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Matform extends its reach with a Mimaki UJF-7151 Plus

Matform extends its reach with a Mimaki UJF-7151 Plus
Label manufacturer and engraving expert Matform has installed a Mimaki UJF-7151 Plus next-generation direct-to-object flatbed LED UV printer from CMYUK. This investment replaces a decade-old Mimaki UJF-3042 FX and significantly expands the company’s capabilities and applications reach.

The 5171 Plus has enabled the company to produce labels far more cost effectively, at a higher quality and at greater speeds and its printable 710 x510mm bed size has also brought with it a slew of benefits too.

Jon Tucker, Matform’s Sales Manager, explained: “With the 7151Plus, we’re able to produce eight-up artwork, whereas with our old A3 machine we were restricted to two or three. Our investment is enabling us to realise many new opportunities, which are taking us beyond labels and into the promotional market.”

Ian Curling, the company’s Works Manager added: “We loved our old Mimaki machine but we were restricted by its size. However, with the Mimaki 7151 Plus, it’s comfortable enough for a single operator to either load six sheets or a large single one and we no longer have to turn work away.”

The UJF-7151 is designed to deliver high-quality on-demand printing at industrial production levels. A digital alternative to traditional screenprinting processes, it offers high-speed printing, direct-to-substrates up to 153mm thick and precise ink drop placement to 1,200dpi.

Matform uses the Mimaki UV curable LH 100 inks that it previously used with its older machine, but the bonus here is that the ink comes in litre bottles rather than 40ml cartridges, resulting in cost savings and an improved environmental footprint. These inks emit very low levels of VOC (volatile organic compounds) while the LED curing technology doesn’t generate ozone.

Jon continued: “The print quality is really good at all settings, but we generally run our Mimaki on a medium setting that provides excellent results for an industrial finish and the style of labels that we print. This setting works well on raised lettering – say around two-millimetres high –with good definition and detail.”

The 7151 Plus comes with process, white and clear inks, plus a primer, making it highly suited to outputting personalised giftware, control panels, pens, packaging, small to medium format rigid signage, instrumentation and gauge faces, custom components, branded electronic device cases, covers and more.

Matform uses the white ink to carry out in-house cold embossing. “The ink is quite forgiving. You can adjust the software and achieve different levels of opaqueness and you can lay down two coats of white or as many layers as you want. There’s also a varnish option. We’ve had quite a few customers ask us about producing Braille labels, as we now have the ability to build layers with the varnish to create a Braille effect,” said Ian.

Matform was founded in 1969, evolving from a traditional screenprinter into a digital industrial labels manufacturer and a digital printer. It is also an engraving specialist, migrating from traditional techniques to adopting Trotec laser technology.

Its in-house capabilities mean that it attracts a wide variety of work from servicing everyone and everything, from the home-based inventor to international engineering companies.

While self-adhesive reverse printed labels on Lexan-style material is a staple, the company is finding that more varied applications are starting to register on the dial. One application area that has gained a great deal of traction at the company is the printing of sequential QR codes.

Jon concluded:  “We’re printing unique markings on so many different substrates – we’ve even printed codes on wood for restaurants. The point is that now, whatever customers require, we can fulfil it in-house, as we have the capability that allows us to be truly versatile. Word is getting out and although label production remains our core business, we can also offer so much more. Whatever a customer requires we now have the technology to make it happen.”

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