Inkthreadable has dramatically increased output capacity with the installation of the first Kornit Avalanche Hexa HD6 direct-to-garment printer in Europe.
The new device was installed at Inkthreadable’s Blackburn site last month, where it joined the firm’s existing Kornit Storm Hexa DTG printer. It was supplied by Kornit’s UK distributor Amaya Sales.
The Avalanche Hexa HD6 was launched at the beginning of the year. It prints in six-colours plus white at up to 1,200dpi and uses Kornit’s Neopigment Rapid ink set, which is billed as providing optimal print quality while using much less ink.
Inkthreadable co-founder Alex Cunliffe said installation and training had gone very well. “We can produce more than 85 t-shirts an hour on the Avalanche, compared with 50-55 on the Storm, and the new ink on the HD6 means we are seeing ink savings of between 35-50%,” he said.
Inkthreadable offers an automated drop-shipping service whereby the firm’s clients link their online shops into Inkthreadable’s system, and Inkthreadable then prints on demand and ships directly to the end customer. The Avalanche Hexa HD6 represents a £350,000 investment for the business.
“We will be focusing on dark garments on this new machine. It has two bridges for increased production speed and we can print white on one garment while we’re printing colour on the next,” Cunliffe added.
The company offers 170 different products ranging from t-shirts to hoodies, vests and hats. Its latest product launches are printed women’s cotton leggings, and dye-sub printed socks.
As well as the two Kornit devices it runs multiple Polyprint TexJet printers and embroidery equipment.
Cunliffe set up the company five years ago with his partner Amy Dunn. The firm now employs 12 staff and moved into a new 750sqm unit with room for expansion last summer. “We had sales of around £1m last year and are intending to grow that this year,” Cunliffe added.
Kornit EMEA marketing director Oliver Luedtke said he was delighted about the installation: “It is a lot of fun and a privilege to work with Alex and Amy, who seem to have DTG ink running in their veins. And it is great to see their growth story where shortly after their initial investment in a Storm Hexa they are in a position to invest into one of our DTG flagships.
“They are the first European user of our new HD technology, and they validate the cost-per-print savings and the print quality improvements that our engineers had in mind when designing the product. The UK is taking the lead in Kornit HD adoption, and we hope that more countries will follow.”