News

July 5, 2017

Lean and Green Stencil Preparation

Lean and Green Stencil Preparation

29.06.2017

 

Michael Ose from Sign-Tronic AG and André Kreuter from Grünig AG visited Sydney and Melbourne for a lightning
visit to give a presentation of what is possible with stencil making and pre-press in screen printing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Arriving last week on Tuesday morning in Sydney the duo went to the KIWO office and gave the representatives there a
rundown of the latest technology for screen making, cleaning and stretching. After a 3 hour session they were whisked away
to see some clients and then away to a well-earned rest. Wednesday saw some more client visits. As it was Michael’s first
visit to Sydney it was a given that he see the Opera House and Watsons Bay.

Back to business. The men were taken to the hotel near the Graphics Arts Club and after quickly dropping of their baggage
it was over to the Graphic Arts Club to prepare for the presentation. Andre gave an overview of what Grünig had to offer and tempted the small audience with what was possible to make a clean, safe work place.

Michael captivated the audience with the options now available for printers to produce “Ready to Print“ screens using the latest
in Computer to Screen Technology. Sign-Tronic is the world leader in CTS technology offering versatile solutions and modular layouts to suit any customer requirements. Being the same night as the State of Origin match it was an effort to finish the presentation in time but it didn’t seem to matter. There was a uninterrupted presentation with lots of questions to follow.

After the presentation it was back to the hotel to prepare for an early flight to Melbourne. The sessions were delivered to an enthusiastic group of Victorian customers on Friday morning and the audience were greatly impressed by the cutting edge technology that was showcased during the presentation. Michael left for China on Friday night last week whilst Andre flew back to Switzerland last Saturday. In all it was a very quick trip for two very busy people and we are very grateful for them to keep us informed of what can happen.

Thank you to Sign-Tronic and Grünig.

 

 

 

 

June 28, 2017

KIWO’S TOMAS LORENC ON GOING DIGITAL

KIWO’S TOMAS LORENC ON GOING DIGITAL

 

A conversation with KIWO´s technical sales manager Tomas Lorenc who reflects on a successful
3 year KIWO/Kornit relationship and identifies the key drivers of digital production.

 

 

 

Textile Image: You are nearly 3 years in your role as technical sales manager at KIWO and this coincides with the beginning of the KIWO/Kornit relationship too. This was a new direction for KIWO so how did your role fit into this transition?

Tomas Lorenc: Yes you are right, KIWO is still only at the beginning of its digital journey and those last three years with Kornit showed us that digital will definitely be big part of KIWOs future. I would like to think that the part which I have contributed helped KIWO\Kornit to be where we are at this stage, however it’s the digital team which deserves the main credit for the state of current Kornit customer base, as without Martin Vodstrcil and Chris O’Brien who are providing service support to all Kornit customers week in week out, Katie Hao our great internal digital coordinator and managing director Martin Stacher who showed some great courage when he had decided to take on the Kornit agency at uneasy times, the Kornit success we are experiencing wouldn’t be possible.

 

Textile Image: What were some of the initial hurdles with Kornit in the beginning and how did you overcome them? How has your role influenced this partnership with Kornit and customers view of the technology and support?

Tomas Lorenc: It’s not a secret that we have inherited a customer base, which wasn’t in the great shape. After I had gone through the first ound of visits around the country we could identify the main reasons for it, which were lack of service and application support provided by the previous distributor, as well as the fact that some of the Kornit users simply weren’t the right customers for this technology, as their business focus was rather signage and a few t-shirts here and there, which wasn’t enough to keep the machines running and led to all sorts of service issues. We also soon recognised that our focus can’t be spread between several different digital products which we initially planned, but purely on Kornit to get the product back on track as fast as possible. So with the help of Kornit AP we have solved all the outstanding service issues one by one and started from scratch. Soon after that, a dedicated Kornit service team was created with strong focus on Kornit application and service knowledge, once we had the expertise on needed level we have spread the knowledge through our customer base and kept providing a service Kornit customers deserve. With that part in place, we have naturally sold some more high production Kornit units and the fact that the customer who expressed the biggest frustration during the transition from one distributor to another  is now the biggest DTG printer in Australia says it all.

