With solvent based and a latex based ink, our roll to roll printers handle non-rigid materials. Vinyl, paper, backlit material, and even wall/floor clings. Most material that comes loaded on a roll usually runs through one of these machines. Our max width is 5′ or 60″, but there are some machines that can print 10 feet or more wide.
There are benefits to both inks used on these roll to roll printers. Solvent inks give up to a 3 year lifespan (un-laminated) and a roughly 5 year lifespan with UV protective lamination, solvent inks are able to withstand the elements. The ink coverage is also quite amazing since the solvent that is used breaks up the material and allows the pigments of ink color to adhere more deeply into the material. This means that a car wrap can be heated and stretched around curves of a car and the image will still be clear and sharp. There is a catch though. Solvent inks release volatile organic compounds (VOC’s) when heat is applied for curing, although the technology is making this less of a problem now, and our eco-friendly solvent inks minimize this. Speaking of curing, solvent inks are also recommended to having 24 hours of dry time so all of the solvent can evaporate before being laminated or used. On the flip side, Latex inks dry instantly. They resist scratches and are ready for outdoor use without lamination, you get more life with lamination though. Latex inks are more eco-friendly since the ink is suspended in water and not a chemical solvent but this is a disadvantage when working with certain substrates or printable materials, since more heat is required to cure the inks. As always, contact us or your print vendor to go over the options for your specific job needs.