Colour management crops up time and again as a challenge for signage and print companies.

Mimaki has worked at addressing this issue. Recently, Total Supply installed a Mimaki JV400-160 LX printer at Icon Signs in Auckland and also at igel signs in Dunedin.

Michael Jackson-Potter, owner of Icon Signs, says, “When I looked around for a new machine, I thought about how difficult it can be to achieve the ranges off colour I want in different jobs. The Mimaki ticks the boxes in that respect. When you do solid colour lay down it demonstrates the representation of colour and how consistent it can be.”

To what degree does colour quality matter? He says, “When you get it right design harmony with colour and output quality that’s when you have winning combination.”

Latex has proved another advantage with the Mimaki. He says, “The Latex is different than solvent; you don’t have that flash off time and, because our business operation is smaller, timing really does matter.

“For example, when you do digital wraps, if you don’t do your process correctly you can get edge pop back but with the Latex, you don’t have that solvent edge issue.

The other issue with solvents: you have to wait hours for the solvent to come out; sometimes 72 hours. He says, “I was doing a job this morning, working through a pressure situation, where I needed to have it back to the client. That is where the Latex comes into its own. You don’t have 72 hours to wait when you run a small shop. When people are hot to get something done, you have to do the job.”

The Mimaki also offers a white ink option. He says, “The first day I installed the Mimaki, I did a white ink job and had no problems. I was quietly surprised.”

Icon Signs also bought a Mimaki CG160-FX11 series cutter. Jackson-Potter says, “A good 90 per cent of the work is contour cut so that relationship is important. The accuracy is amazing, and you can roll out metres.”

He created Icon Signs 10 years ago and now runs it as a two man operation. He says, “When I first started, I was outsourcing but at least I had experience in files and had experience in colour management that means you can think freely about what you can achieve and, in this market, you need a bit of an edge. That was my drive in taking on the machine. I have never had a Mimaki before. It was a big step but I think you need to keep up with the technology.”

Total Supply also provided igel Signs in Dunedin with the Mimaki JV400-160 LX printer and Mimaki CG160-FX11 series cutter combo.

Yuri Reinhardt, owner of igel Signs, recently moved to Dunedin and needed a new printer. He says, “I spoke to Danny from Total and we talked about the advantages of the Mimaki.

“The curing temperature is quite low for a Latex machine. This gives me a greater range of materials I can work with. I also like the idea of a wider colour gamut; that is always going to offer a good point of difference. Of course, Japanese machines have a great reputation too. One nice surprise is: I thought I would have a lot of maintenance with the Latex machine but that isn’t the case.

“We also bought a Mimaki cutter, which gives us a greater width. It is a simple machine to use. I used to deal with Total Supply when they were only supplying consumables. I had also bought materials from Spicers. Now it is good to see them under the same brand.”

He has found the Dunedin market a good place to do business. He says, “We used to mainly do vehicle wraps but now we have all sorts of signage. We like to take on challenging work and we feel confident with the Mimaki.”

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