CIM Signs and Graphics has invested in a new Agfa Anapurna M1600 and two new employees with a Regional Growth Fund (RGF) grant.
The Anapurna, supplied by i-Sub Digital, replaced a six-year-old Rasterprinter UV flat-bed machine to boost the quality and speed of the Norfolk-based company’s offering.
The machine is priced at £79,995, with RGF funding for it contingent on the firm hiring new employees, which it decided would be an experienced sign-maker and a part-time staff member.
"Of all the machines we looked at this was an all-rounder," said John Cornwell, director at CIM. "The Anapurna has a roll-to-roll option which improves speed, it's easy to use and takes up a small amount of space. Our choice was based less on price and more on quality."
The Agfa Anapurna M1600 can print in four colours plus white at up to 46sqm/hr onto rigid boards such as Foamex and roll-to-roll media like vinyl and PVC banner, plus a range of other substrates up to 50mm thick. The white ink is applied by a separate management system, allowing pre-white or post-white to be printed in one production run.
"On the Agfa we can print one display board roughly every ten minutes; on the old printer it would have been one an hour," said Cornwell. "We would have had to field that out to a trade supplier, so it's great to do that work in-house now. It's made a huge difference to output.”
"We've also purchased a cutting machine recently so combining it with the Agfa means we can take on more exhibition work."
CIM was able to use the machine for this very kind of exhibition work just days after its installation, added Cornwall. The company printed 155 quick turnaround Foamex display boards for an international insurance company's exhibition stand.