 

Textile Image: Textile printing technology has gone through and still is experiencing significant developments with regard to digital platforms. Describe some of the main factors influencing this change.

Tomas Lorenc: In short, I believe it’s due to fast moving world we are living in nowadays and its demands. Especially young people want to express their personality through things they wear and differentiate themselves. Online tools and technologies like Kornit allows them to do that relatively cheap and in fast turnaround. This of course urges the textile printing industry to look outside its traditional way of thinking to satisfy growing demand for mass customisation and those who are able to adjust have advantage over the others, as the technology is already available and it will only get better.  This of course doesn’t apply on t-shirts only, but yardage fabric printing too.

 

Textile Image: Can you speak about the specifics of Kornit/KIWO digital textile printing platforms/servicing and how this is developing/changing per industry needs?

Tomas Lorenc: In my eyes the biggest Kornit specific when it comes to servicing is the application side of it. Our service engineers would perhaps confirm, that the mechanical side of it is straight forward, but people have to understand that there are many variables which can go wrong during the DTG process and each garment requires specific pre-treatment and print settings in order to achieve good final esult. This means that you have to be familiar with a variety of possible outcomes when using different garments, job types and print files to be able to support Kornit customer base. For example the pre-treatment and drying process is completely different when printing on polyester, than you would use on cotton t-shirts and online printers with a variety of different types of garments dealing with different challenges, than screen printers who use Kornit technology to print “short” runs of the same design to one type of garment. Those things you only learn by experience.

 

Textile Image: Web2print solutions seem to be a growing requirement for many digital garment printing businesses. Can you explain how this works and how Kornit technology fits into this from a production point of view?

Tomas Lorenc: Creating customised products with different designs is simple when using the variety of web2print solutions available, which play a key role in strengthening printing business these days and Kornit is no exception. In fact, most of Kornit users fully embraced the web2print solution, as it gives them a unique opportunity to reach out to a variety of different customers who are creating their own designs and thanks to Kornit technology they are able to order “one offs” or short runs of t-shirts, that wouldn’t be possible using the screen printing process. Kornit is a proven technology, which in combination with the right web2print solution basically enables printers to satisfy a growing demand for mass garment customisation. The largest Kornit users have their web2print software fully integrated with their production workflow using a bacoding system, which contains all necessary information like print file, position and customer details needed to carry the item through the whole printing process chain without delays. This way the Kornit operators basically only scan bar code stickers, the print file will load into the job queue with correct position, get printed and dispatched.

 

Textile Image: An increasing amount of garments are being digitally printed nowadays and digital technology can offer easier production of more complex designs and graphics. What are the latest developments from Kornit regarding its technology for different applications?

Tomas Lorenc: When it comes to stand alone direct to garment printers, Kornit has refined the successful platform in its latest technology and added interesting features like re-circulation print heads for better ink efficiency and print speed, in Hexversion red and green colours serve to increase the achievable colour gamut and inbuilt humidity fie to help with crucial print climate control. Kornit also successfully released revolutionary roll to roll fabric printer Kornit Allegro, which is the first technology on the market that eliminates the need for external processes and enables customers  to achieve the best results from PFP to finished printed fabric in just minutes, featuring POF (pre-treatment on fly) re-circulation heads and 7 colours this product again allows its users to take their production online and print on demand, without any need for pre or post-treatment process.

 

Textile Image: What does success for you look like in the near future regarding delivering digital garment solutions in Australia?

Tomas Lorenc: For many the word success means something different and its meaning changes as you go through the life. We would definitely like to maintain and even improve the sales and service levels our customers are used to, therefore we have recently employed another service engineer and sales manager in Sydney to strengthen our team. We will continue to work on our long term goal to be the one stop shop for garment printers, as we can offer  DTG solution from entry level to mass production backed by our product expertise, as well as look into other areas such as the dye sublimation market, where we will offer Mutoh printers on Marabu high density inks. Future definitely looks bright for KIWO.

 

Credit:
Textile Image Magazine

 

 

June 15, 2017

Printed Solar

Industry Leaders Supported
Public Launch of Printed Solar 

 

Leading industry suppliers KIWO, Starleaton and Fuji-Xerox Australia have confirmed their foresight and commitment to future technologies by sponsoring the first public demonstration of printed solar cells from the University of Newcastle, which have been displayed at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC) during PacPrint.

