New stretchable ink from Mimaki looks set to change the way we print

May 03, 2016

Mimaki is set to change the way vacuum moulded, or thermoformed applications are created with the launch a unique, stretchable ink suitable for a wide range of thermoforming applications.

The company says its new LUS-350 ink will stretch up to 350% when heated to between 120 deg.C and 200 deg.C and will be of special interest to those requiring exceptional hardness and durability for the production of items such as automotive parts.

Mimaki says that until now it was necessary for objects to be formed prior to the images being applied manually or by screen printing, which is a time consuming and expensive process. This new ink technology now allows thermoformed objects to be imaged before forming, using Mimaki digital printers running inks that will not crack or otherwise be damaged during the heat-based forming process. Mimaki says this process will provide a beautiful finish for a wide range of applications such as car parts, mock-ups, moulded signs and more.

After cooling to room temperature, the ink's rigidity is restored, while securely adhering to the moulded product without cracking or peeling. These characteristics, says Mimaki, make the new ink unique in providing the necessary rigidity, durability and conformability to serve a broad range of applications without any compromise in image quality.

Mimaki LUS-350 ink is compatible with the Mimaki UJF-7151plus and JFX200-2513 printers and will be available this summer in CMYK, white and a unique clear ink.

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