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FLEXO Magazine : May 2010
Technologies & Techniques 22 FLeXO may 2010 www.flexography.org “I t is no longer a Cinderella story. This is not a one year, or one hit wonder. We have an album, or playlist of good songs. That is just the way it is.” Marcelo Mar- ziali of Cenveo MM&T exhibits both confidence and credibility as he declares, “Flexo is not just here for a short stint. It is progressive. It just gets better and better and better.” New capabilities and higher levels of execution, are criti- cal to its success, he observes. “Every year you always have a Kodak, or Harper, or Flint Group/Rotec; or the machines themselves like Gallus; or the software that goes with pre- press; or the materials—inks, substrates, plates and other consumables—that introduce advancements, be they formu- las or fittings that bring flexo up higher and higher and higher and onto new levels. It’s these continuous developments that are responsible for flexo’s progress over the last 20 years. There is no reason why it just won’t keep going. We’re here to prove that today.” Offering his own assessment of the situation and the state of modern-day flexography, Mike Reid of Transilwrap adds, “Right now, it is a very aggressive marketplace. Simply offer- ing the paper, equipment or artwork utilizing the new technol- ogy isn’t enough. Going forward, we must offer more. Some- thing has to be different about the package or magazine cover that is printed. Everything has to gel from a technology standpoint—material, new equipment and beyond. ” No handicaps, nor compromises. Nobody is taking any components into this project that are tricks and specials. ...Kodak’s Emma Schlotthauer says, “ We’re showcasing the best that flexo can do. This is all about everybody pro- viding commercial product and coming together to do things that can be ac- complished in every day production.” Design Details “ Taking flexo to the next level starts in design,” according to Schlotthauer. “ The goal with this project was to say to Katie, FLEXO’s designer, ‘Do whatever you like. Design it the way you would for off- set. Don’t design it thinking, ‘I better not go there because this is flexo.’ That is important being able to move to a point where you can have design freedom, as opposed to having design restrictions because of the production process.” Marziali speaks to the design concisely: “I like it! I recognize some of the images and love the backdrop of Vegas that will partially show through. PresseD to succeeD In many print operations, it is often the flexographic printing press that defines the framework of possibilities. The num- ber of stations, the flexibility, stability, and speed lay the groundwork for what may or may not be possible. While it is not the end all/be all of what can be done—too many other factors, such as inks, plates, anilox rolls and even personnel can make or break a job—a press is the glue that holds it all together. Such can certainly be said of Cenveo MM&T’s Gallus ES in-line press, on which the cover outsert was printed. “ We would have never imagined doing this five years ago, printing a magazine cover,” explains Andre Blais, sales manager, Gallus Inc. , e choing sentiments of many of the people on hand at the Mississauga, ON , Canada facility for the press run. “ Today, there are so many things that you can do to add value to that product, whether it is a magazine cover or a label doing it all in one pass color shifting inks, silk screening, raised varnish, hot foil, cold foil, holograms—you name it. The modern flexo press is vastly more capable than just a decade ago. According to Blais, the critical buzzword is servo. “ You have a lot of flexibility in materials without having to make major changes to the process other than dialing in. Because of the servo technology the machine takes over. This particular press at MM&T has a lot of unique features where you can add a lot of value to the end product. You can do sheeting on this press; you can go from a 1mil substrate film and shrink sleeves all the way up to 18pt. board.” While unlikely to be eliminated completely, the human element can and has been reduced as a result of advanced press technology. “As this technology evolves, we are...making it more electronic and easier for the operator to operate this press,” says Blais. “That enables the printer to do a lot of value-add features to the end product.” Happy with the results, the team displays the finished work. Kneeling l-R: Jay Page, Cenveo mm&T; Paul lancelle, Kodak; marcelo marziali, Cenveo mm&T. standing l-R: Christopher smart and Brian nagtalon, Cenveo mm&T; mike Reid, Transilwrap of Canada; Ben abray, autumn graphics; Kelly Roberts, Canflexographics, ltd .; emma schlotthauer, Kodak; Bob moran, FleXo. inset: andre Blais, gallus inc. FLX_May10_sec1.indd 22 4/19/10 11:57 AM