of 23 x 29.5 inches (585 x 750mm).
Koenig & Bauer (US) plans to present its global brand re-launch at Print 18 in Chicago, Ill., as well as highlight a number of new announcements, including its latest innovations for the commercial market, and its selection as a 2018 Printing Industries of America InterTech Technology award recipient.
Quantum Roll Sheeters will be attending Print 18, September 30 to October 2, at McCormick Place South in Chicago, Ill., where it plans to unveil the newest addition to its roll sheeter product line, the LS model.
UV systems manufacturer Benford UV will showcase its latest DualUV technology at Print 18.
Komori America is introducing an eight-colour Lithrone G37P perfector capable of one-pass double-sided printing, designed with a compact body size.
Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG is now offering an enhanced rotary die-cutter based on the XL technology, primarily targeting the in-mould label market. Based on a recent Awa Global Inmould Study 2017, the in-mould market is growing globally at around 4.3 percent and more than two thirds of the worldwide production is required for food packaging.The new Speedmaster XL 106-DD, explains the company, unites two key production steps in a single machine, describing this as a unique combination in the market. The rotary die-cutter’s first unit places the injection hole in the label for the subsequent production process by means of a die on a magnetic cylinder with a high level of precision. Heidelberg explains even the tiniest holes of five millimeters diameter or more are possible. This has traditionally been a separate production step.The cut out material is removed by means of an extraction system. The second unit of the XL 106-DD subsequently cuts out the contour of the label from the sheet. Heidelberg explains this combination of the two production steps in a single pass means a doubling of the die-cutting throughput, while makeready times and costs for die cutting tools can be reduced to half of what was previously required.The XL 106-DD processes foils and paper with thicknesses of 0.05 to 0.3 mm at a throughput of 6,000 to 10,000 sheets per hour – almost twice as fast, according to Heidelberg, than a flatbed die-cutter. The machine is typically set up in 15 minutes.Injection holes of five millimeters diameter and more can be cut. Apart from in-mould labels, the XL 106-DD can also cut plastic or paper packaging elements, such as POS items which, due to their design, need a window or hole for mounting in the shelf or for attaching to the product.
Komcan is now distributing DigiNip Sensor technology for fast and accurate nip readings of roller alignment. DigiNip is a handheld electronic nip sensor system that provides diagnosis of roller conditions at the nip contact point. Komcan explains the system requires minimal investment and no prior experience to accurately record spot nip width at any section of the web or sheetfed process. The product allows for nip readings to be determined instantly and adjustments made while the DigiNip sensors are between your rolls. The sensor elements that connect into the DigiNip device are designed to provide thousands of readings before replacement is necessary. The technology is designed to act rapidly on the cause of problems, not on the effects. It is estimated that DigiNip allows users to reduce nip measurement time by at least 50 percent, while also significantly reducing paper waste and providing ink savings based on better water/ink emulsion.
Asahi Photoproducts describes its new AFP-BFTH plate as the only FlatTop flexographic plate with Clean Transfer Technology on the market, designed to facilitate kiss touch printing pressure. This new plate, available in hard, aims to fit seamlessly into any workflow and requires no special equipment, the company explains.
Durst, a manufacturer of digital printing and production technologies, has launched the Tau 330 RSC E UV inkjet single-pass press for small and medium converters in the mid-tier market.
The Xeikon Walldeco Discovery Solution will make its debut at the Heimtextil 2019 trade fair, taking place next week in Frankfurt, Germany.
UniNet plans to showcase the new iColor 350 dye sublimation transfer printer at ISS Long Beach 2019, taking place January 18 to 20 in Long Beach, Calif.
Xanté has announced two new configurations for its En/Press Multimedia Digital Press. Customers can choose extended paper handling with either two additional adjustable input trays or a single additional high-capacity letter/A4 tray. Both configurations can be used along with the Enterprise High Speed Feed System.
MGI Digital Technology, a French manufacturer of digital printing presses and finishing solutions, has integrated Memjet’s DuraLink printing technology into its new AlphaJET B1 inkjet printing and embellishment press, making it the first 40-plus-inch sheetfed press to integrate the DuraLink inkjet printheads, ink and modules, it says.
