by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
FLEXO Magazine : November 2010
come in and educate them. The inks are changing and the plates are changing. We also use Fox Valley for new people and those that are being trained on new equipment. In addi- tion, we listen to our customers. FTA has also played a critical role; we have people that are active in many of its events. Our design staff attends the Annual Forum. We follow what FTA is following from a technical standpoint.” Just Around the Corner Nelson admits that he watches other segments of the flexo industry to stay ahead of the game. “Label and flexible pack- aging printers are a little bit further ahead than corrugated,” he says. “So we watch those markets to see if there are tech- nologies that can be applied here. ” Case in point, he adds: “From the lead-edge side, labels and flexible packaging moved to thinner plates, and now corrugated is using thinner plates. The plate screen technol- ogy and the way plates are made for the printing process was driven by other segments before it came to corrugated.” But current trends concern this life-long flexographer. “Unfortunately, we see things moving into digital printing, perhaps five years down the road,” he says. “ T here has been a lot happening in the last five to 10 years and now things are really advancing rapidly. In the next five years, there will be a marriage between flexo and digital printing. Some people in the label business are doing that now. Eventually it will leap- frog into corrugated. “Once digital gets wider than it is now, and faster, it will move in. One machine I saw is running 40in. wide and 500fpm. If someone can open that up another 40in. and keep those speeds, it will arrive in this industry.” Arnold rationalizes that this is not necessarily a bad thing. “If you could get rid of plates and go direct to corrugated, that would be great,” he says. In fact, some customer trends are leaning in a manner that almost beckons to digital printing. Nelson explains, “We are seeing orders become smaller quantities.” Arnold adds, “The marketing guys want to be able to change something and don’t want to be sitting on a lot of inventory.” But flexography continues on its own path of evolution, and this is not lost on Great Lakes Packaging. “ We just made a major investment in a machine,” says Nelson. “ The ones we replaced had setup times of about 25 minutes. The new one can be set up in about three minutes. In addition, this has a fixed architecture and is capable of printing product while being set up for the next job. ” This fits right in with today ’s challenging environment, asserts Arnold. “ T here are demands for shorter cycle times, from the time the customer makes the request to the time the fluting is down and the samples are made. We recently had a customer last year where we got the graphics on a Monday and ran it on a Friday. Normally you’d get two months to do that. But we did it in less than a week.” n Plants & Processes a flexo-folder-gluer—the latest purchase by Great lakes Packaging. Jim nelson, president, Great lakes Packaging. Glen arnold, ceo and owner, Great lakes Packaging. 70 FLEXO november 2010 www.flexography.org May 2-3 Indiana Convention Center | Indianapolis, IN North America’s Largest Package Printing Networking Event in 2011. Period. Contact Jay Kaible at 631-737-6020 x20 www.flexography.org INFO*FLEXnow75%sold!Reserveyourexhibitspacetoday.Tag&Label/NarrowWebMaterialsFoldingCarton/FlexiblePackagingPressComponents/AccessoriesFlexoPrintingGraphicDesign/Prepress INFOFLEX_ad2011_Nov_mech.indd 1 10/29/10 10:36 AM FLX_Nov10_mech.indd 70 11/1/10 2:26 PM
Sustainable Fall 2010