Exhibition contractor invests

Quadrant2Design orders second EFI Pro 16h printer

(L-R) operations director Ross Pike and marketing manager James Vicefield
(L-R) operations director Ross Pike and marketing manager James Vicefield

Quadrant2Design has ordered a second EFI Pro 16h UV LED hybrid printer from CMYUK to boost its capacity.

Set to be installed at the Poole-based business in July, this second model is due to arrive six years after the first and, like the first machine, will be used solely for printing exhibition floors.

Quadrant2Design is a dedicated exhibition contractor that works directly with end users. Customers that buy more than one stand a year are able to store their graphics for free at the company’s dedicated storage facility that currently holds over 1,000 drums of customer artwork that can be reused and repurposed for future events.

Since 2014, the business has been the sole distributor for the modular Prestige Events System in the UK and uses it exclusively. Stands involve total graphic coverage, which the business terms the ‘100% Graphic Look’, further enhanced by photo-floors that extend graphics into this area.

“We’ve invested in a second EFI Pro 16h to increase capacity and build in a level of redundancy. If there’s a mechanical issue, which is a rare occurrence, we can continue production because we work in an industry that has very short turnaround times, big peaks in demand, and we cannot fail on a deadline,” said operations director Ross Pike.

“If the floor isn’t down on the morning of a show’s build day, there’s not going to be a stand.”

“Everything is done in-house, nothing is subcontracted out from the design, printing, finishing, installation, project management, and logistics. The new Pro 16h will help us maintain this,” added marketing manager James Vicefield.

For its floor work, the business prints direct to 2mm expanded foam PVC product rather than carpet to ensure a sharp photographic finish. The EFI Pro 16h, an industrial 1.6m-wide hybrid printer, can easily handle the heavy flooring rolls.

The material utilises the printer’s hybrid flatbed which, with its vacuum, holds the material in place during printing to ensure accurate output.

“Using a roll-to-roll process wouldn’t work using this type of floor material due to the inherent density inconsistencies in the expanded foam,” said Pike.

“The Pinch rollers would create a stretch in the material, so any continuous graphics running across the 1m-wide drops we produce wouldn’t line up, creating anomalies in logos and print patterns.”

The EFI Pro 16h has a resolution of up to 1,200dpi and offers four colours with white as standard. This can be imaged like any other colour or used for multi-layer printing. True four-level, variable-drop greyscale print capability allows for the reproduction of near-photographic images, saturated colours plus smooth gradients.

“The reliability, consistency, no-nonsense production, and the size of the printer is what really works for us. The routine maintenance is straightforward and keeps the printer running without issue. It’s a true workhorse and delivers what we expect,” said Pike, who also praised the company’s kit supplier.

“We’re delighted with the guidance and service that CMYUK has given us. Over the past 12 months, we have printed over 14,000sqm of flooring alone. Our investment in the EFI Pro 16h printers has been a major contribution to our success, and the installation of a second model will increase capacity, increase volume output, and support further growth.”

Last year, Quadrant2Design became the first company in the UK to install InkTec’s Jetrix XGR320 roll-to-roll LED-UV printer.