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Water Based vs Eco Solvent


New Member
I'm trying to understand the limitations of waterbased ink printers. I know that the coated materials are about twice the cost of uncoated. Is a laminated waterbased print as good as a laminated solvent ink print? Are there any other limitations or advantages? Can they both be used on vehicles?

Mike Paul

Super Active Member
Anything outdoor needs to be solvent base or thermal resin transfer. IMHO.

I have seen/read inkjet manufactures say water base prints with a u/v laminate will work outdoors. >> "Sure except for the edges!."

It works for a while but as soon as moisture starts creeping in the edges of the prints it attacks the water base ink. > Blur > failure > Redo

If you do interior signs go water base and save a lot of money on your machine purchase.

If you want to do graphics for outdoor/vehicles usage, spend the extra money and go solvent or semi solvent. Liquid or film laminate is a must even for these type of printers.

paul luszcz

New Member
We bought a Roland CJ540 water based printer based on the representation that as long as you laminate the prints, they are as durable as solvent ink outdoors.

What they didn't mention is that you must laminate at least 1/2" beyond the print. Which eliminates full bleed images (90%) and contour cut images (the other 10%). It's also almost imposible to do and can't be done at all automatically (print/lam/cut).

If you want outdoor prints you MUST use solvent inks.