swissQprint Announces New Vacuum Table

The Tip Switch Vacuum (patent pending) by swissQprint operates selectively and powerfully to boost everyday efficiency. All swissQprint large format flatbed printers now come with this new system.

The new vacuum table is subdivided into as many as 256 segments. The user can switch segments on or off quickly, easily and steplessly at the touch of a finger thanks to the swissQprint Tip Switch Vacuum. This eliminates tedious and time-consuming masking and taping, not least in the gap between boards and dual rolls. Because there is no air leakage, the vacuum develops its full force and reliably holds down even unruly media such as corrugated board. The vacuum table also incorporates a cutting channel that provides a defined and precise trimming edge for roll materials and thin media.

Two zones for tandem production

For tandem production, the vacuum table is divided into two zones, each independently adjustable by the Tip Switch Vacuum. Tandem enables non-stop production: media is loaded onto the printing table alternately at the front and rear. While printing is underway on one side, the operator loads the other side, and vice versa – without idle time, until the series is complete.

Reverse thrust for air cushioning

The user regulates the vacuum strength via the output software, and is also able to reverse the thrust, meaning that the pumps blow instead of sucking. This creates an air cushion on the print bed that eases the handling of heavy boards. They can thus be positioned or moved with little effort and without risk of material damage.

Energy efficiency

The vacuum pumps are underpressure controlled, so they automatically reduce speed once the required negative pressure has developed. This contributes to the system’s overall low power consumption: swissQprint large format printers have been ISO 20690:2018 certified for their high energy efficiency. Besides this, thanks to underpressure control, the vacuum is pleasantly quiet.

Available now

All swissQprint flatbed models – Oryx, Impala and Nyala – are now shipping with the new vacuum system. The swissQprint Karibu roll to roll printer has featured the Tip Switch Vacuum since its introduction last year, and this has proven itself, with users praising it as an ‘ingenious feature’.

(+27 21) 510 8332

Zünd Cutter Chosen To Future-Proof Business

UK-based Prosign Print and Display have expanded their production capacity with the addition of a second Zünd cutter. The company have been users of Zünd technology for many years and understand the versatility and opportunities the Zünd cutter provides. 

Prosign Print and Display is a specialist in large format printing, POS, packaging, exhibition and signage. Based in Nottingham, Prosign Print and Display have been serving the large format printing industry for over 25 Years with a strong focus on continued investment in the latest state-of-the-art technology.

Looking back at his first Zünd purchase, Steve Hardy, managing director at Prosign Print and Display said, ‘We initially put our neck on the block and purchased our first Zünd in 2013. Since that very first day we have never looked back. Our Zünd S3 cutter enabled us to start working towards our goal of becoming a truly bespoke visual communications company. We were able to achieve larger print runs, more intricate cutting and it also enabled us to become more efficient and therefore cost effective.’

The Nottingham based business is a true reflection of the endless business opportunities you can achieve on a Zünd cutter. Prosign originally bought their Zünd cutter to process their own print work, which quickly turned to offering a cutting service to other trade customers. The company is now processing specialist materials like Xanita for POS, exhibitions, retail items and much more.

The company decision to invest in a second Zünd cutter was driven from the need to increase production capacity but also be able to cut materials that they couldn’t previously process. Hardy contacted Zünd and specified a Zünd G3 cutter with upgrade options to meet their business requirements.

Reflecting back on his decision to opt-in for a second Zünd cutter, Hardy said, ‘We needed a cutter that would do the same as what the Zünd S3 did with a larger working area. We were starting to buy in heavy duty cutting service ourselves and wanted to start to work with materials such as wood and aluminium. We needed a Zünd G3, and this is when we decided to start speaking with Zünd about the best way to solve our problems, future-proof our business and ensure that we could keep moving in the right direction.’

Tel: (+27 11) 789 1222

Flexa Doming Solution Used For Railway Applications And More

Flexa’s Flexadome is an innovative doming system that gives 3D effect finishing to PVC labels, adhesive media and other traditionally printed materials.

Tiesse srl has managed to become a qualified supplier of RFI (Italian Railway Network) to produce railway signs. ‘Thanks to the Flexadome system, we can make methacrylate plates for the Italian railway network. The plate is personalised by doming the RFI logo, creating a 3D effect and giving the product a touch of elegance and quality’, said Mauro Tummolo, owner of Tiesse srl, Italy.

