An analogue-to-digital transformation is currently taking place in the textiles and clothing market. Alongside conventional textile printing processes, digital printing is growing fast. Digital offers enormous potential to make production more efficient. And yet textile manufacturers cannot make use of all the opportunities, partly because the systems for the pre-treatment and post-treatment of textiles often come from different manufacturers. This is why Mimaki now offers one complete solution for the textile print workflow.
By Bert Benckhuysen, Senior Product Manager at Mimaki EMEA
It is getting increasingly challenging for big textile brands to manage their production and distribution costs. Everything has to be as efficient and as cost-effective as possible in order to be more competitive and compensate for unsold stock. H&M, for example, recently announced that it has over 4.3 billion dollars’ worth of unsold stock. Digital textile printing is seen as a more cost-efficient alternative to conventional techniques, where smaller volumes can be custom-made. This means that less stock is required, and products can be placed on the market much more quickly. In addition, within the foreseeable future, you’ll be able to adjust a collection or even completely replace it, based on online and in-store sales.
It is no coincidence that traditional textile manufacturers are currently making big investments in their transition to the digital world. According to the latest trends, thanks to this digital revolution, printed textile manufacturing is coming back to Europe, mostly from Asia, because this allows a lot of savings on distribution. Time-to-market in particular plays an important role here. Digital textile production also helps to reduce environmental pollution. The fact is that conventional technology for textile printing is one of the biggest water consumers of all industries. With regard to water pollution, this industry scores the highest, with around 20 per cent. It is estimated that digital textile printing offers savings of over 60 per cent!
But all these advantages can only be used to their full potential if the digital textile production process works like a well-oiled machine. In order to achieve this, to start with, the machines used have to deal with high production volumes, which means that they do not need maintenance during production. The promised efficiency improvements to digital inkjet technology cannot always be fulfilled, because companies use machinery from different suppliers. These machines are not always geared to each other and are not always capable of achieving the same production volume within the same maintenance cycle. Consequently, a machine in the print queue can come to a standstill due to a failure, which means that the entire production stagnates. Next, as a textile print company you are reliant on the technical support of different suppliers in order to get production back on track. As with many things, the efficiency of digital textile production depends on the weakest link. So support for your entire workflow is crucial.
Due to the recent takeover of Rimslow, Mimaki can offer a complete workflow solution for digital textile printing. This is how it looks:
- Step 1: Pre-treatment of fabrics.This is carried out with a special coating, before printing, which is necessary in order to achieve the optimum interaction between the ink and the fabric, and in order to prevent the ink from running. This is now possible with the Mimaki TR300-1850C Pre-Treatment Unit or with the Mimaki TR600-1850W hybrid Coater/Washing Unit.
- Step 2: Printing directly on textiles.This is possible with a digital textile inkjet printer, such as the Tiger-1800B MkII or the TX300P series (TX300P-1800 & TX300P-1800B).
- Step 3: Steaming the printed fabric.This step is required in order to fix the ink on the fabric. In order to do this, a machine like the Mimaki TR300-1850S Steamer or the Mimaki TR600-1850S Steamer can be used.
- Step 4: Washing the printed fabric.With this last step, unfixed residual ink and treatment agent are removed from the fabric. This can be done with the Mimaki TR600-1850W Washer, for example. The textile is then prepared for the next steps in the production and distribution process.
With this one-stop solution for coating, printing, steaming and washing machines, companies in the textile industry now have complete control over their production process. And thanks to our service network in 150 countries, customers have a single point of contact for all support for their textile production process, allowing them to save a lot of time, effort and money. This is how you really make use of all the advantages of digital textile printing.
Mimaki has recently announced the launch of the Mimaki CF22-1225 flatbed cutting plotter. The new cutting solution handles materials as large as 1220 x 2440 mm and is the ideal complement to the Mimaki JFX200-2513 for on-demand production of seasonal POP displays or exhibit components.
With the addition of ArtiosCAD Designer Solution software, the two machines make a complete print-and-cut workflow for creating custom packaging or prototypes. Together, these three components will set sign & display graphics professionals on the path to delivering more profitable short-run, print-and-cut jobs.
“We have brought to bear our extensive knowledge of cutting solutions in the development of the new CF22-1225 cutting table,” says Ronald Van den Broek, General Manager Sales at Mimaki Europe. “Combined with the JFX200-2513 flatbed UV inkjet printer and ArtiosCAD, this offering is an ideal end-to-end solution for cutting and creasing coated cardboard, as well as reciprocating cutting of foam material used for packing.”
The Kongsberg V cutting table represents value, durability, reliability, precision and ease of use at an attractive investment level. The Kongsberg V cutters come in standard configurations for sample making, signage and display production. They offer a broad selection of tools, providing quality results on a wide range of cutting, creasing, and plotting tasks.
There are two kinds of Kongsberg V tables, each with their own strengths and range of applications:
- Kongsberg V for packaging sample making
The Kongsberg V for packaging is a cutting table configured for sample making, short run production of mockups and other packaging specific applications. This table is outfitted with a FLEXIHead which enables highly accurate, powerful cutting on thin, flexible materials such as paper, folding carton, vinyl, textile and more. The FlexiHead is attached to a very precise servo axis, controlling the tool depth when cutting, creasing and routing. Three configurable tool stations accommodate a full range of standard tool inserts.
- Kongsberg V for signage and display production
The Kongsberg V for signage and displays comes with a MultiCUT tool head offering milling productivity and a camera system. The MultiCUT combines all the tool insert options with a milling spindle up to 45.000 RPM.
It’s perfect for a wide range of signage materials. The air-cooled milling bit assures edge quality during high-speed milling of acrylics and other synthetics and the switch-operated bit exchange eliminates the need for hand tools. The camera system and innovative front-end software make it the perfect entry level solution for signage production.
The Kongsberg V Cutting Tables are available in South Africa from Graphix Supply World.
Graphix Supply World
Cape Town: Tel +27 (0) 21 511 5340
Johannesburg: Tel +27 (0) 11 444 9288
Durban: Tel +27 (0) 31 502 6128
24 Hours: Tel +27 (0) 82 455 6333
Versatile, powerful finishing tables for packages, displays and signs
The Kongsberg XN Series boasts a range of innovative features running on the industry’s most solid platform and is available in seven different sizes from 1680 x 1270 mm to 2210 x 6550 mm. A choice of five tool heads and a full assortment of insert tools guarantee unmatched versatility and the speed, power and flexibility to automatically handle a wide variety of materials, such as corrugated, folding carton, solid board, foam, coating blankets, wood and a long list of plastics. Exchanging different tools is quick and error-free, because every insert is identified by a unique bar code. Unobstructed tabletop access from all sides aids ease of use and the backscore feature cuts and creases materials from both sides, in perfect registration.
The Kongsberg XN can be controlled by i-cut Vision Pro, the industry standard for vision-based cutting. It ensures highly efficient production along with simple and extremely accurate print-to-cut registration, even with printdistorted materials, producing top quality output every time. Naturally, speed is also of key importance. The
MultiCUT-HP (High Power) is equipped with a super-strong, water-cooled milling spindle delivering up to three times faster milling speeds.
To find out more about how The Kongsberg XN Series can benefit you, visit GSW at Fespa Africa from 2-4 July at Gallagher Estate, Johannesburg.
Contact Graphix Supply World
Head Quarters: +27(0) 21 511 5340 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Johannesburg: +27(0) 11 444 9288
Durban: +27(0) 31 502 6128