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There are lots of new and exciting things happening at CSD Print and we’d like to share them with you via our blog. If you have any comments or queries please get in touch, we’d love to hear from you

Bigger, better and faster – just three of our New Year’s resolutions!

New cutter for CSDPrint

We’re celebrating

CSDPrint has had a record month; in fact the previous 11 have been pretty fantastic too. This year we have seen our business really take off and that’s got a lot to do with the investment we’ve made in equipment and people.

Three years ago we really stepped out of our comfort zone by moving into large format digital printing. The scale of our investment in the very best digital technology was HUGE for a business of our size but we’ve not looked back, not for one minute.

Over the past year we’ve had a gear change in staffing too. We’ve expanded our management capabilities; added to our print finishing and dispatch team and upped our commitment to training and development for everybody.

The response from our customers has been wonderful; we’ve never been so busy. Every month we are attracting new enquiries as well as receiving bigger orders from our lovely loyal existing retail, automotive, construction and design agency clients.

To sustain this growth we know only too well that we must continue to invest and so we’ve treated ourselves to a fancy big new cutter that will be with us early in the New Year. It’s a DYSS X7 10 x 5 digital cutter to be exact. We can’t wait for it to arrive because we’ve got lots of work lined up that it will just whizz through.

We are getting more and more large projects that consist of cut items such as retail point of sale and building signage of all shapes and sizes. The new machine will enable us to turn these jobs around much more quickly and efficiently because it integrates directly with our production equipment.

We’ll be able to cut virtually any print material including correx, vinyl, cardboard and foamex, PVC, dibond and acrylic.

Sadly we won’t need our trusty 10-year old, 64 inch guillotine any more – it’s robust and reliable and all reasonable offers will be carefully considered!

Top Performing Outdoor Graphics

PVC banners

Wind resistant mesh banners have staying power

Looking for something big, bright and really strong? PVC banners are just what you need – they are perfect for bold outdoor graphic displays.

The heavy-weight PVC banners we produce are just the job if you want to advertise on the side of buildings, on construction site scaffolding, at automotive dealerships or garage forecourts, garden centres, festivals and events…in fact anywhere where you need something that will stand up to the whimsies of the weather.

We print banners to any size you like, in full colour and also onto tough mesh PVC which allows air to easy pass through. These mesh banners have the dual benefit of being light, very durable, wind and fade resistant.

Another great benefit of using promotional banners is they are one of the easiest graphics to display. They are hemmed and can then be finished with sturdy metal eyelets for use with bungee cords or with stitched pockets for inserting poles.

All CSDPrint PVC banners are printed in-house using state-of-the-art high definition digital printers so image quality is superb – just look at the super high quality of these mesh banners we’ve just printed for Total.

Making Christmas Magic

Planning digital printing campaigns for Christmas

We’re gearing up for Christmas, are you? Some of our clients are which is great because it means we can draw up our production and delivery schedules and make sure everything is perfect. Just like Father Christmas and his team of elves, CSDPrint’s modus operandi is to make sure everything is absolutely spot on for the big day (aka Festive Season/Black Friday/Pre-Christmas Sales/New Year Sales).

We’re already printing window stickers, in-store graphics and posters for a couple of our retail clients; festive menu boards for restaurant chains and pavement signs for cafes. So come on, if you need help getting your Christmas or New Year digital printing campaigns planned please get in touch, we’re here to help.

We’ll get our heads together and make a plan. Here’s how we can help:

  • Discuss your Christmas or New Year digital print campaign objectives
  • Plan a practical work schedule
  • Help with creative input and budgeting
  • Source the best quality and most cost-effective materials
  • Manage all the fulfilment and dispatch
  • And most importantly take full control of delivery and proof of delivery.

Come and talk to CSDPrint and we’ll help make your Christmas printing just a little more magical.

Meet Dan our Special Projects man

Dan Todd joins CSDPrint

CSDPrint has a new member of the team – Dan Todd.

Dan has been appointed because he has lots of fantastic project management experience. Over the past two to three years we have been working on more and more larger print projects. Jobs such as 100m hoarding boards for construction sites, multiple-outlet retail displays and complete building rebrands that involve everything from exterior signage and window graphics to wide format wall paper and vinyl lettering. To make sure we can continue to provide the best possible service, we knew it was time to bring in an experienced, extra pair of hands.

Commenting on Dan’s appointment, CSDPrint operations manager Glyn Richardson said: “Dan has 10 years solid experience. He’s worked across all aspects of digital printing and sign making and is already making a very positive contribution to the business.”