 

The three companies joined PacPrint, the University of Newcastle, the CRC for Polymers, the Australian National Fabrication Facility (ANFF) and logistics and supply chain company CHEP, who were sponsoring the installation, which was constructed and displayed on the lawn area between the MCEC and the Yarra River.

 

Professor Paul Dastoor, who heads the University’s Priority Research Centre for Organic Electronics, which has developed
the organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells, said the demonstration was an important step in turning his team’s prototypes into a
commercial reality. “As researchers, much of what we do happens behind closed doors, but when we get close to a market-ready product, as we have with these printed solar panels, our goal is to report on what we have achieved and then work toward getting the product to market,” Professor Dastoor explained. He also said, PacPrint was the ideal venue to do that, as it not only provided a high profile location for the installation and a great venue for our public lecture, but it also allowed to demonstrate this new technology to the print professionals who are going to play such an important role in bringing it to a commercial reality.

 

Martin Stacher, Regional Director Asia-Pacific for KIWO, said the decision to sponsor the installation is consistent with his company’s full support for alternative energies and its role as a supplier of pre-press chemistry for the solar cell manu-facturing process worldwide. “We firmly believe that Australia should be leading the world in renewable energy technologies like solar, wind and water power – in fact, we draw 80% of the energy for our Tullamarine headquarters from a 50KW solar system,” he said.

 

 

March 17, 2017

What is DTG Printing? How to add it to your screen business.

digital-logo-200x100pxThe days of simplifying your artwork to meet your budget are over!  No longer do the your customers have to settle for “dumbed down” versions of their incredibly crafted designs, and no longer do they need to order a hundred shirts (or more) to be taken seriously!

DTG printing arrived on the scene in its infant stages over 8 years ago, and has spent the last several years being tweaked, prodded and modified until it has finally manifested in a form that offers top level competitive quality, excellent durability and reliable manufacturing practices.

If you thought you knew all about DTG printing, check again!
There have been plenty of advances and improvements that have made the process not only viable, but also highly sought after by major clothing brands and online retailers all across the globe.  The Kiwo Digital team is proud to have been actively involved in this industry since the beginning of DTG, pushing for ever increasing quality and reliability, while providing lower consumable costs and delivering the highest quality products to our clients.

We offer a range of manufacturing solutions from the entry level Epson desktop printers through to the industries largest mass production Kornit models.

DTG printing stands for “Direct To Garment” printing, which refers to the process of jetting water based ink directly onto the surface of a printable substrate, rather than printing a transfer which would then be heat pressed onto the substrate.  DTG printing equipment is similar in many ways to the type of desktop ink jet printers which can be found in most homes and offices; utilizing a small selection on ink colors (typically Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black and White), the printer is able to dynamically mix the process inks “on the fly” as it prints, recreating a myriad of colors and effects as it goes!

When compared to traditional decoration techniques, such as screen printing, the quality of a DTG printed garment is unrivaled – the print details, gradients and print accuracy will beat out almost any other garment decoration technique available (sublimation is another “digitally printed” option which offers a fairly competitive option for decorating garments with beautiful full color designs, however sublimation is limited to polyester garments and there is no white ink, meaning it can only be used on white or light colored garments – it cannot really compete with DTG printing when dark garments or 100% cotton is concerned).

The process of DTG printing involves several steps, which can loosely be summed up as follows:

