Lawson Trooper vs. Brown Automatic (ElectraPrint)
Here are some quick differences between the Lawson Trooper and the Brown ElectraPrint Auto:
1. Modular Design – The Trooper is a fully modular press, the Brown ElectraPrint is not. For example, you can purchase a Base with the number of print heads you want, and then add additional print head at a later time – the Brown does not. Note: on Browns Electra, you also only have 7 print stations, not 8 - which is the industry standard!
2. Flex-Head Design – With the Trooper you can move each print head to any print station you desire. This is especially helpful when printing light colors on dark shirts and flash curing – the Brown does not have this capability at all.
3. Same Station Print & Flash – The Trooper allows for Same-Station Print-and-Flash. The Brown can not do this. You actually loose the use of a print head entirely! With the Lawson Trooper there is no need to purchase additional print heads, just so you can insert a flash unit!
4. Shuttle Flash on Casters, Not Dependent on a Print Head – The Trooper’s optional Shuttle Flash is not mounted on a stationary print head! This means faster set-up, greater versatility and eliminates the need to purchase an extra print head. You can also use the Lawson QZE or Hot-Shot Flash unit and wheel it to a manual printer and use it there as well (optional foot pedal required).
5. Registration Bearings/System – If you purchase an 8-Station Trooper, there are 8-Registration Gates; if you purchase a 10-Station Trooper there are 10-Registration Gates. The Brown ElectraPrint does not hold registration, because their method of registering is flawed. Important Note: the Brown Auto uses roller bearings (not on eccentric cams, like Lawson) and tries to guide a Round Pin in to register. This system is nearly impossible to adjust and will not maintain tight registration to .002, like a Lawson.
Call John Ladd at Walkin Billboards 678-229-6680, who bought a Brown Auto and now regrets his decision, because Brown's Auto can not hold registration. He can only print 1-color jobs on it.
6. 7-Year Registration Warranty – All Troopers come with a 7-Year Registration Parts Warranty and a comprehensive 2-Year warranty on all other parts. The Brown is only a 1-Year Limited Parts Warranty! Brown does not have the confidence to back their product with a substantial warranty like Lawson does.
7. Micro-Registration – The Lawson Trooper uses a “Direct-Drive” Micro-Registration system, with a grid locator AND also includes Rear Micro-Registration as well. The Brown uses an antiquated side movement system, that moves the screen in an arc, making registration very difficult. Further, it is very difficult to stand at the side of a Brown Auto and adjust, as you have limited space.
8. Squeegee & Flood Pressure Relief – With the Lawson Trooper, you can simply flip a switch and you can eliminate all squeegee and flood bar pressure on the screen. This allows for accurate movement of the screen when using micro-registration. The Brown always has either squeegee or flood bar pressure on the screen at all times; this makes it nearly impossible to achieve fine/accurate registration.
9. Front Stroke Adjustment – The Trooper offers the ability to adjust the front stroke stop. I don’t think the Brown has a front adjustment bracket.
10. Dual-Action Squeegee – The Trooper uses a “dual-action” squeegee. Benefits of the Lawson squeegee is a larger print area, longer screen life, the ability to reverse the squeegee and use a 60 or 70 durometer squeegee on the print (as you desire) and single-knob adjust squeegee pressure that balances left-to-right squeegee pressure across the print. The Brown auto makes you adjust 4 knobs to balance out their pressure. They also use a steel flood bar, that can lead to premature screen wear and stencile breakdown.
11. Easier Screen Cleaning – The Trooper has a 4” carousel lift vs. the Brown ElectraPrint, which is basically a 2” lift. The Trooper benefit is that you can easily clean and wipe the underneath side of the screen, without moving the carousel out the way (like is required on the Brown ElectraPrint);
12. Pin Registration Available – You can use the versatile and inexpensive Lawson Pin Registration System, if desired. The Brown does not have a pin system like Lawson.
13. Smaller Adult Platen – The Trooper comes with your choice of a 14” x 18” or 16” x 18” Adult Platen. This allows you to use a “Standard Manual Frame” (i.e. 20” x 24”) with the Trooper. The Brown standard platen is approximately 17” x 23”, which is awkard.
14. Foot Pedal Operated – All Troopers come with a convenient Foot Pedal, for easy use and the initiation of the print cycle. – the Brown does not.
