New products from Heidelberg, Windmoeller & Hoelscher, Mark Andy and others improve sustainability and efficiency.
Servo-driven press accommodates 16-inch web widths
The new ELS Servo press features a 16-inch web width. Originally available in 10 x 13-inch web widths, the new 16-inch ELS Servo offers a greater product range for larger flexible packaging. The ELS Servo, with its precise registration and superior reproduction at speeds of up to 750 feet per minute, offers servo performance at a price comparable to mechanically driven presses in its class. In addition to traditional label stocks, the ELS Servo can handle a range of unsupported films.
Near-neutral calibration tool allows different output devices to calibrate to a common visual appearance
Heidelberg USA unveiled its near-neutral calibration tool, scheduled for release later this year, at the 2008 IPA Technical Conference in Chicago, which was held April 22-24. The new functionality, based on open ICC standards, will enable different output devices to calibrate to a common visual appearance-giving customers consistent color from any press. The traditional way of calibrating is to pick a dot gain target and calibrate to a dot. The new near-neutral utility uses profiles or user-defined reference values to calibrate directly to the neutral tone characteristics of the reference profile itself, meaning the greatest possible color accuracy. Near-neutral calibration works by comparing a profile made from an uncalibrated press sheet to a known reference (or standard) profile, then calculating appropriate plate calibration curves to create the neutral ramp. According to the company, one of the great strengths of near neutral is the ability to use an industry-standard reference file, or for users to create custom reference files based on their own unique printing conditions. It’s much easier to calibrate using one common profile for different presses or output devices. Dot gain calibration does not always equate to a common visual appearance on different presses. The near-neutral tool will allow customers to easily calibrate to the industry standard profile or other reference file of their choosing.
New solventless laminating adhesive optimizes process speeds
The new flexible packaging laminating adhesive, Solventless Mor-Free L75-164, was designed to meet regulated food packaging requirements in an environmentally responsible way. The product is recommended for general and medium-performance packages, as well as for challenging hot-fill applications. Laminates used in hot-fill applications made with traditional solventless adhesives are typically slow to cure, requiring a week to 10 days storage in inventory before shipping or further processing. The new Mor-Free product attains full cure at ambient temperatures in half the time, typically three days. Converters can also process laminates made with this new Mor-Free laminating adhesive on the same shift-slitting in just four hours instead of waiting a day or more as they do when laminating with competing solventless adhesives.
Rohm and Haas Co.
Matador speeds production of flat and satchel bags
At drupa, the Windmoeller & Hoelscher subsidiary Garant Maschinenhandel GmbH presented the Matador NG, which allows bag and satchel manufacturers to produce short fast-food carry-out bags, standard bags for baked goods (such as bread rolls) or extra long bags for baguettes. The paper bags produced on the Matador NG, with or without window, do not have a bottom, but feature side gussets for the products to be packaged. The machine is designed for short changeover times with servo drive technology. Product data of previously run bags can be called up from the recipe memory for repeat runs. The machine automatically adjusts to the new product sizes. Additionally, the Matador NG on show at drupa featured the new Linaflex end printer with sleeve change and servo drive technology.
Windmoeller & Hoelscher Corp.
New machine standardizes monitoring and QC for printers and converters
The FlexiProof 100 and FlexiProof UV can be used by ink, resin, pigment producers, paper, film, foil and other substrate producers, flexo component producers (such as plates and anilox rollers), and by any organization that either supplies or plans to supply products that will be commercially produced on a flexographic press. The compact, bench-top FlexiProof is a scaled-down but component-critical exact version of a flexographic production press, enabling users to improve the predictability of quality. As a color communication tool, the FlexiProof is used by ink producers to trial new products, determining ink/substrate interaction and for batch monitoring (color matching). Printers can use the system to trial new products (pilot runs) off-the-production press, which benefits the printer in that a production press is freed up just for production. Color matching off-press also saves time and reduces press waste.
RK Print Coat Instruments
+44 (0) 1763 852187; www.rkprint.com
On/off temperature and limit controllers now RoHS compliant
Watlow’s on/off temperature and limit controllers are now compliant with the European Reduction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) directive. Watlow’s on/off line of products include the series CV, LV, CF, LF and TM controllers. The RoHS ban restricts the use of several substances including lead, mercury, cadmium, hexa-valent chromium, polybrominated biphenyls and polybrominated diphenyl ethers. While RoHS was developed for the European Union, similar requirements are being developed in other countries. Watlow’s on/off temperature and limit microprocessor based controllers provide solutions for applications requiring simple on/off control. These control products are available in a range of packaging options including panel mount, DIN-rail mount, open board and open-board potted, allowing users to select the best version for their application. The controllers can be ordered with either fixed or adjustable set point, heat or cool on/off temperature control and with high or low limit trip action. The on/off temperature and limit controller designs provide significant improvements in the performance, repeatability and accuracy offered by analog on/off and limit controllers. The upgrade to RoHS compliance does not change customer model number ordering options, agency listings, price or warranty.