Goss has launched a colour control upgrade for the 16-page M-600 press, which the company describes as a way to help eliminate potential obsolescence issues for the press model.The benefits of the new automated Omnicolor II press controls, according to Goss, include start-up waste lowered by anywhere from 20 up to 50 percent, as well as significant reductions in turnaround time.“Customers can see the potential pay-off, whatever their current production model may be,” said Rutger Jansen, head of customer service, Goss International Europe. “Together, we plot in their average number of jobs and current makeready figures against the investment cost and the new figures they can reliably expect. I can't claim that the calculation methodology is groundbreaking, but it certainly helps convince our customers that the Omnicolor II upgrade is.”Features of the Omnicolor II upgrade include the ability to automate press setting direct from CIP3 data to reduce what Goss describes as a three-stage process down to a single step, which also helps eliminate error potential.More waste reduction improvements include what the company explains as quicker reaction of the ink keys and repetitive positioning; an ability to move all ink keys simultaneously; and the selection of up to 10 papers and inks, to optimize the presetting.New functionality like Ink Tracking and Color Boost are designed to enable the fastest possible process to achieve good copies. New auto learning, by saving all running job settings, job after job, allows Omnicolor II to fine tune the presetting by taking into account ink, paper and coverage specifications for optimum results.Following a one-day press audit, Goss engineers require full press access for between two and four days to install the upgrade on existing M-600 systems.
Goss International plans to open a new Packaging Technology Center in January 2014 at the company’s headquarters in Durham, New Hampshire. The company’s 650-square-metre (7,000-square-foot) Packaging Center is to be equipped initially with a Goss Sunday Vpak 500 press systemThe facility is being designed to accommodate both brand owners and packaging producers to test, demonstrate and implement cooperative printing programs based on web offset technology. To this end, the centre will also be focused on consumables testing.“The Sunday Vpak platform can provide higher quality, lower costs and faster turn-around times for packaging printing,” stated Rick Nichols, President and CEO of Goss International says. “Our investment in the equipment and the resources to staff this centre demonstrates our commitment to the packaging sector and our confidence in the advantages that web offset can deliver over traditional gravure and flexographic systems.” The Sunday Vpak 500 press system at the Goss Packaging Technology Center will feature seven web offset printing units with a web width of 850 mm (33.5 inches) and a repeat range of 406 to 812 mm (16 to 32 inches). The system will be equipped with a flexo unit and UV and EB curing capabilities and will accommodate film substrates from nine to 75 microns thick and paper products as heavy as 100 gsm. “With the first Sunday Vpak system now producing excellent results and another confidential project underway, we look forward to expanding our ability to demonstrate this new-generation web offset option to packaging producers throughout the world through customized print tests,” explains Peter Walczak, director of product management for Goss packaging presses. Walczak says Goss will host seminars and programs at the Packaging Technology Center that will allow packaging producers, brand owners and suppliers worldwide to jointly explore emerging demands in the market and share new ideas for addressing them. 

“This will also be an industry resource where suppliers can test inks, chemicals and auxiliary technologies for web offset production in a neutral, controlled environment,” stated Peter Walczak, Director of Product Management for Goss packaging presses.Partners supplying equipment and consumables to support the new Packaging Technology Center and its first Sunday Vpak press include ESI, Flint, Martin Automatic, Nela, Prime UV, QuadTech, Technotrans and Vataphone. Additional suppliers will be confirmed prior to the opening of the centre.

Greg Blue becomes the new CEO of manroland web systems Inc. in North America, replacing the leadership of Roland Ortbach, who continues with the organization as Vice President of Sales.“I was very pleased to have had the opportunity to lead our team through our first year,” stated Ortbach. The North American branch of manroland web systems was incorporated in March 2012, when it began business in both the United States and Canada. “We are now ready to move forward and our next critical phase of growth requires the leadership of an individual who has spent much of his career in the service and customer support area of our industry.”Blue brings with him 19 years of experience in the printing industry, including a range of knowledge gained from working in areas like application engineering, project and support management, and aftermarket business development.“I’m excited to take full advantage of the opportunities manroland web systems has in its future,” stated Blue. “My primary goal is to search for new growth opportunities which will continue to strengthen existing relationships with our customers.”In relation to its goals achieved over the past year, manroland web systems points to the strengthening of its parts and service support, relocating its North American parts inventory to a new warehouse in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, expansion of the printcom pressroom consumables product portfolio for U.S. and Canadian customers, relocating North American Headquarters to a new office in Lisle, Illinois, and completing the year with a financial profit.
