A Year in Reflection - Midwest Machinery

A Reflection on 2020 From all at Midwest!

It’s safe to say that 2020 hasn’t been plain sailing for anybody. With that in mind, a lot of people will be happy to see the back of such an abnormal year and will be looking to make 2021 their year – and we couldn’t agree more. We’re just grateful that we can take our health and wellbeing into the New Year. 

Of course, that’s a lot more than some people and businesses can say. So, we’re extremely grateful for that and send our condolences and best wishes to all of those affected by the uncertain times this year. As 2020 draws to a close, we thought we’d share some of our key lessons and learnings. Plus, an account of what we can take into next year. 

Before we jump into things, we’d like to stress that this isn’t us exploiting a chance to gloat and rub our growth in the faces of those businesses who haven’t been as fortunate. We’d like to take this opportunity to provide some well-needed positivity to round off an odd year all-round. 

Boasting and bragging isn’t our style – nor is it ethical. Now we’ve cleared that up, let’s get into it!

 

Key Lessons Learned From 2020

2020 has been a year like no other, right? Well, with the unique challenges that the year has thrown our way, we’ve come through the other side having learned a lot about ourselves and the industry too. Firstly, at a time of uncertainty, we realised that everybody can always give a little bit more. Positivity goes a long way in uncertain times. 

Whether that’s time, guidance or anything you can give – a sense of positivity and generosity can make the world a better place. At Midwest, we’re firm believers in providing our customers and the industry with free advice, knowledge and expertise. If we can share our in-depth knowledge and improve the overall embroidery industry – we’ll do whatever we can.

This wouldn’t be a 2020 review without a nod towards the global pandemic and the huge effects it’s had on everyday life. As a business, we’ve had to change the way we operate and appeal to new buyer behaviour and trends. One thing we’ve learned from the pandemic is that we should never take things for granted. 

Especially our own and our loved one’s health. As we mentioned, we send our deepest condolences and well wishes to all those affected.

 

A Shift in Buyer Behaviour

In 2020, we’ve seen the embroidery community grow and flourish. This has helped our business massively and has changed the way that our audience is behaving. Perhaps this boost in sales and interest is due to more people having more time to follow their passions? Especially within the furlough period earlier in the year. 

We’ve had to rely on our flexible approach more than ever before. With restrictions limiting the way that we can work, we’ve had to find new ways of reaching and engaging with our audience. We’ve invested in a lot of professional videography this year to create useful assets to reach all of our key audience personas.

And we’re happy to announce that it’s worked! Think about it, we’re required to read a lot about restrictions and news updates – we don’t want to research in-depth with more heaps of content, do we? We’ve found that in-depth product overview videos have been the perfect asset to our sales approach and add great value to our audience. 

 

A HUGE Thank You to All of Our Customers

Of course, our customers are at the centre of everything that we do. Therefore, it’s only right that they get a special mention. After all, without them, we’d have nobody to sell our industry-leading embroidery machines to, would we? We’d like to thank our existing, past and current customers for their continued support throughout the year.

 

Midwest Machinery Thank You

 

Industrial embroidery machines require a level of investment – even the cheapest ones on the market. We’re incredibly grateful for your continued investment in bettering your operations and overall production. We appreciate that money may be tight at the moment with everything that’s gone on in 2020, however, your continued support hasn’t gone unnoticed. 

At Midwest, we always operate with our customers at the forefront of our minds. We don’t just look to drive custom, we aim to lay the foundations for long-term, successful partnerships. So, without further ado, a massive thank you is in order for all of our customers. 

We wouldn’t be where we are currently without you – your continued support and investment means everything to us. 

 

The Resilience Of Our Team

At Midwest, we’d like to give a special mention to our amazing team – we couldn’t have got through this year without you. Quite often, your team members are regarded as your most valuable commodity – and we couldn’t agree more on that! They’ve been superb and have risen to every challenge and hurdle that’s been put in front of them. 

With the uncertainty of every industry and massive cuts being made everywhere, it could have been easy for the team to become unsettled and unmotivated. However, our team has remained focused, aligned and dedicated to getting the job done. We can’t thank them enough for the effort that’s been put in and the amazing results that they’ve achieved too.

As a collective, we’ve grown closer in 2020 due to the adverse nature of the challenge ahead of us. This stands us in great stead for another prosperous year in 2021 that’s hopefully a little smoother than the year gone by. Once again, well done team and we look forward to what lies ahead of us for the forthcoming year. 

 

Here’s to 2021!

So, there you have it – a quick round-up of some of the most important lessons learned this year and how we’ve managed to overcome the various challenges ahead of us. As we’ve mentioned throughout, the fact that we’ve made it to this point with our health, wellbeing and business in a strong place is a feat that we’re ever so thankful for. 

Unfortunately, this can’t be said for some people and businesses. We send our well wishes to all of those affected by the adverse times in 2020. With that in mind, we’re looking ahead to the New Year and what lies in store for Midwest. We’re lucky to be finishing the year in an incredibly strong position – and long may that continue for the next 12 months and beyond.

Finally, we wish everyone all the best for Christmas and the New Year. Stay safe, look after one another and have fun celebrating with your loved ones. We look forward to seeing you in the New Year.

The Importance of Live Reporting for Your Operations

Live reporting is essential for monitoring the performance of your machinery and overall business. If you’re not analysing your performance, how do you know whether you’re performing at an optimum level or not? Quite simply, you don’t!

If you’re not carrying out any analysis, it’s likely that you’re not reaching your full potential or improving. Making blind business decisions may lead you down the wrong path. Whereas, if you’re carefully analysing your performance, you can make more intelligent decisions which will best position your business for success. 

If you’re unsure about live reporting and the different ways in which it can benefit your business, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. This post will explore everything you need to know and how you can use live reporting systems and metrics to your advantage. 

 

We’ll cover: 

 

Keep Track of Productivity

Within manufacturing and embroidery, productivity is a key area that team managers are always looking to improve. Whether that’s getting more out of their workforce or their machinery. With that in mind, to calculate their current productivity levels, they’ll need to look at core reports and metrics to see which areas can be improved or need more resources.

Think about it, if you’re wanting more from your workforce, how do you know whether they’ve got the capacity to do so if you’re not analysing the live reports? You could be forcing more work on their plates without knowing that they’re already stacked in the first place. Or, how do you know that your team are putting their all in and aren’t taking it easy? You need to track it. 

Productivity is everything. You can see whether your team is working hard to keep on track to meet tight deadlines. Or, whether they need to up their game and put a bit more in. You can also see whether your machines are being productive enough, or do you need another one to cope with demand a little better? 

 

Improve Efficiency and Reduce Costs

Once you’ve started tracking your live reporting, you can account for the actions of every team member within each job. If you notice that they’re slacking a little and could be working more productively, this is an opportunity for you to improve your overall team efficiency. If they start working harder, your efficiency, output and profitability will rise. 

