Digital print specialist JBF Digital has become the first European site to install the Epson SureColor SC-V7000 UV flatbed printer, which it says has transformed its service delivery, improved production quality and broadened its application versatility. 

The Sheerness, Kent operation specialises in the production of custom printed site hoardings and boards, exhibition graphics, window graphics, banners, posters, and other items. It aims to provide a bespoke on-demand digital printing solution and works with UK print management companies, design agencies, marketing teams and retailers.

JBF Digital managing director Joe Field explained the decision to invest: ‘We needed something to be able to keep up with the orders coming in and this was the direction in the next step of our growth. We also needed to be able to keep up with the competition and stand out from the crowd. Previously we were being out-costed, but with the V7000 we’re now more price competitive and delivering a better quality to our customers.

‘The business was really struggling at times to complete incoming orders. We were running 24 hours a day sometimes and looking to take on extra staff. Now we can take more work on, complete it to a higher quality and offer quicker lead times,’ he added.

The Epson flatbed was recommended to JBF by specialist reseller Perfect Colours. Having two SureColor SC-S80600 roll-fed solvent printers, JBF was familiar with the brand, and felt that the flatbed ‘ticked all the boxes’.

Mr Field expanded, ‘A key benefit is the ability to print directly onto the substrate. Normally we would print on vinyl, laminate, and then fix it to a board. This three-step process could involve up to three people. Now it is a one step, one person process as often the use of UV negates the need to laminate. This saves time and money. It is also more environmentally responsible as there is no need to use vinyl. We can also use eco boards and other more sustainable substrates such as 100% recycled Foamex.

‘Important too for us was the fact the white ink can be laid down in one pass. Normally this was a two-step process and this took more time and the quality was not always as good. When you are using expensive material like acrylic it is important to get it right. We also liked that it had its own red ink. No other flatbed machine prints its own red.’