Finding an edge in today's competitive environment often means taking
a chance on a new product. Two innovative materials that are opening market
opportunities for specialty imagers are AlumaJet from Horizons Imaging Systems
Group and G-Floor Graphic from Better Life Technology. The following
examples explore unique uses of each product.
Eleven years ago. Horizons Imaging Systems Group launched AlumaJet, an InkJet
printable aluminum that delivers photographic quality images directly onto
metal. But only recently has the product gained traction in the specialty
imaging community - winning the 2012 SGIA Product of the Year Award in the
rigid media category.
According to Product Manager
Sam Wainer, the company is now seeing interest from photographic printers and
sign shops looking to diversify their product reach. Wainer says that because
of the higher perceived value of real metal, items printed on AlumaJet - such
as business cards and promotional products-tend to command higher prices, look
more valuable and are less likely to be discarded.
Finding an edge in today's
competitive environment often means taking a chance on a new
Greg Gawlowski, a travel
photographer whose work has been used by calendar, poster and magazine
publishers throughout the country, wanted a distinctive way to display his
work. He chose AlumaJet primarily because of the brilliance of the colors and
detail of the images. Because AlumaJet also accepts standard photo-quality
inks, it produces unmatched image quality.
Another customer. Lasting
Commemoratives, utilized AlumaJet because the material is real metal. The
company, which reproduces diplomas and newspaper articles, considered
alternative "metal-looking" plastics, but opted for real metal
because of its higher-perceived value.
Several architectural signage
and design companies have also switched to AlumaJet for indoor way-finding
signage. With AlumaJet's on-demand printing capability, office name tags, maps
and other items that used to take weeks to print can now be prepared in one
The new G-Floor Graphic media from Better Life Technology is also
expanding conventional printing boundaries. Last year, a US architecture firm
needed a media solution to display its entry at the International Architects
Exhibition in Venice, Italy. The display contained more than 120 examples of
projects done by architects and designers, and instead of showcasing it on the
wall, the display was to be installed on the floor. When selecting a media,
many elements were considered, including:
- The three-month long exhibition o Intense foot
- Easy to clean, install and de-stall
- Safety (non-skid)
- Print quality
With a long list of
requirements, the designers quickly learned that traditional adhesive floor
displays would not be an option, as adhesives would damage the floor tiles,
They instead sought out the G-Floor Graphic, which is printed on the underside
and backed with white so it is protected from foot traffic.
According to Better Life
Technology, the display required three rolls of flooring (8.5 feet wide and 34
feet long) for each room plus the rotunda, for a total of 15 rolls. Each roll
had to be seamed and aligned with adjoining rolls as well as with the floor in
adjacent rooms. And to ensure a smooth process, G-Floor representatives in the
US talked non-professional installers in Italy through the install process by
phone and Skype. Although the project was no small feat, the display was highly
successful and earned an honorable mention by the exhibition.
These are just two product
examples that are expanding market opportunities for specialty imagers. For a
complete list of the latest substrates and media on the market, check out
SGIA's online Find Equipment & Supplies resource at
SGIA.org Keyword: FindEquipment.
When we read this article in the SGIA Journal, we knew from its first sentence
we had to share it with our dealer/distributor/readers. The sentence read:
"Finding an edge in today's competitive environment often means taking a
chance on a new product."
So, with Thanks to the folks at
SGIA for Permission to Reprint.