 

 

If you’re constantly paying a monthly wage when your team isn’t putting in the hard yards to meet deadlines, this will increase costs for the business. You’re paying a premium rate for less work, so live reporting can help you improve the efficiency of your workers and reduce the cost per project – in relation to wages, of course. 

Are your team constantly making mistakes? Or is your machine throwing regular errors that are affecting your overall production? If either of these keeps happening, it’s going to increase your overall costs as a business. With live reporting, you can note where the issues are coming from and act accordingly to rectify them. 

 

Forecast Output and Capacity

When forecasting and setting your business goals, without knowing your performance figures, how can you set realistic KPIs for your team to achieve in the next quarter or year? Quite simply, you can’t. Going in blind will either leave you going in too small with your goals or too large.

Setting unrealistic goals can be detrimental to your workforce. Make them too easy and your team may relax and take it easy. Whereas make them too hard to achieve, it may cause your team to become unmotivated and feel like they’re not making any progress. Both are bad situations for your business to be in. 

Live reporting will allow you to see how many jobs you normally complete and how many you have the ability to complete too. Therefore, you can set realistic goals, plus, see if your team is over/under capacity. From there, you can make smart recruitment decisions on how to drive your business towards your overall objectives and goals. 

 

Analyse the Performance of Your Embroidery Machine

Just as your team needs to be performing, so does your equipment. Your team could be giving their all, however, if they’re not supported with the right equipment, they could be set up to fail before they’ve even started. The performance of your industrial embroidery machine is pivotal to the success of your business and the quality of your products. 

If your machines aren’t performing properly, you’re not reaching the potential that you’re capable of doing so. Live reporting breaks down the performance of your embroidery machine to see which areas it’s excelling in, which need improvement and how much further you can push your machine. Without live reporting, you’d have no idea of how your machine was performing. 

You may be wanting to grow your business, but how do you know whether your current level of machinery can handle the increased demand without analysis? You don’t. Live reporting breaks this down for you perfectly so that you can make smarter decisions on whether your equipment is best positioning or failing your production line. 

 

Check Whether You Need to Upgrade Your Machinery

As we’ve just mentioned, live reporting allows you to see exactly how your machinery is performing. So, is capacity and output massively outweighing the potential of your machinery? If so, you can use this data to justify the decision of upgrading your machine. Not upgrading your machine when necessary can have detrimental effects on your overall business. 

 

midwest upgrade your machine

 

If customers are having to wait a lot longer for their orders just because your embroidery machine can’t cope, they’re not going to be happy. Naturally, humans are impatient and there’s a lot of competition on the market. Therefore, if you’re requiring them to wait weeks or months for their orders, they’ll simply find another supplier that can get it to them a lot quicker. 

Your machine could be throwing errors during their embroidery process, however, if you don’t check the live reports, you won’t see which errors are disrupting your operations. Live reports can help identify which maintenance service needs carrying out on a machine or whether you could benefit from investing in a new one or not. 

 

Choose the Right Equipment For Your Business

Live reporting can have a major effect on your business’ performance – one thing that it highlights is whether you have the right equipment or not. To save you the time on analysing whether you’ve got the right equipment or not, Midwest is here to ensure that you invest in the right industrial embroidery machine straight off the bat. 

We care about your business and improving the overall quality of the embroidery machine. Our HappyJapan machines are industry-leading and all come fitted with live reporting systems as a standard. You can rely on HappyJapan machines to get the job done – first time and every time. But you must have the right one to get the most out of time – FACT. 

So, to ensure that you can make smart decisions when choosing the right one for your needs and requirements, we’ve created a free guide that includes everything you need to know. From machine specifics, best-suited industries and main benefits that you can take advantage of – it’s all in there. 

Grab your copy today!

Midwest WiFi Connectivity Machines

4 Reasons Why Your Industrial Embroidery Machine Needs WiFi Connectivity

You’ll start to notice that a lot of modern industrial embroidery machines are including WiFi connectivity as a standard offer. But why? Well, if your machine has this functionality, it can open up a world of new possibilities and benefits for your production line

Don’t worry if you’re not sure about the ins and outs of WiFi connectivity within industrial embroidery machines – that’s what we’re here for. This post will outline everything that you need to know about WiFi connectivity and highlight the key benefits that your business can take advantage of. 

 

We’ll cover:

 

Create, Store and Access Designs From Anywhere

No longer do you have to limit your creativity when you’re operating the machine. Sure, you can start creating your designs on the touchscreen and design portal, however, with WiFI connectivity and cloud storage, you can pick these designs up on your linked devices from anywhere you like. 

So, if you haven’t had time to finish your latest design before leaving work, you can pick this up later and not slow down the progress of your design phase. That way, you don’t have to delay your designs going into production and can complete your designs from anywhere you like. We appreciate that a change in scenery sparks new creativity and inspiration – why not try it? 

WiFi machines automatically sync with your linked devices and any compatible apps. That way, you always have access to the most up to date version of your designs. WiFi connectivity ensures that the latest versions of your designs are automatically saved, therefore, any intricate tweaks or improvements made to the design are included. 

This is particularly useful for efficiency improvements. Without WiFi connectivity, you’re limited to designing purely on the machine or needing to transfer over various versions of files. So often we hear of businesses embroidering draft designs, rather than the final approved version. WiFi connectivity rules out any chance of this happening. 

 

Save Your Designs Within the Machine

It’s not uncommon for embroidery businesses to have floppy discs, USB drives, hard drives and storage banks lying around with thousands of designs on there. But what if you forget that all-important storage device on your way into work one morning? Annoyingly, this will delay any production and will also delay deadlines. 

With WiFi connectivity, design files can be automatically synced with linked devices and apps. Or, you can physically transfer files to be stored on the machine, that way, you needn’t rely on storage devices and can begin production as soon as possible. We all have those mornings where we forget something on the way into work, don’t we? 

Whether it be something trivial like a coffee for the commute or something important that can be detrimental to your overall production. With WiFi connectivity, you can decrease the impact of human error and store these designs on the machine or via accessible cloud-storage. Therefore, your operations don’t need to take a hit. 

We’re afraid we can’t help with the coffee situation though, sorry. 

By saving designs straight to the machine or via the cloud, you’re best positioning your workforce to achieve maximum efficiency. 

 

Status and Maintenance Updates

Gone are the days in which you need to closely monitor your embroidery machine until the job’s finished. With WiFI connectivity, your machine can provide status updates, that way, you know when you need to go back and collect the product and load the next lot. 

This is perfect for increasing productivity. Think about it, if you know that your job is only 1 percent complete, what’s the point in standing around and waiting for it to be fully finished? Whereas, if you’re aware of the progress, you can carry out further tasks while that job is running and make the most of your time management. 

 

monitor your progress and status with WiFi connectivity

 

WiFi connected machines will send push notifications to linked devices to update on progress and any maintenance needs. That way, you can be sure that you’re getting the most out of your production line by keeping your machine running as long as possible during the day. Plus, you can make any maintenance repairs should any faults occur. 

By knowing exactly what needs changing or where the fault is, you can effectively carry out the maintenance yourself and ensure that you’re minimising any potential downtime. So, your production line can be firing on all cylinders and maximising your output. 

