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Digital Printing with UV Inks Re-Imagines the Possibilities for Decorative Surfaces
The beauty, versatility and durability of decorative surfaces have made dramatic impacts on newly built and renovated residences and commercial buildings for decades. They’ve created nearly unlimited design options in a wide variety of wood-based applications, cabinets, molding, flooring, furniture, countertops, store fixtures, doors and shelving.
Today’s innovative approaches to processing technologies are opening up even more ways to customize surfaces and panels to meet the aesthetic expectations of architects and designers. Digital printing with UV inks in particular has changed the world of what’s possible, offering greater speed and productivity, cost savings and many other production advantages.
The finishing required to decorate a wide variety of substrates demands extremely accurate solutions. Companies such as Cefla Finishing are embracing the challenge of precision with leading-edge machines capable of printing on any surface.
“No one is more focused on supporting trends and innovations in surface and panel processing than we are,” said Roy Pagan, business development manager at Cefla North America’s Finishing Division. “Though we are at the forefront of digital technology, we are not solely a digital printing company. We are a true finishing company.
“If a surface needs a creative solution using any sort of paint, we have the means and technology to apply it. Whether an application requires roll coating, spraying, robotics, manual or semi-manual processing, you name it, we have the decades of experience and technical expertise to achieve exceptional results.”
Personalization on demand
Today, digital printing with UV inks enables Cefla to help its customers achieve great personalization on any material in a wide range of sizes. High optical resolution and a wide color gamut guarantee maximum flexibility and realization of even the most complex projects. With virtually unlimited decoration range, a plethora of colors, and simple operator interfaces with touchscreen panels, service providers can always be up and running to meet changing consumer demand. The wider color gamut UV inks offer means architects gain the flexibility to match existing swatches, achieving more vibrant hues and pattern accuracy.
“If a project involves a UV pigmented ink, whether it’s a UV clear coating, white, water-based or solvent, Cefla has the technology to apply it,” Pagan said.
Combining technologies and using digital scanning are also refining the art of creating beautiful surfaces. For example, when rotogravure printing is used to create traditional laminates that mimic natural materials, the result is often a repetitive pattern without much dimension. In contrast, digital scanning technology makes it possible to take images of samples of a wood species and manipulate the files to capture characteristics such as light-play and shadow. Pagan and his colleagues also are working to advance direct digital printing technology even further with innovations that involve inert coating. For example, to create the look of rosewood, inert coating can be applied to impart texture before the printing process, rather than embossing afterward.
A bright future
Digital printing with vibrant UV inks is helping to create a bright and vivid future for anyone in the business of creating beautiful surfaces and panels. The ability to reproduce images on virtually any substrate is giving design architects and fabricators a growing number of ways to make the world much more visually interesting.
About Cefla Finishing
Cefla and its subsidiaries have more than a half-century of experience in creating and refining processes to advance the industry’s technological innovation. In the 1960s, the company began manufacturing the first spray booths and linear ovens for drying lacquer on panels. In the 1980s, Cefla designed, manufactured and sold the first carousel spraying machine. In the 1990s, it developed a spraying machine with a patented belt conveying system that challenged the conventions of the finishing world. The 21st century has brought continuous product and technological innovation, including Pixart digital printing and patented Inert Coating 3D Technology by Sorbini, the combined technologies that create any 3D effect for surface and edge preparation for all panel types, including MDF, HDF, raw chipboard and honeycomb.