EPSON inkjet printer with white ink

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TurkeyVolumeGuessingMan
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EPSON inkjet printer with white ink

Post by TurkeyVolumeGuessingMan » Tue Mar 14, 2017 11:35 pm

Does anybody know about the Epson Ultrachrome printer that can print white ink? I wonder if this will work on decals?

EDIT: Ah, CRAP! This thing goes for over eight thousand bucks!

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Kylwell
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Post by Kylwell » Wed Mar 15, 2017 12:07 pm

The big issue is where to get 16x20 inch decal paper.

Oh and inking up a printer this size can run 4 figures.
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Post by sbaxter » Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:10 pm

I have an Epson 9800 Stylus Pro inkjet (with UltraChrome K3 ink) here in my office -- has been going strong for many years. When the time comes that I can/must get something new, a printer that includes this technology will definitely get a serious look.

And yes, even the model I use, which is at least 10 years old, had a price in four figures and uses eight different ink cartridges (cyan, magenta, yellow, black, light black, light light black, light cyan, and light magenta), each roughly the size of a VHS cassette. Each one of those cartridges costs in the neighborhood of $100 (to be fair, you get quite a lot of output from each cartridge).

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Last edited by sbaxter on Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Kylwell » Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:21 pm

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Post by sbaxter » Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:27 pm

Nice, but that model is meant to print on fabric.

The white ink will have to be refined (just to bring down the price) and trickle down to models that aren't quite so clearly niche products -- and print on larger sheets -- to get serious consideration here. Good thing the one I have is still providing beautiful output.

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Last edited by sbaxter on Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Kylwell » Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:28 pm

Fabirc, decal paper, it could work.
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Post by sbaxter » Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:34 pm

Kylwell wrote:Fabirc, decal paper, it could work.
Theoretically, it might. But it costs $20,000, requires ink cartridges that cost over $200 each, and has a limited color range (regular CMYK plus white ink). The new hotness that TVGM posted is much less expensive, at least.

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Post by Kylwell » Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:41 pm

sbaxter wrote:
Kylwell wrote:Fabirc, decal paper, it could work.
Theoretically, it might. But it costs $20,000, requires ink cartridges that cost over $200 each, and has a limited color range (regular CMYK plus white ink). The new hotness that TVGM posted is much less expensive, at least.

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It's a wide format printer and doesn't print letter sized and ink, all 8, cost about as much per cartridge.
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Post by sbaxter » Thu Mar 16, 2017 9:18 am

Kylwell wrote:It's a wide format printer and doesn't print letter sized and ink, all 8, cost about as much per cartridge.
I just wanted to note that all of the wide-format Epson inkjets I've seen, including the one I use here and the smaller one I had previously, will print on letter-size paper. It isn't a capability I use often -- the printer is usually loaded with 100-foot rolls of 44-inch wide paper -- but I have used it on letter-sized stock a few times. The additional ink cartridges, while certainly adding to the expense of consumables, do produce much more vibrant colors. They also make it so that the cartridges last longer, I believe, because the results require a smaller amount of ink from each cartridge per print than if I had to rely on conventional CMYK.

And this is just my speculation, but I would guess a fabric printer would use a thicker ink than one meant for paper. That might be a plus for decal paper, or maybe not.

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Post by Kylwell » Thu Mar 16, 2017 12:35 pm

Dude, ah'm just noting what their literature says. So will take letter sized, some won't. I've worked with dozens of wide format printers.
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Post by sbaxter » Fri Mar 17, 2017 12:37 pm

Kylwell wrote:Dude, ah'm just noting what their literature says. So will take letter sized, some won't. I've worked with dozens of wide format printers.
Yeah, I gotcha -- just trying to weigh the pros and cons of two different, potentially exciting technologies -- neither of which, of course, have I seen in action. The specs say the F2000 has a max printing area of 16x20 inches -- that leads me to think that printing on smaller pieces would probably work. For me, the fact that the fabric printer is selling for $15,000 whereas the new WT7900 will apparently be offered for around $8,000 (though it doesn't appear to actually be available yet), and is made to print on paper (specs say it is "(c)apable of printing directly on ink jet coated, paper-based proofing materials, clear and metallic films in roll or cut sheet up to 24 inches in width," I'd say the latter will be the more likely bet, if forced to choose at gunpoint.