 

Automatic Software Updates

HappyJapan machines all include Windows software, so for the machine to work as effectively as possible, you’re going to need to update the software once they’re released. Otherwise, you’ll be operating with bugs and glitches that could easily be rectified. These could prove detrimental to your operations and may take up crucial time.

Software updates are necessary so that you’re getting the most out of the software and that it’s secure as possible. If you don’t update the system, you’re exposing your machine to bugs and potential issues. Not only are you risking production errors but security breaches too – you don’t want to expose your unique designs to cybersecurity hacks that could expose them globally. 

With WiFi connectivity, the machine can automatically push these updates to your linked devices and systems. Therefore, you needn’t worry about missing an update and operating on an old system for any length of time. They’ll notify you and offer you the chance to update straight away or schedule it in for a quieter period of time – usually overnight. 

 

Choose the Right Industrial Embroidery Machine For Your Business

So, you’re now aware of the main benefits and advantages that WiFi connectivity can bring to your business. Are you ready to take the plunge and invest in a machine that includes WiFi connectivity? Or, do you still need a little bit more convincing and more information around them?

Either way, please don’t hesitate to get in touch! Our expert team will gladly help with your questions and queries. Plus, alleviate any worries that you may have too. If you’d like to see one of our industry-leading, WiFi-connected machines in action, please take a look at our video demo today!

Check out our HappyJapan HCU Series and how it can help your business today!

Artificial Intelligence (AI): New Technology to Help Your Growing Embroidery Production Line

If your production line is going to lead the industry, you need to ensure that you’re implementing the most technologically advanced machinery. That way, you can continue to provide high-quality products and easily meet rising consumer demands. If you’re not using the latest technology, you run the risk of being left behind by your competitors.

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been introduced into industrial embroidery machines – particularly the HappyJapan HCU Series. And it’s proving very popular within the industry – unsurprisingly. But what is it? How does it work? And how can it benefit your business? Don’t worry if you’re not sure, we’ve got you covered. 

In this post, we’ll run through: 

 

 

What is Artificial Intelligence (AI)?

Artificial intelligence (AI) aims to increase the use of automation across machinery. It concentrates on the tasks that usually need human interaction and intelligence to complete and looks at where they can automate this – by letting the intelligent machine do the work. That way, you can focus your productivity in other areas of the business. 

For example, we’ve all been lumbered with a tedious task that’s mind-numbingly boring before, haven’t we? Well, what if you could take that burden away from somebody and replace them with functionality for the machine to carry out that task itself? That’s what AI is. 

 

midwest artificial intelligence

 

From there, the “unlucky” person doesn’t have to endure the task and lend themselves to something more important. So, you can say goodbye to operating machines that require pressing a button every so often and hello to getting the most out of your workforce. Introducing AI-led machines can improve your overall productivity levels.

Of course, AI doesn’t mean that you can lay off all your team members and replace them with robots – not yet anyway. You’ll still need team members for quality assurance and other key tasks. Plus, some tasks you just can’t automate. That’s the beauty of AI, they can save you time and provide a useful lending hand.

 

How Does AI Work Within Industrial Embroidery Machines?

If you’re required to constantly monitor your industrial embroidery machines while they operate, that means that members of your team aren’t really doing that much. Sure, it’s an important job as it’s necessary to check that everything is running smoothly and keep projects moving forward and progressing. 

However, is this role actually needed? Or could it be aptly replaced with a machine that incorporates AI technology? That way, it saves the person having to stand over the machine and monitor it and jobs can be automated. If these jobs can be completed without needing close management, your team can concentrate on other more important tasks. 

While you’ll still need to load materials into the machine, AI can help with preset jobs. So, you don’t have to enter the job specifics every time and can speed up the process. AI allows you to take a back seat when it comes to producing your designs, so you can be confident that your machine will get the job done – every time. 

 

How Can AI Help Your Production Line?

AI saves time and that’s exactly what you need for your production line. Time is money when you’re dealing with customers and if you can turn your orders around quicker while upholding high-quality standards, that can open up a world of benefits for your business. Firstly, you’ll increase your capacity, therefore, you can welcome new clients. 

Secondly, your quality standards will undoubtedly rise and fewer mistakes may be made. Since you’re removing human interaction from production, you’re also removing any chance of human error happening. That being said, errors may still naturally happen – but they’re less likely and less often. 

Furthermore, your productivity levels are likely to rise and improve your overall efficiency too. If tasks are being automated, it takes them off somebody’s plate, doesn’t it? Therefore, they have more time to focus their efforts on supporting the areas of the business that need it the most – rather than wasting a lot of time needing to press start and preset designs. 

This will improve your overall efficiency and profitability. If you’re getting more out of your team members, you’re getting more value from their monthly wage. That way, you’re effectively reducing costs, reducing the chance of any wasted capital and improving your profitability. The overall business can massively benefit from AI technology. 

 

Which AI Machine is Best Suited to Your Needs?

HappyJapan HCU Series

The HCU Series is an industry-leading single-head machine that is the perfect entry-level industrial embroidery machine. It’s perfect for startup businesses and small ones too. If your customer demands aren’t too great in volume, a single-head machine is the perfect investment to help churn out those orders.

It’s small and compact – but don’t underestimate the value that it can have to your production line. AI technology takes this machine to the next level. Automated tasks help lend your team an extra pair of hands when they need it the most. This can come in handy at any time of the year but in particular during busy seasons and periods.

 

 

The HCU Series can also slot into larger production lines nicely. Accompanied by a multi-head or high-speed machine, it can help bolster your output and overall productivity. That way, in busy times, you can call upon your single-head machine to help churn out those all-important orders while keeping standards high. 

It’s main features are:

  • Colour LCD touch screen control panel.
  • Single-head 15 colours.
  • Maximum speed 1500 SPM.
  • Tubular Embroidery Area: 400 x 600mm / 400 x 1200mm.
  • Low-profile cap frame (option): 67 x 180mm.
  • Wide cap frame (option): 67 x 290mm.
  • Free PC connection software.
  • LAN and USB network port.
  • USB memory stick port. 
  • Built-in 100 small designs.
  • Easy threading.
  • Take-up lever safety guard.

 

Find Out More About Industrial Embroidery Machines Right For You!

Having the right industrial embroidery machine is crucial to the success of your production line. So, if you’re unsure of where to start looking – we’ve got you covered. We understand that it can be a little tricky knowing which one suits your needs and requirements and that’s why we’re here to help. 

If you’d like to find out more about the perfect machine for your business, please don’t hesitate to download our free guide today! We’ve covered everything you need to know from specific product features to how each machine can slot into different environments. It’s all in there for you to benefit from!

Grab your copy today.

Brother GTX Pro: An Industry-Leading Direct to Garment Printer

There’s a new kid on the block in the direct to garment printing market – and that’s the Brother GTX Pro. And not only is it the new kid but its top of the class! This machine is a huge player within the industry and is the most advanced printer of its kind. 

