3A Composites USA Inc.

Athletic Shoe Displays Mounted on Sintra Step Up for Shopping Center Opening

Designers at Vector Impresion Digital in Medellin, Colombia, stepped up to the challenge of creating 12 larger-than-life Reebok athletic shoe displays last fall with the help of Sintra graphic display board (http://www.graphicdisplayusa.com/sintra/substrate/) by 3A Composites USA. Twelve images of Reebok athletic shoes – each measuring approximately 14-feet by 5-feet – were displayed from September through November 2010 at all entrances to the Santa Fe shopping center in Medellin, inaugurating the opening of the new mall and highlighting its Reebok store tenant.

While serving as the US graphic display industry's leading PVC board for more than 20 years, Sintra is a newer product offering from distributor SEL Consulting in Medellin.

Sintra is comprised of a moderately expanded closed cell polyvinyl chloride in a homogeneous sheet with a low-gloss matte finish. Durable Sintra is easy to fabricate with wood or foam board techniques. It cuts cleanly, creating smooth edges; and, it can be direct printed and accept vinyl graphics. Sintra fabricates easily without special tools and can be heat formed and laminated to other materials.

Sintra was chosen for the Reebok athletic shoe displays following a review of several substrates, according to Monica Ruiz, marketing manager, SEL Consulting.

"Our customer was challenged to create an original display that would communicate amazing and new ideas to the public; and, Sintra offered important features to help accomplish that goal," said Ruiz. "Not only could Sintra easily be formed into shapes, its superior dent- and scratch- resistance was especially important in these exterior displays. Additionally, since Sintra is quite new to Colombia, we wanted to show what a good impression it can make to the graphic display industry in this country."

Images of the Reebok athletic shoe were digitally printed with a Konica Minolta K-Jet 320 printer onto repositionable vinyl and applied to 4-foot by 8-foot sheets of Sintra in the Bright White color and 3 mm thickness. (Sintra Bright White in the 4-by-8 sheet also is print optimized for images that are directly printed to the substrate.)

"Sintra is one of the best materials we've used for graphic arts production," said Mario Ernesto Gutierrez, manager, Vector Impresion Digital. "The surface of Sintra Bright White is very white and clean in appearance, and it can be formed into just about any shape. The installation of the Reebok athletic shoe displays relied on the light weight, rigidity and durability of Sintra. We've been impressed with the quality of 3A Composites' graphic display boards."

Printed vinyl images were applied to six sheets of Sintra for each display. Images then were die-cut to create the shoe shape. Finished displays were installed with a steel structural frame.

"The Reebok store management and its customers were very satisfied," said Ruiz. "The publicity was impressive."

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