Making its debut at the Fespa trade show in Munich last week was the D2M Rapid Screen from Pigment.Inc.

Billed as removing most of the steps from the screen making process, the unit applies an injectable emulsion derived from UV ink as a negative over the entire screen. The ink application is followed by a UV light, which cures the emulsion. The result is a screen that is ready to go on the press.

Full-size screens take around four minutes to create, said general manager Jerry Erich, with multiple passes building up the height of the emulsion, enabling high-build prints.

The system has been developed with René Baer and Shlomo Hermon, who have worked on the chemistry of the ’emulsion’, a UV-ink derivative, to make the ‘one-step’ screen making process possible.

It is designed to work with all common screen mesh sizes and all brands of water-based, reactive and plastisol inks. It will withstand up to at least 2,000 impressions – the company had a screen at the show that had been used 3,000 times – and is compatible with M&R, MHM and Roq systems.

Pricing, exact launch dates and the UK distributor are yet to be finalised, but it is expected to go into production at the end of this year and be available in the UK in the first quarter of 2024 and the price is likely to be around €50,000 (£43,000), with a full-image screen costing approximately €1.20 (£1) to produce.

The D2M Rapid Screen allows screen printing to challenge DTG, said Jerry, because small runs with many colours are quick and easy to achieve, and it also allows set-up costs, which can be off-putting to customers, to be waived.