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FLEXO Magazine : February 2013
customized to cope with changing demands of leading en- trepreneurs. A decade later, at least one-third of corrugated operations deploy high graphics ready machinery. Why? Users appreciate capital equipment investments that offer configurations that can evolve in the future and will meet changing market requirements, based on their packag- ing product mix, the printing level they are targeting, their needs in terms of ergonomics and footprint, and the type of production they foresee—long runs or jobbing. Among the recommendations they are willing to consider: mobile machines,high board line (HBL) units or “Rapidset” (RS) over pit configurations—that bring operations down to floor level. Machines are frequently supplied in five- or seven-colors and comprise space for UV and IR varnish and driers. Usu- ally, additional transfer sections are also recommended in order to convey the sheet in the best condition from the print- ing to diecutting sections. When it comes to folder gluers, the range includes large die-cutter units which, with their automatic anvil grinding process, allow the production of die-cut boxes in one pass, so creating the ideal combination of high graphics print with sophisticated shapes. QUEING CONSISTENCY Dust is the enemy of high quality graphics applications and research and development engineers pay considerable at- tention to providing effective solutions to this problem. Individual converting line components can be equipped with enhanced dust control systems, ranging from rotating brushes and anti-static bars at the feeder, to full vacuum dust collection throughout the line with local or centralized filtration. With the increasingly fine anilox rolls and printing plates in use for high graphics work on coated and semi-coated pa- pers—up to 440 lpi in some cases—the need to quickly swap anilox rolls has become very important. To this end, manufac- turers have developed a robot- ized trolley which can simplify the selection and placement of the appropriate rolls, while improving the overall stock of rolls available. To match the high level of printing required, today ’s ma- chines are largely servo-driven and therefore the user friendly operator interfaces have been developed to help set the ma- chine quickly and efficiently, with consistent and repeatable results. Thanks to a touch screen and a graphical menu system that makes setting operator-friendly, not only can job settings be saved, restored, or copied on de- mand, but the exact parameters of the flexo group are memorized and can be replicated when a repeat order comes in with a dif- ferent production schedule. While having access to an in-line converting process is the key to producing cost-efficient packaging, quality monitoring is becoming more and more essential to eliminate non-con- forming packaging and to deliver consistent quality that fits with end-user specifications. n Editor’s Note: This article is based on input contributed by Bobst. Technologies discussed are reflected in its one-pass die cutting and flexo folder gluer product offerings—specifically models like the FFG 924 NT RS and DRO 1624 NT. The die cutter is available in both high board line (HBL) and rapid set (RS) models. Registron registration setting and iQ300 quality assurance systems are available on all models in both lines. Bobst’s MP3 user-friendly operator interface and streamlined, touchscreen control panel, promote fast setup and is a popu- lar feature of the equipment. Flexo folder/gluer. In-line rotary die cutter in RapidSet—“Over Pit” footprint. www.flexography.org FebRuaRy 2013 FLEXO 51