Inkcups showcases X5-T UV flatbed printer at PRINTING United Expo by digitally decorating plastic bottle openers; project shows event visitors flatbed’s versatility in decorating multiple smaller items simultaneously

Sample article from our Printing & Publishing

November 2, 2023 (press release) –

The Evolution of the Bottle Opener

Have you ever taken a moment to contemplate the history and evolution of the humble bottle opener while cracking open a cold beer? Probably not, as you’re most likely focused on that first refreshing sip. Surprisingly, bottle openers have been in use since as far back as 1892 and have undergone numerous transformations over the years.

Interestingly, the bottle opener experienced a significant surge in demand during the Prohibition era, as people turned to bottled soda and other beverages. The end of Prohibition also contributed to its popularity as people celebrated their rediscovered freedom to enjoy alcoholic drinks.

Today, bottle openers have taken on a whole new level of creativity. They come in various forms, from wall-mounted openers to a wide assortment of unique shapes, keychain designs, and even integrated into the soles of sandals. Despite their long history, bottle openers continue to be a popular and versatile item.

PRINTING United Expo 2023

That’s why, when we gathered earlier this year to strategize for the PRINTING United Expo in Atlanta, GA, we made the deliberate choice to showcase the exceptional printing prowess of the X5-T UV flatbed printer by digitally decorating plastic bottle openers.

PRINTING United Expo is THE printing industry trade show, known as the most dynamic and comprehensive printing event in the world. Looking for one location to experience over a million square feet of equipment? PRINTING United Expo is the trade show just for that.

Trade Show Samples Selection Process

Before every trade show, we carefully curate a list of sample items to demonstrate our printing machines’ capabilities. We spend time researching our customers’ needs and matching them with printable items and the most appropriate printing machine.

At this year’s PRINTING United event, we decided to feature the X5-T by printing full-color images on bottle openers. This showcases the flatbed’s versatility in decorating multiple smaller items simultaneously, demonstrating its ability to handle a bed full of items at once.

Flatbed Printer for Bottle Openers

Above is Inkjet Service Technician Ryan Felts, who has been with Inkcups since 2013. During PRINTING United Ryan ran demonstrations on the X5-T but is also extremely knowledgeable on all of our digital machines including the Helix® ONE, Helix®, Double Helix® as well as the XJET Switch.

The X5-T flatbed UV digital printer is equipped for heavy duty industrial printing for promotional products, such as bottle openers, and can easily handle near constant use. This machine can print a full 43.3” x 24” area in under two minutes, both uni- or bi- directional for parts up to 20” tall. Perfect for decorating flat or slightly curved objects, the X5-T is ideal for full-color on-demand printing.

Print on a wide variety of products with the X5-T from bottle openers to hard coolers to sports balls to pens. Recently the X5-T has gained additional momentum for its ability to decorate the bottom of flat bottom drinkware like rocks glasses with the print technique- mirror print.

Custom Tooling for Flatbed Printing

In the realm of flatbed printing, the significance of precise fixtures, or tooling, cannot be overstated. Tooling plays a vital role by securely accommodating the part(s) during the printing process, preventing any movement, and ensuring the ideal position for the best print results.

In-house, our skilled machinist, John, crafted specialized tooling designed to flawlessly secure bottle openers during the printing process. To learn more about our custom inkjet tooling services please visit our Services > Custom Fixturing page.

The fixturing that was used at PRINTING United (shown below) is known as drop-through, where the products nestle in the holes to stay secure during the printing process.

Get Started Today

To learn more about our complete line of UV digital flatbed printers please visit: UV Printers. This page is a wealth of knowledge and will help you learn the differences between our different digital flatbed printers. To discuss your business needs in greater detail, please contact us today to get connected with your local sales representative.

To find other application spotlights from PRINTING United 2023 please visit our blog.

* All content is copyrighted by Industry Intelligence, or the original respective author or source. You may not recirculate, redistrubte or publish the analysis and presentation included in the service without Industry Intelligence's prior written consent. Please review our terms of use.

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Dan Rivard
Dan Rivard
- VP Market Development -

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