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Christiansen brings Flagsource from loss to profit

May 1, 2009

Janice Christiansen rebuilds the family business one solution at a time. By Sigrid Tornquist “When you’re faced with a problem, you need to break it down and take one thing at a time—because it’s not the size of the challenge, it’s how you handle it,” says Janice Christiansen, president of J.C. Schultz Enterprises Inc. (Flagsource®) …

Protective fibers create range of performance options

Outerwear and footwear containing eVent fabrics from GE Energy offer individuals in challenging environments a wide range of performance options. eVent protective fabrics are designed with a balance between protection and comfort using Direct Diffusion™ technology, and offer a high-visibility and flame-, chemical- and arc-resistant material suitable for rainwear in the utility, oil and gas …

Meltblown media designed for air filtration industry

Just developed: DelPore® meltblown media that is biodegradable and compostable. Designed specifically for the air filtration industry—including short-term applications such as medical face masks, respirators, vacuum bags and furnace filters—DelPore is manufactured from PLA (polylactide) rather than traditional polypropylene, offering added value to manufacturers concerned about sustainability, zero toxicity and low-energy initiatives. DelStar Technologies is …

Project showcases art and architecture in fabric and steel

Every two years, a landscape architect is chosen through a juried competition to create an installation for the Cleveland Public Art Park. The latest incarnation, from Eventscape, Toronto, Ont., Canada, celebrates both Cleveland’s industrial heritage and its new “green” environmental agenda. The fabric-clad organic futuristic forms make a powerful visual impact on a number of …

IFAI State of the Industry 2009

In April 2009, the Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) released a digital version of its two-part State of the Industry series, published in the February and March issues of Specialty Fabrics Review. Part I focuses on the U.S. industry, covering market size, forces, key markets, market trends, global trade issues and the coming year’s outlook …

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Report predicts increased demand for printing inks

A report from www.reportlinker.com says the U.S. demand for printing inks is forecast to reach $4.8 billion by 2013. Lithographic inks will remain the most widely used, but digital inks represent the fastest-growing product segment in the U.S. printing inks industry.

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EFI expands VUTEk line

EFI, Foster City, Calif., introduced two VUTEk wide format UV printers: a 3.2-meter hybrid VUTEk GS3200 for high image quality and speeds up to 2,400 square feet per hour; and a 5-meter, roll-to-roll VUTEk GS5000r, combining enhanced point-of-purchase quality capability with billboard production speeds up to 3,100 square feet per hour. SOURCE EFI

Increasing the odds of getting a business loan

How to get a business loan in today’s tight economy. By William J. Lynott Credit is the oil that lubricates the machinery of business. Whether it’s a loan to buy inventory or supplies, support renovation or expansion, a capital purchase, or just the need for a short-term boost to meet payroll or other operating expenses, …

Output coating improves graphics printing

GO RIO dye sub polyester fabric from Graphics One uses a special output coating that produces improved graphics and works well with either direct or transfer printing. Developed to meet the demands of the latest high-speed dye sublimation printers, it is recommended for trade show exhibits, flags, banners, POP, curtains, drapes and pillow prints. SOURCE …

Fiber board offers alternative to wood in marine environments

FirmaFlex™ is fabricated of densely compressed polyester fibers and won’t warp, crack, swell, rot or peel over time or by exposure to water, making it a more stable solution than wood in a marine environment. The bendable fiber board can be shaped easily to serve as a backer for upholstery needs; it’s lightweight, but strong …

No sweat: Tactical response shirt takes the heat

The Vancouver Whitecaps move into a refurbished world-class soccer venue in 2010, and BC Pavilion Corp., Vancouver, B.C., hopes its retractable roof will give fans an intimate yet light-filled experience. The gathered synthetic roof fabric will effectively limit the capacity of the stadium to 22,000 seats, but allow end-zone draping to be removed for future …

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SGIA releases 2008 annual report

The Specialty Graphics Imaging Association (SGIA) unveiled its “Industry in Review: 2008 Annual Report” in mid-March, a resource that offers current sales-per-employee ratios for each industry segment, newest equipment trends, industry impacts of the current economic downturn, and more. Included are profiles for each industry segment: graphic producers, garment decoration, industrial-use printers and finishing. View …

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Printing company responds to recovery bill

Printing Industries of America, Washington, D.C., says it is encouraged by President Obama’s plan to unlock credit for small businesses. Seventy-five percent of print plants employ fewer than 20 workers. A statement released by the organization says that printers and other businesses need significant incentives, including short-term tax relief, to fuel an economic recovery.

