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FLEXO Magazine : September 2012
Technologies & Techniques Finessing the Bottleneck qCDC Makes Die-Cutting Faster, safer, and More Reliable By Jeff Feltz An old joke tells of a wealthy businessman that decides to celebrate his success by buying the fastest sports car he can. He heads to a large dealership downtown and, immediately, his eyes go to a Jaguar. The salesperson, sens- ing an easy sale, lets him take a test drive. But the man comes back disappointed, claiming that he can’t go fast enough. The same thing happens again with a Ferrari and a Bugatti. Finally, the salesperson takes the businessman to the jewel of the showroom: a sleek Lamborghini, the fastest car in the fleet. Again, the businessman takes it for a spin, then comes back, flings the keys on the salesperson’s desk, and claims that he cannot go fast enough. “ Wait, I don’t understand” says the salesperson. “ T hat car is by far the fastest car in our fleet. It can go over 200 miles per hour!” “ Yes,” sighed the businessman, “But the traffic only goes 25 miles per hour.” Anyone who has sat in traffic is familiar with the concept of a bottleneck. Even if the traffic is moving, there will be points where it slows down. Although the cars on the road are ca- pable of much higher speeds, nothing can move faster than the bottleneck. Bottlenecks exist throughout workflow processes as well. Recent innovations in press technology have radically im- proved throughput, removing some of these bottlenecks, but only to a point. There are plenty of high speed presses that THE IDEAL DIE-CUT STATION • Simple, user-friendly and easy-to-use • Allows for die changeovers in under 1 minute • Maintains robust die-cut quality • Delivers high performance stripping • Ergonomic design • Compatible with a wide range of dies • Produces little to no waste 64 FLeXO septeMBeR 2012 www.flexography.org quick Change Die stations offer simple access for cassette loading. photo: Mark Andy.