Ipex debutant IGS unveils Azon UV printer


A new low-cost UV inkjet printer able to print onto items up to 200mm thick is making its European debut at Ipex.

The Azon Q UV, made by Croatian manufacturer Azon, is on the stand of the firm’s distributor International Graphic Supplies (IGS) (N4-C352).

IGS is also a new venture, having been launched six months ago by Peter Flynn, the former sales director at HighWater, and Steve Charlesworth, who was previously a salesman for Heidelberg.

The QUV features a self-adjusting single-pass printhead assembly that traverses the vacuum print bed. It prints in CMYK plus white.

Prices start at £11,400 for the A3 model that can print objects up to 300x800mm, while the largest-format option can print 2.5x1.15m and costs £42,000.

“It can print onto ceramics, wood, plastic, phone covers, golf balls… we’ve even had someone who’s interested in using it to print onto coffins,” said Charlesworth.

Print speed is around 4sqm/hour, and the maximum resolution is 1,440dpi.
“The ink cost is around 82p per square metre,” he added.

Flynn said the Q UV can also be used to ‘expose’ processless printing plates, by printing directly onto them. “We’ve tested it with the Dotworks Tango plate. By printing just cyan it will image the plate. It’s an ideal option for low-volume users.”

Two other new Azon printers, a solvent device and direct-to-garment t-shirt printer, are also on show.

IGS also has kit from Chinese plate and prepress kit manufacturer Konita on its booth, including the UV-800 platesetter which is based on the old Creo Trendsetter design. Konita had been working with Creo prior to the latter’s acquisition by Kodak in 2005, but Kodak subsequently dropped the project.

The platesetter is available in UV and thermal versions, and can output low-cost conventional plates at 44pph, or thermal plates at 28pph.

“It’s so cheap. It’s perfect for the packaging market,” Charlesworth added.
A B2-format version costs £45,000, B1 £80,000 and VLF £170,000. It comes with a two-year warranty.

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