  1. PREPARE THE GARMENT FOR PRINTING:
    Before any ink can actually be printed on the garment, the fabric must be prepared with a liquid pre-treatment chemical, designed to create a bond between the ink and the garment itself.  Without this pre-treatment fluid, the ink would simply absorb into the porous cotton material and appear very poorly (if at all).  Pre-treatment is absolutely required for any dark garment printing (any time white ink is involved, either as an under base or a highlight layer), although it is entirely optional when printing on light colored garments.  If pre-treatment fluid is applied to the light garment prior to printing, the ink will remain on top of the fabric (rather than soaking in) and will appear more vibrant, while providing superior wash-fastness over the life of the garment.  If no pre-treatment is used on light colored garments, the print will still look good but you will notice that it simply doesn’t “POP” like it would have with the pre-treatment.  The pre-treatment is applied either manually or via an automated pre-treatment unit, depending on the situation – after the spray is applied, the garment is then wiped to press the fibers down (reducing the effects of fibrillation, especially on non-ringspun garments) and then heat pressed to seal the pre-treatment to the garment – once this is completed, the garment is ready for printing!
  2. PREPARE THE ARTWORK FOR PRINTING:
    Although you can certainly load up any artwork file and press the print button, it is important to understand that proper artwork preparation is vital to the successful recreation of complex DTG prints – there is no magic involved in the printing process that will turn “adequate” artwork into “amazing” artwork…. The better the initial artwork file is in terms of quality, color saturation and vibrancy, the better the final printed t-shirt is going to look.
  3. LOAD THE GARMENT ON THE DTG PRINTER:
    While this may seem like one of the easiest steps, it can actually become quite tricky when trying to reproduce complex specialty prints that cross over seams or collars, as well as when trying to print odd shaped or odd sized garments (such as onesies, or printing on sleeves and whatnot).  You use a series of “loading boards” called Platens to keep the garments pulled flat and smooth for the printing process, and you may need to set up custom platens to allow you to print on a variety of alternative substrates and print locations.
  4. PRINT THE GARMENT:
    Once everything is prepped and ready to go, you simply load up the artwork file in the specialised RIP software (RIP stands for Raster Image Processor, by the way) and press the print button!  The printer will travel the entire length of the garment print area, spraying ink as it goes – when it is done we are left with an incredibly detailed, vibrant print that will impress even the toughest critics.  For dark colored garments, the machine will first print a full pass of white ink (as an under base to the colors), then it will return for a second pass that will complete the image with the color layer.
  5. CURE THE INK:
    Since water based inks remain “water soluble” until they are permanently heat-set, it is important to press the garments after printing to ensure that the design does not come off in the wash!  For light garments, this generally involves direct exposure to high pressure and heat for around 90 seconds, while dark garments get the same treatment for at least 180 seconds; it is important to select garments for printing that are able to withstand the arduous manufacturing conditions involved with DTG printing water based inks.

digital-logo-200x100pxWhile this may seem like a lot of steps, most people would be blown away to find out everything that goes into the process of traditional screen printing – relatively speaking, DTG printing involves far fewer steps.  In addition to taking less time for the overall setup / print cycle when compared to traditional decoration methods, DTG printing also involves far fewer chemicals and consumables, none of which contain the level of harsh and abrasive chemicals found in many screen printing products.

DTG printing is perfect for short or even medium length runs and especially full color printing – with a little creativity, you can recreate some incredible effects that will leave most screen printers in the dust, without breaking the bank in the process!
Contact KIWO now to find out what we can do for you, or browse our website for even more information before you get started.

February 17, 2017

Kornit Allegro And Project Runway

 

One of the greatest aspects of producing high quality textiles is getting to work with some of the most talented and innovative designers in the fashion industry. When given a chance to work with the creators at Project Runway, a wildly popular fashion reality tv show, as a worldwide market leader in textile printing technology, we at Kornit Digital were flattered and excited to collaborate.

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In the October 6th episode “Sink or Swim,” designers used the Kornit roll-to-roll printing system, the Kornit Allegro, to create their own unique printed fabrics for swimsuits and coverups, with the winning look to become a part of Heidi Klum’s swimwear collection. Kornit Digital played an essential role in the episode, providing designers with a rare opportunity to have complete control of their product, and realize their exact visions.

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Each of the thirteen design contestants printed five yards of swimsuit fabric and four yards of a sheer rayon lawn for their cover-ups. Thanks to Papilio Prints and the Kornit Allegro, the world’s only single-step digital textile printing system, the designers were able to receive their custom-made fabrics the next day, and immediately get to work!

Quick turn-around times are crucial for modern designers, and our work with Project Runway illustrated just how big a role reliably fast printing can play in bringing a product to market. Using Kornit’s patented NeoPigmentTM printing process, single step production can be achieved using natural fibers, synthetics, and blends. Our resource-efficient technology is eco-friendly, suitable for local production requirements, and can cut costs for textile companies.

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The episode culminated in a fashion show featuring all of the different Kornit-produced textiles, transformed into incredible fashion. We especially enjoyed the critiques from the esteemed judges, Klum, Nina Garcia, Zac Posen, and Lucky Blue Smith.

