Sign & Digital Graphics

Start Here October '18

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45 S T A R T H E R E 2 0 1 8 up fully automated, however. While auto and manual presses come in many con- figurations, it's always wise to start with as many heads as the budget will allow. The more colors you can handle, the more you can offer. On-press, you will need at least one flash unit. A flash allows you to gel inks for white underbases. Finally, you will need a dryer to cure the inks once printed. Dryers also come in many shapes and sizes including gas and electric. The ink choice will dictate the amount of time in the chamber and what type of dryer you may need. Post-press equipment might include automatic folding, tagging, and/ or bagging equipment as well. While researching screen-printing equipment can be overwhelming, there's minimal required to start a business. With a few quality necessities, you can get started. There's a learning curve when buying equipment. And while those new to screen printing have much to learn, a num- ber of principles that screen printers fail to consider, the equipment purchase should be viewed with a look to the future. You want equipment that operates flawlessly, produces quality images, and lasts for years. Most entrepreneurs hope to grow the business. The best equipment is rugged, durable, machined to precise tolerances, easy to use, and easy to integrate with other equipment. Many manufacturers of qual- ity screen-printing equipment welcome visitors, so if you have the opportunity to tour the factories of the equipment you're considering, do so. While a factory visit may seem like overkill, depending on the amount of money you plan to spend, it is a major purchase, and a factory visit will go a long way toward deciding who you want to do business with for the long run. You will have the greatest success and fewest problems if you stay with an established company with a reputation for customer service and quality products. If you can get most of your equipment from one manu- facturer, you'll usually eliminate compat- ibility issues, and you'll benefit by getting nearly all your service and support. Quality equipment from a reputable manufacturer will last for decades if you follow the pre- ventive maintenance procedures. Should the equipment need repair, and it will, a manufacturer that excels in customer ser- vice, troubleshooting, and has technicians in the field in your neighborhood will be of tremendous help. This may seem like a lot of information and almost some deterrence. However, if you're just starting out, your first step may go a long way in determining which path you go down. You can spend a lot of time researching and planning, but that time is nothing compared to the thousands of hours you can spend spinning your wheels if you make some wrong decisions and poorly plan. As my mother has always told me, "If you fail to plan, you plan to fail." A screen-printing business is creative and artistic but also requires a business-oriented mindset. HyperDual Motion - The HyperDual motion package results in smoother cut radiuses and Kern's fastest cutting speeds to date. Unmatched Safety - The LaserCELL features a Class 1 safety enclosure that allows the system to be placed in high trafc areas such as busy factory oors and university classrooms. Premium Quality and Performance Highly Versatile CO 2 and Fiber Laser Sources E X P E R I E N C E T H E N E X T G E N E R AT I O N K E R N L A S E R S . C O M | 8 8 8 - 6 6 0 - 2 7 5 5 | M A D E I N T H E U S A OptiFlex Class 4 Laser System LaserCELL / FiberCELL Class 1 Laser System

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