CIJ Printer, Your Days Are Numbered

As a widely used technology, thermal ink jet printing has been openly accepted in the high resolution porous case coding arena. The advantage, of course is the lack of a complicated ink circulation system and replaceable print head cartridges allowing for almost zero maintenance. Thermal inkjet printers are on the verge of leaving their comfort zone as ink manufacturers sharpen their pencils and apply efforts towards developing solvent based inks for non porous substrates. Doors are beginning to open with new solvent based inks that allow these systems to throw ink that sticks and dries on non porous substrates. Printing on plastic, steel etc. is no longer an impossibility for thermal inkjet.
The front runners in the business, Hewlett Packard and Lexmark, both have firm footings in the marketplace but differ greatly. HP 51645A cartridge design allows for a more solvent friendly delivery while the Lexmark system is unable at this time to run a solvent heavy ink through its cartridge. HP’s 51645A cartridge however is unable to throw the ink more than 1/8 inch from print head to substrate. This poses a challenge with product placement in conjunction to the print Postindustrial Economy head, allowing for little wiggle room in print head placement distance from the target substrate. Lexmark has a more robust throw distance of up to 1/4 inch giving it a less claustrophobic placement towards the product to be printed on. Lexmark cartridges are designed with a set of redundant nozzles to all but eliminate the common streaking found with HP’s head when jet clogs arise. These two characteristics make Lexmark a more logical choice for printing applications.
The fact that HP has been in this market of industrial printing for a substantially longer period of time is shown by the vast amount of choices of HP based industrial printers out there in the market. Lexmark is just getting started, but I look for great things to come from the printing giant in this field. It is rumored that they are designing a cartridge specifically for solvent inks for the industrial print field. If this is so, look for major changes in the marking and coding industry to come.
Both types of printer systems come available in a wide selection of print height capabilities. Each cartridge represents one half inch of print height. There are simple economical printers for under $1000.00 to systems that can print 8 inches of print height for much more.
The time has come to let go of that expensive c.i.j. dinosaur, you Latest Technology 2019 could use that space in your maintenance shop for better things.

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