Fine Cut first in UK for new Impala LED printer

by FESPA | 30/11/2017
Fine Cut first in UK for new Impala LED printer

Speciality printer Fine Cut has become the first UK company to invest in the new swissQprint Impala LED printer, supplied by Spandex.

The new 2.5 × 2 metre printer, configured for six colours (CMYK, LC, LM) plus white, primer and varnish, is already in operation at the company’s production site in Lancing, West Sussex. It is used to produce a broad range of precision industrial applications for clients in the medical, automotive, marine and agricultural sectors, as well as more conventional signage and graphics work.

The Impala LED has replaced Fine Cut’s original swissQprint Impala UV printer, which had been in service since early 2012 when the company made its first foray into large format digital print production. The opportunity to transition to LED curing was the primary driver for Fine Cut’s decision this year to upgrade to the next generation printer.

Digital print manager Simon Tourle explains, “While the original Impala exceeded all our expectations of digital output quality, UV curing still presented limitations for high precision work on more challenging substrates, due to the media distortion caused by the high temperature curing process.”

Installed by Spandex UK in October 2017, according to Tourle the new printer hit the ground running, and the Fine Cut team quickly got to grips with the new model, which is now running non-stop for eight to nine hours a day, with split shifts when necessary to cope with volume peaks.

The commercial impact of the latest investment has been felt immediately. “The new Impala LED has delivered a noticeable step up in speed, thanks to acceleration of the printing process itself and the LED curing, which removes the need for warm-up and cool-down cycles between jobs”, explains Tourle. “Our flatbed productivity has more than doubled.”

Over six years of working with the swissQprint Impala printers, Fine Cut has valued Spandex’s technical and applications expertise in service and support of the printers and inks. “The Spandex team has been extremely responsive to our needs, showing great interest in how we work with the Impala and helping us to get the best from the technology”, comments Tourle.

SwissQprint launched the new Impala LED at FESPA 2017 in Hamburg last March.

The premium output quality from the swissQprint Impala has been the decisive factor in Fine Cut’s transition from its heritage in screen printing to digital. According to Tourle, the team kept an eye on developments from the early days of digital wide format technology but, until the launch of the first generation Impala in 2010, they had not seen a digital flatbed solution that met their exacting standards for colour accuracy and consistency.

They were stunned by the quality of printed samples from the Impala. An impression that was reinforced by a visit to the swissQprint manufacturing plant in Switzerland where they were shown the wide range of print possibilities that could be achieved with the press.

In practice, Fine Cut found that the swissQprint Impala could actually surpass the quality achievable with the screen process, enabling them to achieve photographic quality prints on virtually any substrate including many that were historically screen printed. “Our clients absolutely appreciate the exceptional quality we can deliver with this digital press” says Tourle.

Alongside its digital production solutions, Fine Cut maintains a strong screen line-up for printing true metallic and conductive inks. With a diverse base of prestige customers, Fine Cut values the versatility to print on an array of materials and handle a range of bespoke requirements.

The original Impala printer enabled new, custom applications that would have been uneconomical or impossible with screen; now the Impala with LED curing opens up many more potential new avenues.

“As a business, we’ve always invested to stay at the forefront of the industrial print sector with a clear focus on high quality results realised by our technology choices”, says Tourle. “We’re driven by the wish to be able to respond to any client brief, however challenging. We like to say that we can print anything on anything and with the Impala, we certainly can.”

by FESPA Back to News

Topics

Interested in joining our community?

Enquire today about joining your local FESPA Association or FESPA Direct

Enquire Today

Recent news

Are analytics services worthwhile for wide format printing?
Software

Are analytics services worthwhile for wide format printing?

Nessan Cleary shares how press manufacturers are increasingly offering machine analytics services and shares if these are good value for money in the wide format sector.

19-04-2024
Smart factories and customisation technology explored at Personalise Make Wear 2024
Personalisation

Smart factories and customisation technology explored at Personalise Make Wear 2024

FESPA's Textile Ambassador, Debbie McKeegan speaks to industry specialists at Personalise Make Wear at Personalisation Experience and Sportswear Pro 2024 held in Amsterdam. Each day of the exhibitions Debbie hosted a fire-side chat with these specialists to discuss various industry topics. During this Fire-side chat with Antigro, Caldera, Print Logistics, Inkcups and Kornit Digital they discuss the role of digital technologies in personalisation, reshaping the supply chain, the future of manufacturing and more.

19-04-2024
The pros and cons of Digital Signage and Printed Signage
Signage

The pros and cons of Digital Signage and Printed Signage

Sonja Angerer discusses the pros and cons of both digital signage and printed signage. Current developments such as artificial intelligence and spatial computing are changing the situation once again. How will this shift affect printers?

18-04-2024
How to create an efficient smart factory
Personalisation

How to create an efficient smart factory

Debbie McKeegan speaks to industry specialists at Personalise Make Wear in Amsterdam about smart factories and customisation technology. Debbie speaks to Antigro, Caldera, Print Logistic, Inkcups and Kornit Digitial.

18-04-2024