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Opinions on Van Son Ink

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Post time: 2013-4-1 16:07:07 |Show all posts
Question for you all, we have been a long time user of Braden Supften  4C EPTS Ink in our heidelberg.  we back it up with Alcohol and Prisco 3451 fountain solution.   We have have been using this ink for 15+ years and our sales reps treats us very good.  As you all you in our every changes industry pricing is getting immense pressure and i'm always looking for ways to cut cost without quality.  Our Fuji Vendor who is a 20+ year sales rep to us, just told me they started carring Van son Vs3 series process ink and sent some in for me to try.  he wants me to back it our with Pressmax 1104 fountain solution.  I have always VERY hesitant about messing with our chemistry but the van son ink it $3-$4 per # cheaper, but my rule of thumb is, is that its always cheaper for a reason,  anyone have experience with this series of van son ink?? thanks in advance for all your input.

Post time: 2013-4-2 19:46:49 |Show all posts
We've always ran Toyo until about a year ago and we decided to change to VanSon.  It only took about a month and we changed back.  just ran better, looked nicer on the finished sheet.  Just my 2 cents worth.

Post time: 2013-4-2 18:22:18 |Show all posts
I thought Gans brought most of their sheetfed ink in from China these days - dont tell me they dont. And didnt Braden get bought by Sun Chem? - in the end cheap ink is cheaper - cheaper materials produce ink with weaker film and poor drying, especialy in poor conditions. Aqueous coating has made it possible for ink makers to manufacture cheap, weak, Alkyd heavy inks that transfer well and fool pressmen who think press settings has something to do with ink strength. If you need it, pay extra for the ink company that gives you better service, otherwise you will pay more for the cheaper product.

Post time: 2013-4-2 17:07:13 |Show all posts
We get our VanSon ink from Vivid Colors and they are wonderful.  They carry many of the manufacturers inks (as well as many other press supplies) and will work with you to find the product that works best for you (if it doesn't happen to be VanSon).  The sales reps are knowledgable being that most, if not all, have ran a press before.  They are familiar with the characteristics of each of the inks so if your having issues they can help you troubleshoot and/or find a different product for your needs.  They have an emergency response team that is available 24/7.  Yes, I said 24/7!  I've called at 2am and had my ink within a couple of hours and it didn't cost me my first born child.  Because of their service I know that I will always get good quality products from them.  They allow me to test a variety of products on a guarantee.  I personally like working with them because they carry so many products that they're not interested in cramming a particular product down your throat, instead they give you options and suggestions for what's right for you.

Post time: 2013-4-2 15:59:58 |Show all posts
I have heard the same kind of thing about these ink companies in the US buying their ink from over seas.  Due to the economy they are buying their ink from over seas and private labeling it.  All they are concerned with is price.  No concern for quality.  It is who can cut the others throat first.  But on the other hand if their customers are only concern with pricing let them use it.  They will ultimately end up being so inefficacy and upside down due to the garbage these ink companies are selling them they will be forced to go out of business and leave more print sales for those who care and who are using quality products.
I would love to see an ink company be able to say all their products are made in the USA.  Imagine an ink company who wants to help the US economy improve instead of supporting these off shore companies who's garbage will keep the US printer running inefficient.  
That is enough for my rant.

Post time: 2013-4-2 14:48:35 |Show all posts
VanSon's inks are made either in Holland or Korea.  But they do bring everything into their hub locations and modify the inks upon request.  I have special formulations for perfecting.  Also special mixes of varnishes.

Post time: 2013-4-2 13:47:32 |Show all posts
I had heard that companies such as Gans and Braden who traditionally manufactured their own inks were importing ink from Korea and/or China. In fact, another ink rep had said that Van Son was also importing some of their inks from Korea and/or China.  In this case do companies such as these have the ability "customize" formulations for the customer?
On another note, Doesn't anyone buy American anymore?

Post time: 2013-4-2 12:09:23 |Show all posts
Gordon -
It's not necessarily the sales volume that justifies whether a company needs an inplant operation or not. It really is based on the remaining gross profit after paying for bodies to man the operation. But that comes at a cost to your ink / pressroom consumables pricing obviously.
The truth is that it's your company, not mine. Test the ink for yourself. There certainly isn't anything wrong with testing the VS3 series for your own satisfaction. It may not even work for you and at that point this is a mute conversation and a dead issue.
A few things:
#1 - I would however encourage you to call them for a rush PMS or a color match (a color outside of the pantone guide) and see how long it takes them to turn it around. If you AQ or UV your work, are they able to furnish you with "Bleed Resistant" formulas upon request?
#2 - If you run a job and it ends up going sour, which one of the two pays the claim? Is it Fuji or Vanson that does the legwork and compensates you for your loss?
#3 - How familiar with ink is your Fuji Rep? If he/she isn't entirely familiar with the dynamics of ink and which series, ink, formula is appropriate for the varieties of stock you run, you should ask yourself if that's the person to trust with a critical part of your business.
In Los Angeles, people typically buy ink from the manufacturers. I haven't seen many companies buying ink through distributors unless they're an extremely small shop that might purchase from a "Cash and Carry" type set up (your local paper store).
Again, I'm voicing my opinion and do not mean to offend anyone's decision. It's rather comical when the paper companies and the "Supply Houses" view ink as just another arrow in their quiver to offer.
Hope my advice helps and best of luck.