Laser alignment tool provides precise measurements
The Microgage 2D Laser alignment tool provides precision measuring, machinery alignment, calibration and other demanding industrial applications. Roll and web lines, extrusion systems and other production equipment are all checked and aligned for improved operating efficiency and reduced downtime. The Microgage 2D combines a compact laser transmitter with a receiver and digital display. As the laser moves across the receiver in a vertical or horizontal direction, the display provides a reading of the motion, accurate to 0.0001 inch. The Microgage will operate over a distance of more than 100 feet with a bright red beam that is adaptable to many industrial applications. Several accessories allow for alignment of straightness, runout, parallelism, squareness, bore alignment, shaft alignment and flatness measuring. The 2-Axis Laser Microgage operates on batteries and all components are machined of solid aluminum with a hard anodized coating for wear resistance.
Pinpoint Laser Systems
Redesigned press with servo technology runs unsupported films
Mark Andy Inc. has sold more than 25 of its redesigned model 2200 presses with servo technology since the product debuted in late 2007. Each section of the press is independently servo driven (shaftless) from infeed to rewind, including print and converting stations. With fewer gears involved, both vibration and noise are reduced, as is general wear and tear. Optional features of the redesigned 2200 include automatic register control for higher print quality, and remote diagnostics allowing for direct access to Mark Andy technical support. Of particular interest to printers and converters is the 2200’s capability with filmic substrates. With the demand for packaging products printed on unsupported film, the ability to run biaxially oriented polypropylene (BOPP) down to 25-micron (1 mil) can open new applications for converters who are finding profit margins under pressure in traditional self-adhesive label markets.
Mark Andy Inc.
Isoten vacuum rolls available in a variety of surface coverings
Isoten vacuum rolls are available with a variety of surface coverings to provide tension isolation and web control-including super-tough steel screen. The new line of Isoten vacuum rolls features a durable steel screen that evenly distributes vacuum suction across the roll face. This fine mesh creates a smooth surface for mark-free web handling while providing control in transporting or pulling wet webs and/or isolating web tension. Standard vacuum roll shells include a tungsten carbide plasma release coating that provides a general-purpose shell surface. Other roll covering options include polymer compounds, felt for delicate webs and a rotary gravure seamless screen for magnetic media and optically clear applications. Vacuum rolls are available in diameters from 12 to 20 inches, and lengths up 160 inches, with web wrap angles from 30 to 180 degrees.
Plate control solutions reduce downtime costs, production waste
Designed to improve on-press productivity and reduce downtime costs and production waste, X-Rite’s plate control solutions offer the highest level of accuracy, repeatability and imaging range, including extreme highlights and shadows. Featuring new firmware and software that support screening and plate technologies and the Fogra FMB measuring bar standard, X-Rite’s new plate control portfolio includes the iCPlate2 and the PlateScope. Featuring a high camera resolution, automatic calibration and long battery life, X-Rite’s iCPlate2 is available in two configurations: (1) iCPlate2 X, which is most suited to customers who only troubleshoot their plates occasionally but who need a highly accurate device to help them easily diagnose problems; and (2) iCPlate2 XT, which is ideal for customers who regularly check plates but don’t necessarily print to a control or to an industry standard. The new 6.1 version of PlateScope supports all current screening technologies including AM, FM, XM and hybrid screen types. PlateScope is suitable for customers who are concerned with process control, printing to standards such as SWOP, Gracol (G7), FOGRA or ISO, or who are coordinating output between multiple computer-to-plate (CTP) devices.
Digital computer-to-plate equipment and quick changeover printing presses quickens turnaround time
In response to the need for quick turnaround printing and packaging solutions, Cortegra introduces Cortegra XPress, a suite of programs and services designed to execute customers’ printing projects with speed and precision. This program can complete orders in three to five days after the approval of graphics. By drawing on the resources of multiple locations and innovations, such as digital computer-to-plate equipment and quick changeover printing presses, Cortegra XPress uses dedicated equipment, personnel and materials. Program highlights include: available for a variety of materials including pouch foil, blister lidding, labels, cartons and inserts (within pre-defined production parameters and specifications); fast turnaround of three to five days from date of graphics approval on pre-determined quantities; customized programs based on individual project specifications; for quantities under 30 million square inches; surface print up to eight colors; includes inventory management of finished goods; competitively priced.