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Brother releases direct-to-garment printer

The Brother GT-541 is small enough to sit on a desktop, yet large enough to print up to 14-inch by 16-inch graphics. It prints lifelike, high resolution, full color graphics in less than one minute for most designs—directly from your computer. The GT-541 uses water-based pigment inks that withstand repeated washings, and is faster and …

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Connecting with customers

Making design trends and economic realities work together. By Gina Wicker It is difficult to focus exclusively on design trends when the economy is the overwhelming trend these days, but the truth is that colors and patterns and economic trends have an impact on each other. With grim economic news and changes in our political …

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Herculite releases heavy-duty products

Architent® Excel™ high performance, blackout, structure and tent fabrics from Herculite are flame-resistant, waterproof and durable, made for hydrostatic and cold crack resistance. Excel has a tensile strength of 400 pounds and a tear strength of 180 pounds, and incorporates Herculite’s Rain Kleen® Pearl Coat™. Herculite 2000 is a heavy-duty, high-performance composite designed for rugged …

Powerful heat blower increases productivity

Professional Heat Blower Series features a powerful air delivery rate of up to 23 cfm, for faster work on applications such as window tinting, packaging, shrink wrapping, thawing pipes and working with plastics. The color-coded keys each lock in a specific temperature range, making it possible to verify the correct temperature at a glance. A …

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Study investigates hoop building as shelter for cattle

Beef producers in southwest Iowa asked Iowa State University (ISU) Extension specialists about shelters that would keep cattle out of mud, under a roof, and in an environment that would preclude manure run-off. In summer 2005, Shawn Shouse, ISU Extension field engineer, launched a study of hoop shelters with a 50- by 120-foot building on …

U.S. Congress approves key trade positions

Two trade officials with major responsibilities for U.S. textile policy have won confirmation in Congress. Ron Kirk, former mayor of Dallas, is the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) and will serve as the Obama Administration’s main trade advisor. Among Kirk’s top priorities: expanding assistance to help workers losing jobs because of import competition, concluding the Doha …

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GatorWraps opens new showroom

GatorWraps, Las Vegas, prints and installs digital film wraps for cars, trains and buildings. The company recently opened a new, high-visibility showroom to demonstrate its products on a grand scale. “Advances in digitally printable films have allowed us to expand our services to wall graphics and building wraps,” says president Rod Voegele. Company senior designer …

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Pacific Coast Fabrics stocks water repellent fabric

Pacific Coast Fabrics, Gardena, Calif., now stocks Deko-Tex Lotos 7058FLBN, a water repellent polyester outdoor fabric. Digital printers have had difficulty with water repellent textiles because ink and dye were equally repelled from the fabric. With this new material, the repellent is activated by heat in the calendaring process, after the material has been printed. …

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Foundation reinterprets use of textiles in historic interiors

For more than 25 years, The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation has taken the lead in reinterpreting the use of textiles in historic interiors from the 18th century. The symposium, “‘A Very Large Curious & Compleat Assortment’: Textiles for Interiors, 1730–1830,” gathers leading American and English scholars in the field to review the design and composition of …

Protective fabrics recommended for industrial applications

Ibena has two protective fabrics recommended for industrial applications. proFire Comfort Antistat consists of 93 percent Nomex®, 5 percent Kevlar® and 2 percent P140 anti-static carbon fiber, available in weights from 5.3 to 9 ounces, in 63-inch widths and many colors. proSafe is a fabric made of 55 percent Modacryl and 45 percent cotton (Protex …

Aftermarket chemical products manufactured for variety of applications

303 Products Inc. manufactures a variety of aftermarket chemical products: UV screening and protective treatments, finishes and specialized cleaners for vinyl, rubbers, plastics and textiles. Sold in automotive, marine, RV, patio furniture, pool and spa, hardware and industrial fabrics shops, with a “new look” packaging for 2009 designed to more directly target consumers in these …

IFAI Canada’s 2009 Honours Program winners announced

Winners demonstrate ingenuity and high-quality craftsmanship. IFAI Canada Expo 2009, held March 5–7 in Calgary, Alberta, attracted business owners from across the industrial fabrics markets. A tour to view area projects and Calgary Tent & Awning opened Expo events; guest speakers and industry exhibits provided ample opportunities for attendees to learn and network. A highlight …