At China Print 2013, running from May 14 to 18 in Beijing, Goss International is featuring its new Magnum Compact press model. A four-high Magnum Compact tower will be displayed at the show, which is to be demonstrated with Goss’ Autoplate fully automatic plate changing system.The company describes the Magnum Compact press as a cost-effective approach to traditional single-width newspaper and semi-commercial production that is designed to drive new short-run, multi-product business models. It is build for extremely fast changeovers, versatility and simplified operation.Along with the new Magnum Compact model, Goss is highlighting its portfolio of single- and double-width newspaper presses at China Print, including the Community SSC/Magnum series, which the company describes as the market leader for single-width production in Asia, as well as Universal and Uniliner presses and the Colorliner CPS and FPS compact double-width press options.At China Print 2013, Goss is highlighting its Vpak packaging technology as a variable repeat web offset press for folding carton, flexible packaging, pre-print and label printing. Sunday Vpak presses feature quick-change blankets and printing cylinder sleeves and are available in web widths from 520 to 1905 mm. For the commercial printing market, Goss is also highlighting press range from the 16-page M-500 and M-600 models to wider-web Sunday presses, as well as the M-800 model that was recently installed in Beijing with a 4x4 configuration.
It was two decades ago when the first Sunday web press unit entered production. Since then, over 2,300 Sunday printing units have been shipped to 27 countries around the world.The 1993 Harris Sunday press featured the then-revolutionary gapless-blanket technology, which allowed printers to run at 100,000 impressions per hour compared to 75,000 impressions which was typical at the time. The gapless blanket technology reduced vibration and eliminated streaking which led to higher print quality with reduced non-print area, leading to paper savings.Since 1993, the technology changed hands twice, first to Heidelberg Web Systems in 1988 (when Heidelberg bought Harris Graphic) and finally onto Goss International in 2004. Along the way other features have been added, including Autoplate, Automatic Transfer, pinless folding and DigiRail digital inking technologies, as well as automated controls and high-performance splicers, dryers and auxiliaries.The Sunday 3000 won the PIA/GATF InterTech award in 1994 and made its drupa debut in 1995. By the end of that year, 31 units had been installed in six countries. According to Goss, the first Sunday press still remains in operation in the United States.
Goss International has been named as one of five companies to earn a 2012 Siemens Customer Excellence Award. The award recognizes the application of Siemens technology in delivering advanced automation in Goss presses.“We are especially delighted to have been recognized for our achievements in automation, as they are part of our long-term mission to help our customers improve productivity and short-run agility while reducing waste and maintenance requirements,” said Jeff Upchurch, senior vice president of Research and Development at Goss International. “We are streamlining press and finishing system performance, including job changeover processes, with a comprehensive approach aimed at automating, simplifying or even eliminating steps. Results can create new market opportunities for web printers allowing them to compete at run lengths that were formerly in the domain of sheetfed printers.” Other companies receiving awards include Conoco Phillips (oil and gas energy), Fori Automation (equipment designer and manufacturer), Lockheed Martin (aerospace), and GT Advanced Technologies (LED and solar technologies)."Our Customer Excellence Awards illustrate the power of partnership, specifically highlighting best practice sharing and providing inspiration to other users in the Siemens automation user community. Each of this year's winners has clearly demonstrated their leadership in driving innovation, collaboratively overcoming barriers and delivering success," says Raj Batra, President of Siemens Industry Automation Division.
Tetra Pak has launched its connected packaging platform, designed to transform milk and juice cartons into interactive information channels, full-scale data carriers and digital tools.​
Xeikon says it has developed a digital printing solution for pouches that will result in reduced lead times, while also increasing the number of SKUs to better meet the demand from brand owners.
Steve Jobs once said, “Packaging can be theatre, it can create a story.” Anyone who has purchased an Apple device knows the products are presented in the most premium way. There’s a sense of gravitas to the first opening of the box. While Jobs is correct in noting packaging’s role in the brand experience, it’s also expected to serve functional requirements. Protector, marketer, salesman, environmental steward and, increasingly, digital beacon: The humble package will play a key role in all retail channels going forward.
SPGPrints’ new RSI III – the third generation of its rotary screen printing integration module for label and packaging presses – boasts time, safety and ergonomic innovations for increased production efficiency.
Concurrent with the opening of DScoop Edge Orlando, Hybrid Software has released Stepz, a native PDF step & repeat tool for digital label and packaging printing. Derived from the Packz editor tool, Stepz can be customized for the capabilities and requirements of different digital presses and finishing equipment, the company explains.
Manufacturer of green packaging and tissue products Cascades has unveiled its new brand for retail solutions: Cascades IMGN retail solutions.
Kornit Digital Americas recently debuted the Kornit Avalanche Poly Pro, calling it the industry’s first digital direct-to-garment system built specifically for polyester and poly-blend substrates, a market that has seen increased popularity due to non-cotton sportswear and athleisure apparel.
Vastex International has introduced a new 67 x 95 cm vacuum pallet to hold poster board, corrugated plastic and other flat substrates in place on a standard textile screen printing press.
