Media Part 5: Vinyl Upholstery | HP Latex | HP

What I want to go over here is something that’s
a little bit in the R&D department. And I’m bringing it up because we know it prints very well. We’re just not doing that much of it. And if it is being done, it tends to be a little proprietary. This is upholstery. What we found is, latex is an extremely flexible technology. When you print on upholstery, in this case
it’s a faux leather, or a pleather, or a brand name called Naugahyde, you know, they’re all kind of fall in that same ones – PVCs, synthetic leather. And when you stretch this stuff, it’s just unbelievable. I mean, it’s better than any screen-printed
solvent for resisting cracking. The flexibility of the ink on this flexible
material is the best I’ve ever seen. And the color is outstanding, as you can see. Now, this is upholstery that’s come in from a manufacturer. And the only issue is, it’s a little flexible. I mean, it’s a little… got a little too much play in it. If it were a little more rigid, it would go
through the printer much better. It does go through the printer. It requires some attention on it; probably
a little more attention than I’d like. But if you can find a pulse tree out there…
and here’s what you want to remember. You don’t want a lot of coating on the upholstery. You don’t want, you know, like, silicon anti-slip,
or anti-graffiti, or any of that stuff. What you’re looking for is upholstery that
is as clean to the base cloth as possible. Because the Latex will print really well as long as there’s no intermediary between the actual PVC and the latex inks. It needs to bond to that. If there’s things in between there that are
put on there even for not slipping or sticking to itself on the roll, it can interfere with
the success of the Latex printer. I’ve even had success, recently, printing
on real leather; rolls of leather. But we had to get to a base cloth level, level, where the leather didn’t have any type of treatments or coatings. And once that was done, we were able to print on it pretty well. So, looking at upholstery, you know, here’s some other things. This is a faux patent leather that we’ve been able to print on. Very nice. Here’s more of the patent leather. And then here’s another faux leather with a texture to it. The Latex prints gorgeous on this. Prints very well, as long as you can source
something that’s pretty stable through the printer, that doesn’t bunch up at the print
rollers, say on a 300 series printer. I would definitely consider looking into upholstery
as something to develop a new application. It’s certainly things that we’re looking into, here at HP. So, upholstery, faux leather, anything along
those lines; very successful. What you may need to consider at the fabrication
level is, do I need a liquid laminate. Liquid laminates would ideally be the choice to give this to type of real protection you’re going to need if you’re going to make it into, say, seats, or chairs, or bar stools, or things like that. I’ve heard tell of people making it into a
lot of things out there already. It’s just, they figured out unique things to do with latex. They’re making a very good living at it. That technology or that process belongs to them. But the idea of printing on upholstery, I think, belongs to everyone. And if can find sources, and play around with
some upholstery, find the right products, figure out your water-based laminate solution,
as needed, it may just depend on the application, I think upholstery is a real breakthrough technology. Our preliminary tests have all been excellent. I would certainly direct you to explore that
area with the Latex printers, and see what you can come up with. I think you might find an entirely new horizon here on different types of faux leather, PVC upholstery type products.

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