Maintaining your large format printer ensures that jobs are completed on-time and prints are of the highest quality.
Updated: 6/14/2018 – Your wide format printer will only work well if it is properly maintained. When you rely on your printer for your business, regular maintenance is vital. It is the kind of thing best done preventatively and regularly, instead of waiting for something to go wrong.
To keep your wide format printer functioning well for a long time to come, follow these tips for print head cleaning and more. You will also find a well-maintained printer makes better prints!
Supplies for Printer Maintenance
Have these supplies in stock for maintenance and repair. Each one plays an important role.
- Gloves: Wear latex or nitrile gloves when performing printer maintenance. It is important to avoid direct contact with chemicals such as ink and cleaning solvents.
- Eye Protection: Similarly, safety goggles protect your eyes. Just in case printer ink or other solvents splash, you will be glad you have the coverage!
- Shop Wipes / Industrial Wipes: Paper towels are a must-have for quick clean up of any spills or messes.
- Print Swabs: Print head swabs are one of the most important supplies to have on hand. These are used to clean the hard to reach areas of your wide format printer. When you use print swabs you can extend the life of your print heads and improve print quality.
- Print Head Wipes: Use a polyester, lint-free wipe, with attributes similar to those of cleanroom wipes. Use these to clean print heads and other sensitive materials and areas of the printer.
- Spray Bottle: Use this for careful, accurate spraying of your cleaning solvent. You should always refer to your specific printer manual for acceptable cleaning solvents.
Referring to Your Manual
The manual for your printer will give you specific instructions for maintenance. This includes how often you should clean and maintain your printer. It will also let you know which supplies and cleaners suit your specific machine. While some of these products are universal, like safety goggles and gloves, others will change with your printer make and model.
Other Maintenance Considerations
Factors like the environment in which your printer lives impact maintenance and cleaning. Think about the operating temperature and humidity — higher or lower levels can change your printer’s efficiency. The cleanliness of the area also matters.
Have questions regarding this topic? Leave a comment below to start the discussion.
If you’re planning to do a makeover for your house or want to give a boring wall some life, consider a wall graphic. Apart from adding wonder and beauty to the interior, wall graphics also can be helpful in covering holes or patches on a wall. It may conceal some spaces in the wall while also making it gorgeous. If you’re considering wall graphics and want more information, take a look at these tips.
Use your interior style as a basis
If you choose to have a modern interior, make sure that the wall graphic also will appear modern. You also can consult the professionals as to what would appear right in your kind of interior. We offer full customization, so we can provide whatever you need to match or contrast with the intended space.
Bedroom wall graphics
If you have children in your home and want to place wall graphics in their bedrooms, we recommend allowing them to choose their own. Some parents have avoided wall graphics which have a lot of details and appear too realistic in favor of letting their kids choose graphics that would assist in widening their imagination.
Wall graphics for children’s bedrooms are typically lively and colorful. Your children’s favorite character may feature in an excellent wall graphic.
An adult’s bedroom, on the other hand, may have graphics depicting scenery and additional designs that interest the bedroom’s owner. White and black graphics are a current trend. However, there is plenty of opportunity to go wild with color. Wall graphics with pale colors tend to be better for bedrooms as they are less stimulating, but we will be guided by your needs and desires.
Living room graphics
For the living room, large wall graphics would work best if there’s a large and empty wall. Use colors present in your living room, so the colors complement and coordinate with one another. This will help ensure that large wall graphics inside your living room look great as backdrops for furniture and additional items.
Bathroom and kitchen graphics
When picking kitchen and dining area wall graphics, many people steer toward images of fruits, utensils, and other items related to food. For your bathroom, you might pick wall graphics of rivers, waterfalls, marine animals, and anything which may be connected to water. This makes sense, but we encourage you to be individual. If you have a unique idea, we’d love to hear it and we can make it happen.
3-D printed Floor Graphic Inspiration – Here are several 3-D floor graphics that were produced using photography:
ENFIELD, CT – DaVinci Technologies has added two new and innovative products from AlumiGraphics. The products are designed for long-term indoor and outdoor floor and wall surfaces. Made of pliable aluminum foil, these product are easy to install and no not require an overlaminate.
AlumiGraphics SILVER SMOOTH features a stunning silver metallic surface and is designed for outdoor and indoor rigid wall graphic applications. It’s made of durable aluminum foil that can withstand harsh weather environments. Since this material is pliable, it is perfect for conforming to rough surfaces such as brick, cinder block, stucco and other masonry materials. Like other products from the AlumiGraphics line, no overlaminate is needed – simply print and install. This cuts down install/production time by 25%.
