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Author Topic: Largest Possible CANVAS Prints?  (Read 3733 times)
Snook
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« on: March 21, 2009, 06:15:19 PM »
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Hello guys. Was wondering if anybody could let me know the BIGGEST size I can print to canvas.
Are the 66" printers the biggest?
Who in the US does the biggest best prints, specially to canvas?
Also if so, is there anyway to some how stitch the canvas together after the fact so they are even larger?
Wanted to print larger than 66" .Actually where I live there is nothing bigger than 44" HP Z3000.

Thanks for any ideas or possibiliteis.

Snook
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bill t.
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« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2009, 07:22:58 PM »
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At that kind of size the limitations have more to do with the amount of shop area you have available.  And the size of clean surfaces you have, etc.  Handling those big mamas is a chore all by itself.

Most cities have several sign printers set up to do very large prints indeed.  A cooperative one will help you out with profiles, smaller test prints, etc.  Other won't want to be bothered with you.  Find one you can work with and a develop a relationship...it's your best approach to prints that size.

Of course you CAN buy a gigantor printer yourself, but prepared to find yourself sucked into the sign industry just to keep up on payments.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2009, 07:23:35 PM by bill t. » Logged
tived
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« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2009, 11:37:00 PM »
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there are printers much bigger, but you will be looking to the sign industry, I think 120in would be a nice big size but then again, unless you are wrapping up a building, you could stitch these together in little strips of 3m wide and the roll length of 100m...but its going to cost yah.

I am not in the US, but I know of people here in Australia who most likely could do this. When you buy the printer, remember to build the space for it big enough for so you can move things around, approx 3 times the size of what you print, including room for a forklift to move your media around for you :-)

best of luck, let us know how you go, sounds like an interesting project

Henrik
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Snook
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« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2009, 08:53:52 AM »
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Ok guys I know it is possible to print bigger,
But what I want to know is if it is possible to print to CANVAS Like on a Espon or HP type print BIGGER?
Do those Banner billboard printers able to print to Canvas and is their Canvas for printing photographs Bigger?Huh

Also How do you Stitch the canvas (smaller) ones together if needed? Is there a special company that does that??

Thanks for any further information.
What I want to do is print and image to CANVAS at bigger than 66" wide which is the widest InkJet printer to Cnavas that I know of?
Thanks
Snook
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Ernst Dinkla
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« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2009, 10:41:06 AM »
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Quote from: Snook
Ok guys I know it is possible to print bigger,
But what I want to know is if it is possible to print to CANVAS Like on a Espon or HP type print BIGGER?
Do those Banner billboard printers able to print to Canvas and is their Canvas for printing photographs Bigger?Huh

Also How do you Stitch the canvas (smaller) ones together if needed? Is there a special company that does that??

Thanks for any further information.
What I want to do is print and image to CANVAS at bigger than 66" wide which is the widest InkJet printer to Cnavas that I know of?
Thanks
Snook

Sign printers maximum size will be about 20 feet wide. Printing on vinyl impregnated canvas or synthetic fabric for trailers or large illuminated signs. Usually this kind of media is sealed together instead of stitched if it has to be larger than the 20 feet wide. Solvent and UV curing inks. Doesn't have the image quality and appeal you seem to need.

The high volume canvas shops switched to (eco)solvent printers and the canvas qualities that are suited for that type of ink. The printers usually have a bigger minimum droplet size and a lower image quality if compared to the most recent wide formats discussed in this list. It is relative though, canvas isn't the media for the highest image quality possible, image data for 6 feet wide prints usually is already stretched too much.  Canvas up to 10 feet wide (Fredrix) is available for that kind of equipment.

I doubt there's canvas for water based inks beyond the 64" size.  If I recall it correctly there was a Roland with water based inks at 180 cm (6 feet) wide but if Canvas is available for that machine it will be Roland branded. Stitching canvas will be difficult, the inkjet coating will break at the seam and it will be hard to keep the tension equal along the seam. If the solutions above are not usable then it may be wiser to laminate/glue the canvas parts on a larger canvas.



met vriendelijke groeten, Ernst Dinkla

New: Dinkla Canvas Wrap Actions for Photoshop
http://www.pigment-print.com/dinklacanvaswraps/index.html

Try: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Wide_Inkjet_Printers/



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Scott Martin
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« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2009, 10:47:07 AM »
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For the last year and a half I've been making and exhibiting 5x7 foot (60"x86") prints made on a Canon iPF 9100. I have them stretched on 2.25" deep custom made stretcher bars for about $150 (pricing at this size are usually double this). I consider this to be about the largest *reasonable* size canvas inkjet prints that common users can expect to make. While many RIPs can make longer prints (and the Canon iPF print plug-in allows prints up to 708 inches (59 feet) without a RIP) having them stretched or attached to panels is problematic. It would be easier to tile larger images onto multiple prints, stretch them separately and display them together as a diptych, tryptic, etc. FYI, whenever you stretch canvas around stretcher bars one needs to consider the image area that goes on the sides and plan your tiling overlap areas carefully when tiling an image into several smaller prints.

