The Little Guy
We recently installed press #5 at Motion Textile. I’ve affectionately nicknamed this 8-color MHM X-Type Plus “The Little Guy” (maybe I was thinking of that Portlandia sketch?).
A few thoughts on going small with this new install:
The majority of sleeve prints that we run are very simple (2-4 spot color) prints with a flash or two. We can now schedule (almost) all sleeve print jobs on this machine and leave it setup with sleeve platens for days.
We do a lot of sampling. We can effectively sample an 8-color/4-flash (using of a heat gun in place of a flash) print on this machine
Simple Spot Color
Although the majority of the designs we produce contain at least one technical print it is very often that the additional print placements are simple in nature, i.e.: full color print on front, 2-color print on back, 1-collor print on sleeve. 2/3 of these placements can be produced on our new 8-color machine rather than tying up one of our lager presses. This is super helpful on large runs.
It is rare that we ever run a discharge print job that is over 5-6 colors and this new machine feeds into a dedicated dryer. On a typical day we can now schedule all of our discharge prints on this single production line without hindering our plastisol printing.
Large Quantity Runs
Assuming basic printing where the press speed is not being driven by flash time and/or squeegee speed, the faster index speed of a small machine makes a difference in units per hour. One of our press operators was able to comfortably average 1,000 prints per hour over a 4-hour period. I don’t care what anyone says, that is fast and you are making money at that speed, even at competitive pricing.