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roland versamm here - on my 3rd one

usc sells hp latex printers too -  but not a print and cut machine in one like I personally prefer

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Well everybody wants to start doing vinyl printing until they find out how much it costs for the equipment and the maintenance...

Wow... thanks for the useless answer. Let's pretend I'm not living on Welfare and I'm actually interested in the idea...

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In all the research I've done, (Have still yet to buy a printer because of start up cost, material cost, and maintenance.)  the Roland VersaCamms are a great value, another option is the Roland BN-20 its slower and smaller.

 

I've looked at just about everything, and because of dakotagrax experiences with the Rolands makes me look more toward.

 

I would prefer to have print/cut as well.

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If I was going that route I would probably lean toward the Summa Thermal printer. Supposed to be less maintenance woes. I don't know enough about it and am not thinking about a printer at this point so i have not pursued either style other than a cursory review at first before I realized how high the cost was going to be. 

 

 

https://www.summausa.com/collections/dc-series

 

I would be curious to get an informed comparison from Dakota on these DC series printer cutters vs the solvent or eco-solvent printers from someone who has experience. (hint hint Scott)

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If I was going that route I would probably lean toward the Summa Thermal printer. Supposed to be less maintenance woes. I don't know enough about it and am not thinking about a printer at this point so i have not pursued either style other than a cursory review at first before I realized how high the cost was going to be. 

 

 

https://www.summausa.com/collections/dc-series

 

I would be curious to get an informed comparison from Dakota on these DC series printer cutters vs the solvent or eco-solvent printers from someone who has experience. (hint hint Scott)

 

I forgot about thermal printers! Looked at a Gerber FX a while back but the single color at a time was a negative to me. The Summa will hold multiple colors, DC4s look like they are reasonably priced for a used one, just look like they are slow, they don't have the same resolution as a printer, but lamination isn't required. That seems debatable from what I've read.

 

Need to find a good price per sqft calculator to compare printed vs thermal.

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If I was going that route I would probably lean toward the Summa Thermal printer. Supposed to be less maintenance woes. I don't know enough about it and am not thinking about a printer at this point so i have not pursued either style other than a cursory review at first before I realized how high the cost was going to be. 

 

 

https://www.summausa.com/collections/dc-series

 

I would be curious to get an informed comparison from Dakota on these DC series printer cutters vs the solvent or eco-solvent printers from someone who has experience. (hint hint Scott)

I don't have any experience with the thermo resin - was told by 2 people with the gerber that they couldn't do gradients - areas had to be solid colors but sure looks like that summa can do it from that picture.  other thing was the price per ft was supposedly more expensive - but again absolutely no personal experience with that.  I bought some decals from a couple of people with gerbers for black printed on chrome for domed decals I did

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I don't have any experience with the thermo resin - was told by 2 people with the gerber that they couldn't do gradients - areas had to be solid colors but sure looks like that summa can do it from that picture.  other thing was the price per ft was supposedly more expensive - but again absolutely no personal experience with that.  I bought some decals from a couple of people with gerbers for black printed on chrome for domed decals I did

I haven't looked into what cost to print is for the ribbon but it sure sounds like low maintenance which is one of the huge drawbacks that has kept me away. I have an embroidery machine to pay off at the moment but I may consider something like this in a  year or two if it is in fact something that can just sit there without a problem. I have just never wanted to be in a position where I felt I HAD to print because I needed to get some ink flowing.

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After some research on the Summa DC4, looks like its about $1.50 a sqft for ribbon, then what ever material you print on, which depends on what you buy. I really like that I can print directly to inexpensive 651.

 

This forum has some pretty impressive examples of what can be done with the Summa thermal printers.

 

http://www.digital-graphica.com/phpBB3/viewforum.php?f=9

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The problem with the summa is the ribbon is only 100mm or 3.97 inches. The most common complaints were noticeable overlap and banding when your design is larger than 100mm. The Gerber foils are 300mm. This combined with the high cost per inch turn me off to thermal.

I decided to wait and watch how latex printers evolve. If I had to choose right now I would probably grab a Roland solvent printer.

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I moved from Gerber thermals to HP Latex, and wish I had done it years ago!  I was seriously looking at the newer Summa thermals, but decided against it quickly after seeing the HP and Roland printers in action.

 

I was also looking for a single print and cut machine, and after buying the HP and Graphtec and Summa cutters, I am sooooo glad I didn't get a single print/cut machine.

 

The HP 110 54" latex NEW is down to $7K, which is a steal if you ask me.  The downside of the HP machines, is you need a 208v circuit installed, which is just a one-time cost of about $500-700 bucks or less depending where you live, home vs commercial, etc.

 

No odors, no waiting on prints for a day to laminate, etc, a happy HP latex owner considering a 2nd one already!

 

Our workload is decals, signs, and high qty of small things.  Example, last night we printed off 5k hard hat stickers for a repeat customer, and I did it in batches and was able to utilize both of our cutters to speed things along, so depending on your volume, you may want to consider separate print/cut devices.

 

We don't do auto wraps, banners, coro signs, etc.  Lots of smaller signs and cut-only decal work.

 

To be fair, we went and saw a demo of the Roland printers, and loved em and most likely would have bought one except for two things:  (1) odor was bad and we run out of our home, and (2) the delay from print to laminate to cut was a day or two, and we like to print/cut/ship the same day if we can.

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