General Formulations Announces VP of Sales

Michael Maxwell, General Formulations

Michael Maxwell, General Formulations

General Formulations (Sparta, MI) announced the addition of Michael Maxwell as vice president of sales.

Prior to his new role at General Formulations, Maxwell held a variety of positions in industry-leading companies including Mimaki USA, Gerber Scientific, and Reece Supply Co., according to a press release from the company. In his new role, Maxwell will direct the sales and customer service management functions in the US, Canada, Latin America, Australia, and New Zealand.

“Michael’s industry knowledge, relationships, and extensive background working with key printers and distribution partners will be a huge asset for General Formulations,” Mike Clay, president of General Formulations, is quoted in the release. “We are extremely excited to have Michael in his new role and leading the GF sales team.”

For more information, visit generalformulations.com.

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PrintFactory Expands to North America

PrintFactoryIn order to serve its North American clients, PrintFactory, one of the top suppliers of large format printing software and services, announces that they will open up an office in Atlanta, Georgia, to expand their global network. The announcement comes at a time when the company’s global installed base has exceeded 10,000 users, representing the largest expansion in the company’s history.

PrintFactory’s suite of award-winning RIP-based workflow software has been, and will continue to be, available in the U.S. and Canada since 2011 through its valued partner and distributor GMG Americas.

“As we continue to use technology to simplify the wide-format printing process, today marks another milestone. It is our pleasure to acknowledge the great work done by our partner GMG Americas to date, and to continue that work together,”says Erik Strik, CEO of PrintFactory. “Our rapidly growing installed base in North America requires a stronger presence in the region in order to service it. We will now provide local support to our Distributor (GMG Americas) dealers and customers in the US and Canada from our PrintFactory USA Atlanta office.”

Simon Landau, global director of Strategic Projects, will lead the PrintFactory USA Sales effort, assisted by Vio Moutia, customer success manager. Michelle Bodary, a former GMG employee, will lead the PrintFactory USA Customer Support team.

“We’re pleased to see this additional investment from PrintFactory in the region as this move will further ensure excellence in customer support, which better aligns with the time zone requirements,” comments Joseph Varone, president of GMG Americas.

Due to its availability on every continent, round-the-clock support, and offered in twenty languages, PrintFactory is the only truly independent Large Format Print software company in the world. The PrintFactory workflow software offers OEMs and End-Users an extensive set of features, more than any of its competitors. With their innovative cloud platform, LFPs can set their own individual preferences (including language) without having to order separate versions via dongle, and their SaaS per printer model allows them to have unlimited users. Standard print markets and industrial scale operations can both benefit from this RIP workflow.

PrintFactory—Press Release

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Greg Doucette Purchases the Print House

On January 2, 2022, a torch was passed from father to son when Greg Doucette finalized the purchase of Print House from his father, Paul Doucette, who has owned and run the company since 1983. From direct mail to promotional products, no orders are too large or small for this company based in Malden, Massachusetts.

Greg, who is now the official president of Print House, says his highest priorities are customer satisfaction, expanding service offerings, improved processes, employee happiness and the commitment to becoming a greener and sustainable company.

Paul started his journey in the 1970s. While working as a licensed aircraft mechanic, he decided to venture into smaller machinery repair.

Having the principles of keeping his clients happy with the best quality, in 1982, Paul made the career move and purchased Circle Graphics. In January of 1983, The Print House was born.

Over four decades, Paul has created a printing family that has gratefully served clients all around the Boston region.

From the large health care industry to a small business just starting out, Print House has put the same dedication into every marketing and promotional product as he would for the next customer.

Greg, who grew up inside the walls of Print House as a kid, doesn’t plan on making many significant changes to the company right away.

Most of what Print House is today, is because Paul and Greg have worked together on a shared vision and commitment over the years and with the help of their team, have implemented new services and capabilities along the way.

