When it was first announced at drupa 2016, the Acuity LED 3200R UV inkjet printer caught the eye of Graphics Works Director Peter Barham, and in December 2016 his company became the first in Europe to install this ultra-high quality 3.2 metre wide roll-to-roll printer.
“We were at drupa specifically to look for a wide format machine that would increase the maximum width we could accommodate and help to boost our overall productivity.” Says Barham. “We compared the Acuity LED 3200R with machines from other suppliers, but there were two things that really clinched it for us: one was the quality of the Fujifilm ink, which we felt was noticeably superior to that of its rivals, and the other important factor was the level of service and support that we knew we could rely on from Fujifilm.”
“We already own four Fujifilm Acuity LED 1600s,” Barham continues, “so we were very content with the extremely high standards Fujifilm offers in both its products and service. Fujifilm’s support and service has always been excellent in our experience and, with multiple machines, they have been very willing to provide service training to allow us to manage most predictable maintenance issues in-house, ensuring maximum uptime and minimal disruption.”
Graphics Works, based in Milton-Keynes, specialises in producing premium wallpaper coverings for high-end brands across a range of sectors, from hotels to the high street. It made its first foray into the LED UV ink market in January 2015 with its first Acuity LED 1600 printer, which doubled its production speeds and cut production costs by 20 per cent. Such was the immediate success that the company had added another three Acuity LED 1600 machines by the end of that year.
“All four of our Acuity 1600s are now being used for a variety of applications: wallpaper predominantly, but also vinyl graphics, window film, posters and carton work, where the white and clear ink options are an important extra benefit. The installation of the 3200R has increased our capacity yet again, this time by at least 50 per cent, due to the increased print speeds it can achieve (up to 110m2 per hour). As well as boosting productivity, this has enabled us to further slash turnaround times. Even on substantial orders, the lead times we now achieve are regularly half what would have been expected two to three years ago.
“The anti-banding function on the 3200R also gives us a speed increase and provides a dispersed edge to the print passes, allowing faster print modes to be used without banding. We intend to move a lot of heavy production from the 1600s to the 3200R, with the benefits of greater print speed and ink savings and the convenience of bulk ink supply, which is particularly important because we run the machines 24/7. We’ve found the 3200R to be an especially good machine to run through the night as it has a particularly robust feed mechanism and the machine can be configured to email alerts in the event of any errors.
“As well as the increased width we can now offer to customers, we regularly take advantage of the dual roll capability, freeing up the four 1600 machines to be used for higher value creative work and sampling.”
Says Tudor Morgan, Sign & Display Segment Marketing Manager, Fujifilm Europe: “The Acuity LED 3200R continues the productivity, reliability and ultra-high-quality benefits that the smaller Acuity LED 1600 platform has become renowned for. It has been a privilege to partner with Graphics Works as it has expanded its business over the past two years, and we’re delighted that they have again selected Fujifilm and the Acuity LED 3200R to help them improve their capability still further.”