Textile recycling opportunities highlighted

Textiles Intelligence published an article by MarketResearch.com in February, 2009 describing forms of textile recycling and businesses making it work. “Recycling in the textile and clothing industry offers companies important benefits, particularly from an environmental viewpoint,” writes Gregg Kellett, online marketing manager for MarketResearch.com. To encourage recycling in Europe, for example, the EU passed new …

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Start “going green”

By Jan Schieffer If it’s time for your company to “go green,” the Fabric Graphics Association (FGA) wants to help. FGA has developed sustainability guidelines to encourage companies to adopt practices that conserve resources and energy, minimize the use of harmful chemicals, and look for opportunities to apply sustainable practices throughout your organization. To start, …

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Practix Manufacturing introduces super-wide format printer

Practix Manufacturing USA, Acworth, Ga., introduced the OK-405RW-5M wide format rotary heat transfer printer. With a belt width of up to 220 inches, it can print fabric widths and grand format projects up to 16 feet wide. This efficient and eco-friendly printer will heat fix printed fabric or dye sublimation transfer onto super-wide media. SOURCE …

Cottonworks® Global Fabric Library now open

Cotton Incorporated, the association of America’s Cotton Producers and Importers, and LIM—The College of Business of Fashion, have joined together to open The Cottonworks Global Fabric Library in two LIM fashion merchandising studios at the college’s building on Fifth Avenue in New York City. Displaying fabrics from more than 350 mills, knitters and converters from …

Junkers & Müllers introduces new products

Mediatex® Self-Adhesive textile wallpaper from Junkers & Müllers is a matte surface, reflection-free material that can be printed and cut with standard equipment. Removable and reusable, it sticks to any surface and can be used for wall stickers, borders, wallpaper, roller blind box systems, art reproductions, and frequently changed advertisements. Mediatex Lightbox, with its special …

Carpet backing material offers alternative to thermoset backing

HYPOD™ Polyolefin Dispersions, a recyclable carpet backing material, taking carpet sustainability to the next level in many applications, including modular carpet, broadloom, thermo-moldable products and artificial turf. Carpet manufacturers can apply a thermoplastic backing, rather than a thermoset backing, while still using conventional coating equipment. Thermoplastic backings also use less material, which can help conserve …

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High-visibility showroom demonstrates products on a grand scale

Las Vegas is all about big, bright and flashy, an excellent setting for a company that prints and installs digital film wraps for cars, trains and even buildings. GatorWraps, a growing business in Las Vegas, Nev., recently opened a new high-visibility showroom to demonstrate its products on a grand scale. “Advances in digitally printable films …

U.S.-Pakistan trade policy review

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the U.S.-Pakistan Business Council have called upon the Obama Administration to ease access for Pakistani textiles in the U.S. market. A report developed by the two business groups recommends review of trade policy in Pakistan, cutting tariffs on textiles (Pakistan’s chief export) and completing a bilateral investment treaty. The …

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Custom fabric crafter provides graphics for various applications

By Jill C. Lafferty Baraboo Tent & Awning is a custom fabric crafter with a number of businesses under one “tent,” so to speak. So what ties several of those fabric applications together? The answer is graphics. The Baraboo, Wis.-based company provides customized graphics on awnings and canopies, umbrella shelters, instant shelters, cabanas, POP displays, …

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PrintVillage Inc. releases new printing system

PrintVillage Inc. and its digital dye sublimation division, US Sublimation, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., introduced the Velotex Xpress, a self-contained, single-step textile printing system designed specifically for the trade show graphics, sign and flag industries. Offered as a complete integrated system with RIP software and a selection of pre-profiled media, it can produce output not achieved …

Meeting international textile standards

Oeko-Tex® Standard 100 Certification gives manufacturers, retailers and consumers confidence that their textile products are safe for human use, ensuring that the products are tested for harmful levels of more than 100 potentially dangerous substances that could adversely affect human health. The certification also provides third-party validation that textiles comply with the Consumer Products Safety …

Heavy nylon fabrics offer fire protection

Lucerne introduces the X-Tinguish line of heavier, fire-retardant nylon fabrics. Proprietary technology enables X-Tinguish to pass a vertical flame test without affecting appearance, hand or performance. For general use in automotive, military, safety and protective, upholstery and other applications. SOURCE Lucerne Textiles +1 908 725 0501