“[This year] marks a huge year for Print House—not only because of this transition, but because we are in the best position to serve our customers and grow what we can offer them,” says Greg. “From as early as I can remember, I watched my father run this business with integrity and prioritizing attention to details, and I can say with confidence, that won’t change.

“With the help from our team, a lot of them from the early days with my father, we remain as committed to growing this company from the foundation he built. I’m very excited to lead Print House into the future.”

So what is the future of Print House?

The company foundations are strong and will remain intact. Yet, there is no end in sight on the horizon. They plan to grow and evolve with technology, capabilities, and more options for their current and future clients, while concentrating efforts to keep their environmental impact as minimal as possible.

—Press Release

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You Can Either Invest Extra Money and Time for the Client, or Live with the Regret

THE ILLUMINATED MONUMENT sign for Skyloft, a 388-unit Class-A residence, is intended to be subtle in size and proportions. Clear Sign & Design (San Marcos, CA) designed a one-piece, precast concrete base with etched and filled geometric lines borrowed from the branding guide. A seamless band of fabricated aluminum wraps around the concrete and provides for push-through acrylic lettering, as well as a subtle, halo glow to highlight the etch and fill details. Skyloft is the vision of Sanderson J. Ray Development (Newport Beach, CA) with StreetLights Residential (San Diego), a specialist in high-end hotels and apartments, as the builder.

As with many projects, this process started with our engineering team constructing the design through SOLIDWORKS to help prevent conflicts and to improve structure fluidity and welding attachment points. Our push-through letter ledge and attachment design, and seamless floating effect of the aluminum sign body improve both the curb appeal and durability. Clear Sign invests in thicker aluminum frames and skins than many of the comparative products I see when I walk other job sites. Oil-canning, warping, fallen push-through letters and cracks from poorly designed seams and joints are all reminders of why we invest the extra time and money.

Once the structure was built and pre-fit onto the precast base, our paint department treated the body with multiple coats of Matthews Ultra Low VOC paint and a satin clear coat for maximum durability. We specified Bitro Bantam LED modules for lighting duty, powered by a pair of Mean Well CLG-60-12 single-output LED drivers, located within a service closet of the building. (We install remote power supplies whenever possible.) Clear Sign assembled the cabinet and concrete backing and footing at the shop, then transported the sign to the site, allowing for a straightforward lift-and-place installation into a landscaped planter.

The halo both splashes the etchings and "floats" the sign.

The halo both splashes the etchings and “floats” the sign.

This made the install a one-day affair. Due to the working radius, we were forced to leave our Skyhoist at home, and rented a 30-ton crane with the capacity to work with a 40-ft. radius. Our technicians needed only to excavate for the footing and conduit sweep, then drop in this 5,500-lb. beauty, backfill and admire the fruits of their labor. Clear Sign goes to the lengths that we do for details that many people will never notice, because we see the art in all that we do. This super-small monument is being asked to do a very big job: identify a space, communicate intent and stand out from the crowd.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This column contains additional images of a project Gabe analyzed on page 44 in our February 2020 edition.

PHOTO GALLERY (6 IMAGES)
Attaching the push-through acrylic lettering and ready for LED modules.

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Spooked Sign Employee Threatens Her Co-Worker with a Taser

Don’t Tase Me, Flo!

We had a big tractor parked in our lot overnight to have an install done the next morning. When the earliest employee got in, he panicked that someone was in the truck, sleeping (or ready to attack someone?) and texted all the ladies who come in early. One of the ladies brought her taser in from her car. She saw another employee in the dark, but unsure who he was, threatened to tase him if he came close. He was far enough away to get a good laugh out of it with her. “It happens.”
Mary Kohler, The H&H Group, Lancaster, Pa

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Epson Introduces Its First Direct-to-fabric Printer for North America

As production print shops continue to look for innovative solutions for digital textile printing, Epson has announced its first direct-to-fabric printer available in North America—the Monna Lisa 8000. The culmination of over twenty years of research, development and customer feedback, the Monna Lisa 8000 (ML-8000) combines precision engineering with advanced design to deliver the ability to print on a range of fabric types.