Post time: 2013-4-2 11:03:28 |Show all posts
I'm sorry to inform "D Ink Man" and "Azures", but VanSon/Fuji do customize their inks to fit the needs of the printer.  They have done for us and at least 2 other printer's that I know of.

Post time: 2013-4-2 09:26:07 |Show all posts
We have used the Vs3 series since it came out as well as the Vs5, Vs7 and VsZero. When we got ready to do our G7 certification we brought in Toyo, Kohl & Madden and VanSon as well as their techs to do a side by side comparison and VanSon won hands down. Don't be swayed by anyone on this forum as to whether one ink is so superior to another. Bring in the ink manufacturers to do a side by side comparison. If they are so confident in their inks, they will bring in the ink at no charge as well as their techs and prove that their ink is superior. VanSons Tough Tex inks are very good also if you need an oxidizing ink for non-porous substrates.
The company I work for is one of the largest sheet fed printers in the state and has won several awards for our printing and all with VanSon inks.

Post time: 2013-4-2 08:05:16 |Show all posts
Do your self a favor....Buy an ink with high pigment level and low water pick up level.
ZIPSET..............It is the best

Post time: 2013-4-2 06:08:13 |Show all posts
Asures has it correct. Van Son does not engage in customizing ink series to fit the needs of a printer. Same is true for Fuji and all the other Supply Houses that want to bundle their wares. It is all sales with little regard to the technical aspect. They do however provide some of the best lip service available. Stay with a company that manufactures their offerings. Gans and Braden do this and are experts at it. Don't worsen your problems with these sideshow middlemen. If you look at price only, you will lose in the long haul. Truth.

Post time: 2013-4-2 05:08:00 |Show all posts
Aaron, my understanding is that a printer that grosses about $10 million or more, buys enough ink to allow the ink manufacturer to put one of their own ink specialists onsite in the print shop to adjust, formulate, etc. the inks as required.
Is that correct? If not, what shop size would you consider the smallest that would permit an onsite ink specialist.
best, gordon p

Post time: 2013-4-2 03:27:07 |Show all posts
In most cases I'd agree with Aaron, but in respect to the Fuji/VanSon arrangement, he is wrong.  VanSon's own pressroom reps along with Fuji's reps work right with you.  They will develop whatever it takes to adjust, formulate or manipulate the inks.  They developed new formulas, adjusted existing formulas for us and brought in their specialists from all over the country to help us be successful.  Any of their personnel, including right up to the President of the company is just a phone-call away.  They believe in the old-fashioned way of not only being a supplier, they preach and deliver that they are a part of your team.
Is VS3 a perfect ink, No.  No ink is perfect, but is it an excellent ink and does it produce top award winning work. YES!

Post time: 2013-4-2 01:41:12 |Show all posts
I've seen the Vanson VS3 series in action. It certainly isn't a bad ink but nor is it the "Top Notch" either. I wasn't impressed by the color gamut when further examined on test sheets printed.
Something to take into consideration when you buy ink from a "Graphic Arts Supply House" is that they have no ability to adjust, formulate, or manipulate those inks in event something goes south. Sure, test the inks for yourself but you should really keep that in mind.
You get what you pay for..
Aaron Sures
G7 Expert
Pressroom Specialist
Gans Ink & Supply Company
(323) 867-3677 Direct Cellular
Printing Ink, Eco Friendly Inks, Sustainable Inks, Environmentally Friendly Inks, Gans Ink Home

Post time: 2013-4-2 00:10:28 |Show all posts
We use both FM (Taffeta) & 250 Line Co-Res.  We have separate profiles/curves on uncoated & coated for both types of screening.

Post time: 2013-4-1 22:27:45 |Show all posts
Are you using FM screening?
thx, gordon p

Post time: 2013-4-1 20:52:49 |Show all posts
I would strongly disagree with the D Ink Man.  Toyo is a high strength process series and when we did side by side tests, we used about 2% more ink.  Our total savings the first full year in use was over $65,000.  If it was an inferior product we wouldn't be able to win the most Best of Category awards for our PIA region & Benny's from the national competition.  It's just like anything else, it's a tool in making the final product and it's how you use it.

Post time: 2013-4-1 18:53:33 |Show all posts
The V3 ink is a weak color strength process series. You will have more problems on medium to heavier coverage forms, particularly drying. The V3 being slower drying, more stay open, could be a problem if you are use to a more oxidative type of ink like you are using. If it ain't broke, I would not fix it. Do not forget the service aspect also.

Post time: 2013-4-1 17:38:21 |Show all posts
We were a Toyo house until almost 3 years ago.  Didn't think we'd ever switch, but we were installing some new presses and we were seeing inconsistencies with ink/water balance and always chasing color.  The pressman described it as: "Riding The Wild Bull".  We then tested:  Two other series of inks of Toyo, Superior Ink and Kohl Madden.  We also tested 8 different blankets & 3 different fountain solutions & alcohol substitutes.  The pressmen, one of which had been a demonstrator for Komori, remarked that they had never seen an ink that was so easy to hold color balance, no piling and several other good running characteristics.  We also going to be installing an automated dispensing/blending system for Pantone inks.  VanSon was the only vendor interested in really fine-tuning their formulas, so that all the mixes very accurately matched the swatch books.  We were also installing a long perfector press and much of our work is ad agency/designer work and we needed to be able to match on both sides of the sheet, with no chalking on the downside.  VanSon, brought people in and developed a set of ink for us, that was fantastic.  
So, I would definately give them a chance.
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