Mimaki has previewed a new hybrid printer for a direct-to-textile or transfer production.
Advancing the technology of the TX300P-1800 system by adding transfer capabilities, the as-yet-unnamed new printer was described as an “entry-level” device with no further indication of price or release date at this stage.
During the sneak preview At ITMA in Barcelona last month, Mimaki showcased the hybrid functionality of the new tech, which enables users to switch between a platen with ink-receiving ditch for direct printing and a vacuum platen for paper printing.
EMEA general sales manager Ronald van den Broek said: “Mimaki’s new hybrid textile printer is designed to provide extreme flexibility to the digital textile print market. When you can easily shift from one set of inks to another on the same printer and in next to no time, you can significantly boost your capabilities in terms of fabrics, applications and target markets.
“In addition, the new printer supports two combinations: direct sublimation and sublimation transfer, and pigment and sublimation transfer, which means even further benefits in terms of versatility.
“What we are offering here is an affordable solution that enables print service providers of all sizes to provide a full range of textile printing applications: not only does the new hybrid printer lower the barriers to access the textile arena for smaller printing houses, but it also makes a valuable tool for larger production houses, helping then easily manage smaller runs.”
The machine will come with three available inks: textile pigment ink for cotton, linen, and other natural fabrics, direct sublimation ink, and sublimation transfer ink for polyester.
Its Mimaki core technologies, such as the nozzle check unit and nozzle recovery system, are designed to ensure stable, continuous print operations. Adjustable head gap allows for a space as high as 7mm between the substrate and the printhead for direct-to-textile applications.
Van den Broek said the printer will be well-suited both to smaller print operations and also to larger-volume production houses looking to leverage the “myriad benefits” of digital print for smaller runs.
He said: “The textile market is still relatively early-on in the adoption of digital printers, with most textiles being printed in the conventional way and a lot of large players dominating the market. With this new hybrid printer, Mimaki has provided an affordable solution that lowers the barriers to entry for smaller print providers.
“With this product Mimaki is effectively democratising accessibility to textile printing, and with solutions like this in the market, we expect to see improved growth of digital printing in textiles.”
When the new machine is available to market, it will be distributed in the UK and Ireland by Cheshire-based vendor Hybrid.