XY flatbed tables as reliable platforms Print

Since Zund has a long history of making table-oriented flatbed cutters, it is natural that they would be interested in experimenting with a flatbed table UV-curing inkjet printer.

XY flatbed tables as reliable platforms
Zund XY-Flat UV-curable inkjet flatbed printer at FESPA Amsterdam 2009.

Zund XY-Flat, Epson piezo printheads
Zund booth at FESPA Amsterdam 2009.

Zund XY-Flat UV-curable inkjet flatbed printer

The first Zund printer was a combo (moving transport belt, inherited from Mechatron via Perfecta Print, the Zund 215 (the best selling UV printer of its time)). Then Zund designed a hybrid (named the 250 Combi). This is considered the best hybrid UV printer ever designed. And at the same time Zund experimented with a flated table concept, the XY-Flat printer. It reportedly used an Epson printhead.

Two companies have tried to produce a UV-curable inkjet printer using Epson printheads: Zund and Eastech. Now Roland would be a third company.

So far none of these printers using Epson heads for UV-cured inks has functioned well enough to sell. The Zund XY-Flat was shown at DRUPA 2004 but then disappeared quickly. The Eastech printer with Xaar or Spectra heads is doing okay; but their version with Epson printheads is not presented at trade shows in Germany.

Zund XY-Flat UV-curable inkjet reviews
Zund XY-Flat UV-curable inkjet flatbed.

And Roland shows their flatbed only in hotel rooms, not to the public. It was not until 2008 that the Roland LEC-300 was launched. It uses a newer Epson printhead and does not need heating (for ink viscosity) at the printhead. The reason Epson printheads failed in the past is because most UV ink must be heated near or inside the printhead. Epson heads could not accept this kind of heater in the past.

As a professor of technology, we were keen to learn why the Epson printhead is not successful. So we began to ask around. After all, even the Canon bubblejet thermal printhead can handle UV-cured inks. Yes, you can learn about this in the FLAAR Reports on printheads for UV printers, available from www.wide-format-printers.NET. Indeed, based on what we found (and mention in our reports) it is unexpected that anyone would even attempt to try an Epson head with the requirements for UV ink being what they are. Epson heads are great for giclee and fine art photography, but are too slow for production signage in any event. Besides, the Toshiba Tec, Ricoh, Konica Minolta and plenty of addition heads can handle UV ink just fine. We have a FLAAR Reports on printheads for UV-curable inks to introduce you to this subject.

The Zund 215 and GRAPO Octopus use Xaar 500 heads (The GRAPO Octopus II switched to KonicaMinolta printheads). The Zund 250 UV printer uses Spectra heads. The popular ColorSpan 72UV uses Ricoh heads. Mimaki uses Epson heads in their solvent printers but Toshiba Tec heads in their Mimaki UV printers.

If you have first hand experience with the Canon UV-cured printer, Zund XY-Flat, Eastech Octra with Epson heads, Roland flatbed, or the earlier Tektronix UV-cured ink printer, please let us know by telephone, 419 823-9218 (Vonage/VoIP service) or send a e-mail, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it '; document.write( '' ); document.write( addy_text48852 ); document.write( '<\/a>' ); //--> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Zund XY-Flat UV-curable inkjet flatbed printer evaluations
Zund booth at SGIA 2007.

G3 flatbed XY cutters now introduced

Because there is a larger market for XY cutters than there is for flatbed UV printers, Zund wisely decided to concentrate on cutters (and no longer on inkjet printers). Today their current XY flatbed cutter is the G3. I have inspected their previous generation flatbed cutters directly in their factory in Switzerland. As soon as there is time to return and update myself on the advances offered in the G3 (third generation) series, we will update our separate page and update our entire cutter report.

G3 flatbed XY cutters reviews
The current XY flatbed cutter, Zund G3 cutters at VISCOM Germany 2008.

G3 flatbed XY cutters evaluations
G3 flatbed XY cutters, monitor. VISCOM Germany 2008.

 

Most recently updated Nov. 11, 2008.

First posted November 28, 2005. Updated May 10, 2006 and Oct 30, 2006.