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Help! Window perf tunneling

Discussion in 'Digital Printing' started by rm5690, Jun 5, 2019.

  1. rm5690

    rm5690 Member

    Jun 27, 2018
    Virginia, USA
    This is my first time printing window perf and, of course, its for a deadline job due tomorrow and I have installers scheduled.

    My rep suggested Clear Focus Econovue because its cheap and they sell it in 25' rolls.

    Im printing on an HP 560 and within the first several feet its tunneling / coming off the vinyl while the media is being cured. No issues printing, though.

    I wouldn't be worrying about it since it isn't causing print issues, but I have to contour cut it and mask it and I don't have enough media to reprint anything.

    What exactly causes tunneling? Do I really need to be worried about it?
    I'm guessing the heat and moisture is causing the backing to react differently than the vinyl so they pull apart, but does changing the temperature change this? Or is it just a cheap media that does this?
  2. Modern Ink Signs

    Modern Ink Signs Premium Subscriber

    Jun 27, 2008
    Waukesha, WI
  3. kanini

    kanini Member

    Jul 13, 2012
    If you don't have a complex cut you can of course hand cut it to be sure nothing messes up while cutting to avoid one risk factor.
  4. ikarasu

    ikarasu Very Active Member

    Jun 10, 2016
    Port Coquitlam, bc
    Window perf is a pain to print on with a latex due to the heat. I think it's because all the holes provides uneven "Tension" on the backing... so it tends to tunnel it a bit when it gets heated.

    We used to have a bunch of issues with the cheap window perf.. Usually it'd bunch up while printing and get a head rub in random spots. I ended up downloading a avery window perf profile, lowering the heat and adding an interpass delay and now it prints perfectly - We just printed 100 FT without a single head touch or tunnel. Every media is likely different... but I'd start with a perf profile and go from there. Since you only have 25 FT of material its probably risky... But window perf is cheap enough.

    Next time contact bigfish, Gans has a window perf thats been tested and used by lots of Latex users.. And it's cheap. if I were in US I'd buy it from them!
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  5. Superior_Adam

    Superior_Adam Member

    Dec 13, 2017
    Wichita, Kansas
    I print Clear Focus Econoview all the time for short term graphics. I don't have any issue printing on our 560 with it. You need to play with your printing setting to get it right just like any other media for the latex. My guess is the heat is too high. We are at 12 pass/194 temp and 90% saturation. Also make sure your using the paper back version of the perf.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. AGCharlotte

    AGCharlotte Member

    Feb 28, 2018
    Charlotte, NC
    What Superior_Adam said is key... if you're not running the paper backed version, it's going to tunnel like crazy.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. Reveal1

    Reveal1 Active Member

    Nov 7, 2010
    Cape Girardeau, MO
    After much trial/error, we've been using Fellers house brand for latex (paper back) at 6pass/100% saturation at 210F on our 560. Always a good idea to run enough out to clear the heater before print. Lays nice and flat.
  8. rm5690

    rm5690 Member

    Jun 27, 2018
    Virginia, USA
    Thanks for all the good input!

    This was a perfect storm of nothing being easy during my first time trying something – the media was tunneling (I cranked the heat way down and it helped, but didnt fix it), then I had a weird printer glitch and lost a foot of media and didnt have enough to print the whole job, then my plotter wasn't talking to my RIP...

    All in all it was a great morning cutting 25 feet of material out by hand hoping that the installers didnt show up early.

    Ill be right back, Im going to the ABC store
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