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New to forum with lots of questions

Discussion in 'Newbie Forum' started by printpros, Aug 28, 2012.

  1. printpros

    printpros New Member

    Aug 3, 2012
    Hi I am new to the forum and this is my 1st post. My company has been in business for 18yrs. We are a printing company doing offset and digital print etc. We have done large format signs, posters, banners etc. for most of that time as well. We were probably one of the 1st people in our market to offer this large format service. We have always sent to work to out of town suppliers and currently to a local sign shop. We have now added a large format printer in house and are producing the work ourselves so I have lots of learning to do.

    We added a Mimaki CJV30-160 64" with ES3 ink. My questions that I have today are:

    1. I am dong a outdoor sign on diebond. I am going to print this on white vinyl and put it on the diebond. Do I need to laminate or coat the vinyl with something for outdoor use or can I just leave it as is.

    2. If laminate is needed can I do this with a cold laminate? I don't have a laminator large enough for this sign. I would need something that I can apply with a big squeegee.

    3. I am also doing some 6' x 2' banners with grommets for a regular customer that we have done before through a sign shop. They did them and coated them with a "soft brush laminate" some kind of liquid I take it. What is this and where would I get it?

    4. Does anyone have a supplier for signs supplies in Canada?

    Any help would be great. If I need to post this in a different forum please let me know.


  2. 2B

    2B Very Active Member

    May 5, 2011
    see read for the replies
  3. Red Ball

    Red Ball Very Active Member

    Aug 20, 2008
    Welcome from the Kingdom of Texas!
  4. Craig Sjoquist

    Craig Sjoquist Major Contributor

    Jun 18, 2004
    Welcome to a outstanding Signs 101 & people.

    PHILJOHNSON Sales Manager

    Jul 23, 2010
    Seattle, WA

    Hello and a warm welcome from Seattle, WA!
  6. Scott Reynolds

    Scott Reynolds Active Member

    Feb 5, 2005
    That's it!! I'm going to buy some #15 scalpels, sutures, syringes and a bone saw....

    My doctor has been the middle man for too long!! I'll be posting a bunch of questions tomorrow....
  7. IronHawk

    IronHawk Member

    Jun 28, 2012
    Welcome from Omaha! :popcorn:
  8. gabagoo

    gabagoo Major Contributor

    Oct 10, 2006
    Vaughan, Ontario
    Also contact Proveer / EM plastics / Acme Sign Supply. Best you get pricing that is fair...new accounts generally pay top price with ND so beware.
  9. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

    Jun 7, 2006
    Welcome from Pennsylvania........................
  10. SD&F

    SD&F Very Active Member

    Oct 4, 2009
    Howdie from North Georgia!!!
  11. printpros

    printpros New Member

    Aug 3, 2012
    Thanks for all the welcomes. From several of the posts I have read I can see that this is a awesome forum. Lots of experience here to pull from.

    Pat I have ordered some cold UV laminate for the sign. It is being printed on white gloss vinyl.

    3. I am also doing some 6' x 2' banners with grommets for a regular customer that we have done before through a sign shop. They did them and coated them with a "soft brush laminate" some kind of liquid I take it. What is this and where would I get it?
    laminating a banner is NON common practice, banner are considered short term signs, did they use a "matte" banner material so there is no gloss?

    This was printed on 13oz white banner material. Not sure if it was gloss. The banner was for outdoor use and I don't think it was a solvent printer they used. Some older HP model I think. Maybe that is why they laminated it.

    Thanks Pat for the ND Graphics info. I downloaded their catalogue. I remember using them a very, very long time ago for something and had completely forgot about them. I will let them know you referred me.

    Thanks, gabagoo for the other suppliers I will look them up as well. I am sure I will have many more questions to follow.

  12. Bigdawg

    Bigdawg Just Me

    Jun 8, 2005
    Sunny Florida
    First of all... welcome Bob!

    Sounds like you have grown... good for you! I come from an offset background so the best advice I can give you is that sign printing is a different critter. Thrown out all those 300 dpi, CMYK things that matter in offset! This is a really good place to learn - just read, read, read. Were you doing the layouts and sending them over to be printed? Because layout is different for banners and such than it is for things like postcards or business cards.

    This isn't some shoe company that doesn't want to buy signs getting their own printer. My background was in offset printing and design too... and it evolved to include sign work and my own equipment. I personally feel it is a natural extension - with technology today, many industries are starting to cross-over and you either grow or you lose the customers.

    Our sign company offers printing services - granted I use a wholesaler, but if I was doing enough continual business that it was more economically feasible to have my own equipment... you're darn tootin' I'd be buying it. And asking lots of questions or hiring someone to run it.
  13. printpros

    printpros New Member

    Aug 3, 2012
    Yes we have always done all the layout and subbed the work out. We have been doing large format and some sign stuff for probably 15yrs just not in house. Our customers knew we didn't do it in house they just trusted us to get it done.

    I don't really want the sign work, like sign poles and such but will do the small stuff. Customers don't want to go to several places to get their stuff done if I can do it in house now I will otherwise I will sub it out or send them to a "sign shop".

    I will be more focused on the roll up banners, posters, hanging banners and stuff. We have enough work to justify getting a machine to do it in house so we made the leap. We are also almost the last "printer" in town to get a large format machine even though we have been offering the service the longest.

    I think it is easier for a printer to get into the sign side rather than a sign company to get into printing. Printing equipment and related finishing equipment is expensive. I just finished a 3yr lease on my digital printing equipment that I bought out. It was costing me close to $10,000 a month for the equipment. It is down to about $3,000 per month in "click charges" There is no substantial piece of equipment I can purchase for the printing side of the company for less than $20,000. I also think it is a natural extension to our business.

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