The top three designs of the episode were representative of the limitless possibilities offered by our printing technology. From a bright graphic feather print, to a more ethereal floral motif, to the bold black and white Escher-inspired harlequin print from challenge winner Rik Villa, each textile produced was one of a kind.

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Opportunities like this wonderfully showcase the speed, accuracy, and ingenious technology we at Kornit Digital bring to every project we undertake, and it was truly an honor to work with the entire creative team at Project Runway.

Check out all of the amazing looks and textiles from the episode in this video clip!

What to learn more about the Kornit Allegro? Click HERE

February 17, 2017

KIWO goes Solar!

KIWO goes Solar!

As of Friday the 10th of February around 9.30am in the morning, KIWO produces 75% of its daily electrical power requirements itself from their newly installed solar station at its Headquarters in Tullamarine VIC. “I believe that Australia is the perfect place for renewable energies” says Martin Stacher, Managing Director of KIWO. “We do have ample of space and sun for the solar side and also enough wind to use wind turbines as well” he continues. “I always wanted to do something like we have now and once I was contacted by Roycon it was really an easy decision to make”. The whole project was completed from conception to installation within just 4 months – which illustrates that if two partners share a vision to accomplish something, then together it can be achieved swiftly. KIWO is fully committed to becoming a comprehensively “greener” company, not only with the product range that it offers, but also with actions like this solar station installation at its HQ in Victoria.

Bruce Castleton (Project leader from Roycon) states “We would like to thank KIWO for their partnership and vision in transitioning to a clean energy future, and to demonstrate our gratitude we will be donating 50 trees for your 50kW system to the Fifteen Trees Organisation which are planted in schools and forests across Australia to help with reforestation.”

Bruce is also sharing some information about the technical side of the installation at KIWO: • KIWO’s system size is 50kW. This consists of 200 GCL 250W panels, and 2 Fronius Eco inverters.

• It will produce on average 200kW of electricity per day – 73MWh per annum, which will offset 75% of Kiwo’s peak daily usage.

• Including all of the repayments the system will save the company approximately $25,000 over the next 5 years; $143,000 over the next 10 years; and over the system life of 25 years it will save Kiwo between $801,000-$1,068,000 based on our conservative projection of 7% inflation of electricity prices per year (electricity prices have increased by between 8-10% this year alone).

• As for the more significant environmental benefits, KIWO’s commitment to sustainability will offset annually the equivalent of 21 tons of carbon being dumped into the atmosphere, or 17 Australian cars taken off the road, or 124 mature trees, every single year – a truly outstanding contribution.

About Roycon

Roycon Electrical and Solar was founded in 2010 to realize a vision of helping Australian homes, businesses, and communities transition towards a more sustainable energy future. Since then the company has become an industry leader in renewable energy solutions and is comprised of a team of experts including project managers, engineers, accredited solar designers, licensed installers, and electricians. We primarily aim to create energy solutions for the commercial and industrial sectors which include hybrid systems, remote area power supplies, and battery storage technologies that enable businesses to alleviate running costs, whilst also being environmentally conscious and enjoy a competitive advantage for decades to come. https://www.roycon.com.au/

About KIWO Australia

KIWO Australia is the leading supplier into the Screen Printing industry by offering the complete product package including stencil making. Other important business activities include the supply of products into the Metal Dec industry in Australia where KIWO is also offering extensive color mixing and matching facilities in VIC as well as in NSW. KIWO Australia’s Digital activities include the Kornit and Epson DTG systems as well as Digital Inks from Marabu. In all of its business activities KIWO strives for the complete package approach and understanding of their customer needs and requirements. More info under www.kiwo.com.au

