By Rhys Handley, Monday 14 May 2018
Fabric printer Stead McAlpin has invested in a second Aleph TXB-160S digital textile belt printer in order to expand its pigment capabilities.
Based in Carlisle, the firm took on its new machine at the start of April for approximately £15,000. The machine was chosen for its capabilities and favourable pricing, as well as for staff familiarity.
It will typically run jobs involving velvets, apparel and bright colours, opening up Stead McAlpin’s increasingly strained capabilities in pigment dye digital print.
Director Josh Soper said: “We chose this machine as we were experiencing limitation on our current pigment dye digital print machine. While our pigment machine offers superior technical performance, it was lacking in its ability to print very bright colours and penetrate fully into velvet.
“We chose to go ahead with getting a reactive dye machine due to a demand from our traditional home textile customers and the apparel sector.
“In short, we can now offer the full range of digital printing capability.”
Aleph’s 1.6m-wide machine, a belt-driven version of Mimaki’s JV5-160S, runs at speeds up to 58sqm/hr with a maximum resolution of 1,440dpi. The solvent inkjet system prints in six colours – typically CMYK plus light cyan and light magenta.
The TXB-160S includes cutting capabilities in the Y direction at the head and takes substrates up to 1mm thick. Printing is via four staggered on-demand piezo printheads.
Alongside its fellow TXB-160S, the new machine joins a portfolio of printers comprising a 1.5m and 3m Pegasus, an Evo and an RD4 – all from SPGPrints – and R5B rotary and flatbed printers by Buser.
Stead McAlpin employs 67 people on its 2,322sqm premises and turns over approximately £10m, according to Soper.