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Vinyl Decals Direct relocates and claims Ricoh first

Wide-format printer Vinyl Decals Direct (VDD) has moved to new larger premises and claims to have become the first UK company to install the Ricoh Pro L4130 latex printer using Ricoh’s new fast-drying aqueous resin (AR) latex inks.

Tanner (left) with Atlantic Tech Services area manager Gavin Wells

The Coalville, Leicestershire-based firm took delivery of the 1.37m-wide machine, which was bought from Harlow, Essex-based supplier Atlantic Tech Services, at the end of September.

The five-staff company then moved to its new 250sqm unit, which is around eight times larger than its previous site – also based in Coalville – last week. It invested £200,000 in the new building plus a further £22,000 in the Ricoh kit.

The 1,200dpi L4130 is capable of printing at speeds of up to 33sqm/hr. Ricoh first showed the device running the AR latex inks in March, at Fespa Digital in Amsterdam.

The six-colour-plus-white, roll-to-roll machine is an OEM version of the Mimaki JV400-130LX fitted with the Ricoh variable-drop piezo printhead technology and a latex inkset developed exclusively by Ricoh, which cures at 60˚C.

Vinyl Decals Direct said it chose the L4130 because of the machine’s ability to produce high-quality prints faster than most conventional solvent and latex printers. The business also operates a range of Mimaki printers and cutters and outsources litho printing.

Vinyl Decals Direct managing director Steve Tanner said the device has quickly increased the company’s productivity and opened up a number of new business opportunities.

“The Ricoh is absolutely brilliant. The quality, colour depth and gamut of colour is twice as good as what comes off our Mimaki JV33. It’s printing twice as fast and there’s no curing time with it being aqueous latex.

“We’re predominantly printing wraps on it so far, for vehicles and various other things, but there’s all sorts going through it.”

The company also produces items including vinyl labels, stickers and vehicle graphics for clients operating predominantly in the waste management and health and safety sectors.

Camfree at the double with Atlantic and the Ricoh Pro L4100 Series Latex Printers

Fleet Vehicle Wrapping, Graphics and Signage specialists Camfree Signs & Graphics have installed two Ricoh Pro L4100 (130 & 160) wide latex printers, together with the fast drying Ricoh AR latex inks, supplied by Ricoh partner Atlantic Tech Services.

Camfree Signs & Graphics LTD specialises in vehicle wrapping and signage, from single vehicles to national vehicle fleets and office branding. The Southampton-based company has over 25 years of experience in the signage industry and due to significant growth during the last five years have recently moved to their larger premises. Ideally located on the river Hamble, Camfree has also seen its boat wrapping division grow from strength to strength offering bespoke solutions, from colour change to sponsored branding.

Managing Director James Freeman said: “With our company growing and demand for our services increasing, we chose the Ricoh Pro L4130 and L4160 to speed up our production to provide a speedier service for our ever increasing customer base.

“The fast drying Ricoh AR Latex inks have also been a major contributing factor in speeding up our production, as the prints come off the Ricoh’s fully cured, completely dry and ready to use.

“We went to Atlantic because they are the major national supplier of the Ricoh latex printers. This – added to their printer knowledge and the quality of their after sales support – were key in our decision to buy the Ricoh printers.”

The Pro L4100 Series Latex Roll-to-Roll Printers come inclusive with variable dot GEN5 Piezo Printhead technology for high quality output. The Pro L4100 printers are capable of printing CMYK, or as a six-colour colour sets, CMYK – Orange & Green or CMYK – Orange & Green plus 2 x White. The Ricoh AR latex inkset are developed exclusively by Ricoh, which cures at 60˚C, without the need for an additional optimiser as is required in other leading latex brands.

[Image shows: Stafford Cox, Atlantic Service Director and Camfree Signs & Graphics’ MD James Freeman]