I'm not aware of any canvas materials that are available in rolls larger than 60/64 inches. Stitching strips of canvas together would be problematic - I doubt you could find anyone that would be willing to even try this for you. If you want to go larger than this I would consider looking into signage printers as Henrik mentioned. I've done a fair amount of color management consulting with signage printers over the past 15 years so I'm pretty familiar with the technology. In fact, it's my curiosity with grand format printing at these client's shops that has brought me to acquiring a 9100 for printing my own fine art work. Some signage printers (like the Scitex XLjet) are sixteen feet wide and at these extremely large sizes, printing on vinyl is the norm because of it's availability, affordability, durability and handling characteristics. Signage print vendors use hot air "welding" machines to melt half inch overlaping strips of vinyl to each other. With this technique I've seen my clients wrap 20 story buildings on all four sides. The limits are constrained to one's budget.  

I've long encouraged artists not to overlook using these signage printers for their work. While the dot size is much larger (~4 picoliters) than we are used to with inkjet (~1.5 picoliters), so are typical viewing distances for large work. While printing resolutions for these signage printers used to be stuck at 600 dpi, they are now creeping up to 1040-1440dpi range When combined with 8-16 passes and 4+ inksets, the effective visibility of printer dots is quite low. Accuracy of dot placement is also another area that has just recently improved dramatically - some of these machines can now render 4 point type with excellent readability. The color gamut of solvent printers is particularly fantastic and may eventually steal away market share from todays pigment printers.

Also of note are UV-curable printers that signage print vendors also have. The color gamut isn't as wide as solvent printers but they are capable of printing onto just about anything. I've seen some pretty nice artwork printed directly onto large sheets of foamcore, aluminum, wood and even glass at surprisingly low all-inclusive costs.

As photographers, we have replaced our silver gelatin tunnel vision with inkjet tunnel vision and it can be really fun to break-out and try something different. Good luck with your venture into grand format printing!

P.S. Straight forward grand format printing can be disappointing even with with 50+ megapixel source images. Enhancing localized contrast and adding subtle amounts of noise are common keys to satisfying grand-format prints and the techniques for this are worthy of a whole other lengthy discussion.
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bill t.
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« Reply #6 on: March 22, 2009, 12:25:14 PM »
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To actually answer part of your question, I just looked at my notes and apparently there was a company in my city that made big prints by literally sewing together the output from a 44" printer.  I jotted down "lineup good to a1/8" at the seams."  Unfortunately they went out of business, maybe that's an omen.

In thinking about it, if you printed with say 1/2 inch overlaps you could lay the pieces emulsion to emulsion and hit it with a sewing machine maybe 7/16" in from the edge.  Dunno, sounds to me like yet another entry on the very long list of ways to screw up a print, but after a few tries it could start to work.

The well established alternative is to shove together several prints mounted on panels.  That way you only have to screw up one print at a time.

There's an entirely different mojo to huge prints versus merely very large prints.  Strangely, rather monolithic imagery seems to work better at monumental sizes, whereas detail-rich images with a lot of texture somehow wind up being just large scale patina.

Edit...the guys who sew up car covers, canvas awnings, etc could probably teach you a lot.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2009, 12:39:59 PM by bill t. » Logged
enduser
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« Reply #7 on: March 23, 2009, 12:54:35 AM »
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If you live near the coast, a good sail maker would be able to join lengths easily.  Otherwise a panel mounting on one of the Alcan composite panels such as Kappa Mount and assemble on site.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2009, 12:56:21 AM by enduser » Logged
marcsitkin
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« Reply #8 on: March 23, 2009, 09:48:38 AM »
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Ultraflex offers an oversize canvas:



Artex® Canvas
Artex® Canvas is a light-weight; extremely strong and flexible canvas substrate. Artex Canvas is a high-end indoor sign and banner material and is very easy and beautiful to print on with solvent, UV or screen printing. Unlike many other canvas products Artex can be finished/welded with ease.  It can also be printed on its reverse side for an optional duller finish. Available widths range from 54” - 196”.
 


http://www.ultraflexx.com/products_specialty.htm
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Regards,

Marc Sitkin
www.digitalmomentum.com
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