This machine appeals to businesses of all sizes – so, whether you’re a small startup or a large enterprise business, this machine can take your production line to the next level. It’s compact, so you needn’t worry about having large premises to be able to house it. 

So without further ado, we’re going to dive deeper into the machine, it’s main features, how it works and everything you need to know – read on to find out all about it!

We’ll cover: 

 

What is Direct to Garment Printing?

Also known as DTG, direct to garment printing is exactly what it says on the tin – it’s the process of applying ink directly onto the garment to result in striking colours and high-quality designs. It’s thought that this method of printing is one of the best for bright and bold colours – so, if you’re looking to create eye-catching t-shirt designs, DTG could benefit your business massively. 

It’s a popular printing technique – and it’s easy to see why. Although the printing process may be long, it produces incredible results on a wide range of products. However, you need a specialist DTG printer to achieve maximum results. These printers require a level of investment but they’re absolutely worth it – after the initial purchase, it’s very cheap going forward. 

 

Image Credit: MHM Direct

 

DTG printers work in a similar way to your average everyday printer, except instead of paper you feed in clothing garments. It couldn’t be easier and once you’ve agreed the desired artwork, it’s pretty much a one-step process. It’s possible to achieve high-quality DTG printing results and turn them around on the same day. 

One of the main advantages of DTG is that white inks are used throughout. In other methods of printing, white spaces are usually left blank. But with the introduction of white inks it’s now possible to make your designs pop and stand out. This especially helps on coloured fabrics and materials. 

 

What Can You Print With the Brother GTX Pro?

DTG printing can produce amazing results – especially on products that are 100 percent cotton. It’s ideal for clothing companies and you can produce amazing designs and patterns on t-shirts, hoodies and other popular clothing items. That’s the beauty of DTG, it’s versatile and can lend itself to a multitude of different garment types.

DTG is the perfect printing method if you’re looking to make those intricate details stand out from the crowd. That’s the difference between top tier clothing and bang average – if you take care of the finer details and finicky details, it shows that you’re willing to perfect the little bits that impress your customers and audiences. 

 

Video Credit: MHM Direct

 

Eye-catching colours are a huge advantage of DTG. If you’re printing colours onto clothing you want them to stand out, don’t you? With this method of printing, you’re able to print multiple colours at the same time. Whereas, with other methods, such as screen printing, you have to print the colours one by one and layer them. It’s a much more effective way of printing. 

So, if your business wants to step up your product range and create amazing quality printed garments, the Brother GTX Pro should be considered. It’s a specialist DTG printer that guarantees incredible results. That way, you can make your designs come to life with a bang! Then they’re guaranteed to make a statement and get noticed by a wider audience. 

 

Features Brought Forward From Old Models

Ink Supply System

The innovative ink supply system on the Brother GTX Pro ensures that all of your ink gets used and there’s little wastage. So, you can be confident that you’re getting pure value for money and are utilising as much ink as possible. This helps keep your business cost-efficient and environmentally friendly – both are big plus points for companies. 

To ensure maximum ink usage, the cartridge mechanism is programmed to automatically roll up the pouches. It stretches as far as it can go to make sure that no ink is spared. That means you get the maximum amount of printing jobs out of your allotted ink and nothing gets unnecessarily wasted. 

 

Wet Capping Station

When you’re looking for a consistent quality job, the last thing that you want is dried up nozzles. If this happens, you can expect the quality of your DTG to drop incredibly, as dried up nozzles will mean an uneven covering and patchy design. That’s not something that people want to walk around wearing on their garments, is it?

To prevent that from happening, this machine submerges the nozzles in a maintenance solution while idle. That way, it keeps the nozzles moist and eliminates any risk of ink drying inside of them causing problems for your printing. Ink drying within the nozzles is no more – thankfully!

 

Built-in Temperature and Humidity Sensor

You needn’t worry about the machine overheating or not performing due to temperatures fluctuating. This machine has a built-in temperature and humidity sensor that helps regulate the performance based on external factors. That way, external components, the garment and the ink are protected in all different conditions. 

If the machine didn’t have this built-in, you’d be constantly needing maintenance to regulate your machine and get it back up and running. Not the Brother GTX Pro though – it’s a machine that will stand by your side no problem.

 

What’s New on this Model? 

New Maintenance Unit

The new maintenance unit within the machine allows you to simplify the cleaning procedure. It’s intelligent and has removed the need for unnecessary steps, so you can clean the machine a lot quicker and save time. 

Operators can also access parts a lot easier. So, should they need to replace items from natural wear and tear, it’s a lot more accessible than previously. The last thing you want is a broken machine that’s hard to repair, isn’t it? That’s a waste of time! Well, there’s no need to worry about that with the Brother GTX Pro. 

 

Optimal Platen Height Sensors

Platen height sensors are the perfect guide for the machine operator. Rather than getting to the end of a print and realising that the quality isn’t all there, sensors will inform the operator of the optimal position for an incredible print. So, rather than going in blind, your operators have the perfect guide to allow for maximum efficiency. 

This rules out the likelihood of often mistakes. Sure, mistakes will still naturally happen, your team members are only human after all. But if you’ve got a guide and sensors to assist you, it leaves the guesswork out of printing and assures top quality all round. 

 

Equip Your Business Properly With the Right Industrial Machinery!

So, there you have it – an overview of DTG and the features of this amazing machine. Are you ready to take the plunge and equip your business with the Brother GTX Pro? Or, do you still need a little more convincing? Either way, that’s fine! That’s what we’re here for. 

At Midwest, we have plenty of Brother GTX Pro’s in stock and ready to ship! So, waste no time and get in touch to secure yours today. Or, if you have any questions or queries please feel free to get in touch as well. 

Our expert team is always on hand to help you with anything you need – honestly, there are no silly questions at this point, so if you need anything clarifying or clearing up, please just pick up the phone! We look forward to hearing from you. 

perfect cap embroidery machines

3 Perfect Industrial Embroidery Machines For Cap Embroidery

Cap embroidery is massively popular with embroidery businesses. After all, caps are an everyday clothing staple and aren’t likely to go out of fashion any time soon. Due to their versatility, they can be adapted to suit the tastes of different fashion senses and personal preferences. 

As they’re always in fashion, it means that there’s a constant demand for them. So, to make sure that your business is effective in churning out high-quality products time after time, you need to have the right equipment in place. The introduction of an industrial embroidery machine is necessary if you’re going to achieve and exceed your forecasted goals. 

But which industrial embroidery machine is perfect for cap embroidery? And which model is best suited to your business’ individual needs and requirements? We’ll explain all in this post so that you can make smarter investments to help drive your business forwards. 

 

We’ll cover: 

 

HappyJapan HCU Series

The HCU Series is the most technologically advanced machine on the market. It’s a powerful single-head machine that can produce incredible results. It’s the leading machine within the industry and the only model that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology when running the machine. 

 

 

With the introduction of this technology, you can streamline your internal processes and improve the efficiency of your production line. No longer are you required to monitor the machine at all times to ensure that the job is carried out perfectly – your previous cap jobs will be remembered, therefore, you can press go and see your cap designs come to life. 