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February 16, 2017

Stronger NSW Team

KIWO Australia strengthen its NSW team
Effective January 2017 KIWO has integrated the business activities of JW Agencies and Wilflex Printing Supplies into its operation. Both companies have been an integral part of the NSW screen printing industry for many years by supplying a wide range of high quality products and offering outstanding service to their customers throughout that period.
“As the leading supplier into the Screen Printing Industry in Australia the integration of those two companies and their very experienced and versatile staff members makes a lot of sense for us” says Martin Stacher, Managing Director of KIWO. “We are very pleased with the direction and we are looking forward to offer an even more comprehensive service and product range to our esteemed customer base” he continues.
JW Agencies has been one of the trusted suppliers into the Screen printing industry in the Greater Sydney region for decades. Bill Porteous has been a mainstay in the Australian Screen Printing Industries for a long time and he is pleased to see that his legacy will be continued within KIWO. “I have been looking for a good solution to ensure the future of my business for a while – with KIWO I have found the perfect place. Not only are we operating in a similar yet not overlapping market space but also the philosophies of JW Agencies and KIWO are congruent, we are both looking to offer quality products and services to our esteemed customer base.” Joining KIWO as well is Tyrone Michael – a long time loyal employee of JW Agencies and responsible for the stencil making.
Not as long as JW Agencies, but Wilflex Printing Supplies has been around for quite a while as well. Troy Lenton has a long time relationship with many T-Shirt / Garment printers in the Greater Sydney area. However, being a rather small entity and working the market mainly with the help and support of his wife Tanya, Troy found it harder and harder to grow the business. “Now being part of a corporate yet family style outfit like KIWO will allow me to spend more time out in the market and seeing customers more often” says Troy Lenton. “The combination of my experience in the market and the complete product range including stencil making will allow us to be even more successful.”
About JW Agencies:
Founded in 1993 JW Agencies has been one of the mainstays in the Greater Sydney region for the past 24 years. Founder Bill Porteous – a Chemist by training – has been in the Printing industry since more than 50 years. JW Agencies enjoyed a very good reputation within its clientele by offering products from reputable international brands from all over the world (KIWO, Ulano, Sefar, Grunig, Signtronic, Sericol and others) coupled with outstanding customer service and understanding of the individual screen printing processes for various applications.
About Wilflex Printing Supplies:
Troy Lenton has been running WPS since 2003. As a trained Screen printer he knows exactly what the modern T-Shirt / Garment printer is looking for. Troy has been offering his knowledge and products (among others brands like Wilflex, KIWO, Ulano) to a variety of textile screen printers in the Greater Sydney region and beyond.

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November 29, 2016

Christmas Special

christmas-bannerFrom now until Christmas we are giving away a top quality Stahls Hover Heatpress for free with every Epson Surecolour F-2000 DTG printer. This is an incredible deal – Get in while you can….

September 1, 2016

Visual Impact

We are pleased to be able to display a great range of equipment at this years Visual Impact in Sydney Sept 17 – 19.

We will be showing the Burkle wide format liquid coating machine along with Kornit and Epson DTG machines and showcasing the Stalls range of Heampresses and media.

Come and check us out on stand B12, chat with our sales and technical team who will be happy to field any questions and discuss your own particular production requirements.

VI SYD16 WEB BANNER

August 17, 2016

POLYCOL MULTI-TEX

A high solids, fast exposing, pre-sensitized ‘pure photopolymer’ SBQ emulsion specially formulated for use with most all of the newest textile inks including plastisol, water-based, discharge systems. It is developed for use on the newest Computer-to-Screen imaging & LED exposing systems as ell as conventional exposure systems. Read More

August 17, 2016

KIWO POLYCOL LIGHT-SCRIBE

From the most respected name in Computer-to-Screen imaging, KIWO, Inc. features their Computer-to-Screen (CTS) line of emulsions – KIWO POLYCOL LIGHT-SCRIBE. Read More

August 17, 2016

KIWO POLYCOL VERSA-TEX & VERSA-TEX PLUS

VERSAtile high solids, pre-sensitized SBQ emulsion for ALL TEXtile inks. Read More

August 17, 2016

MARABU DIGITAL INKS

Did you alway want to save money for your solvent ink cartridges, but the quality of the products out of Asia scared you off Well we have a good news for you, Kiwo Australia introduces german made alternative inks for Roland and Mimaki printers for great prices. No need for flushing out your printer,…

August 17, 2016

POLYCOL MULTI-TEX

A high solids, fast exposing, pre-sensitized ‘pure photopolymer’ SBQ emulsion specially formulated for use with most all of the newest textile inks including plastisol, water-based, discharge systems. It is developed for use on the newest Computer-to-Screen imaging & LED exposing systems as ell as conventional exposure systems. Read More