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  • Solvent Printer Advice (BN20 is it worth it?)

    Posted by Steven Nev Taylor on June 17, 2020 at 12:11 am

    Hi all and best wishes at this strange time.

    I’m looking for some help and advice regarding taking my business forward and starting to produce my own printed stickers.
    I currently cut vinyl for decals / clothing and produce various styles of number plates too, so mainly work within the automotive trade.

    I have been supplying some printed stickers to my customers by outsourcing print jobs, however find it frustrating with needing to order larger numbers and the lead times that can come from this process.

    I’m looking at making custom small batches of stickers, a lot of my customers like unique one off designs so was hoping to invest in a small print/cut machine to help me provide my customers with one off stickers and decals, and the possibility of more complex designs using heat pressing onto clothing.
    My issue is that I work from home, so space is a factor I need to take into account.

    I was almost sold on the Roland BN20 and knew there are positives and negatives with it, and from people’s past responses on this forum I have seen that not many stay with it – mainly as it is small (part of the reason it appeals to me) but also slow.
    I like the fact it’s not too expensive or big so will fit in my home office, and quite versatile with a good print quality.
    However and rather naively I assumed that a print and cut machine with solvent ink would allow me to produce stickers for use on vehicles without having to laminate them too.
    I have never laminated any work in the past so a bit unsure of what is best in this area, cold or hot lamination? or even if its possible to use a BN20 to print designs with registration marks, remove the artwork and laminate, then pass back through the BN20 to finally contour cut.

    I am also aware that the BN20 hasn’t been superseded In all the years it’s been around… for whichever reason – and knowing my luck I’d buy one and Roland (or another brand) would probably release an updated desktop machine :shake:

    So would I be better off looking at a separate good quality printer for the artwork and then allowing my plotter (Graphtec ce5000-60) to contour cut them out :shocked: and then adding a cold laminator to my equipment list to ensure longer lasting results.

    Any advise on smaller printers and laminators (around 25”) that would be worth me looking at much appreciated, or if the bn20 sounds like the best option for me and buying a second hand laminator to work with it let me know :praiseyou:

    Many thanks In advance


    Simon Worrall replied 2 years, 5 months ago 1 Member · 1 Reply
  • 1 Reply
  • Simon Worrall

    June 17, 2020 at 8:20 am

    I appreciate you lack space, but if you possibly can, go for something bigger.