The HCU Series is compact, yet don’t underestimate the power that it can generate. This machine will have no problem churning out order after order to ensure that your customer demands can be met. Plus, you don’t have to worry about quality being compromised with speed, this machine is proven to help achieve groundbreaking results. 

With that in mind, you can be certain that if you’re a small business, a startup or have a small customer base, this is the perfect machine for you. That way, you can introduce your cap designs to the market and ensure that your products are always high quality. 

It’s main features are: 

  • Colour LCD touch screen control panel.
  • Single-head 15 colours.
  • Maximum speed 1500 SPM.
  • Tubular Embroidery Area: 400x600mm / 400x1200mm.
  • Low-profile cap frame (option): 67x180mm.
  • Wide cap frame (option): 67x290mm.
  • Free PC connection software.
  • LAN and USB network port.
  • USB memory stick port.
  • Built-in 100 small designs.
  • Easy threading.
  • Take up lever safety guard.
  • Automatic thread trimmer.
  • Automatic colour change.

 

HappyJapan HCR3-1504E

Once your business starts to grow, you’re going to need the extra capacity to deal with increasing customer demands. If you’re trying to grow your business while just using a single-head machine, you’re limiting what your business can produce and won’t be achieving your maximum potential. 

So, you’re going to need to add more machine heads to your overall production line. That way, you can double, triple, quadruple or multiply your capacity even more! Think about it, the more heads that you have on your machines, the more caps that you can embroider at the same time. This saves so much time and frees up room to welcome new and larger jobs. 

 

Cap embroidery multi head machines

 

Multi-head embroidery machines are necessary if you want to achieve minimum turnaround times but maximum results. During busy periods, simply telling your customers that you’re busy and they’ll have to wait for their orders to be fulfilled isn’t an option. People are impatient and there’s plenty of competition to choose from within the cap embroidery market should you not meet their needs and requirements. 

We’ve chosen this 4-headed HappyJapan machine as a natural progression up from a single-head. Sure, it’s a big step but you must be positive with your investment. Plus, think of the money that you’ll save when it comes to further invest. As you grow, you’d easily start to outgrow a 2 or 3-headed machine, so why not future proof your business for the next few years?

It’s main features are:

  • 10.4-inch colour LCD touch screen control panel.
  • Multi-head 15 colours.
  • Maximum speed: 1000 SPM.
  • Maximum flat embroidery size: 450 x 500mm (360mm).
  • Tubular Embroidery Area: 420 x 440mm.
  • Low-profile cap frame (option): 70 x 180 mm.
  • Wide cap frame (option): 80 x 360 mm.
  • Free PC connection software.
  • Machine memory: 40,000,000 Stitches – Up to 250 designs can be saved.
  • USB and LAN network port.
  • Automatic thread trimmer.
  • Automatic colour change.

 

HappyJapan HCR3-1512

For large national and international businesses, this 12-headed HappyJapan machine is perfect for all of your cap embroidery needs. At this point, your business will be experiencing demand like never before and order volumes will be through the roof. With that in mind, you need to be working at your most efficient and ensure you maximise your productivity. 

 

multi-head cap embroidery machine

 

This 12-headed powerhouse can embroider up to 12 caps at a time! Which means that you can have orders turned around in no time. These machines are designed to be run all day and they have no problem doing so. They’re durable and their lifecycle is long, meaning that you’ll have no issues with working this machine as hard as possible. 

The sheer speed of this machine is incredibly impressive. So, if you need to slot in a quick order for a loyal customer to add extreme value or you want to offer a super-express service, this machine allows you to do so. Plus, although it’s lightning-fast, you can be sure that the quality of work produced is always the highest standard possible. 

So, if you have an expansive customer database, you needn’t worry about not fulfilling their needs and expectations. You can guarantee that your caps will be of incredible quality and you’ll establish a favourable reputation within the industry. 

It’s main features are: 

  • 10.4-inch colour LCD touch screen control panel.
  • Multi-head 15 colours.
  • Maximum speed: 1200 SPM.
  • Maximum flat embroidery size: 450 x 500mm (360mm).
  • Tubular embroidery area: 420 x 440mm.
  • Low-profile cap frame (option): 70 x 180 mm. 
  • Wide cap frame (option): 80 x 360 mm.
  • Free PC connection software.
  • Machine memory: 40,000,000 Stitches – Up to 250 designs can be saved.
  • USB and LAN network port.
  • Automatic thread trimmer.
  • Automatic colour change.

 

Choose the Perfect HappyJapan Machine For Your Business!

So, you’ve seen the ideal machine recommendations for small, medium and large businesses – now it’s time for you to take the plunge and purchase the best machine that encompasses your needs and requirements. Think carefully around this one though, it’s a huge decision and requires a level of investment that you won’t want to go to waste. 

If you’re not completely convinced with the machine recommendations that we’ve given, we’ve got the perfect resource for you! We’ve put together a FREE guide that highlights everything you need to know about buying the perfect HappyJapan for your business. Please don’t hesitate to grab your copy today!

cap embroidery machine types

Cap Embroidery: Which Machine Type Should I Use?

Cap embroidery is an area in which businesses can explore different styles and take advantage of the latest trends. They’re a staple in fashion and various other industries, so caps are a perfect product for businesses to incorporate into their repertoire. 

Businesses must equip themselves properly to be able to carry out cap embroidery effectively – after all, you need the right machinery to be able to carry out advanced designs and keep up with customer demands too. With that in mind, a specific cap embroidery machine or industrial embroidery machine is a necessity.

But which one is right for you? And which type of industrial embroidery machine would suit your business the most? Don’t worry if you’re not sure, this post will outline everything you need to consider so that you can make a smarter decision when choosing the ideal machine for your business’ needs. 

 

We’ll cover: 

 

What is Cap Embroidery?

Without stating the obvious too much, cap embroidery is the process of embroidering designs, lettering, patterns and more onto caps and headwear. It’s very popular with most embroidery businesses because caps never go out of fashion. Even though, some styles prove more popular than others throughout the year. 

Cap embroidery is extremely versatile and the freedom in design that you’re exposed to is amazing. You can take sub-standards materials and products and put your own spin on things, that way, your customers and the wider-industry will instantly recognise that those caps have been produced by you. 

Providing a custom cap embroidery service allows you to widen your target market boundaries – if you can create anything on your caps, you appeal to everybody, don’t you? From inspirational quotes, cool designs or acknowledgement of popular sports teams, people have their individual preferences of what they like their hats to display.

Caps can easily slot into various fashion styles – which means that they’re an incredible item to appeal to a mass market. There are different styles and trends developing at all times, so you need to be on the ball with the latest “in things” within the industry. That way, you can be recognised as an industry leader and the “go-to business” for all things caps.

 

The Importance of Having the Right Machine

Within the embroidery industry, if you’re not well prepared it’s likely that you’re not going to maximise your potential for success. It’s also likely you have huge expectations and dreams for your business, however, if you don’t equip yourself properly, you’ll possibly fail to achieve these. 

