Started by Mark Lindquist, July 10, 2013, 09:29:11 pm
Quote from: Scott Martin on July 14, 2013, 09:43:12 amWhile I'm not sure, my gut feeling is that it's not polyurethane. That's a dinky UV printer... The Vutek GS5000 is the kind of big dog my clients tend to use. With an 8+ color inkset and lots of resolution modes and number of passes to choose from subtle gradient are really nice at the higher settings. Gotta have those light colors and black inks - 4 color inksets are never going to look great. A neat option that I'd like to know more about as well. Not sure how lightfast these are relative to UV Curable. UV Curable is very affordable and super tough...
Quote from: Mark Lindquist on July 12, 2013, 09:47:31 pmI'm looking at DuPont SentryGlas - Expressions. They've done 10 year testing in Arizona under extreme lighting conditions.
Quote from: shadowblade on July 14, 2013, 10:20:39 amMaybe in 10 years' time, they'll actually have 8- or 12-colour models available for the same price as current Roland printers (i.e. $20-40k).
Quote from: shadowblade on July 14, 2013, 10:20:39 amA $500k-or-greater printer just isn't viable for printing fine-art photos, which are neither 2m-5m wide, nor produced in such huge numbers as to justify the purchase price of such a machine.
Quote from: Ernst Dinkla on July 15, 2013, 08:39:41 amYes, Glass was what I expected as a solution too. In the past (20 years or so) I have used a local insulating glazing company to assemble the glass sheets I silkscreen printed for an outdoor sign. I used the different layers to create some interaction for passersby, the texts shifting to the background etc. A text/vector design on three inside surfaces including the white glass background. This insulating glass had a silica in the profile sealed in to capture any moisture. The printing had two steps, an etch on the glass first of the design to create a better bond and then alkyd based ink that hardens on oxide. It lasted longer than the lawyer firm it was created for.You might consider that method too and have the front glass printed at the inside with UV curing inks + a white ink for reflection and add white glass at the back. It is possible with tempered glass too for better strength. In that case no extra polymers are used in the image layers that could create issues. The process could be less expensive than what you describe. Prolonged exposure of UV cured inks in sunlight is not without issues though. Met vriendelijke groet, Ernsthttp://www.pigment-print.com/spectralplots/spectrumviz_1.htmDecember 2012, 500+ inkjet media white spectral plots.
Quote from: Ernst Dinkla on July 15, 2013, 08:39:41 amEdit: In the sign industry and other industrial print facilities that use (eco)solvents or UV-curing inks the inkset often does not go beyond CMYK, ... I do not know a CcMmYKkkRGB inkset in use in that industry....
Quote from: Scott Martin on July 15, 2013, 07:52:55 pmWell there are 8 color CcMmYKkk UV inksets and the Epson Surecolor S70 uses an 11 color solvent CcMmYKkkOWMs inkset that incorporates Orange, White and Metallic. These are THE two UV and Solvent inksets attractive to those wanting to make the highest quality UV and solvent prints today. R and B inks really don't help much and I think you'll see them disappear in the future. Don't leave Vutek off your list of UV printer manufactures - the rest you mention (except Inca) are late comers to the party, and trail in sales.
Quote from: Scott Martin on July 15, 2013, 07:52:55 pmWell there are 8 color CcMmYKkk UV inksets and the Epson Surecolor S70 uses an 11 color solvent CcMmYKkkOWMs inkset that incorporates Orange, White and Metallic. These are THE two UV and Solvent inksets attractive to those wanting to make the highest quality UV and solvent prints today.
Quote from: shadowblade on July 15, 2013, 09:28:04 pmThe Epson inkset only has a stated permanence of 3 years... I'm assuming this is outdoors, unprotected, though...
QuoteAre they actually used in the industry right now and can they print as flatbeds on glass sheets?
Quote from: Scott Martin on July 16, 2013, 10:32:57 amYes, that's outdoors where aqueous inks won't last 2 weeks. UV Curable longevity is much greater than solvent.
Quote from: Mark Lindquist on July 16, 2013, 12:46:44 pmDo you think other systems would actually outlast SentryGlas® Expressions™, which is fused between layers of safety glass?Think windshield glass. They have known direct sun longevity testing, actual real time testing in direct Arizona sun. Are you saying any system you are discussing can outlast or better SentryGlas® Expressions™ in terms of sturdiness, and light-fastness, and carry a guarantee? Remember, there is no possibility of permeating any seal, because there is no seal - it is all one incorporated entity.Don't forget, we're in hurricane territory here. We get storms that would curl your toes.... backwards...Tallahassee is inland enough that we haven't had anything like a Katrina-like event, but we get big winds and unbelievable rain storms. In the summer we can get rain almost every afternoon and I'm talking real gully-washers for short periods.Whatever I come up with has to be able to withstand the elements here. The SentryGlas® Expressions™ seems like the hardiest of all the applications that have been thus far discussed, and even now, I'm having doubts as to the light-fastness beyond say 15 years, realistically.Nothing on this scale is easy, though. It feels like the industry is just at the tipping point, however.
Quote from: shadowblade on July 16, 2013, 12:57:09 pmAn artistic display made out of safety glass will last until someone decides to throw a rock at it. In an average city, that'd be 25 days, not 25 years.Safety glass or not, it's going to break - the 'safety' part just stops it from raining glass slivers everywhere.
Quote from: shadowblade on August 13, 2013, 11:37:22 amJust wondering - can UV printers also be used to make prints on fine art paper? Or are they limited to metal, ceramic, plastics and other rigid materials?
Quote from: shadowblade on March 30, 2016, 11:52:10 amOut of interest, what did you end up going with? Did the Sentryglas Expressions work out? If you went with them, how is their print quality and colour accuracy like? Any idea what sort of inks/print process they use for the layer in the middle?10 years of outdoor display probably means 10 centuries of indoor display - just as well, given some of the museum relics some photos are displayed alongside.
Quote from: shadowblade on March 30, 2016, 10:17:00 pmLooks good - was that done using laminated glass? How is the close-up image quality? Good enough for small (20x30") prints, or only really suitable for huge pieces?Did you get any idea of their print process (dyes vs pigments, aqueous, solvent, UV, etc.)?
Quote from: Mark Lindquist on March 30, 2016, 10:52:18 pmNo-not laminated glass. Have not found anyone who does that work to my expectations yet.
QuoteThe images were initially made partly using a robotic system I built with a Nikon D810 as the end effector. Since the file size is pretty big to start with, I processed the images at first in NXD, then lightroom,then photoshop. I made the images for the diptych 4'x8' immediately out of NXD then began working a series of duplicate image layers that included lights, darks, saturation, curves,etc., hand blending everything. It's amazing to me that PS CC 2015 can handle such huge files at 300 ppi. At one point I believe the file was in excess of 20 GB.So to answer your question, the image is pretty sharp at about 1', very sharp at 5', and tack sharp at 20'.It is easy on the eyes close up. I had 16"x32" prints on ultra gloss aluminum made as test prints and they are astonishingly sharp. The images will scale up or down at this point. To me, that's the main advantage of working "real time or actual size" - it's much easier to scale down than to scale up. The scaled down images are clean, clear, crisp, sharp.Another reason I worked at the largest file sizes (actual size) was to avoid noise accumulating from stacking layers. In the end, the final image looks very much like a 20x30 print, but it has much more integrity having been edited full scale, so the finished work has as much dynamic range and tonality as I personally required. The pieces glow. Of course I made 44" wide glossy prints on my Z3200 and sent them along with the file as match prints.
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