15. Smaller – Troopers usually have a small diameter than Brown presses.
16. Safer – The Trooper is a safer press to use than the Brown, because of 2 basic reasons:
A) The press can not automatically cycle, until the Foot Pedal is actuated (except on the Trooper-PC);
b) The rotation of the Trooper Carousel is “softer” than the Brown press, because the Trooper does not require much air to start and stop the carousel; while the Brown is electric powered and cannot/will not stop until it completes its rotation.
17. Simpler – The Trooper has a much simpler Control Box. The Brown presses have lots of buttons to turn heads on and off and to control other indexing features. The Trooper has a very simple, control panel that is on a Boom Control, that rotates as you move around the press for quick and fast set-ups.
18. Print Head On/Off Controls – The Trooper has On/Off controls at each individual print head. – The Brown does not. This makes for a very simple set-up and easier future maintenance;
19. Screen Access – The Trooper has a more “open head/screen access” than the Brown. Our Aluminum Extrusion provides strength, while providing for greater screen access. This is better for registration and for adding ink to the screen. The Brown requires honky braces in the front of the press which make it very difficult to add ink to the screen and to register the press.
20. Manual Indexing – The Trooper and Trooper XL allow for “manual indexing”, if you want, while everything else remains fully automatic. This means that you have a choice, depending on your operator and style of printing required. Also, this is a great feature just in case the automatic indexer malfunctions or breaks, or needs servicing (and they all do at some time or another), and with the Brownyou can no longer operate the press (they only have “free-wheel”, with no automatic indexing lock). With the Trooper you can always rotate the carousel;
21. Simple Design / Common Parts – The Trooper utilizes common parts that are frequently available locally. For example, we use standard electric micro-switches vs. custom-made proximity switches. Likewise, we use standard air-cylinders, nuts and bolts and other hardware. Brown uses lots of custom parts, that can only be purchased from them;
22. Lawson Stability…we’ve been a pioneer in the screen printing industry since 1949. Knowing that the company you purchased your new automatic from is financially stable, committed to the screen printing industry and is in a position to support your automatic with in-stock parts and a knowledgeable service staff. Brown is a very small company that depends upon outside contracts to produce many of its parts and sheet metal. They also went Bankrupt under the name of Harco.
23. Performance Guarantee – All Troopers come with the Lawson Performance Guarantee: “Guaranteed to be fully functional to your complete satisfaction upon proper installation by Lawson – or your money back!” Brown does not have this guarantee;
24. Free Factory Training – Lawson offers free factory training at our St. Louis facility. In a complete 1-Day course, you will learn all the essentials of how to install, operate, maintain, and service the Trooper. Brown does not our same comprehensive program;
25. Complete Turn-Key Manufacturer/Supplier – Lawson manufacturers equipment, inks and many supply items used in screen & digital printing. The customer truly has a single-source supplier who can aid with the entire “equipment-supply chain” experience. This means fewer hassles for the customer, reduced costs and more supplier accountability.
26. More Options Available – The Trooper has many more options to choose than theBrown. For example: XL or PC style presses, Speed Rails, Speed Platens, Head Support Bridge, Air Clamps, Modular Head Pre-Wire and Pin Registration and many more.
27. Self-Installation – The Trooper can be self-installed, if you are so inclined and have mechanical ability. The Brown ElectraPrint must have a factory technician install the press;
28. Installation Fees – Brown charges $2,000 for installation. Lawson’s fee is only $795, plus expenses.
29. Squeegee/Flood Bar Change - The Lawson Trooper has a Single-Pull Pin, to install and remove the dual-action squeegee. The Brown makes you unclamp/pull 4 hold-downs! As a result, the Lawson Trooper is faster to set-up and change-over jobs.
30. Boom Control Box - The Lawson Trooper uses a Rotating Boom Control Box, that can be adjusted and placed where you want it. This makes for faster set-up and faster loading of shirts during production. Brown's control box is fixed and is actually in-the-way, as you load shirts, because it is too big and sticks out too far over the load-station.
31. Replacement Parts & Accessories - Lawson's dual-action squeegee/flood assembly and platens are much less expensive than Brown. For example: Lawson dual-aciton squeegee is $104.00 vs. Brown's $195.00; Lawson's Aluminum Platens (most sizes) are only $95.00 vs. Brown's at $175.00.
32. 24-Hour Tech Support Hot-Line - Lawson offers a 24-Hour Tech Support Hot-Line, Brown does not offer this service.
33. Install Printing Coach - Lawson's Service Tech are also printers. Brown simply installes the equipment and leaves; while the Lawson Tech/Print Coach stays and actually teaches the customer how to best set-up and print on the Trooper.