The Embroidered & Printed Clothing Company: Kornit Storm Hexa from Adelco
Justin Baker, managing director
Tell us a bit about your business
We have been around for 20 years and are a trade supplier of a wide range of decorated garments. We started off with the standard embroidery and screen print, but now also do all-over dye sublimation printing on T-shirts and bags, laser cutting, sewing and DTG printing. We are one of the few companies in the UK that offers all of these decoration methods, which we frequently combine to create some fantastic looking designs.
What digital printing system do you use, and when did you buy it?
We bought a Kornit Storm Hexa 12 months ago. After a lot of research we decided to go with the Kornit based on the low cost per print, and the quick and easy pre-treatment solution they offer. We are now running it flat out every day and are looking to either upgrade to a quicker Kornit or buy an additional machine. A lot of customers that were having screen print are now moving over to DTG as it‘s more cost-effective on the multi- colour, small run stuff. The machine also has other features, like a built-in humidifier to help keep the printer heads from drying out and blocking, and then the added red and green inks, which help us print with a wider range of colours.
Did you buy it to replace a machine, because you were starting to do DTG, or some other reason?
We originally ran three of the older Brother DTG machines. The main issue we had was cost per print: as we are a trade supplier the ink cost was making it very hard to compete on this level. Since moving to Kornit the print cost is much cheaper and we have a full order book for DTG.
How much did it cost?
We paid around £230k for the machine. They are not cheap, but you do get what you pay for.
Why did you choose the Kornit – what are its main advantages?
The key points for us are speed, print cost and ease of use – the Kornit ticks all three boxes. It would be good if it was quicker, but we are looking to address that issue with a possible machine upgrade.
Is there anything you‘d like to see in an upgrade or don‘t particularly like about it?
The colours sometimes get a bit duller when the garment goes through the dryer. It‘s nothing major, but it would be good if this did not happen. Other than that and the speed, I cannot think of anything.
What‘s it like to use? Do you have any tips on how to get the most out of it?
It’s simple enough to use. The software interface is easy to navigate and simple to import artwork. There are all the features you need to resize and position your image before you send it to print; there are also a variety of features that allow you to choose how much white and colour get printed onto the garment, which means you can get the best possible print for any given garment.
What sort of work is it used for?
We use the Storm Hexa for all sorts of different sized runs, from small, one-off orders and runs up to 200- 300 to individual drop ship orders for webstores. We are currently linking to multiple webstore platforms and taking on daily orders through our in-house drop ship system.
What other machines do you have and do you use any of them in combination with the Kornit?
We run MHM automatic screen printing machines, Tajima embroidery machines and Monti (Antonio) for dye sublimation printing. We have invested a lot in the screen department recently, including a Spyder DTS unit and automatic cleaning and coating machines. We have combined embroidery, dye sublimation and screen print with DTG, which opens up a lot of new options.
What would be your advice to others thinking of buying a DTG printer?
Have a good look at all the options and buy the right machine for your market.