You must invest in the right equipment so that you can produce high-quality and industry-leading embroidered products. Without the right equipment, you’re going to be compromising quality. High-technology machines are programmed to run quickly and maintain incredible quality standards – investing in one is definitely the smart decision. 

 

Cap embroidery machine HappyJapan

 

Whereas, poor quality machines may be able to turn orders around quickly, but you’ll probably see an inconsistency in quality and your results. When you’ve got a backlog of orders and are in the middle of a busy period of the year, poor quality products can cripple your business. This will lead to disgruntled customers, wasted time and a poor reputation.

Poor reputations are hard to overturn – you don’t want to be known as the business who’ll likely get orders wrong, do you? By having the right equipment in place you can solidify your spot at the top of the industry, increase your overall capacity and output and improve your overall operations – it’s a winner all round. 

 

Single-Head Industrial Embroidery Machines

Single-head machines are the perfect cap embroidery machine for startups and small businesses. If you’re only dealing with a small client and customer base, you don’t need a huge machine that’s going to require a much larger investment and premises to house it – do you? Especially when the industry-leading single-head machines are advanced and high powered.

They’re the perfect entry-level machine. Firstly, they’re the cheapest price point on the market, so the initial investment risk is a lot less. Therefore, should you decide to take the leap into cap embroidery and realise it’s not for you, you’ll have minimised the potential hit. However, we prefer to look at it as a much cheaper way of producing amazing products to propel your success levels. 

They’re compact and portable, therefore, they can be moved around and you can embroider while you’re on-the-go. That way, your production never has to stop just because you’re away from the machine. Whether you’re at home, in work or wherever you’d like to take the machine, there needn’t be any roadblocks to your production. 

Single-head industrial embroidery machines are perfect for producing amazing cap embroidery results. They’re highly technologically advanced, so you can be sure that your results will outperform your competitors. Plus, they’re proven to work at high speeds while maintaining the highest of standards. 

 

Multi-Head Industrial Embroidery Machines

One drawback to single-head machines is that you can only embroider one cap at a time – if you only have one machine, that is. However, with an industrial multi-head machine, you can embroider up to 12 caps at a time – and everything in between too. They’re the perfect machine for growing businesses that need to keep up with customer demands.

As with all embroidery businesses, you’re going to have periods of the year that are going to boom. With that in mind, you need to be well prepared for busy periods so that you can turn orders around quick enough to still appeal to potential customers. If somebody is told that their order can’t be processed for weeks due to you being too busy, they’re going to look elsewhere. 

 

Cap embroidery multi head machines

 

Multi-head machines add great capacity and output to your business. That way, you can smash through busy periods without turning customers away! Plus, you can welcome extra business to continue growing your company and hitting your overall goals and objectives. Most importantly, these machines can work quickly while maintaining incredibly high standards.

While multi-head machines are a larger investment than single-heads, they’re necessary for growing businesses. If you’re relying on single-heads to produce all of your products, you’re putting too much pressure on them and limiting your output. Take the stress off your machines and increase the scope to double, triple, quadruple (and more) your output and productivity levels. 

 

Choose the Right Machine For Your Business!

As we’ve established, single-heads and multi-heads are the perfect cap embroidery machines for your business – but you must choose the right one for your individual needs. Unfortunately, there’s no blueprint or one-size-fits-all approach that works for all businesses, if only it was that easy. You need to think carefully about your individual needs and requirements.

Think about it, if you end up with the wrong machine for your business, it could end up being unproductive and your investment may turn out to be wasted, leaving you to invest in another machine. Therefore, you must choose the right one to help drive your business in the right direction. 

It’s normal for you to be a little overwhelmed when thinking about the machine that’s perfect for your needs but that’s why we’re here! We’ve put together a comprehensive FREE guide that explains everything you need to know about industrial embroidery machines and the right one for you. Find out more today!

multi-head cap embroidery machine

5 Cool Cap Embroidery Business Ideas to “Peak” Your Interest

Baseball cap embroidery is a cool way to keep staple accessories looking sharp and help your products stand out from your competition. If there’s one way to put your spin on things, it’s embroidering unique designs across your product range to ensure that nobody else can replicate your style. 

Plus, caps aren’t just a fashion accessory. Sure, when you’re out and about, you’ll likely see the majority of people wearing them in line with their fashion sense. However, they’re multi-purpose. Think about it, sports teams, clubs, societies, businesses and more all use caps for a variety of reasons. 

Caps are extremely versatile. With that in mind, we’ve handpicked five of our favourite cap embroidery business ideas to help inspire your latest product range and drive those all-important sales.

 

We’ll cover: 

 

Fashionable Designs and Objects

Caps never go out of fashion – FACT. While there may be times where different styles are more popular than others, it’s worth noting that caps never go out of style. And the beauty of that is that they’re so adaptable with the times too. Of course, fashion moves quickly, so your designs need to adapt to this too. 

You need to keep up to date with the latest fashion trends – if you want to be the popular “go-to” choice within the industry, that is. Otherwise, you’re going to be known as the business who’s late to the party. Or, the company that’s still trying to sell yesterday’s hottest trends when nobody wants that anymore. 

If you can uncover the latest trend early and start producing your own fashionable caps, there’s a good chance that you’ll likely do well. For example, in recent years, Dsquared2 has been killing the cap game. Although they’re not everybody’s cup of tea, there’s no escaping their trucker-style caps on Instagram and in the street. 

 

Dsquared-cap-embroidery

Image Credit: Dsquared2

 

They produce a wide range of caps and headwear with large embroidered designs on them. The vast array of styles allow people to think that their cap is unique. They’re massive and have stayed in style for several years now – that’s the beauty of latching onto a trend early and making it your own. 

 

Favourite and Inspirational Quotes

Quotes are a great baseball cap embroidery idea – but why? Well, there are many angles that quotes on caps can be targeted at. Firstly, the simple embroidery of an understated quote on a cap can round off a look nicely. For fashion-based products, quotes are often serious and uplifting, as opposed to something that can be taken lightly. 

But that’s another great option for quotes on caps – the fancy dress and novelty market. Whether it’s somebody’s favourite line from a classic film or the style that can easily be paired with an outfit for a fancy dress party, funny quotes on caps can be used in various ways. They’re a sure-fire way to turn heads in the street and bring a smile to people’s faces. 

Quotes on caps are incredibly popular – it’s a way that people can easily express themselves and create a garment that means a lot to them. Perhaps they have a mantra that they live their life by and want to reflect it in their outfit? Or, they have a saying that means a lot to them and want it always to be with them – personalising a cap with it is an easy way to do so. 

It’s common to see quotes and sayings on t-shirts as the main design point – so why not try this out on caps and appeal to a wide target audience? 

 

Sports Teams and Clubs

Sports teams and clubs around the world all have their own merchandise and team wear. In fact, in plenty of sports, baseball caps are a part of the on-field uniform. With that in mind, people want to show their support and association with sports clubs in any way that they can. A cap is an accessory that can be easily paired with most outfits for you to still show your colours. 

