The rise of direct to object printing

Printed salt and pepper pots
Printed salt and pepper pots

In a buoyant promotional printing market there is an ever expanding array of items being printed onto for the purposes of marketing collateral, exhibition giveaways and brand building and this is set to continue as new printing technologies are developed.

Stuart Cole, national sales manager for Industrial Products at UK and Ireland Mimaki Distributor, Hybrid Services, said: “There are a number of key technologies that have contributed to the rising market in promotional printing.

“Mimaki’s introduction of printable primer has opened up a variety of more unusual materials to be printed to. Printable primer improves adhesion, cuts down pre-print processes and makes previously unprintable rigid items the perfect surface to lay down a logo or brand message.”

Mimaki’s UJF series of desktop LED UV flatbed printers has revolutionised small-format direct to object printing since its release six years ago, and the product has become more and more affordable. Add-ons, such as the Mimaki Kebab, which uses rotary rollers to assist with 360° cylindrical printing, opens up further bespoke printing opportunities onto sports bottles, candles, jars and many other items. The UJF series also teams up with the Digi-Foil system, pioneered by Mimaki reseller; I-Sub Digital, which provides beautiful foil effects at a fraction of the price of traditional foiling by adhering to the printable primer laid down by the printer. The impact and lustrous finish of a foil effect adds value to invitations and business cards, and opens up the luxury packaging market which continues to grow.

Mr Cole adds: “What’s important is that we continue to demonstrate the very many products in the promotional industry that are now possible to print onto with LED UV flatbed technology. The marketplace is endless if you think creatively about it. I continuously hear from printers who have discovered or developed innovative new applications and it’s not unusual to see three or four UJF-3042’s working in tandem in a print room fulfilling larger order requirements.”

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