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Should I buy the LEJ-640?

Discussion in 'Roland' started by jadkins86, Mar 17, 2014.

  1. jadkins86

    jadkins86 New Member

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    Aug 26, 2013
    I am looking into the market of purchasing a new printer to go with my aging Roland VP-540. I have seen the Roland LEJ-640 Hybrid UV-LED and very interested due to the size and pricing, but have hear many negatives regarding speed and acceptance of certain materials. I am limited on space to have a printer but not too constricted. I would like to buy a used larger true flatbed, but thought the new roland hybrid would work for my needs. The printer would be use to print directly to coroplast, acrylics, aluminum, pvc, and polycarbonates. The VP would still be used for over flow. My main concerns are for better looks on backlit graphics and reduce cost of application. But printing 1 - 4x8 an hour does not feel the void I have. Or should I just fix up the VP-540 with new heads and go on my merry way with a paid for printer?
    Thanks for any advice.
    Jason
    Jerry's Signs & Awnings
     
  2. gritsonis

    gritsonis New Member

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    Sep 16, 2013
    My 2 cents-

    I worked in the sign industry for about 5 years before switching over to the packaging world. Now I have been doing package design/prepress for about a year. We recently purchased the lej-640 in Dec of last year. The printer can do wonderful things that have blown the minds of many of our usual customers. I am getting very skilled at learning the ways of clear ink. It has expanded our gamut for what we can produce now with the ability to do spot coatings and simulated embossing etc which are a huge appeal for the packaging industry ofcourse.
    The lowest resolution we run is 720x360 has a nice quick speed to it with great quality results. However this printer to me seems best suited for short run gimmicky/specialty printing. If I owned a sign shop I would be more interested in a work horse type printer. Something that can print edge to edge that doesn't have steel grit rollers. If this printer was a car it would be a Cadillac. But if your into printing large format signs, you should be looking for a Ford Bronco. Don't fool yourself into buying this printer just because of the fancy things it can do. I do not see the purpose of having a clear ink printer for a sign shop anyway. I hope this helps.
     
  3. kanini

    kanini Member

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    Jul 13, 2012
    Finland
    In theory it looks like a great printer. But then you see only 220 ml ink carts, very slow print speed compared to other flatbeds and a pinch roller feed system. Also, you still need to laminate if you want the print to last outdoors for more than 2-3 years. In my opinon you get a flatbed to avoid the work step to mount a printed image to a substrate (speed, and a lot of boards to mount) or to get the loook of direct print on for example acrylic or metal. Since the LEJ doesn't have the speed you should get it if you're after the direct to substrate print look.
    I'm sure it has its place but I'd suggest you take a good look at if it's the right printer for you. I thought we needed a flatbed but after looking at why you get a flatbed and what the numbers say black on white we went with more roll-to-roll machines. I'm sure it would be a great toy, but to me the numbers don't add up with the LEJ.
    I'd love to hear some success stories with this printer though, so please chime in!
     
  4. jadkins86

    jadkins86 New Member

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    Aug 26, 2013
    Yeah kinda what I was thinking

    That is the same line that I was thinking, great features but not enough speed or substrate range to justify the price in a sign shop. Any suggestions of an alternative or a way that I can fit a large FAT-bed printer in my shop. I could do it just would hate to rearrange an entire shop and worried about dust/debris getting in the prints.
     
  5. rturner381

    rturner381 Member

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    Jan 8, 2010
    Primary considerations

    With the flatbed, your primary considerations would include: Workflow, Clean environment, Power, and Equipment footprint. Once these issues are 100% GO, then the consideration goes to WHICH printer and PRICE. :thumb:
     
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