‘We also produce many domed labels that are applied in industrial and fitness equipment. We find the Flexadome system very innovative, especially with the use of single-component resin. It is always ready to use, does not require any mixing of components and once opened, it can be stored for up to nine months. In addition, the drying time in the oven is very fast, about 10-12 minutes, resulting in a big saving of time and money.’


Be Inspired To Start Your Own Business At The Graphics Print Sign Pop-Up Activation

Explore affordable business opportunities – even ones you can start from home – in graphics, signage, digital printing, branding, T-shirt printing, vehicle graphics, laser engraving, 3D printing and more at the Graphics, Print and Sign (GPS) pop-up activation, taking place at Eastgate Shopping Centre in Johannesburg. Sign Africa is a media partner of GPS.

Personalised items like mugs, coffee tumblers, phone covers, notebooks, bags, decor, stationery branding, promotional gifts, and unique T-shirts are in-demand. Sticker, label and business card printing are also profitable. The activation will feature industry experts, who will demonstrate products to produce these items, and who can guide you on everything you need to profit from these items, and much more. Whether you are looking to be your own boss with a new start-up, or invest in a profitable solution to supplement your existing income, the GPS activation will have a solution tailored to your need.

Date: Thursday 29 October – Sunday 1 November 2020

Time: 9am – 6pm daily (shopping centre hours are subject to change)

Address: Eastgate Shopping Centre, Strelitzia Court Entrance 6, 43 Bradford Rd, Bedfordview.

Parking: Underground parking is available for your own cost. You can also download the new Admyt app for parking payment. The open parking opposite entrance 6 is free (Opposite the Mega Mica). There is no entrance fee or registration needed for the activation – simply come through and be inspired. 


Gerber Cutting Technology Increases Production Capacity

Over the last several years Albanian workwear company AFM Distribution has experienced tremendous growth and is looking to enter the competitive export market. In order for AFM to successfully expand their company and ensure they are offering the best quality and price for each of the 60,000 garments they develop per month, they needed a solution that could efficiently reduce time to market and cut costs.

AFM Distribution is leveraging Gerber Technology’s integrated solution to reduce costs, labour and material waste so they can expand their business. Since implementing Gerber’s solutions, AFM has improved their profitability by approximately 25%, which has enabled them to invest in more staff training and specialisation.

‘Many people believe that technology is going to replace their employees, but as we have seen with AFM, that is not the case at all,’ said Richard Jessup of Gerber Technology. ‘By correctly leveraging technology, AFM was able to improve the livelihood of their employees by adding to their skillset and giving them opportunities to grow. We are proud to help AFM not only streamline their production but also empower them to create jobs.’

AFM’s manufacturing site in Vora is equipped with the GERBERspreader™ XLs50, the Gerber Paragon® HX,and Gerber’s software solutions: AccuMark®, AccuNest™ and AccuPlan™. Since AFM uses expensive fabrics and materials, it is critical that they maximise material usage and cut with absolute precision. With the powerful combination of AccuPlan and AccuNest, AFM can digitally send Cut Plan solutions, which include multiple markers, fabrics, colours and corresponding spreads and ply count, to quickly produce and track down the cutting efficiency of thousands of garments. Since implementing Gerber’s powerful design and production tools, AFM has been able to deliver as many as 1800 parts per shift, assuring quality from the first layer of fabric to the last while saving money and improving material utilisation.

‘The GERBERcutter® provides maximum precision, especially when cutting notches and holes,’ said Ardiana Karakashi, AFM’s finance director. ‘This is particularly critical as the company manufactures workwear, which can have as many as 200 notches. By leveraging Gerber, the cutting quality is assured from the first layer of fabric to the last. Moreover, we can rely on the first-rate technical support provided by Gerber Italia.’

(+27 11) 444 0404

Sytech Supplies Announces Desktop Cutting Machine

Sytech Supplies recently announced the availability of the Silhouette CAMEO 4 desktop cutting machine. With CAMEO 4’s smart cutting technology, users can now choose to cut from a mat or go completely matless. It also gives them the ability to cut directly from a roll using the built-in roll feeder and crosscutter.

