A printing business can be started in any part of the world, and all the equipment needed to start a printing business is the same irrespective of the country you choose to start your printing business.
No doubt, there are people who are interested in starting a printing business who may not know all the major equipment they will need to start the business. In this article, we will look at some of the major equipment you will need to start a printing business, what the equipment is used for, and of course, how much it will cost you to purchase this equipment.
There are different niche ideas when it comes to the printing business, we have regular printing services, 3D printing services, screen printing, green printing et al. But for the purpose of this article, we will write about the equipment you will need if you want to start a regular printing business.
List of Equipment You Need to Start a Printing Business
Digital Printing Press Machine
If you are planning to open a standard printing press, one of the major equipment you must have in your shop is a digital printing machine. A digital printing press combines digital printing with offset printing. It’s a large format printer that can produce a huge volume of digitally printed color documents. Please note that digital printing differs from traditional, analog printing methods – such as offset printing – because digital printing machines do not require printing plates. Instead of using metal plates to transfer an image, digital printing presses print the image directly onto the media substrate.
Cost: $245.99 – $399.99
Large Format Printer
Another major piece of equipment you must have if you want to open a standard printing press that can handle corporate clients is a large format printer. Large format printers are printing machines (printers) that support a maximum print roll width of between 18 and 100 inches (460 and 2,540 mm). Large-format printing projects often require special printers that can accommodate larger paper sizes. Large format printers are essential for producing banners, posters, signage, and other oversized graphics. They come in different technologies like inkjet, latex, and UV-curable.
Cost: The price varies
Screen Printing Equipment
Screen printers use a silkscreen, a squeegee, and hinge clamps to screen print their designs. Screen printing is a process where ink is forced through a mesh screen onto a surface. Making certain areas of the screen impervious to printing ink creates a stencil, which blocks the printing ink from passing through the screen. The ink that passes through forms the printed image. Basically, screen printing machines are used for printing on apparel, textiles, promotional items, and signage. This equipment includes screens, squeegees, and a printing table.
Cost: $139.99 for VEVOR Screen Printing Press 4 Color 1 Station Screen Printing Machine, and $349.99 for Phrozen Sonic Mini 4K LCD Resin 3D Printer Series.
Heat Press Machine
Depending on the type of printing services you want to offer, you will need a heat press machine if you plan to print on custom apparel or promotional products such as fabrics, mugs, and other products. A heat press machine is a machine engineered to imprint a design or graphic on a substrate, such as a t-shirt, with the application of heat and pressure for a preset time period. Please note that a heat press is a very useful tool that guarantees a successful heat transfer because it can measure pressure, apply consistent pressure, and dispense the exact temperature, without pressing multiple times to get the desired output.
Cost: $98.22 – $267.29
Paper Cutter and Trimmer
Another piece of equipment you will need if you want to open a printing press is a paper cutter and trimmer. A paper cutter or trimmer is any device for cutting or trimming paper, typically a weighted, powered, or spring-hinged blade mounted on or over a ruled board or table on which many sheets of paper may be aligned for cutting at one time. Please note that precision cutting is key for producing clean and accurately sized print materials hence the need for paper cutters or trimmers. Interestingly, paper cutters and trimmers come in various sizes and types.
Cost: $32.65 – $220.99
A laminator or laminating machine is yet another important piece of equipment that must not be found missing in a standard printing shop. Laminator machines are machines that apply a thin plastic cover to paper documents by using pressure, heat, and their internal roller mechanism. Laminators are basically used to protect and enhance the durability of printed materials, such as ID cards, menus, and posters. Please note that there are pouch laminators for smaller items and roll laminators for larger projects.
Cost: $29.99 – $46.25
Another major piece of equipment you will need if you want to open a printing shop is what we call finishing equipment. Depending on your service offerings in your printing shop, you may need various finishing equipment like binders, folders, collators, and booklet makers to complete and package printed materials.
Cost: The price varies, and it is based on the type of finishing equipment you want to purchase.
A computer is yet another major piece of equipment you will need if you want to open a printing shop. A printer produces the output from the computer on paper. The printer is the output device that helps to display hard copies on paper. Printers are used to create a permanent representation of visuals or text, which is often printed on paper.
Cost: The price varies, and it is based on the type (laptop or desktop), brand, model, and configuration.
Another major piece of equipment that you will need if you want to open a printing business is a document scanner. A document scanner is an input device that transforms your documents into a digital computer-readable format through optical character recognition (OCR). It processes images, graphics, and text, whether handwritten or printed.
Cost: $57.00 for Canon CanoScan Lide 300 Scanner, and $1,295.99 for RICOH fi-8170 Deluxe Bundle Professional High Speed Document Scanner.
Lastly, another important equipment you will need if you want to open a printing shop is a binding machine. A binding machine is used to bind a range of papers which includes documents, manuals, quotations, brochures, and much more. Binding machines are used to create professional-looking books, reports, and presentations. Common types include coil binding, comb binding, and perfect binding machines.
Cost: $41.46 – $199.99
It is important to note that in as much as you would need all the equipment listed above to open a printing business, there are other equipment not listed above that you may need especially if you want to open a 3D printing press business. If you plan to open a 3D printing shop, in addition to all the equipment listed above, you should make plans to purchase 3D printers such as Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM), Stereolithography (SLA), and Digital Light Processing (DLP) printers.