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FLEXO Magazine : August 2011
54 FLEXO august 2011 www.flexography.org Optimizing Your Business for Short-Run Printing Materials Prep & Positioning + In-Plant Workflow are Critical By glen galloway & Mike Reinhardt Customers are increasing the number of SKUs. Typi- cal run lengths are decreasing. Many jobs of seven or more colors require complex process printing with photo-like quality. Clearly, industry trends for flexographic printers are changing. To be successful in this market, the presses and organiza- tion of plants need to be optimized for quick changeover and waste minimization. Prior to 2000, most printing presses were geared cylinder types and wash-up systems were just in their infancy. Depend- ing on the number of colors, changeover times between jobs ranged from a few hours to the better part of a day. In addi- tion, a significant amount of waste was generated cleaning up the used inks and then getting the press into impression/ register. No more! SUCCESSFUL SHORT RUNS • Press changeover time is reduced to less than one hour. • Waste is minimized to only a few pounds. • Maintenance work is accomplished in minutes after the press has been shutdown. • Registration and impression on a 10-color job can be accurately set in 5 minutes, with less than 50 feet of waste material. • Proper scheduling of similar jobs optimizes press time and eliminates unnecessary color changes and wash-ups. • Material flow is organized to allow press personnel to focus on the makeready. the control panel of a modern press, where registration and impression can be accurately set in 5 minutes. Photos: W&H Corp./ Bema Inc. TEchnologIes & TEchnIques