Selector guide outlines rubber-based pressure-sensitive adhesives
This selector guide features high-performance Duro-Tak acrylic and rubber-based pressure-sensitive adhesives (PSAs). Designed to meet the in-use and environmental demands required for tapes, graphics and film labels, Duro-Tak rubber-based PSAs meet demanding industrial applications that require high tack with a balance of adhesion and shear properties. For graphics applications, Duro-Tak PSAs produce products that must meet critical conditions, such as optical clarity, plasticizer resistance on a variety of facestocks and performance in high-humidity environments. Charts present information on more than 50 Duro-Tak acrylic and rubber-based PSAs, with details about solids, viscosity, solvent blend, solvent resistance, special features, tack, peel, shear, roll storage on vinyl and resistance to shrinkage.
Print modules for combo presses feature fast changeovers
Global leader in rotary screen technology Stork Prints has agreed to supply Italian press manufacturer OMET with dedicated Rotary Screen Integration (RSI) modules for the Varyflex 520 millimeters and 670-mm wide combination presses. Suited for paper packaging and flexible packaging applications, the Varyflex is designed to maintain high productivity, with fast changeovers between different processes possible at all print and converting stations. The Stork units slot into the main frame of the press, and are interchangeable with other processes such as flexo, gravure and foil stamping. The Omet press has a repeat size range from 12 to 33 inches and up to 12 colors. The screen unit’s gearless, independent motors allow flexibility in pitch adjustments, to arrive at the precise intermediate printing length required. It is installed into the machine without mechanical intervention, through a basic plug.
Stork Prints Group
Flexographic clear varnish produces pearl-effect coating
The Super Pearl WB, a flexographic clear varnish, produces a smooth, glossy and intense pearl-effect coating. Designed to run on both paper and film, this coating can be used as a standalone effect coating or overprinted on other inks to produce a variety of effects. Using a manufacturing process enables Advanced Ink & Chemical to load the maximum amount of pearl particles into the clear coating while still retaining optimum transfer out of anilox cells.
Advanced Ink & Chemical
Flexo press caters to central impression applications
Miraflex C central impression (CI) flexographic printing press is designed specifically to fit the core segment of CI flexo printing applications in terms of repeat length, printing width and output. Ease of operation, extensive automation and detail improvements, such as sleeve-type nip rolls and light-weight doctor blade chambers, highlight this new development. The Miraflex C is available with eight or 10 color decks and printing widths of 39 to 57 inches and is capable of high-quality printing on plastic film, paper, aluminum foil and laminates.
Windmoeller & Hoelscher
Operations execution software helps packaging makers follow best-practice processes
FlexNet for Packaging Manufacturers is an Operations Execution System (OES) with a set of preconfigured, best-practice business processes for manufacturers of flexible, folding, paper, plastic, metal and glass packaging. These manufacturers are transitioning from regional to global distribution strategies, as evidenced by increasing merger and acquisition activity. As a result, processes must be globally integrated with process and system standardization, providing visibility to production and the supply chain network, elevating customer satisfaction and competitive success. FlexNet integrates the automation layer with enterprise applications. It also creates a collaborative environment for distributed operations to better maintain quality, remove waste and achieve sustainable operations within production, quality, warehouse, maintenance and time and labor processes.
Fast-cure solventless adhesive achieves lamination speeds up to 1,200 feet per minute
New Mor-Free L75-164 fast-cure adhesive from Rohm and Haas can achieve line speeds up to 1,200 feet per minute for difficult polyester-to-polyester laminations, as proven during a recent demonstration (see photo) on a Super Simplex Laminator at a Nordmeccanica North American facility. The adhesive bonds up to 200 grams within two hours, cures within four hours to allow same-shift slitting to proceed, and can cure completely in just three days to more quickly allow fill operations, instead of the typical two to three weeks storage before use. During trials with polyester-to-polyester lamination, Mor-Free adhesives exhibited no misting or smearing of inks on finished films.
Rohm and Haas Co.
New roll mover designed for large soft-material rolls
The new Big Wheel RollMover is specifically designed to safely move large rolls of soft nonwoven materials without damaging outer layers. The battery-powered Big Wheel roll mover eliminates the need for cumbersome and hazardous air hoses used to drive other roll moving units. Its 36-volt motor and heavy duty gearbox is suitable for pushing the heaviest of rolls across plant floors or onto trolley conveyors. The Big Wheel uses a larger diameter drive-roller to provide improved contact with the surface of master-sized rolls without creating indents and marks. With its elevated point of contact, this larger roll mover is also less likely to get “pinned” under big rolls at the end of travel. Tapered drive-rollers are also available to keep ends of the drive wheel from marking even the softest materials. Operators control the Big Wheel’s speed using a variable-speed, twist-throttle handle. Throttle response and movement speeds can also be programmed according to customer preference to assure optimum safety in maneuvering large, heavy rolls. Battery operation improves operator safety by eliminating air hoses that create tripping hazards.