From football to netball – and everything in between – you’ll find that caps are a huge part of their team wear. For example, while footballers themselves don’t wear caps on the field (except for keepers now and again when the sun’s out), you’ll still see the manager and the coaching staff with personalised caps and headwear on. 

People want to emulate their sporting heroes. Plus, show their support in any way that they can. Sports teams and clubs are a great idea for your business to look into – however, make sure you do it legally and don’t undercut any legislation in place. When done right, it’s the perfect opportunity. 

SnapBacks and fitted caps have been a huge part of fashion for many years now – especially in the USA. Think back to Ice Cube and NWA in the 1980s – you’d never see them without an LA Raiders branded cap rounding off their outfits. And things haven’t changed, they’re still an iconic part of a lot of people’s fashion sense. 

 

Ice-Cube-NWA-La-Raiders-cap-embroidery

Image Credit: Hip Hop Golden Age

 

Business Names and Logos

A lot of businesses wear caps as part of their everyday uniform – and this spans across a wide range of industries too. A lot of businesses within the food and drink industry are required to wear caps for health and safety and food hygiene reasons – it’s either a cap or exposing a not so flattering hair net when serving customers! 

Rather than wearing plain caps, businesses would prefer for them to be branded and personalised in line with the business’ recognisable branding and uniform. Otherwise, it won’t look as professional and won’t leave the same impression on their customers. Plus, branded uniforms empower the employee and make them feel part of the team. 

For example, imagine you’ve just started in a new position and everybody has a branded cap except for you – that’s not very welcoming, is it? Are you not worthy of representing the business or something? Whereas, if you’re all wearing the exact same uniform, it’s a level playing field and it’s clear that you’re one of the team. 

Helping businesses with their overall uniform as well as their cap embroidery is a great opportunity for your embroidery business. As long as businesses continue to open, they’re going to need uniforms. So, it’s not a market that’ll ever die out and one there’ll always be a constant demand for. 

 

Universities, Societies and Clubs

When walking around campus at university, you’ll no doubt notice the different societies and clubs being represented in many ways. Most commonly, these are represented through clothing and accessories. Hoodies, bags and caps are all popular ways to show off which society and club that you belong to. 

 

Oxford University Baseball Cap Embroidery

Image Credit: Amazon

 

And if it’s not a particular society or club, there’ll likely be a lot of university-based merchandise and clothing on show too. People like to feel a part of something – especially at university when they’re moving away from their families for the first time in their lives. Something as simple as wearing a hoodie or cap to show a sense of belonging, can make people feel extremely at ease. 

At university, the list of societies and clubs is ever-growing and evolving. There’s so much going on – and that’s amazing news for you! As we’ve said, these societies like to have their own branded merchandise and clothing. The more societies that pop up and are born, the more potential customers you have! Targeting these areas is a great business area for you.

 

Equip Your Embroidery Business Properly to Maximise Success

It’s all well and good having the perfect business ideas but if you’re not well equipped enough, they’ll never make it out of the ideas phase. With cap embroidery, you’ve got to measure customer demand and account for incredibly busy periods of the year. So, you’re going to need a setup that can easily turnaround orders without any compromise on quality. 

A vital part of this setup is an industrial embroidery machine. They’re incredibly important to businesses and can be the difference between turning away custom and welcoming more orders. They’re designed to suit businesses of all shapes and sizes, plus, meet a vast array of different budgetary requirements too. 

For more information on how an industrial embroidery machine can help drive your business forwards, please download our FREE guide today!

midwest vs brother

Speed Comparison: HappyJapan vs Brother

When you have a superior product in the marketplace, it can be so frustrating when competitor brands miss-sell their product as equivalent to yours. Especially when there’s no evidence to support their claims. Business owners, marketers and salespeople reading this will understand all too well.

Many manufacturers sell commercial machines masquerading as industrial to customers who don’t know any better (which is fine, education is important). But then the end-user sets up their machine within an industrial production line and quickly realises that they’ve invested their budgets in commercial machinery that’s not fit for purpose.

So, here at Midwest, we’ve decided to combat this lack of education of the end-user (again, not your fault) by being straightforward and transparent with you all. With that in mind, this post and supporting video will compare HappyJapan machines with Brother – another brand on the market that specialises in commercial embroidery and sewing machines. 

 

The Experiment

Within the embroidery industry, businesses have worked hard to create industrial production lines that require quick turnaround times and uncompromised quality. So, the speed of your embroidery machine is vitally important. Strictly speaking, the more stitches per minute (SPM) – the better. 

HappyJapan values machine speed at its core. From single-heads to wide-area embroidery machines, you can see that speed is valued throughout their whole range. So, we’ve set up a speed comparison to see how they compare with other machines in the industry when performing. 

We gathered examples of all the HappyJapan ranges, from the multi-head range to the single-head range. We even threw in a variety of machines from each price band. 

We then put these machines in a room with a Brother ‘Embroidery Machine’, pulled up a standard ‘Bee’ design, and set them all running at the same time to see how long it would take to finish the whole job. There were no other variables introduced into play. 

We wanted to see how truly behind these commercial machines were in terms of speed and accuracy. 

What we found is pretty astounding. Take a look!

 

 

The Results

As you can see, with all variables the same, on the same design, here are the project time results:

1st: The HappyJapan HCU Series – 5:26:19 – That’s 5 minutes, 26 seconds.

2nd: The HappyJapan HCD3-1501 – 6:48:61 – That’s 6 minutes, 48 seconds.

3rd: The HappyJapan HCR3-1506 – 7:6:42 – That’s 7 minutes, 6 seconds.

4th: The HappyJapan HCS2-1201 – 8:5:16 – That’s 8 minutes, 5 seconds.

5th: The HappyJapan HCHP-701 – 8:7:18 – That’s 8 minutes, 7 seconds.

And a far off last place: The Brother PR60E – 11:4:08 – That’s 11 minutes, 4 seconds.

The results speak for themselves. All HappyJapan machines in the experiment were quicker than the Brother alternative. We like to base our statements and comments on cold, hard facts – that way, they can’t be argued with and are totally unbiased. 

If we compare the HCU Series, our premiere single-head machine, with the competitor Brother single head machine, that’s more than double the lead time per job. That’s a big saving for your business – this time can then be reinvested elsewhere within the business into areas that need it the most. 

Just think how this could affect your production line every month? You could see increased productivity, output capacity, profitability, quality – the list goes on! All that can be achieved by implementing the right equipment and finding the perfect embroidery machine that suits your business’ needs and requirements. 

We’re passionate that the HappyJapan range is the best in the industry for durability, quality and turnaround times – that’s why we’re prepared to put our necks on the line and put it to the test. We believe that our customers (both potential and existing) should be investing in machinery that provides unmatched value to their business – and that’s what you get with HappyJapan. 