Roland DGA has released its first direct-to-garment printer for on-demand personalization, the VersaSTUDIO BT-12, that can print directly on cotton-based products.
Cutting plotter manufacturer Summa is introducing two new sizes of its finishing flatbed systems: the F3232 and F3220. Leveraging the technology of the Summa F Series, the new flatbeds are expected to be ready for shipment between February-April 2019.
The next-generation, single-pass EFI Reggiani BOLT textile digital printer from Electronics For Imaging made its debut this week during an open house event at the EFI Reggiani facility in Bergamo, Italy.
Updated and new tools available in version 4 of the EFI Fiery DesignPro software suite from Electronics For Imaging (EFI) aims to help apparel and textile design professionals save time and streamline their design processes.
Xerox announced during its 2019 Investor Day that it has acquired Vader Systems, a Getzville, New York-based metal additive manufacturing company. The company explains the acquisition will allow it to offer low-cost metal additive manufacturing with more metals to its customers.
The new Roland DGA DGSHAPE DE-3 rotary engraver boasts advanced laser-pointing technology, ethernet connectivity, automatic depth regulation, and other intelligent enhancements for enhanced performance.
Birmingham, U.K., large-format printing company Andesign has used its Massivit 1800 3D printer to produce an impressive 3.5m-high x 2m-long elephant head.
Xaar PLC will invest with additive manufacturing company Stratasys in a newly formed entity, Xaar 3D Ltd., to develop 3D printing solutions based on high speed sintering technologies, leveraging Xaar’s technology relating to high speed sintering and industrial piezo inkjet printheads and Stratasys’ commercial and market knowledge.
Manroland web systems says it has been analyzing and testing the benefits of alternative production methods for spare and wear parts. The results, manroland says, show there is no getting around the topic of additive manufacturing processes.
The Xerox Direct to Object Printer, which is a customized solution built to order, allows for printing photos, images and text directly onto 3D Objects in just a few minutes. The technology, which can be aimed at on-demand personalization, relies on Xerox print head nozzles that are half the width of a human hair.The print head nozzles, explains Xerox, can accurately spray ink on objects as small as bottle caps and as large as football helmets. The printer can print on plastic, metals, ceramics and glass, eliminating the need for costly labels. “This innovation opens up a path for creating customized products instantly at a time when the consumer’s appetite is all about personalization,” said Brendan Casey, VP of Xerox Engineering Services. “Imagine a sports fan coming home from a game with a helmet or ball that was personalized right at the stadium, or a retailer offering on-demand personalization on hundreds of different store items.” Xerox explains it uses enhanced image-quality algorithms to direct the microscopic nozzles half the width of a human hair. By accurately spraying ink at distances of one-quarter inch, the printer is able to print on smooth, rough, slightly curved or stepped surfaces at print resolutions ranging from 300 to 1,200 dpi. The printer can handle up to 30 objects per hour, with the ability to scale for production. “The real innovation here is that we can now print on items, such as steel water bottles with multiple curves, without the setup time and costs that analog printing such as flexography or screen printing require,” said Wayne Buchar, Chief Engineer, Xerox Engineering Services. Xerox explains the ink jets are compatible with virtually any type of ink chemistry including solvent, aqueous and UV inks and can be operated at temperatures as high as 140°C, enabling jetting of specialized inks that meet demanding requirements. As well, the architecture of the Direct To Object printer features a flexible design for holders so that objects can be changed out easily.
Toronto-focused urban site BlogTO has highlighted Toronto’s Letterpress printing scene with a short list of the city’s printers.“Since the dawn of the internet, geek chic has reigned, so it makes sense that a love for typography would resurface,” writes post author Sarah Ratchford, “Combine that with the maker/DIY takeover, and you've got yourself a town full of folks seeking out letterpress printers.”The list includes Trip Print Press, previously profiled by PrintAction in October 2006 and five others. The posting also solicits readers to contribute other letterpress operations in their comments section.Read the full post here.
In the age of computerization, where metal type in China has been falling in popularity, there are a few who are working hard to save the cultural asset.The Associated Press has published a profile on Chang Chieh-kuan, one of the few remaining lead-type printers in China and Taiwan. "Lead type makes an impression on paper that digital printing cannot," says Chang. "It allows people to feel the weight and power of the character."Taipei once had 5,000 printing shops in the 1960s, but today only 30 old-style establishments remain. Chang's company, Ri Xing Type Foundry, is the last print foundry in the capital and hasn't turned a profit in 10 years. "If I can't save this business ... it would be a big loss for Taiwan," Chang said. "As for humanity, the Chinese-character movable letterpress is a huge cultural asset and could very well disappear."Read the full story here.

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