Right now, it wouldn't fit any needs I have (if my current printer exploded or some such). It doesn't print wide enough for my needs and I'd have to do some mighty impressive dancing to make a case for needing the white ink.

Regardless, you'd need to either be selling a lot of decals or need one of these printers for its intended purpose, and therefore have access to it to print the odd decal sheet, to make it worth buying. But we can certainly hope that these technologies trickle down eventually to printers we can use for our model-building purposes.

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Post by DaveVan » Fri Mar 17, 2017 2:35 pm

Back in the day I thought the ALPS MD-5000 I bought was expensive. Please someone buy the ALPS tech and market it right......
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Post by Kylwell » Fri Mar 17, 2017 2:58 pm

DaveVan wrote:Back in the day I thought the ALPS MD-5000 I bought was expensive. Please someone buy the ALPS tech and market it right......
The problem with the Alps technology is it's incredibly wasteful and very limited on resolution. There is now a laser printer with white toner but it has no black, instead using CMY to generate a blackish tone. If Oki would just add a 5th toner bay we'd be buying them by the bucketload.

Inkjet's biggest problem is to get ultra fine droplets the fluid also needs to be even finer which typically has meant no pigment. With advances in micro, even nano, sized pigments we should start seeing this technology trickle down.
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Post by sbaxter » Sun Mar 19, 2017 7:28 am

Kylwell wrote:The problem with the Alps technology is it's incredibly wasteful and very limited on resolution.
Yeah; I have a (slowly-developing) project accurizing a few large-scale Lightning McQueen toys for which I will need quite a few decals. I can collect and/or draw the decal art myself, but some have smooth gradients that I don't think an ALPS printer can successfully reproduce, as well as some colors that would have dot-screen patterns that would be too coarse, but the high-end Epson printer I have certainly can print them beautifully. The trouble is those decals will be applied to a red surface, and the semitransparent nature of the results from the inkjet is a problem. My tentative solution is to find someone with access to an ALPS printer who can print an all-white version of the images I need, and then apply the smooth inkjet-printed art over the ALPS white decals.

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Post by Kylwell » Sun Mar 19, 2017 12:01 pm

sbaxter wrote:
Kylwell wrote:The problem with the Alps technology is it's incredibly wasteful and very limited on resolution.
Yeah; I have a (slowly-developing) project accurizing a few large-scale Lightning McQueen toys for which I will need quite a few decals. I can collect and/or draw the decal art myself, but some have smooth gradients that I don't think an ALPS printer can successfully reproduce, as well as some colors that would have dot-screen patterns that would be too coarse, but the high-end Epson printer I have certainly can print them beautifully. The trouble is those decals will be applied to a red surface, and the semitransparent nature of the results from the inkjet is a problem. My tentative solution is to find someone with access to an ALPS printer who can print an all-white version of the images I need, and then apply the smooth inkjet-printed art over the ALPS white decals.

Qapla'

SSB
You could try printing them out on opaque white decal film then carefully trim them out. Not fun but doable.
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Post by Kekker » Sun Mar 19, 2017 2:14 pm

Or try to come as close to the background color as you can and use that as a border around your image. That way you have a little margin of error in your cutting and any bits where you cut too wide won't be as noticeable.

I've found it's usually better to cut wider around a decal than cut into the image itself. Even a minor bit of the image nicked tends to really stand out, at least to my eye. The as-close-as-possible matching border helps with that.

Kev

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Post by PACinT » Sun Mar 19, 2017 4:14 pm

I had an ALPS printer once.

The Company tried to break into the commercial printer market but .....

Their main market is various printing technologies(dry-ink, heat, laser, etc) used in Industries, cash registers, etc.

They are still around.

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