Dan has worked throughout the UK and Europe managing projects for a huge range of clients including automotive companies, construction contractors, medical equipment manufacturers, pet and vet products suppliers and toy retailers to name just a few.

CSDPrint’s CEO Gail Harrison added: “It’s very exciting seeing our special projects team taking shape. When we invested in all the large format equipment we needed a few years ago, we didn’t for one minute imagine we would be as busy as we are.

“Dan’s project management experience is already proving to be a big asset for us. He helped us with the build of an information hub for our client Total UK and is managing a number of ongoing projects at Leeds City College. It’s great to have you on the team Dan.”

Jumping through hoops

Digitally printed foamex

Fabulous pic of foamex horse graphics

Here at CSDPrint we love a challenge! We like getting creative to help our clients and do everything we can to make sure a job’s just right, and on time. It’s all part of what we do. So, it’s really lovely when someone takes the time to tell us – or even show us – how pleased they are with what we’ve done.

Here’s some feedback from our lovely client PAB Studios…

“Thank you CSDPrint for helping to delight our customers, White Rose Equestrian, who wanted a bold signature jump for their new Jump Arena.

 

“The foamex you suggested was just the right material for the job, being weatherproof but able to create a sturdy and safe jump that makes a real impact in the Arena.

“The 1.5m horses and rose will look superb once mounted on the jump. Perhaps this is a new avenue you could pursue?!

“What’s for sure is we know who to contact to get a good job done, quickly, efficiently and with great customer service.”

Materials, surfaces and substrates

Foamex for exhibition graphics

Cut out Foamex lettering graphics

Here’s a little post about one of the most popular materials we work with. We thought it might help to share a bit of technical know-how…

Foamex is fantastic for digitally printed signs and displays of any shape or size – it really is super versatile and has a fabulous finish.

It’s also durable, comes in a big range of sizes up to 10ft x 5ft and in lots of different colours but most importantly of all it is a great material to digitally print onto.

We love recommending Foamex to our clients because we know it can be relied on whatever the job for example:

 

  • automotive show room promotional signs
  • car header boards and promotional license plates
  • retail window graphics and in-store hanging boards
  • point-of-sale displays
  • exhibition stands and exhibition graphics
  • directional/way finding signage

Foamex can be cut to any shape and makes stunning strutted free-standing displays – you should see some of the 6ft chickens we’ve produced!

It can also be printed on both sides and can even be spot gloss varnished which is a fantastic way to make individual design details really stand out.

Whether it’s big, small or cut out Foamex is very co-operative when it comes to printing. Our CSDPrint uber high tech digitally printing systems produce the highest quality images and accurately recreate every design detail.

And just in case this one amazing substrate isn’t enough, we’ve also got super light weight Kappa and Smart-X too.

Please get in touch if you want to discuss substrates – it’s our specialist subject!

It’s a match made in heaven (well Castleford actually)

Self adhesive stickers

Fuel tank stickers heading for Norway

No, this little blog doesn’t have anything to do with dating but we do like it when things marry up! Getting your print work produced exactly as intended is our primary aim, especially when it comes to getting the colours right.

We’ve just had some lovely feedback from our client Fuel Proof Ltd who ordered a range of safety stickers for their fuel storage tanks. The Lancashire-based company manufacture and supply high quality bunded fuel tanks and bowsers for diesel and aviation fuels. Safety is of course a big priority for them and therefore they need a range of health & safety signs and stickers.

Fuel Proof asked us to ensure that the self adhesive stickers they ordered would match their corporate colours exactly and very helpfully sent us the Pantone reference numbers.

Top tip: If you want to make sure all your digitally printed items, not just stickers and construction site signs but banners, posters, exhibition stands and hoarding boards match, it’s a good idea to either provide a colour reference such as a Pantone number or a sample. It really does help because there can be problems when comparing the colours used in your design and the finished printed products.

Our operations manager Glyn Richardson explains: “It’s all to do with light and how you are viewing the colour. Artwork is produced using computers which transmit light but printed materials reflect light so the colours appear differently.

“Also the way colours are created varies too. The lovely bright red you carefully selected on screen at the design stage will be made up of red, green and blue (RGB) tones however digital printing uses cyan, magenta, yellow and black (CMYK).”

It might sound a bit complicated but it’s not when you’ve been involved in printing for as long as we have. At CSDPrint we pride ourselves on getting the closest possible colour matches – in fact Fuel Proof said all their stickers were “absolutely spot on!”