AlumiGraphics GLOW GRIP – AlumiGraphics® Glow Grip is a “glow-in-the-dark” foil-based print media designed for textured floor surfaces. It is ideal for indoor and outdoor floor graphic applications. It can be applied to sealed and unsealed concrete, asphalt, brick, tile, terrazzo, marble, vinyl flooring, and a variety of similar rough surfaces. No overlaminate is needed for this product. AlumiGraphics Glow Grip has a slip-resistant surface that meets ASTM slip resistant standards. It has a 1 year expected outdoor life performance.
Both products join the award-winning AlumiGraphics line of aluminum foil based print media. For more information, visit: https://davinci-technologies.com/product-category/manufacturers/alumigraphics/
About DaVinci Technologies
DaVinci Technologies provides solutions for the digital wide format printing industry ranging from equipment and general purpose media to innovative specialty media for unique applications. Their product line ranges from HP Latex Printers, Finishing Equipment and Inkjet Media to cleaning solutions designed specifically for the printing industry.
Whether you are printing photography, display graphics, or artwork, selecting the proper material is critical. You should find the proper balance of functionality and aesthetics to highlight, preserve, and transport your visuals.
Photographic and Fine Art Printing
Let us now take a look at photographic and fine art printing. Usually, photographers or artists ask us what kind of paper they should be using. With a multitude of various photographic and fine art papers on offer, making a choice may be more challenging than you’d think.
Here’s a brief guide:
Inkjet Prints vs. Digital C-Prints
First, you’ll want to decide whether you’ll be using inkjet prints or digital c-prints.
In a C-print, the C stands for chromogenic, referring to the procedure through which color photography is developed. C-prints include color photographs. A digital C-print is generated on an RGB scale and has a specific aesthetic set that most photographers prefer. They’ll carry the exact same DNA as the original photographic laboratories, except the refined technology of today of exposing film with light is done through the use of a digitized file as its negative; and the end print is the photo sensitive paper that receives the light-transferred picture.
On the flip side, inkjet prints are pigment based and generated on a CMYK scale. Therefore, these colors are bolder and have more of a “pop.” An inkjet printer is common in an office and personal setting, though specifications are amazing for commercial usage.
The staples of photographic paper include glossy and matte. Matte papers feature non-glare finishes that are good for photos that have detail and texture, whereas glossy papers are coated and feature shiny looks that work well for images that have high contrast. If you’re frequently handling your photographs, matte paper probably is the better choice because it does not pick up fingerprints the way glossy paper does.
Metallic paper gives photographs a pearly, three-dimensional effect. Additional popular photograph papers are fiber, luster, and deep matte. And there are display films, too, like duratrans and duraclear.
Inkjets, AKA a fine art giclée print, is generated on a broad array of fine art canvases and papers that range from rag paper to photo paper, vinyl and watercolor paper.
Mactac has announced improvements to their line of PERMACOLOR ColorGard LUV overlaminates. Already considered to be some of the best laminating films on the market, the improvements elevates this product into an even highly level of performance. ColorGard LUV films offer protection from abrasion, moisture and other potentially damaging effects in both indoor and outdoor environments. Additionally, as an added benefit these films enhance the vibrancy of the graphic.
Among the new improvements are:
- Increased outdoor durability up to 5 years
- Color shift resistance
- ColorGard LUV films now have unmatched superior adhesion and wet-out over challenging UV inkjet prints
- Photographic prints
- UV screen printed images
- Latex, Solvent, Eco-solvent and Water-based Inkjet AND especially UV inkjet prints
Why Use High-Performance Laminating Films?
Laminating are used to protect printed graphics from light, dirt and moisture both indoors and outdoors. It should also be known that not all laminating films are created equal. Low-grade laminating films can bubble, crack, warp, and cause graphics to fade. A high-performance overlaminate, such as PERMACOLOR ColorGard LUV by Mactac offers UV protection, superior flexibility/conformability, superior adhesion, long-term protection, and graphic enhancement.
Learn more about PERMACOLOR LUV Overlaminates
Types of Wall Graphic Media
Type II – Commercial Grade
Type II wall media is considered commercial grade – it’s designed to comply local, state and federal building and fire codes. This media is durable enough to withstand light and medium wear. Common applications include lobbies / waiting rooms, hallways, schools, restaurants, and retail settings. Typical intended application time is long-term.
