There’s a lot more that goes into the installation of a wide-format printing system than just the date and time of delivery. There are a number of factors that can greatly affect an equipment installation and not taking these into consideration can lead to major issues during the process. Outlined below are some key considerations to be addressed prior to the installation of wide-format printing equipment to help ensure a smooth process.
The facility’s specifications and delivery requirements must be considered to avoid problems during delivery. Prior to installation, determine the dimensions of each area of the facility the equipment will enter to ensure it will fit properly. This includes the building entrance, corridors, staircases and elevators. If an elevator will be used, it’s important to determine its load capacity as well.
Additionally, check if the facility has delivery requirements that must be met. For example, is a certificate of insurance required by building management? Should the elevator be reserved in advance? Or, are floor protections required? Many, if not all, of the delivery requirements should be addressed up front using a vendor’s site survey.
Many organizations purchase new wide-format printing systems to replace older, unwanted equipment, and need to have their existing products removed. Determine if the removal of equipment is necessary as additional time, rigging and labor may be required.
Where the equipment is placed in a building can greatly impact its performance. Failure to provide a suitable environment can result in decreased performance and increased equipment problems. These factors include:
- Clean Environment: Make sure the area is reasonably free of dust and other airborne particles such as could be generated by sanders or trimmers. Airborne dust or other debris can interfere with the jetting of ink from the print heads of inkjet printers causing image quality and printer performance problems.
- Room Volume and Ventilation: Some printers produce sound, odor, ozone and dust emissions requiring larger space or additional ventilation systems to avoid affecting the equipment or the user.
- Temperature: Operating in a room outside of the equipment’s specified temperature requirements can impact its ability to run properly. Depending on the location and size of the room, an air conditioning system may be necessary.
- Surroundings: Some printers may be affected by surrounding equipment and conditions and should not be placed near water boilers or humidifiers or subject to ammonia fumes or direct sunlight. The print quality of some printers may be affected by excessive vibration generated by heavy machinery such as shears, punch presses or guillotines.
It is important that the machine be placed in a room with appropriate dimensions for the equipment to be installed, work properly, and allow for any necessary maintenance. If the room does not conform to minimum dimension specifications, the installation will often require additional authorization, which can cause delays. Vendor specifications often include the operational footprint of the device as well as recommendations as to where to place the printer.
In addition to the room dimensions, consider the floor conditions. Some printers may need to be installed directly on a concrete floor as the alignment and level of the printer can be compromised if the floor support is flexible (e.g., carpeting or wood). Also check to be sure the maximum floor load of the equipment can be accommodated.
Determine what power configurations and electrical supplies are required for the printer and any supporting equipment. Consider if a separate outlet will need to be provided for the installation of any network interface box. It may also be the customer’s responsibility to hire an electrician to provide electrical service to the printer, as well as supplying their own power cord.