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Blog Home How-To Tip Sheet: What to Look for in a Bottle Printing Machine
How-To, Inkjet PrintingJuly 18, 2023

Tip Sheet: What to Look for in a Bottle Printing Machine

How-To, Inkjet Printing
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Lizard Bottles

Navigating the world of bottle printing can be overwhelming, especially when it’s your first endeavor. To help you through the initial stages of research, consult this comprehensive guide as your trusted resource. You’ve already checked off the first box: narrowing down your market to drinkware! When deciding on a bottle printing machine, focus on three key areas: sourcing your blanks, assessing the machine capabilities, and evaluating the manufacturer’s service and support.

Supply of Blanks

Sourcing suitable vessels for printing drinkware is a crucial and challenging aspect. Building a good relationship with a reliable drinkware distributor is vital. As a small startup, without historical data, accurately forecasting demand might seem daunting. However, with growth and time, purchasing the right amount of drinkware blanks becomes achievable. The Goldilocks approach of ordering “just the right” number of blanks to avoid stockouts or excess inventory is within reach!

If you’re unsure where to start with blanks, leverage your connections! Ask the companies you’re researching for drinkware printers if they can recommend reputable blank suppliers.

Machine Capabilities

Investing in a bottle printing machine is a significant undertaking. When evaluating different manufacturers, consider the complete package: the machines offered, service and support, training, and consumables.

A bottle printing machine, commonly referred to as a rotary UV printer or cylindrical inkjet printing machine, can decorate various cylindrical items with straight or tapered sides. Whether it’s bottles (wine, water, or beer), barware, shot glasses, growlers, stadium cups, tumblers, and more, these printers can print directly onto them.

Digital decoration using UV cylindrical printers offers numerous advantages over alternative methods like pad printing, dye-sublimation, or screen printing. UV LED lights cure ink instantly, eliminating downtime or the need for an additional drying step.

Service & Support

When considering a machine manufacturer, ask these pertinent questions:

  • What does your warranty cover?
  • How quickly can I reach a live person for support?
  • If I require an on-site technician, how soon can they arrive?
  • Are replacement parts readily available?
  • What other services do you offer?

Establishing a strong relationship with the chosen cylindrical printer company is essential, much like finding a supplier for drinkware blanks.

Additional beneficial services may include adhesion testing, custom fixturing, application consultation, and sample testing. These services can be invaluable resources.


Choosing the right cylindrical inkjet printer involves considering training and installation for your team. If you’re already familiar with printing methods like screen printing, the transition may be easier. However, proper training can significantly flatten any learning curve.


Digital printing extends beyond the machine itself. Consumables such as UV inks and primers are vital to the printing process. These materials depend on the substrate being printed. Having consistent access to fully stocked warehouses for consumables is crucial. Some digital ink companies provide their own ink lines, while others outsource.

Consider the availability of stock at a moment’s notice if demand suddenly surges. Warehouse location is another important factor. A digital printer is merely a large paperweight without ink. Asking these questions upfront provides a clear understanding of the company’s operations.

Replacement Parts

Closely related to consumables, replacement parts are also crucial to have on hand or shipped overnight. Hand in hand with service and support, replacement parts and the experience to replace them are necessary to keep down time to a minimum.

Choose Inkcups

Unlock the potential of bottle printing and various cylindrical items, such as cosmetic bottles and coffee tins, by partnering with Inkcups today. Our comprehensive printing solutions cater to operations of any scale, offering a wide range of cylindrical inkjet printers, from compact benchtop machines to high-speed models with 12 stations and everything in between.

With eight digital ink lines and in-house adhesion testing, Inkcups ensures your drinkware meets the highest adhesion standards. Our world-class 1-year warranty is included, with extended warranty plans available for added peace of mind.

Inkcups boasts a global presence with direct sales offices, strategically positioned warehouses, and skilled technicians, ensuring unparalleled coverage and swift service and support worldwide. Experience unparalleled technical support, both in-person and over the phone, no matter your location. Join us at Inkcups and embrace seamless, top-tier bottle printing and decoration. Contact us today!

Additional informative resources: Custom Liquor Bottle Labels, Digitally Printed

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