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FLEXO Magazine : March 2011
Technologies & Techniques The quality of dispersion can affect the print quality because of its effects on transparency and rheology. As anilox roll volumes decrease, less ink is trans- ferred to the substrate. However, this lower volume of ink is expected to pro- vide the same degree of color strength for the final image. This is like adding weight to a race car and expecting the car to maintain the same speed. It is possible, but the engine and fuel will have to work harder. With ink, either the pigment loading has to increase or the pigment particle size must be optimized at a lower level, or both. Increasing the pigment loading reduces the amount available in a formulation for resins and other materi- als. Reducing the particle size of the pigments can help with the strength to a degree, but this often increases the viscosity of an ink and can hinder the ink’s ability to flow. COMMUNICATION Balancing all variables may seem like an impossible task. My intent was not to confuse everyone with a thesis-level account of ink chemistry variables, but to provide information about issues that might arise when discussing which ink to run for a particular job. I like to describe ink development as a mixture of chemistry, art and adven- ture. Just as drivers must sometimes make adjustments before a big race, or even while the race is already in progress, so must we adapt on the fly. What’s important is that the driver—in our case the printer—maintain contact with the crew and the ink supplier, and relay to them a print job’s priori- ties along with updates about an ink’s performance and any adjustments that may be necessary. Communication from the printer and end-user is absolutely vital to ink sup- pliers as they seek to optimize all the various characteristics of an ink. n About the Author: James Ford is the senior chemist and special projects technical manager for Color Resolutions International (CRI) in Fairfield, Ohio. He has worked at CRI for 10 years and has more than 20 years of experience in the field of color. Ford has a BS in Chemistry from Ohio University, an MS in Chemis- try from the University of Cincinnati and an MBA from Xavier University. He will discuss color management during his presentation, “Instrumental Reprise,” on Tuesday, May 3, during the Inks & Sub- strates Session at the 2011 FFTA Annual Forum in Indianapolis, Ind. Color Resolutions International is an international packaging ink company focused on water-based and UV curing flexo inks for printing labels and tags, flexible packaging, folding cartons, envelopes and corrugated cardboard. CRI custom formulates inks that print cleaner, richer truer colors. Newly developed products include LabelCure, Profector Plus and Newtrol® DGF. For more information about CRI, visit www.colorresolutions.com or call toll- free at (800) 346-8570. FORUM 2011 SETTING THE PACE FOR FLEXO PACKAGING EXCELLENCE speAker Improve your balance at any speed theDiffe r ence! Experience 3MTM Flexographic Plate Mount- ing Systems give you flexibility - a choice of adhesives, foams and thickness to better balance solids and dots to meet increasingly higher customer expectations. Air-release EASY Mount Adhesive provides faster set-up and smoother surfaces for improved productivity and print quality - at any speed. Best of all, 3MTM Flexographic Plate Mounting Systems are brought to you by Anderson & Vreeland, with 50 years of flexo experience. Tip the balance in your favor. 866.282.7697 | Fax 800.223.6869 | AndersonVreeland.com | info@AndVre.com Download free Selection Guide at www.AndVre.com/3m_mounting.html INFO*FLEX 2011 - booth #714 AV 9606.5 3m stonesad.indd 1 2/7/11 2:39:16 PM www.flexography.org march 2011 FLeXO 31 www.flexography.org march 2011 FLeXO 31 FLX_March11.indd 31 3/18/11 1:32 PM