Graphics system bonds produce long-lasting custom graphics

The Sunbrella® Graphics System (SGS) bonds Sunbrella fabrics and 3M films using a vacuum system and heat lamps to produce long-lasting custom graphics, fast. SGS Thermal Digital Print film is a flexible urethane that can be digitally printed on most solvent, eco-solvent and UV printers, and then applied to Sunbrella and other Glen Raven fabrics, …

The PIG® pool handles small leaks

Small tank or drum leaks happen every day and everywhere, creating slippery and flammable gasoline, diesel, oil or chemical hazards for employees and customers. The New Pig Corp., Tipton, Pa., developed a clever solution for low-volume leaks: the PIG® Sealable Portable Containment Pool. Its design enables responders to catch and contain liquids, seal the container, …

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Theaters present new opportunities for print shops

By Janet Preus Theaters have known for centuries about the versatility and convenience of using fabric. Act curtains, often elaborately decorated, conceal the stage until the play begins, and painted backdrops descend from the fly space, transporting the audience to another time and place. Painted flats (muslin stretched over frames) create the illusion of walls, …

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Keeping up with advances in backlit applications

Staying on top of advances in fabrics and techniques for backlit applications offers a promising opportunity for growth. By Sigrid Tornquist If you want to attract attention to something, shine a light on it—or better yet—shine a light behind it. Backlit interior signage has long been a popular and effective advertising strategy, but it’s a …

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AW Specialty Papers introduces litho transfer paper

AW Specialty Papers, Elk Grove Village, Ill., announced T75, a new heat transfer paper designed for cold peel litho printing. T75 is designed for total release of the ink and can be used for litho and screen printing of a backup plastisol, and straight screen printing of one-color plastisol ink. It has dimensional stability, smooth …

Honoring top textile scientists

The American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC) recognized the world’s top textile scientists during its 2009 conference at the Hilton Myrtle Beach Resort, South Carolina, in March. The article “Describing Color Differences,” written by Carol Tomasino Revels, was selected as the best paper published in AATCC Review in 2007. A report on “Capillary …

Vinyl-coated polyester fabric used for various applications

Manart’s PVC 18 is an 18-ounce, vinyl-coated polyester fabric. Resistant to tearing, ripping and abrasion, and with a cold crack of -40 degrees [F], it is well suited for truck covers, tonneau covers, athletic, industrial and marine applications. Available in nine colors. SOURCE Manart-Hirsch Co. Inc.

Multiple treatment system protects fabrics from hazards

Problem: Fabric treatments protect from some hazards, but customers want a product that can do it all. Solution: Duro Textiles has introduced Ultimate Defense™, a multiple treatment system that protects fabrics from liquid penetration, mildew, UV light, abrasion and surface spills. Each process is unique and can stand alone or be used in conjunction with …

Biodegradable PCMs stay cool in the heat

When phase-change materials (PCM) go from solid to liquid, or liquid to gas, they retain or release energy. When the heat is on, certain PCMs remain cool. And products made with PCMs formulated from animal and vegetable sources can be as varied, cool and “green” as a farmer’s market in June. Glacier Tek Inc., West …

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Green cost savings

What cost-saving techniques does your company implement regarding recycling and textiles? “Never throw out any fabric scraps” is a policy at Glawe Tent and Awning. A bin of fabric scraps has resulted in a remnant sale of small lots of industrial fabrics to the public, a source of supplies for a neighborhood sheltered workshop and …

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Proper printer maintenance

Proper printer maintenance can make or break your ROI. By Maura Keller Most fabric graphic shops and end product manufacturers don’t have a problem remembering to maintain a clean environment to house their textiles. But when it comes to keeping their printing equipment clean, they are the first to admit negligence. Take a look at …

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SolvoTex textiles offer easy-to-handle finishes

SolvoTex textiles from Neschen, Elkridge, Md., offer advantages over vinyl media for many applications; the most important is their light weight, flexibility, ease of handling and non-reflective finishes. Most SolvoTex textiles are processed with DigiCoat, a coating that assures a sharp, crisp print quality, but still maintains the texture and feel of the original fabric. …

Reference detergent used for laundry tests

Compiled by Juli Case We’re going to be conducting some laundry tests to see how well our product holds up to home washing. What detergent should we use? You’re probably not going to want to buy a detergent from the grocery store, especially since most tests are intended to be both consistent and replicable. According …