“Epson Monna Lisa printers have long maintained a strong reputation and market position in Italy where they have been used to digitally print fabrics for some of the world’s largest international high fashion brands,” said Mark Krzywicki, product manager, Professional Imaging, Epson America, Inc. “The Monna Lisa 8000 has been developed to provide that same high quality in a more attainable, easy to use package—enabling North American companies to print on a wide variety of fabrics locally for both short runs and larger volume orders.”

The ML-8000 features eight, all-new 4.7-inch PrecisionCore® printheads to deliver crisp, professional quality textiles at industrial level print speeds up to 1,744 ft2/hr. Leveraging Epson’s most advanced imaging technologies, the ML-8000 accurately reproduces complex patterns, color gradations and photographic-like detail to meet evolving trends and designer needs.

The ML-8000 is available for install with either Epson GENESTA Pigment, Reactive, Acid, or Disperse ink—to best suit each customer’s need and application and provide performance printing on an array of textile options, including cotton, viscose, polyester, nylon, silk, wool, and blended fabrics. The machine features a hot-swappable ink system that holds up to 20 liters of ink per color and automatically switches from an empty ink pack to a new ink pack mid-print for uninterrupted printing.

Designed for productivity and reliability, this printer minimizes downtime and simplifies maintenance with an array of user-friendly features. The ML-8000 is also available for install with new Epson Edge® Print Textile workflow software for powerful color management and seamless workflow integration and is compatible with Epson’s new production-management Cloud Solution PORT, providing an operational dashboard view of a production line with cloud-based printer fleet reporting.

More About the Monna Lisa 8000

The new direct-to-fabric printer takes production capabilities to the next level with high-performance features, including:

  • Built for productivity: New 4.7-inch PrecisionCore printheads deliver beautiful, accurate prints at print speeds of up to 1,744 ft2/hr
  • Breakthrough image quality: Epson Precision Dot Technology and exclusive Micro Weave®, Multi-layer Halftoning and Lookup Table functions work together to reduce banding, graininess and degradation
  • Stable operation: User-friendly features include auto nozzle cleaning by fabric wiper, Nozzle Verification Technology, fluff blower, and ink mist extraction system
  • Minimize downtime: Epson support and remote monitoring system allows for fast, easy troubleshooting
  • Versatile Epson GENESTA inks: Print on a wide variety of fabrics, available for install with either Pigment, Reactive, Acid or Disperse ink; each ink pack is hot-swappable to allow for continuous printing
  • Easy operation: Large nine-inch touchscreen panel provides easy navigation and printer management
  • Full-service support and consulting: Support from dedicated teams and experts at Epson Textile Solution Centers

The Epson Monna Lisa 8000 is now available and will ship directly from Epson America. There are several Epson PreferredSM Plus service coverage plans available that include toll-free advanced telephone access Monday through Friday and usually next business-day on-site service.

—Press Release

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Published first here: https://www.signshop.com/graphic/digital-printing/epson-first-direct-to-fabric-printer-north-america/

General Formulations Announces New Vice President of Sales

Formulations
Michael Maxwell, new vice president of Sales at General Formulations.

General Formulations, a leading manufacturer of Pressure Sensitive Films, has announced the addition of industry veteran Michael Maxwell as Vice President of Sales.

Prior to his new role at General Formulations, Maxwell held a variety of positions in industry leading companies including Mimaki USA, Gerber Scientific, and Reece Supply Company. During his tenure at Mimaki USA he served in several key strategic roles including Senior Manager – Corporate Strategic Development and Senior Manager Business Solutions.

In his new role, Maxwell will direct the sales and customer service management functions in the US, Canada, Latin America, Australia, and New Zealand.

