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Label Printer experience (Device, not company)

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We're looking at buying a label printer like the Primera LX500 or similar. We're doing a larger number of short runs and the printing cost and time to get labels sucks. For us, after a few runs we're expecting it to pay for itself. It will also allow us to test out label designs on bottles. 

- Who has experience with any label printer?

- What is your advice for getting one?

- Can the labels/ink survive water? We're putting some of these on canned cocktails that we put on ice.  

Anything else we should know? 



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We have the LX610 we use for small bottlings. 700 is the MAX I would do but even that is pushing it. The only choice of paper for water would be the white bopp and pigment ink. I personally don't use ours on cans exposed to alot of water or ice. Also, know you're limited to dimensions, so check it'll work for you.

Overall, we like it but it can be temperamental, takes time to print, and really isn't meant for any serious volume. Great for small, one-off bottling though.

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I've been thinking about this.  The math checks out: average cost of a label is like +/- $0.10.  If you don't mind basic shapes, this makes good sense.  

I want to hear more about the durability of the labels too.

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We have a Primera LX2000 that served us well for short runs (100-200 labels) in our early days. We even went so far as to have custom die cut blank labels made by Kenco for it. The print quality was good, but not near as good as our current label supplier. The excess material around the die cut needs to be "weeded" out. If you use a label applicator (like an AP-360 or AP-362), the labels would need to be re-rolled correctly. And you *might* be able to save some money on the cost of ink, but then you need to factor in the cost of maintenance and potentially needing to replace a print head. That being said, we came to the realization that once we factored in the time we were spending, it just wasn't worth it.

It was one of the many "just because you can, doesn't mean you should" lessons we've learned. We're really good at making great spirits ... not printing labels. 

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