Everything you wanted to know about JPEGs, DPIs and PDFs

Artwork tips for large format printing

We thought it might be useful to share a few hints and tips about preparing the artwork needed to produce your printed items.

CSDPrint works with a huge variety of companies – some are big with their own in-house design teams and some are smaller and outsource their artwork production.

Whatever size of company you are, getting your designs ready to be printed can seem daunting especially if it’s for something really big like construction site hoardings, retail window graphics or exhibition stands.  So, here are a few of our top tips which we hope will make the whole artwork thing simpler…

 

  • Regardless of the computer program being used to create your artwork, the key is to focus on the quality of the image. What might look good on your computer monitor might not look good once it’s printed
  • As a rule of thumb we suggest clients enlarge their artwork by 400% on screen to check how good it will look once it’s printed
  • Artwork created using vector images – usually logos or line art graphics – are great because they can be enlarged or reduced in size without affecting the print quality
  • However problems tend to arise when raster images such as Jpeg digital photographs are used. These images are made up of a finite number of dots or pixels and therefore the quality of the printed images varies depending on the size of the final product. This can be a particular problem if the image is line work such as a logo
  • We recommend that photographic images are high resolution, so that’s at least 150 dots per inch (dpi) but the larger to number of dots, the better
  • It’s best not to use graphics, logos, clipart or images from the internet (unless you know they are high resolution such as stock shots). Screen-grabs or images cut directly from web pages might look fine on screen but in reality are usually very poor when printed especially when the image is being used for a large item such as a banner or exhibition stand graphic
  • And be careful if you are planning to use programmes like Photoshop to manipulate a web graphic – you can’t improve the resolution of the original snipped image
  • High quality Portable Document Format (PDF) files are great for submitting artwork; if they are set up correctly they are very reliable. Artwork saved as print quality, press quality, high quality or 300 dpi resolution or more are the best bet and always remember to embed all graphics and fonts
  • There are of course many other file formats (JPEG, TIFF and EPS) and we will do our best to work with them but its best to ensure all fonts are changed to paths or outlines in these cases
  • Finally, be sure to check and double-check the artwork proof we send you prior to printing. The proof will show exactly how your final printed items will look.

If you have any queries at all please get in touch with our head production honcho Lucy but be warned she’s not a fan of PowerPoint artwork!

Get packing

Excellent customer service

In the past 12 months we have been doing lots of fab large format work for the Cedar Group based in Romsey, Hampshire.

The global marketing solutions agency might be super-busy but they are always really lovely to work with.

At CSDPrint we try our best to give all of our clients the very best service possible. Over the 30 years we’ve been in business we’ve come to understand that more often than not it’s the little things that make the biggest difference…

Here’s some great feedback we’ve just received from Craig Smith, Business Development Manager at Cedar:

“Gail and the team always try their very best for us, we know that. It shows in the excellent level of communication, their efficiency and in particular the quality of their packing – it’s second-to-none.

“It might seem like a small part of what they do for us but it’s so vital to ensuring that everything arrives with us in tip top condition. Their attention to details like that makes everything run so much more smoothly.”

Thank you very much indeed Craig! Whatever it is we’re printing whether it’s very large hoarding boards for a construction site, complete new campaign packs of car crowners, window posters and vinyls for our automotive customers or thousands of small safety stickers we always do our best to make sure they are carefully packed and dispatched.

Keeping safe and looking good

Construction site hoarding boards

Alternate gloss and matt laminated site hoarding boards

Construction site hoarding boards  have a very important safety role to play. They are there to protect the public as well as the people working on site. In fact there is a legal responsibility for making sure that the boundaries of a development of any kind – a new build, refurbishment or demolition – are properly secured and that access is correctly managed.

If you need further information about the legal requirements for building and construction site perimeter hoarding boards go to http://www.hse.gov.uk/construction/safetytopics/publicprotection.htm

Having put together your hoarding board health and safety plans, you might decide that the large expanses of perimeter hoarding would make a make a fantastic surface on which to tell passersby about what’s going on…and that’s where we can help!

We have worked with construction companies of all sizes from across the country in the last 30 years designing and printing large format hoarding boards. In fact we like to think CSDPrint provides a gold star, turn-key service which includes site surveying, specification, design, printing and installation management.

Here are a couple of short printed hoarding video case studies that you might find useful http://www.csdprint.co.uk/videos.html

If you need any further information, or have any questions, please get in touch.

CSDPrint knows how important it is to get everything just right so that your sites not only keep everyone safe but look their best too.