“Michael’s industry knowledge, relationships, and extensive background working with key printers and distribution partners will be a huge asset for General Formulations,” states Mike Clay, president of General Formulations. “We are extremely excited to have Michael in his new role and leading the GF sales team.”

“General Formulations’ expansive product offering, commitment to customer service, and incredible domestic production has earned them a top position in the industry, and I couldn’t be more excited to join the team at such an amazing time,” states Michael Maxwell, vice president of Sales, General Formulations.

—Press Release

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Published first here: https://www.signshop.com/industry-appointments/general-formulations-new-vice-president-sales/

NUtec Ink System Enables Continuous Printing

NUbis bulk ink system.

NUbis bulk ink system.

NUtec Digital Ink (Cape Town, South Africa) offers NUbis, a bulk ink system engineered to ensure a continuous supply of ink to the Epson DX4, DX5, DX6 and DX7 print heads used in wide-format digital inkjet presses.

NUbis enables more efficient printing with uninterrupted refilling, giving the functionality of a cartridge with the advantages of a bulk system, according to a statement from NUtec. The system holds either 1000ml or 2000ml degassed pouches, which can be replaced when empty, even during printing without disrupting the print session.

“Installation of our NUbis bulk ink system is simplified with the supporting tools we provide including our Quick Install guide, detailed components list and step by step installation video available on our YouTube channel,” Darren Claassens, head of sales and marketing at NUtec Digital Ink, is quoted in the company statement. “Additionally, our network of distributors and dealers are fully trained on the system and are able to assist with installation and technical support.”

For more information, visit nutecdigital.com.

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Bringing Veterans’ Photos to Life for PTSD Awareness

Veterans
Photographs featured in the outdoor exhibit, The Odyssey Project, spreading awareness of the struggles some veterans face with PTSD. Photo: Mark Russell, Buffalo Canvas.

Expression through photography has no limits. Imagination and ideas flow freely. While some claim print photography is dead, Mark Russell, of Buffalo Canvas proves otherwise. His shop in Buffalo, New York, printed the photos for an exhibition at the Central Library focused on spreading awareness on the struggles some veterans face with PTSD. The Odyssey Project created by photojournalist, Brendan Bannon, features photographs from forty-two veterans.

Veterans
Photo: Mark Russell, Buffalo Canvas.

The outdoor exhibit had its share of challenges, including withstanding temperatures that would vary between 40 to 65 degrees. Russell needed a product with the right adhesive, was easily removable, and met fire safety standards with a Class A fire rating, so he turned to LexJet for answers.

“We don’t have all the information, so the relationship with LexJet is important,” Russell explained. “LexJet has a solution almost every time.”

Veterans
Printing the graphics out onto GF 226HTR Wallmark. Photo: Mark Russell, Buffalo Canvas.

LexJet recommended General Formulations 226HTR WallMark™ to fit the bill. GF 226HTR has a unique and innovative pressure-sensitive adhesive that is specially formulated to be both high-tack and removable (HTR).

Veterans
Printing the graphics out onto GF 226HTR Wallmark. Photo: Mark Russell, Buffalo Canvas.

The combination of vinyl and adhesive is designed to stick aggressively to most surfaces but is specially formulated to remove cleanly for up to a year:

  • Unique HTR adhesive is both high-tack and removable and allows for ease of installation;
  • Print and cut edge-to-edge with stunning image quality and superior hold; and
  • Safe for all spaces with its E84 Class A fire rating.
Veterans
Printing the graphics out onto GF 226HTR Wallmark. Photo: Mark Russell, Buffalo Canvas.

The exhibit was installed on a large exterior granite wall of the library. Weather conditions put the product to the test.

“It was tough with the weather, one day, it was 65 degrees, and the next, snowing,” said Russell. “We’ve been using different General Formulations products on other projects, so we felt confident.”

