ARB Digital | Roland

UV Printing Yields Outside-the-Box Solutions that Improve Margins

ARB Digital   |   Sacramento, California

Thinking outside the box has always paid off for Alvaro Rodriguez.  So, when he opened his own business, he chose UV flatbed technology to achieve a competitive edge.  “Other shops had solvent printers, and some had UV capabilities, but those operations weren’t using the white ink to their advantage.  I saw an opportunity,” said Rodriguez.

UV Flatbed Versatility

Rodriguez opened Sacramento, California-based ARB Digital in 2012 with Roland’s VersaUV LEF-12 desktop flatbed printer.  “The print quality is amazing.  The LEF lets me do everything I want to do,” he noted. 

“I’m a small company, but I have state-of-the-art equipment capable of printing on all kinds of materials. That opens up a world of opportunities.”


Rodriguez’s shop specializes in unique designs on sought-after substrates like aluminum, steel, wood, tile and various papers.  His clients include restaurants, artists, and interior designers – all of them seeking new ways to tell a story with their signage.

Rodriguez points out that printing a restaurant menu on paper prices out at about $.30, while printing the same menu on wood allows him to charge closer to $20.  “The profit margin in producing products on unique substrates is much higher,” said Rodriguez.

Creative Solutions

One recent job Rodriguez took on put his creative skills to the test. A restaurant owner asked him to design a unique mural for a new location.  Instead of the usual vinyl or canvas, Rodriguez proposed a composite of photos of the town printed on tiles.  He contacted a photographer friend who designed the image.  Then, Rodriguez used his VersaUV to print the images directly on natural stone tiles. “It was like putting together a 14’ x 7’ jigsaw puzzle with 512 pieces,” said Rodriguez. 

“I like to treat our output as high-end products - not just printed signs,” said Rodriguez.  “Not only are the margins higher, having respect for the materials and surfaces makes for a better overall product.

“I’m a small company, but I have state-of-the-art equipment capable of printing on all kinds of materials. That opens up a world of opportunities.”