Features include:

– Built-in roll feeder allows for easy load and cut for rolled vinyl and heat transfer.
– Built-in crosscutter lets users trim vinyl or heat transfer right from the roll.
– Full 30.48cm (12 inch) cutting width when using a cutting mat.
– Cut up to 3m in length with selected materials.
– Matless cutting capabilities.
– 3mm clearance for thicker materials.
– Automatic tool detection.
– Sleek, compact aesthetic with a sliding lid and feather-light backlit touch panel.
– Wireless cutting with Bluetooth® connectivity.
– Print and Cut registration capability.
– PixScan™ compatible.
– Driven by Silhouette Studio®, giving users limitless design options to customise their projects.

+27 87 056 3231

Wrap Of The Week: Long Life Lettering

Sign Africa takes a weekly look at some of the most unique wraps. This week’s wrap features a VW wrapped in Avery Dennison vinyl. The design was done by In-Detail Advertising.

Image credit: Pantone SA Facebook.

If you would like to feature in our weekly highlights, send your eye-catching wraps to

Image credit: Pantone SA Facebook.

021 421 5211

Companies Are Looking To 3D Printing To Strengthen Their Supply Chains

Surveying thousands of manufacturing executives across the globe, HP’s Digital Manufacturing Trend Report finds that companies are increasingly investing in advanced 3D printing solutions that provide the agility, speed, and flexibility necessary to grow their business and become more resilient in an ever-changing environment.

At its global Innovation Summit, HP and members of its worldwide partner and customer community, along with industry experts, showcased the power of digital manufacturing to transform industries. Underpinning the event was a new HP study delivering insights on digital manufacturing technologies and trends such as industrial 3D printing. HP’s Summit featured discussions with executives from Additive Integrity, Decathlon, Forecast3D, IDC, Nissan, SOLIZE Products, the World Economic Forum and more.

One of the key insights from the global manufacturing industry is that regardless of sector or location, companies are looking to 3D printing to strengthen their supply chains, become more agile, and create more innovative product development and manufacturing strategies. This is underscored by a rising investment in 3D printing, support for 3D printing as a viable alternative to traditional manufacturing, and a greater desire for closer ecosystem collaboration to drive adoption.

Manufacturing decision makers also see opportunities for accelerated innovation, recognising that 3D printing is uniquely suited for the mass personalisation of new products, and by also reducing waste and promoting a more sustainable economy.

‘The global manufacturing sector is clearly signalling a desire for greater supply chain resiliency, more manufacturing flexibility, increased speed of innovation, and stronger environmental sustainability,’ said Ramon Pastor, General Manager, HP 3D Printing and Digital Manufacturing. ‘And they are seeing industrial 3D printing as a way to not only lower costs and go to market faster, but as a unique competitive advantage that accelerates innovation for customers.’

HP’s digital manufacturing trends report highlights include:

Digital manufacturing technologies are spurring economic advancement and agility

• 99% of global respondents believe that digital manufacturing technologies can lead to economic growth.
• 89% of respondents are looking to evolve their business models because of the current world business environment.
• Over the next 12 months, 71% plan on investing in digital manufacturing technologies, and over four-in-five respondents (85%) indicated that their company plans to increase their additive manufacturing/3D printing investment.
• Three-quarters of respondents said that additive manufacturing/3D printing helps their company be more agile, is a viable alternative to traditional manufacturing, and is a backup to traditional manufacturing.
• Nine in ten respondents said they are investigating new production/supply chain models, with 59% evaluating hybrid models and 52% looking into localised production.

Accelerated innovation transforms industries

• The most cited benefit by respondents using additive manufacturing/3D printing is the increased ability to innovate.
• The top new areas of innovation that companies are investigating include mass customisation for direct-to-consumer products, production on demand and digital warehousing/virtual inventory.
• In particular, 91% of respondents want to explore the innovation that mass customisation provides and believe it could be applicable to their business if parts could be personalised through 3D printing/additive manufacturing.
• Medical, industrial and automotive were called out as the industries most ripe for innovation in additive manufacturing/3D printing over the next five years.

