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Mar 1, 2005 12:00 AM
We recently asked our InRegister readers to tell us about their wide-format inkjet and flatbed digital projects. Responses ranged from banners to bus shelters to an unusual Central Park installation. (For more on wide-format, see www.globalshop.org, www.popai.com and www.sgia.org.)
A banner year
Winchester Print & Stationery (Winchester, Ontario) used its Epson 9600 to create a 4 x 7-ft. banner to help the Thurler family celebrate the 25th anniversary of its move from Switzerland to Canada. According to B. Kent Raistrick, operations manager, Winchester Print is a 12-employee family-owned business specializing in short-run (500 to 50,000 copies) ethnic and community newspapers. About 80 percent of its business comes from nearby Ottawa.
Its pressroom includes an eight-unit Web Machinery Ventura as well as several small-format sheetfed presses. Having added Agfa’s ApogeeX workflow and the Epson 9600 in 2004, the company will complete its CTP transition this month with the installation of an ECRM platesetter.
Although Winchester Print wasn’t planning on getting into the banner business, Raistrick says that’s the beauty of being in a town of 2,000 people: Everyone knows each other and when you have a new piece of equipment, word spreads quickly. Other Epson 9600 projects have included a poster for a piano dealer and 3 x 4-ft. promotional signs for Winchester’s stationery business.
The humongous printer
Kubin-Nicholson (Milwaukee) bills itself as "Printers of the Humongous for more than 75 years." Originally a silkscreen specialist, the 150-employee company is reportedly one of the largest litho/outdoor and digital printers in the United States, printing outdoor and transit boards for clients such as Target, Kohl’s, McDonald’s, Burger King, Toyota, Ford and Anheuser-Busch. Kubin-Nicholson also prints point-of-purchase displays and packaging for a variety of national companies.
The company’s litho facility includes five 77-inch Harris offset presses with a KBA 205 80-inch press on the way. A second facility, also located in Milwaukee, features digital wide-format equipment including multiple 16-ft. wide Vutek UltraVu 5330s, a Scitex Turbojet (65 inches wide), the ISI Grandjet (113 inches wide) and three 60-inch Encad Novajet 850s. Kubin-Nicholsons’ recently opened Dallas facility features an additional UltraVu 5330.
"Our digital inkjet printers print up to eight process colors enabling us to print large format, full-color images," says Jessica Hupp, Kubin-Nicholson’s director of marketing, "We can print on virtually any substrate."
The company’s biggest digital project, a 2001 Target promotion, measured 109 ft., 4 inches x 195 ft., 4 inches (21,355 total sq. ft.). Kubin-Nicholson can accommodate print widths up to 16 ft., 4 inches in one piece. While there’s no absolute maximum print length, 150 ft. is the practical cutoff. Larger sizes, such as 20 x 60 ft., can be printed in sections, aligned and seamed together. See www.kubin.com.
That’s a wrap
Finally, Bob Feldberg, vice president of marketing, Konica Minolta Graphic Imaging U.S.A, submitted a photo of a wide-format project that captured the nation’s imagination: Christo and Jeanne-Claudes’ temporary installation of 7,500 16-ft.-high orange gates in New York’s Central Park.
Because the husband-and-wife artistic team shuns commercialism, the banners didn’t sport corporate logos and weren’t offered for resale. But you might have the chance to deal with Christo’s German-based fabric supplier, Stephan Shligen. "Our speciality is a wide range of technical fabrics which we produce on 80 weaving machines," Shligen told Deutschland Online. "These include advertising banners for the facades of high-rise buildings and filter fabrics for power stations." See www.christojeanneclaude.net.
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