- HP PVC-free Type II Wallcover – featuring a water activated adhesive-backing
- DaVinci Type II Wallcover – non-adhesive backing
Adhesive-Backed Wall Media
This type of media is ready to be applied to the wall without the need for paste. There are several options when it comes to adhesive. Water-activated adhesive has more room for error during installation because it can be moved or slid into place. Products with a peel away backing and a low-tack adhesive also fall into this category.
- Easy Image Wallcover and EnviroScape Mural – PVC-free wallcoverings with water activated adhesive for easy installation
- ROODLE by Mactac – A repositionable vinyl media for wall decals with similar characteristics to a certain product that begins with Fat and ends with Head.
Non Adhesive-Backed Wall Media
Non adhesive backed wall media is similar to wall paper in that it needs paste to be applied. This type of media is used for applications where typical adhesive-backed media does not cut it or when users prefer a traditional wall-paper-like installation.
DigiScape Smooth 9 mil – a durable, wet-strength media and an excellent alternative to pvc wallcovering materials.
Metallic / Specialty Finishes
RoughRap – for rough deeply textured surfaces such as brick, stucco, and cement.
WallFab Pearlescent – stunning metallic canvas-textured surface.
PanoRama Walk & Wall – one-step solution for indoor floors and walls, no lamination required.
Examples of Unique Wallcovering Textures
Unique textures such as this distinctive exotic faux mayan stone finish by KoroGraphics® can give the appearance of a mural that was painted directly on the wall.
Another option from KoroGraphics® is Trade Route, a finely detailed interpretation of ancient Chinese horizontal “raw” silk. Subtle slubs adorn the face of this fine fabric texture and convey a rich, sophisticated appearance to the finished image, a true upgrade from a standard “Artist Canvas” texture.
WallFab by Presto Tape is a polyester nonwoven wallcovering featuring a natural hand-woven canvas texture. It produces vivid imagery and striking detail – something that has to be seen in person to get the full experience. It comes in a variety of options including WallFab, WallFab Pearlescent, and WallFab Black Metallic (all pictured below).
Easy Image by DaVinci Technologies is a PVC-free wallcovering with a premium fabric-like texture that produces vibrant images on a unique soft to touch surface.
What are Wallcoverings?
Wallcoverings are designed to cover an entire surface as opposed to a smaller section of a wall. Additionally, wallcoverings can serve to cover blemishes or imperfections on dry wall or plaster walls. Typical wallcovering media is also thicker and more durable than standard sign vinyl.
Why Choose a Unique Wallcovering Finish?
It is easy to go with a standard smooth or canvas textured wallcovering. They are mass produced and many times a less expensive option. Standard wallcoverings will always have a place in the market – especially for short term or applications where a big visual impact is not important. So why choose a unique finish?
Unique wallcovering media gives the appearance of a premium surface. Since the textures and finishes are indeed unique, it makes viewers more intrigued about the subject matter – something everyone in the digital printing industry strives for. Surfaces can vary greatly. Some wallcovering surfaces look as though the graphic has been painted directly on the wall. Others have metallic finishes and change appearance in different lighting. Heavily textured finishes create depth and rich images. As you will see in the examples below, the possibilities can open opportunities into new markets and carve a niche for you as you expand into this sector of wide format printing.
Easy Image Wallcover features a patent-pending adhesive system that enables end-users to quickly and easily install wall murals and graphics. As shown in the video, it can reduce installation time by up to 60%.
DaVinci Technologies has announced the release of a brand new product. DaVinci Type II Wallcover is a high-performance digitally printable wallcovering. It features a durable non-adhesive backing and a bright white vinyl face. Available in three unique textures, DaVinci Type II Wallcover is a true commercial grade media. It is designed for high-traffic areas where there is a potential for above average wear. Ideal application areas include public settings such as waiting rooms, classrooms, retail stores, restaurants, public transportation facilities, and more.
All three variations available, which includes Sandstorm, Stubble, and Glazed, produce stunning imagery, vivid colors and can cover slight blemishes on the wall. It can also mask nicks and dings that may happen in the future.
DaVinci’s new line of wallcover media is formulated and tested to meet a variety of fire safety, environmental health, and mold & mildew control certifications. It was specifically developed to comply with local, state and federal building and fire codes. It is available in 54” x 150’ roll sizes and compatible with latex, solvent/eco-solvent, UV Inks
For more information, visit https://davinci-technologies.com/product/davinci-type-ii-wallcover/
DaVinci Technologies is leading provider of solutions for the digital wide format printing industry ranging from equipment and general purpose media to innovative specialty media for unique applications. Their product line ranges from HP Latex Printers, Finishing Equipment and Inkjet Media to cleaning solutions designed specifically for the printing industry.