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Small Format Printer

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Printers' started by John L, Dec 14, 2010.

  1. John L

    John L Very Active Member

    Apr 28, 2007
    I've had a couple wide format machines. Have since sold them off and dont really miss them. I've been sending all of our printing to a few local "wholesale" inkjet printers that actually print so cheap it didn't pay me to even have a large format printer here any more.

    One aspect I do miss though is the ability to run off a few hundred small decals when we need them. Hard hat size, sign labels, etc. Nothing larger than maybe 12" square, or maybe 12x 24. Usually it's just multicolor vector artwork.

    Is there any dependable, inexpensive print/cut solution for only small items like this.

    I've seen dozens of used Edges out there, and there's even one for sale local with the plotter for $1500 but I know almost nothing about them. I think I'd prefer a small inkjet over an Edge if there is such available.
  2. thmooch

    thmooch Active Member

    Mar 13, 2007
    Gerber Edges are awesome. The have been around forever(kinda). Short run, quick turnaround, great machine. Back in the day It was the Stuff, and still is very useful.
  3. iSign

    iSign Major Contributor

    Nov 29, 2003
    Kahului, Maui
    can't beat the edge for this.... and there really isn't even much of a second place either... get an edge! (mine runs at least 3-1/2 to 4 days a week for the last 10 years)
  4. TheSellOut

    TheSellOut Very Active Member

    Feb 8, 2008
    Correct me if I am wrong but Edge prints far outlast inkjets and are a lot less maintenance. Almost sounds like the perfect machine in this instance.

    Since you will also be subbing out prints to a solvent printer, one thing you might want to consider is...if you would notice a major difference in the print of a file produced on each machine?
    and I don't know the answer to that:popcorn:
  5. John L

    John L Very Active Member

    Apr 28, 2007
    If this guy can show me it run something I think I'm gonna buy it today. 1500 seems cheaper than even ebay auctions. If I get it I'll probably be searching the past Edge threads and leaning on you guys.

  6. Typestries

    Typestries Very Active Member

    Jan 8, 2007
    NJ | VT
    John if you need edge help with the edge, give me a shout. I bought one new 16 years ago and even with all of our inkjet goodies, we still use it. I just cant seem to want to part with her, even though her usage is way down. It would be perfect for what you want to do-use it whenever, no maint, etc.

    If you go to see this one you mention there is a specific test print you should do to visually judge printhead health. Usually it's a series of percentage fills, 12" x 12" in 40-80% printed ideally using cobalt blue foil, it will show you if the head is printing consistently across the width.
  7. The Equipment Guy

    The Equipment Guy Member

    Dec 16, 2009
    I still sell a couple of Edges a month, they are a great machine. For $1500 you need to know what you are getting and make sure it works...thats a good deal. Remember that you will need software (most likely Omega) and a 15" plotter. If these are included at that price....jump on it quick!

    With Omega, some versions work only with certain versions of windows. Ask which one they have just to help you with compatibility. The newer Omegas can run all the older versions of the Edge.

    With the Edges you should see a printhead test. Print a 1 foot by 1 foot square in both a 50% halftone and a 10% to 90% fade. You should not see white lines running the length of the vinyl (burnt pixel) or sections where the fade looks like it has shadowed sections (bad clutch) In either case it means a bad printhead. However, many folks do not print with anything but spot color and therefor even a bad printhead can work fine for them.

    A Gerber Edge that opens sideways rather than front to back is either the Classic or the Trunnion model and is no longer supported by Gerber for replacement parts.

    It will greatly simplify contour cutting if you get a "plus" series plotter to go with the Edge.

    Hope that helps.

  8. ryank

    ryank New Member

    Aug 9, 2009
    why an edge over say a summa ?

    The cost is comparable, and you get a much wider print?


  9. Vital Designs

    Vital Designs Vital Designs

    May 29, 2005
    Dalls, Texas
    I actually run my edge with flexi and use a summa cutter for contour cutting. I don't use it too much any more but there are a couple of applications where you "just can't get there" with an inkjet.
  10. toomeycustoms

    toomeycustoms Member

    Nov 18, 2008
    Nor Cal
    I just got the new sign warehouse catalog and it looks like they have a new desktop PrismJet DT system. 13" 8 color ink setup. Claims 3 years outdoor without lamination. No price for the printer by itself and you will still need a cutter. It is kinda slow, 13 minutes per sq ft in "normal" mode.
  11. HulkSmash

    HulkSmash Major Contributor

    Sep 10, 2010
    13 minutes? Must be a typo........
  12. Mosh

    Mosh Major Contributor

    Oct 19, 2009
    A small 30" roland would be better than that.....prints and cuts and 3+year life un lammmed i have stuff out there going on 5 years un laminated....
  13. Custom_Grafx

    Custom_Grafx Very Active Member

    Nov 23, 2008
    Wouldn't be as much learning curve for the OP as well coz they've already had experience with inkjet before?

    Edge is great, but the small roland will do photos and whatever as well. I know you say it's just for small vector stuff - which is perfect for the edge, but yeah... roland is just more versatile. maybe one thing would be a roland deal breaker... if you wanted to print solids/white ink... then it's a no brainer... go the edge.
  14. TresL

    TresL Very Active Member

    Oct 24, 2005
    The Edge has things it does and does it well.
    I've been looking for a used one for awhile.

    But yeah, overall the Roland is more versatile and cost freindly to run.
  15. weaselboogie

    weaselboogie Very Active Member

    Apr 23, 2006
    You're talking about the sp-300 right?

    Not to be confused with Roland's lemons.. the pc-60 and pc-600. Both worth their weight in current recycled steel prices.
  16. The Equipment Guy

    The Equipment Guy Member

    Dec 16, 2009
    I have a used Sp300 coming up within the next month. Keep in mind when you look at 30" machines that all ranges of print material are not always on the shelf in 30"

  17. Jackpine

    Jackpine Major Contributor

    Roland is coming out with a 20" Versacam

    I was told by a dealer that Roland is coming out with a 20" Versacam, print n' cut for garment transfers and small decals for the craft shows and small shops.
  18. thewvsignguy

    thewvsignguy Active Member

    Feb 21, 2008
    Grantsville, MD
    We still use or ol' PC60 colorcamm for smaller stuff 1-2sq. ft jobs. Although it's about 11 years old it still prints fine for those "gotta have em' today decals".

    Signwarehouse has a new 13" eco-sol printer in their new catalog. I can't find it on there site but I did not look very hard. Price was not to bad as I recall, I'll get more info on it tomorrow.

    Here it is:

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