Signs of the Times - April 2014 - (Page 44)

Te c hno lo g y R e v i ew By Chris and Kathi Morrison EFI's UV-cure, VUTEk® GS2000 Pro-TF and GS3250 Pro-TF digital-hybrid printers Chris and Kathi Morrison own and operate The Image Specialists, a full-service graphics company based in Clements, CA. Chris is also a Microsoftcertified systems engineer. For signs, POP, endcaps, formed parts, and vending and gaming panels T thermoplastic ink - the secret recipe here - is formulated to work with the 2-meter-wide, VUTEK GS2000 Pro-TF and 3.2-meter-wide VUTEk GS3250 Pro-TF digitalhybrid printers. With an extended color gamut, the eight-color (plus white) inkset can achieve unexpectedly vivid colors. Additionally, VUTEk GS-TF inks exhibit superior elongation characteristics while maintaining first-rate adhesion and opacity. The printers' true, variable-dot, grayscale printheads provide a standard, 600-dpi resolution selectable to 1,000 dpi, for high-end imagery. An EFI Fiery® XF RIP comes with the package. The VUTEk GS-TF thermoplastic ink's chemistry allows deep-draw thermoforming with pre-printed images, but the process demands much more than first meets the eye. Imagine drawing a filled square on a flat, white balloon with a hermoforming, the art of shaping plastic to a specific form through a heat and vacuum system, is a unique process and, today, any imaging on such components is usually accomplished through screenprinting, affixed vinyl letters or airbrushing the second surface. Generally, a high set-up cost accompanies such processes, so short-run work is out of the question. Also, due to costs, most prototyping is limited to one or two colors. Now, however, through the application of EFI's new, UV-cure inks and your choice of two printers - EFI™ VUTEk® GS2000 Pro-TF and GS3250 Pro-TF - the international firm offers a direct-tosubstrate option for custom imaging onto numerous, flat, thermoplastic materials that will be thermoformed into 3-D shapes. UV-curable, thermoplastic ink EFI's VUTEk GS-TF UV-curable, Specifications: EFI VUTEk GS3250 Pro-TF and EFI VUTEk GS2000 Pro-TF EFI VUTEk GS3250 Pro-TF Printhead Technology EFI VUTEk GS2000 Pro-TF True, variable-drop grayscale Ink-Drop Sizes 0-36pL drop sizes DPI Dual-resolution 600 or 1,000 dpi Ink Eight colors, plus white; switchable to Fast-4™ Media Size Up to 126.5 in. wide Media Depth Print Speed Up to 80 in. wide Up to 2 in. Up to 44, 4 x 8-ft. boards/hr. 44 SIGNS OF THE TIMES April 2014 Up to 32, 4 x 8-ft. boards/hr. Key Information EFI One VUTEk Place Meredith, NH 03253 (404) 931-7760 Contact: David Lindsay, PR Manager (404) 931-7760 Sharpie® pen, and then picture how your drawing would look with the balloon inflated. Would the Sharpie ink maintain its original color? No. EFI has concentrated on the pigmentation of its new inks to ensure these printers' images, after having been stretched, will display saturated, brand and Pantone colors. Achieving accurate color also requires such features as Adobe® Photoshop's™ Spray-Paint tool, which can add saturation to the file image's areas of greater elongation. The VUTEk GS Pro-TF system can print on such materials as PETG, acrylics, polycarbonates, polystyrenes, PVC and more. The system is ideal for such applications as custom-formed outdoor signs, POP displays, vending and gaming panels, endcaps and numerous formed parts for consumer and industrial applications - including any odd requests from inventors or architects. Generally, screenprinting businesses that create thermoforming graphics have established relationships with firms that carry out the actual mold-making and forming. However, equipped with a VUTEk GS Pro-TF printer, either center could easily adopt a full-finish system. n

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Signs of the Times - April 2014

Signs of the Times - April 2014
Columns & Departments
ST Update
Technology Update
ISA Sign Expo 2014 – Making the most of it
Vinyl Apps
Strictly Electric
LED Update
Software Update
Technology Review: Roland’s SOLJET Pro 4 XF-640 printer
Technology Review: EFI’s VUTEk GS2000/3250 digital-hybrid printers
Sign Museum News
New Products
The 2014 Intl. Sign Contest
2nd Annual Readers’ Choice Award
For the Record
ISA Expo Adds SEGD Component
Surprising Evidence about Neon’s History
Editorially speaking
Advertising index

Signs of the Times - April 2014