SPGPrints has begun the construction of its new 700m2demonstration and training facility for digital textile customers and end-user brands, set to open on 4 September this year at the company’s global headquarters in Boxmeer, The Netherlands.
The Experience Center will feature operational SPGPrints PIKE and JAVELIN digital textile printers for demonstrations and customer trials. There will also be a conference room with an advanced audio and video system, and areas to provide technical and commercial training and information. Their purpose is to ensure that suppliers and buyers of digitally printed textiles fully understand the revolutionary benefits and implications of digital production.
“The pressures on textile printers and brands today mean that understanding the new ways of production and distribution can make the difference between success and failure,” said Jos Notermans, commercial manager digital textiles, SPGPrints. “The Experience Center was conceived to give both groups a clear and thorough picture of how digital textile printing not only ensures quality and delivery times, but shortens supply chains, reduces the costs of stock and warehousing, and makes a significant contribution to sustainability by cutting energy use and waste.”
Textile printers will be able to bring their own jobs and fabrics and print them, with expert assistance, on a PIKE or JAVELIN printer. Seeing the technology in action, and the fine detail possible, will give them a good understanding of how they can expand their product offerings cost-effectively. Beyond the technical aspects, they will be able to learn how printing on-demand can save money as well as time, throughout the supply chain.
Brand managers, who have increasingly been attending textile trade shows, will have the same opportunity to see digital textile printing in action, and also increase their understanding of digital economics, where unit-cost or cost-per-square-metre models no longer apply.
Technology for quality and high-volume production
Being able to see the PIKE and JAVELIN printers in the same environment will help printers reach the best buying decision for their companies. Both the PIKE and JAVELIN use SPGPrints’ Archer technology to fire variable-sized drops up to 4mm to the substrate, achieving maximum flexibility, rich blotches and fine detail.
The PIKE printer, designed for annual production exceeding 2 million linear metres, is a fixed array, single-pass system. The printer at the Experience Center is configured to print six colours on a nine-colour frame with reactive inks.
The JAVELIN uses a scanning head and is designed for printers taking the first step into digital production, or for those wishing to supplement an existing digital capability. It is designed for printing up to 2 million linear metres per year. The JAVELIN at the Experience Center has a 3.2-metre width and can run a wide range of fabric from wovens to nets, full width, or at 1.85m. The JAVELIN features a scanning carriage for six colours with six print heads for each colour and is equipped with a three-pass dryer. Samples printed for customers will be shipped to them for steaming and washing.
The new Experience Center is part of an €8M capital investment programme by SPGPrints. This also includes the building of the expanded 1000m2 Digital Inks Factory for production of its inkjet inks, enabling the company to boost capacity in response to the growth of the digital textile printing sector.
“We believe that, by understanding digital technology, and the digital proposition more fully, both printers and retail brands will be in a position to make better buying decisions. That is the concept of the Experience Center,” Notermans concluded.