Veterans
Installing the GF 226HTR WallMark artwork to the exterior granite wall of the library. Photographs featured in the outdoor exhibit, The Odyssey Project, spreading awareness of the struggles some veterans face with PTSD. Photo: Mark Russell, Buffalo Canvas.

For the installation, having the right adhesive was a must. Choosing media that is Class A fire-rated is also an important factor for a public exhibition.

“LexJet’s recommendation of the GF 226 HTR performed really well, giving us flexibility with the install and being easily removable. It printed beautifully, and the installation went smoothly. The library loved it and has extended the exhibit through May.”

Veterans
Installing the GF 226HTR WallMark photos to the exterior granite wall of the library. Photographs featured in the outdoor exhibit, The Odyssey Project, spreading awareness of the struggles some veterans face with PTSD. Photo: Mark Russell, Buffalo Canvas.

This is perfect timing with Memorial Day coming up on May 30. Sharing the experience through the art of photography and capturing the stories of veterans offers the opportunity to pay honor to the men and women who have proudly served our country.

The exhibition runs through May 31 at the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library at 1 Lafayette Square in Buffalo, New York. The event is free and open to the public.

Veterans
Photo: Mark Russell, Buffalo Canvas.

—Press Release

The post Bringing Veterans’ Photos to Life for PTSD Awareness appeared first on Sign Builder Illustrated, The How-To Sign Industry Magazine.

Published first here: https://www.signshop.com/graphic/vinyl-graphics/bringing-veterans-photos-life-ptsd-awareness/

ISA Report: Sign Language Defined

Language
SRF’s Glossy of Signage Terms.

Whether dealing with local planners, your clients, or just talking to an industry colleague, it’s helpful when we’re all using the same language. That hasn’t always been possible in our industry.

Now, thanks to the Sign Research Foundation—and its twenty-year commitment to finalizing this project—the Glossary of Signage Terms is available at the SRF website.

This all began in the early 2000s, when the foundation was developing a model sign code for cities to reference when developing their own. It quickly became apparent that there was no standard terminology for many types of signs or common materials and technologies used to fabricate signs.

The development of this glossary isn’t just about making communication clearer or work easier. Instead, it was apparent that sign ordinances that use improperly defined terms are open to interpretation during regulations.

Sometimes good signs fail simply because what is meant is unclear. Some of this occurs because those who write the rules and regulations don’t necessarily know our industry.

With the glossary, however, there can be a more uniform understanding of what is meant by a building-mounted sign and how it differs from a building fascia. There is now an ability to distinguish between a projected sign and a projected-image sign.

Using this glossary can help communities develop reasonable sign codes, ensuring that they are clear and easy to follow. This not only benefits our industry, but also local officials who no longer have to guess if they understand what the code means when they are approving or denying a sign permit.

The uses of such a glossary extend well beyond the regulatory aspect, of course. Bob Chapa, CEO of Signarama Troy/Metro Detroit and Geisler Sign Company praised the glossary on LinkedIn, calling it “dynamic, engaging and COMPLETE.”

I couldn’t agree more. This 120+ page book is filled with clear and easy to understand terms, along with many helpful images. The Glossary of Signage Terms is just one of the important resources that SRF has developed through the years.

A quick glance at the research section of the SRF website shows just how varied and important this information is.

Model sign codes help communities with a framework for developing their own codes.

Economic impact studies put a dollar value on how signs positively impact a business.

Wayfinding guides have been critical to communities as they finance and develop these systems.

And niche products like historic signs or retail wayfinding is invaluable those looking for this hard-to-find information.

ISA’s advocacy team often turns to SRF’s publications for help, so I can vouch for their value to our efforts in developing reasonable and beneficial sign regulations. This is yet another important SRF resource for our industry. I hope you’ll join me in supporting SRF, either with a tax-deductible gift or by purchasing a publication. In fact, get a few copies of the Glossary and share with your local officials. It never hurts to be speaking the same language.

—David Hickey

David Hickey is vice-president of Government Affairs at the International Sign Association.

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