Opening up new opportunities for collaboration

• 85% of respondents indicated that collaboration across sectors to embrace new digital manufacturing technologies is important.
• 81% indicated their company has future plans to collaborate with government entities on digital manufacturing products.
• The top barrier to entry in the additive manufacturing/3D printing entry for respondents is finding a qualified workforce.
• To address this skills gap, 64% want to offer more professional training services, and 53% want companies, governments, institutions and citizens to work together to make investments in educational and job-skilling programmes.

Sustainable production will continue to be a business imperative

• The top ways that additive manufacturing/3D printing can reduce waste and promote a circular economy are reducing the amount of materials used and better matching supply and demand, followed by shortening and simplifying traditional supply chains and improving service options that can prolong the life of products.
• 90% of respondents said that the recyclability of additive manufacturing/3D printed powders and parts is important.
• 88% of respondents believe that it is important that governments create a sustainable ecosystem by incentivising investment in and development of socially and environmentally beneficial digital manufacturing technologies.


X-Rite And Pantone Win Industry Award For Colour Measurement Solution

The i1Pro 3 Plus is a spectral colour measurement solution designed for imaging, print and textile professionals who need advanced calibration and colour profiling capabilities to handle wide-format and industrial printing applications.

X-Rite Incorporated and Pantone LLC are proud to announce that the i1Pro 3 Plus with i1iO chart reader received a coveted Printing United Alliance 2020 Product of the Year Award for spectrophotometer devices.

‘Winning the Product of Year Award is further validation of X-Rite’s commitment to innovation and delivering colour measurement solutions designed to meet the evolving needs of digital printers and the variety of materials they support,’ said Ray Cheydleur, Printing and Imaging Product Portfolio Manager, X-Rite. ‘With the i1Pro 3 Plus and i1iO, printers can create ICC profiles for almost any substrate and calibrate print production devices for the highest level of colour accuracy.’

The i1Pro 3 Plus features a larger 8mm aperture to support new materials used in digital printing applications such as ceramics, textiles, glass, metal, wood, vinyl, plastics, thin films, cardboard, paper and more. It simultaneously measures M0, M1, and M2 in a single pass and supports transmission scanning for backlit signage applications. It also offers a polarisation filter that reduces specular highlights and shadows on fabrics and ceramics. With the addition of the i1iO chart reader, the i1Pro 3 Plus can be used in automated measurement workflows, resulting in an easier and faster process from manual readings.

‘One of the things I like best about our competition is that it is juried, and judges are basing their decisions on objective criteria. With outstanding entries like X-Rite i1Pro 3 Plus with i1iO, they had their work cut out for them,’ said Ray Weiss, Director of Digital Print Programmes, Printing United Alliance. ‘The Product of the Year competition represents the best of the best among commercial hardware, software, consumables, and industrial and screen equipment. Congratulations to all the winners.’


Primeview Announces LED Video Walls

These premium aspect ratio solutions replace the need for a multi-screen set-up, making Fusion MAX ideal for multitasking and a superior viewing experience. Additionally, the 3840 x 1080 resolution (double the pixel count of two 16:9 Fusion MAX Full High-Definition screens combined) helps ensure that documents are easier to read and digital files are easier to view simultaneously.

Primeview’s new line of indoor turn-key LED includes the world’s first 32 x 9 aspect ratio standard, 3840 x 1080 pixel resolution, bezel-free panel display, and eliminates the concerns required with other custom video wall options.

Available in a striking 1.2mm, 1.5mm, 1.9mm or 2.5mm LED pixel pitch, it excels as a solution for digital-signage, executive boardrooms, gaming, and control rooms. Its scalable building blocks of Fusion indoor LED means it can be installed in a variety of spaces for maximum impact such as customer innovation centres, sports venues, distance learning and e-sports.

The new Ultrawide solutions are built to boost productivity by combining superior picture quality with a 32:9 aspect ratio to deliver the immersive experience that businesses need. It is also a natural fit for professionals in finance, utility, oil/gas, architecture and design firms looking to upgrade their technology to improve output in a socially-distant, now larger executive boardroom.

The building blocks of the Fusion Max 32:9 Series of turn-key LED solutions is the Fusion Line of LED. Fusion LED comes standard with a 3-in-1 Integrated Board Design (power, receiving card and bridgeboard, 100k hours rating, 160/160 wide viewing angles, wall mountable framing accessories and a no-hassle 5-year onsite parts and labour warranty.


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