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FLEXO Magazine : September 2011
that brings a particular set of barrier properties and package rigidity that is required for the best presentation and/ or preservation of the packaged item. Gravure lamination offers simplicity. Laydown of the adhesive is consistent. It usually requires the use of a driven smoothing bar to smooth out the adhe- sive coating surface. The major draw- back with the use of a gravure coating cylinder is that each coating weight requires a dedicated coating cylinder, engraved to apply a specific coating laydown weight. More coating weights equals additional machine set-ups and higher inventory costs. Lamination can also be accom- plished using flexographic coating as the method of applying adhesive. Flexo adhesive coating is gaining popularity as a preferred coating method because it allows the converter to apply less adhesive to achieve the same bond strength compared to a rotogravure coating cylinder. The flexo coating assembly can accommodate a wide range of coating weights, metered by setting (adjustment) of the proper management of the gap between the flexo coating rollers. Flexo is also the best method for applying the adhesive directly on unsupported aluminum foil. High efficiency drying allows for the integration of the laminating process in-line with the printing press without reducing press speeds. The ideal ar- rangement is a combination of impinge- ment (forced air) and flotation drying. By heating both sides of the web, the possibility for uneven drying and the corresponding risk of entrapment of solvents within the adhesive layer is eliminated. Temperature control is an obviously critical factor to effective laminating and is usually accomplished through separate control of individual drying zones. Unobstructed accessibility to the dryer for cleaning operations is not only a given, it is necessary! Solventless laminating, or the utiliza- tion of 100 percent solids as the ad- hesive, is another method to consider. Solventless eliminates the need for the dryer, which is necessary for dry-bond solvent or water-based adhesive lami- nation. The chemistry for solventless adhesive is a cross-linking chemistry to bond two substrates. Solventless lamination typically generates the least amount of waste, since there is no rela- tionship to drying or production speed in order to achieve results. The major drawback is the required extended curing time. In some cases, spe- cial "hot rooms" Solventless lamination generates little waste, since there is no relationship to drying or production speed in order to achieve results. Spartanburg, S.C. USA 1-800-624-1985 www.laserengrave.com Engraving Quality Through Experience And Technology SEE US AT BOOTH #811 Laser Engraved Ceramic Anilox Service • High deﬁnition anilox engravings • Specialty engravings for your custom process l a e s t o h / d l o c , s e v i s e h d a , s g n it a o C • application engravings h ti w t s i s s a o t e c i v r e s l a c i n h c e T • your speciﬁcation needs y r t s u d n i e h t n i e m it d a e l t s e t r o h S • www.flexography.org SEPTEMBER 2011 FLEXO 59