 

Save Your Business Wasted Money

 

midwest embroidery machines

 

Now you’ve seen the real evidence, it’s time to make the right choice based on your business’ requirements. In order to reap the benefits of adding an industrial embroidery machine to your production line, you need to make sure that you choose the right one. You can’t pick any old machine and expect groundbreaking results – it doesn’t work like that. 

Don’t worry if you’re not sure about where to start – that’s where we come in. At Midwest, we help all of our customers find the machine that suits them the most. From output capacity to budgetary requirements, there’s a lot to consider. However, we allow FREE trial periods on all of our range, so that you can make smarter business decisions a lot easier. 

Now we’ve shown you why to choose our brand, you might be wondering which type of machine is right for you? Well, we even have a resource for that! Check out our handy guide to the right of this blog for a rundown of the HappyJapan machines we recommend for each stage of your business journey, along with helpful tips on when it’s best to upgrade from your current machinery!

Technologically Advanced Embroidery Machines: HappyJapan vs Our Competitors

Nothing is more frustrating than a piece of equipment that’s outdated. It’s behind the times. It’s not working as well as it should be. Older machines that are part of a modern production line only serve to slow down output, decrease efficiency and as a result, lose you revenue.

Not only that, your business could be losing out to competitors that have less downtime or more air-tight production lines. Customers in the modern business environment aren’t oblivious to these things. They notice when deadlines aren’t met or the quality of your products isn’t quite as good as before.  Not having the foresight to constantly be future-proofing yourself and your machinery will hit your business reputation and customer perception hard. 

So, what can you do to rectify this situation? Well, it’s pretty simple. Invest! More specifically, invest in technology. We cannot stress highly enough how crucial it is for businesses, especially embroidery businesses, to focus on looking to the future and budgeting for equipment that is cutting edge. 

But if you don’t know where to start, we’re here to help. In this blog we’ll compare the main features and technological capabilities of HappyJapan and our competitors’ embroidery machines. No prizes for guessing who’ll come out on top!

The Machines

embroidery technology

We see so many amazing embroiderers go under because they weren’t willing to invest in the area of their business that is most important; machinery

As with all our comparison series, let’s firstly analyse what makes an embroidery machine ‘technologically advanced’ – as we realise it’s an abstract term that’s difficult to define. 

When we talk about machines that are on the cutting edge of tech, we firstly have to discuss their features. Is the machine wireless? This is a must for modern production lines as the system has to be adaptable and moveable if necessary. And this is especially important in a growing business, as space has to be made for additions and subtractions to the manufacturing process based on capacity requirements. 

Another key feature of a tech-conscious machine is its accessibility options. The modern generation of embroidery machines are (mostly) equipped with LCD touchscreen panels and one-touch systems; all to aid operators, making training easier and daily operations a lot simpler.  

Thirdly, a key question you have to ask your embroidery machine supplier is “What operating system is the machine running on?” –  this is important when dealing with tight deadlines and more complex projects, as your machine has to seamlessly interface with third party software to realise unique product requirements. The only system worth mentioning for this purpose is Windows. Anything else is inferior software and will only lead to errors and conflicts with any third party products.

With that in mind, since you’re one of those forward-thinking businesses that invests, let’s look at the cream of the crop for technologically advanced machines you need to consider today.

HappyJapan – The HCR3-1512

hcr3 1512 machine

The HCR3-1512 is the top of the range for HappyJapan. It’s a machine that we would recommend only to businesses that have medium/large production lines and customers that have demanding lead time requirements. It’s a high-speed, 12-headed beast that has the highest level of production power available from the top embroidery machine brand in the industry. It’s completely wireless and can fit into a variety of environments and production lines – it’s compact, high-speed and designed to get the job done right, every time!

It has a maximum speed of 1000 SPM with all 12 heads active, and high-speed servo motors built in, to add that extra efficiency for jobs that need to be completed in rapid succession. This is all controlled via a 10.4 inch colour LCD touch screen control panel – one of the largest operational interfaces on the market. This easy accessibility is necessary for machines like the HCR3-1512, as operators have the responsibility for many embroidery jobs at once. So a panel that gives an overview of the process – including speed and design progress – is critical.

The machine’s memory can hold up to 40 million stitches. Again, this is something that makes the HCR3-1512 the best choice  for big projects. Couple that with automatic thread break protection, an automatic thread trimmer and a flat embroidery space size of 450 x 360mm, and you’re looking at a model that is at the forefront of embroidery technology.

Of course, all HappyJapan machine models come with Windows-licensed software built in and PC connection software through the use of Wilcom, which comes as standard. This means the operator can introduce third party software into production with no problems; but also save time by using barcode scanning on a PC to load designs automatically.

Tajima – The TMCP-VF Series

Image Credit: Tajima

The best comparison model from Tajima is the TMCP-VF Series. It’s a high speed, top of the range model, armed with servo motors and custom switches – a feature designed to aid operators when working with large and complex projects. This model can go all the way up to 15 heads.

The TMCP-VF can expand to an embroidery space of 800 x 400mm. It comes with an LCD touch screen panel (which isn’t fully touch screen, we might add), which is a shame for the purposes of comparison. 

Tajima also states that this model has improved motor performance and is much more energy efficient. However, the machine doesn’t run on Windows-licensed software, which will create problems for embroiderers that rely on additional input software or barcoding to upload designs. 

Let’s Compare

To be brutally honest, the TMCP-VF Series doesn’t come close to HappyJapan’s HCR3 1512. Firstly, let’s take its size. The Tajima model is absolutely huge, meaning that it’s not flexible to fit into different working scenarios. The last thing you want when upgrading your embroidery machine is to have to look for a new premises too, isn’t it? Talk about rising costs! What you want is a compact, high-performance, reliable machine that packs a punch – if only we knew one? 

The HCR3 1512 is an energy-efficient machine too. When running your machine all day, you’re going to be using a lot of power. Which is why you need the most efficient machine possible to keep a cap on your spending, right? If you opted for the Tajima machine, you can expect much higher energy costs than the HappyJapan. Lower running costs and unparalleled quality, is that not your winer right there?

The HappyJapan machine will have no problem running faster over prolonged periods of time and is more consistent than the alternative. Also, it has a far superior colour change – meaning that you can have ultra-flexibility when it comes to embroidery design colours and overall quality. There’s only one winner for us and that’s the compact, durable and utterly impressive HappyJapan HCR3 1512.

Decide For Yourself

advanced technology embroidery

The ultimate deciding factor you need to consider is the operating system issue. The vast majority of third-party software requires integration with Windows-licensed systems, and only the HappyJapan model can deliver that. If you’re an enterprise business with a multi-layered production line, this is a crucial requirement.

For this reason, and the ones above, we can’t recommend the Tajima model over the HappyJapan. We simply can’t lumber you with all those software conflicts when there’s an alternative at a similar price point, that is faster and more accessible. 

Now that we’ve settled that, the question might occur to you “What size of machine do I need for my capacity and output requirements?” Well, we have just the piece of educational content for you. To the right of this blog, our Ebook will talk you through every level of our embroidery machine range and give you advice as to what is best for you. Whether you’re a startup or a national business!