Under the theme ‘Shape the Future in Colour’, Mimaki will showcase its advanced colour additive manufacturing technology at formnext in Frankfurt, Germany. Running live on stand D26 in hall 3.1, the Mimaki 3DUJ-553 3D printer allows bureaux, designers and product developers to reach unparalleled levels of photorealism due to its fine detail and extensive colour capability.
‘The colour range and vibrancy combined with the ability to match colours with such accuracy opens up some very exciting application possibilities,’ stated Bert Benckhuysen, senior product manager at Mimaki. ‘For instance, skin tones – where the slightest variations can easily be detected by the human eye – are reproduced with photorealistic quality as Mimaki meets the accuracy of scanning equipment with absolute precision. Product developers striving for accurate representations of their designs get extraordinarily smooth colour gradations, minimising granularity, and special spot colours can be created for brands with exacting requirements.’
The 3DUJ-553 3D printer prints in over 10 million colours and the results are consistent and repeatable thanks to Mimaki’s use of ICC colour profiling. Mimaki has also developed a clear resin so full transparency and semi-transparent colour can be realised. Printing in 19, 32 or 42 µm layers, the 3DUJ-553 3D printer delivers super fine detail and smooth surfaces, which are preserved during post processing as the support material is water soluble and simply dissolves in water.
Exclusively distributed by Hybrid Services, the company recently held the UK and Irish launch at the TCT Show in Birmingham. ‘Visitors to the exhibition very quickly appreciated the creative and colour matching benefits of the Mimaki 3DUJ-553,’ confirmed Brett Newman, Hybrid’s chief operations manager. ‘Thanks to the level of detail available, the design possibilities are vast and we’re seeing potential customers really start to appreciate the application opportunities this printer presents.’
Through a collaborative project with Materialise, Mimaki 3D printed models are currently available via i.materialise.com under the name Multicolor+. Miranda Bastijns, Materialise director manufacturing online, commented: ‘Materialise is currently trialling Mimaki’s full colour 3D printing technology. The material, Multicolor+, allows us to create smooth surfaces with vibrant colours that enhance the value of a finished object. Multicolor+ offers more vivid and intense colours and enables stronger, sturdier materials with a minimum wall thickness of 1mm. It also allows for printing interlocking parts. As a result, Multicolor+ is ideal for printing decorative parts such as figurines, avatars and architectural models.’
Mimaki 3D printed models have a strength comparable to ABS plastic. Printed in UV cured photopolymer resins with inkjet printing heads, models can be handled direct from the print build tray, which is a large 500 x 500 x 300 mm. The 3DUJ-553 3D printer is easy to operate either remotely or through a touch panel. Mimaki 3D Link software also allows colours to be changed on the fly.
Mimaki’s expertise in inkjet, UV and colour management derive from the company’s heritage in 2D printing according to Bert: ‘Our history in 2D printing is fundamental because it has given us proficiency in colour management, ink circulation for maximum uptime of the printer and operability. We also understand the importance of continued investment in research and development; not only that, but it means we have excellent technical support and customer service already in place, as we look to expand our sales infrastructure.’
He concluded, ‘It is said colour speaks all languages, so our incredible range of print samples – encompassing industries from toys, entertainment, tools, medical, consumer products, signage, architectural, art and packaging – will speak for themselves. Following our successful launch last year, we are delighted to meet with the formnext community again and show them the technology, the colour and all developments we’ve made over the last year.’