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FLEXO Magazine : August 2011
56 FLEXO august 2011 www.flexography.org MODERN MARVELS Modern machines are direct drive (with an infinitely vari- able repeat) and include technologies for quick changeovers to get the press back into production quickly--all the while minimizing waste. Feature-by-feature, and component-by- component, this equipment includes the following. Automatic inking and wash-up systems—Computer-controlled tanks/ valving are employed to clean the anilox rolls, doctor blade chambers, hoses, and system internals to a delta E of 2 or less. Different wash-up programs can be selected for the particular ink system, in order to minimize solvent waste generation. In-line ink viscosity controls—New systems use ultrasonic methods with no moving parts to measure the ink in real time and add solvent as necessary to adjust the viscosity. Redesign of the CI section for easier maintenance—All regularly serviced components (blades, end seals, and dryer boxes) are configured for simple, toolless removal and in most cases all work can be accomplished in a few minutes after the press has been shut down. Pre-makeready capability—Many new presses are equipped with pre- makeready capability that allows operators to prepare unused decks for the next job, while the press is running. Personnel can change anilox rolls, plate bridges/sleeves, change seals/ blades, and prepare the inking system for the next job, while the one in the press is printing. Automatic impression setting and registration—There are several new technologies available that can accurately set the registration and impression on a 10-color job in 5 minutes with less than 50 feet of waste material. Computer controlled color matching— Here, color matching is accomplished by having a real-time ink weight linked to a computer that compares a printed sample to a reference (either digital or master copy). The software calculates the ink components needed to match the ink to within a delta E of 2 or less. When the above described technolo- gies are used, press changeover times can be reduced to less than one hour and waste minimized to only a few pounds. IMMEDIACY At PRESS SIDE While the right equipment is extremely important in provid- ing customers with high quality, short printruns, it is only part of the equation. Material flow through the facility; as well as On many presses, the CI section has been redesigned for easier maintenance. Many new presses are equipped with pre-makeready capability that allows operators to prepare unused decks for the next job, while the press is running. STACK CI INLINE THE NEW STANDARD IN FLEXO GEARLESS SERVO OR GEARED FAST ON-PRESS PLATE/ANILOX SLEEVE CHANGES SERVO OR MANUAL PLATE/ANILOX POSITIONING 1-10 COLORS • 2-150” WIDE DOWNSTREAM OR COMPLETE LINES CONTACT RETROFLEX phone: (920) 532-4850 • fax: (920) 532-4854 firstname.lastname@example.org • www.retroflex.com