UV Web Printing -- Rays of Opportunity
Zub states that the new presses help Beldar maintain existing clients' needs while providing the opportunities to gain new business. "The SR-200s have brought us into new and profitable markets, namely direct mail and 50˝ jumbo rolls for statements and invoices," he says. "Our position in the industry has changed from a business forms manufacturer to a print communications provider."
UV technology is also catching the eye of niche printers, especially security printers and package printers. In the post-9/11 environment, security printing is garnering even more attention, notes Midlik. "We're seeing a growing interest in thermochromatic inks and the added level of confidentiality and security they can bring to documents," she says.
UV has also garnered the eye of printers looking to move into the ever-growing realm of packaging. "Packaging has been a growing market for us, because of the increased eye appeal that UV coatings can bring to a product," Midlik claims.
And it's not just traditional heatset printers that are moving into UV. There is a growing interest among coldest printers. Prime UV is working with a number of coldest printers, mainly newspaper printers, who are retrofitting their presses with UV capabilities in order to bring a more heatset look to their product, particularly with inserts.
Another supplier of dryers, William Fuchs, president of F.D.V. Wm. Fuchs-Jac. De Vries, reports that he is also seeing a growing number of non-heatset printers use UV drying systems to eliminate marking and tracking problems. Non-heatset printers are also interested in UV's ability to run better grades of paper stock, thus producing better print quality, according to Fuchs.
Responding to the demand for UV technology, paper manufacturers are creating more and more substrates that can be run on UV presses. Some substrates can now only be run on a UV press.
Another emerging trend is that of hybrid-UV technology, notes Fuchs. Hybrid combines the properties of UV and conventional inks. "They enable the printer to run jobs on-press without special rollers or long cleanups between conventional and UV jobs," he adds.