Printing direct to Digital Magnetics magnet media is a very cost-effective method of creating high impact retail advertising, vehicle graphics, POP or POS displays, calendars and decorative magnets, message boards, photos, way finding signs, temporary signage, and more. Achieving quality results from your printer and magnetic sheeting is essential for the success of every project. Digital Magnetics Magnetic films can be considered as a semi-rigid substrate due to its thickness, and, like all semi-rigid substrates, takes a little know-how to produce the best quality product. Here are some tips for printing direct to magnet.
Choose the correct magnetic film. Selecting the right type of magnetic film is critical, as different inks and printers react differently with different top coatings. Magnetic films are available with a PVC or PET coating in a variety of thicknesses.
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Choose the correct thickness. For most roll-to-roll large-format printers, thinner magnetic films can be advantageous as the weight of the magnet pulling through the machine can get quite heavy. Flatbed printers can handle slightly thicker magnets. Be sure to check your owner’s manual for the recommended maximum thickness to ensure that the printer can handle the thickness of the magnet for the required application.
Avoid head strikes. As with other semi-rigid substrates, it’s important to steer clear of head strikes. In order to avoid damaging printheads, adjust the printer’s head height to the highest setting. Your owner’s manual provides information on the thickest material that it can handle in order to prevent head strikes.
4. Create an air gap. As some printers in the market may have metal platens, it is important to cover this piece to keep the magnet from sticking or catching during the printing process. A simple strip of heavy tape will do the trick, as will a thin piece a chip board. The point is to create a little air gap or space that prevents the magnet from attracting to the metal as it passes over.
Raise it up. Elevating the roll of magnet media in a way that gives a slightly straighter feed into the printer or lessens the steepness of the angle from the feed spindle to the printing area often provides better printing results. The goal is to prevent the magnetic sheeting from rippling, bunching up, or pulling too taught while feeding through the printing area. Check your owner’s manual for the maximum weight restrictions on the feed end of your printer.
Slow and steady. Take the time to adjust the printer settings and be patient. Slowing your printer down and having patience is a necessity when printing on magnet. It is often not a “set-up and walk away” type of printing job.