Sign & Digital Graphics

October '19

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22 • October 2019 • S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S SPECIALTY IMAGING DIGITAL GRAPHICS Sign shops should also pay attention to the printing surface of the magnetic materials they are purchasing. Vinyl is a really common printing surface which is compatible with UV, solvent, eco-solvent and latex inks. If they have an aqueous ink printer, they need to use magnet with a paper top coat. If the magnet is going to be used outdoors, a clear protective laminate will need to be applied to the paper-coated surface to protect it from the elements. Shane Colvin, director of busi- ness development for Magnum Magnetics, says that his com- pany has seen a large uptick in magnetic materials being printed for the point-of-purchase/retail market. "We've given the ability to retrofit and/or change store design quickly and easily with magnetic materials," he says. He adds that, "Printers have told us the biggest benefit lies in their ability to have fewer 'touches' in a print process. No lamination, no liner removal, no static issues; it's a great option." Most industries have used magnets at some level, he says, but customers are coming up with more outside-of- the-box applications. "Point of purchase is a great example of people using an outside-of-the-box application and print direct to showcase a product or brand where in the past it may have just been a piece of magnetic tape holding up printed cardstock," Colvin says. The popularity of magnetic signage is cyclical, says Gary Foster, vice presi- dent of sales for Maghold. "It comes and goes." Right now, many retailers are using magnets or magnetic-receptive materials almost exclusively for their rack adver- tising, in large part because most retail store shelving is made out of metal. Foster recommends that clients consider magnetic-receptive materi- als instead of printing direct to magnet because having a system allows a store to be more flexible in its advertising. Magnetic-receptive materials are thin- ner and lighter than printable magnetic material, so using that material can save retailers money, particularly if they change out their displays frequently or want to layer different promotions on top of each other. Gertz agrees, saying that instead of a retailer having to reprint entire graphics, they can have one large magnet on the wall that can hold multiple promotional graphics made out of magnetic-receptive materials. He used an outdoor store as an example, where the background graphic would show mountains or people hiking and then each week the store could offer a different sale on backpacks or boots, printed on magnetic-receptive material, layered on top of the original graphic. "That way if they want to change their sale for the week, they don't need a whole new graphic. They just change out the variable information," he says. Another popular use for magnetic-receptive sig- nage is grocery store directories. The backer board is a magnet and the dif- ferent aisle categories and numbers are made with magnetic-receptive material. That way, every time the store decides to redesign its food offerings, it doesn't have to reprint its aisle directories. Foster says that it is all about edu- cation. Most retailers are still using direct-to-print magnets so his company continues to adapt to customer demand. Maghold's Super 60 super wide printable PET magnet is almost 25% lighter than the standard PVC magnet. The compa- ny's newest magnetic-receptive material MAGMATE has an iron-backed coating and is compatible with UV, solvent and latex ink printers. It also comes in 54" and 60" widths in either 12 mil or 30 mil sizes. It is made of PET and is about 10 pounds lighter per square foot than PVC, he says. Clay Reierson, director of operations for XCEL Products, says that his company got into printing on magnetic-receptive materials more than a decade ago. At that time, sheet magnet was still pretty young and wasn't all that popular because of the weight and size limitations of the material. Image courtesy of Master Magnetics. Image courtesy of MagHold. Image courtesy of Master Magnetics.

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