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FLEXO Magazine : August 2013
Ink changeovers are particularly interesting. Unlike the stan- dard in-line machines, the CI label press is serially equipped with an automatic cleaning system that allows color change- over to be reduced to one ink change, instead of changing all the elements involved—doctor blade, anilox roll, etc. — as usually happens in in-line printers. All the latest automatic job adjustment advances are incorporated into the CI press. A job changeover can be simplified and reduced to under 15 minutes, which is enough time to change the printing sleeves, perform an automatic wash and change the inks. DRUM DRIVES PERFORMANCE The CI press for labels prints via the central drum. The printer unit is made up of two cast side frames and has a structure of built-in radial/horizontal printer units, which form a machine that is as compact and ergonomic as possible, and particularly robust with great vibration absorption capac- ity. All this provides high resolution and high quality printing. The drum plays a determining role in maintaining the regis- ter between colors when materials that are unable to withstand high tensions are used. It is also responsible for the quality of the tread for ensuring uniform pressure throughout the printing job. It is stabilized, balanced and rectified in relation to the market’s most demanding tolerances, at time of manufacture. Devised and designed thinking about the operator and the desired results, the press includes ergonomic improvements that allow for maintenance during production. That includes programmed maintenance operations that are usually car- ried out during scheduled production idle times, but also those daily operations, like changing doctor blades, cleaning drying boxes, cleaning the central drum etc. All these can be carried out without the need for tools and in a quick, comfort- able and simple way. The machine is equipped with an upper platform, which provides access to all the elements requiring maintenance in order to facilitate cleaning, maintenance and spare part replacement. REAL LIFE EXPERIENCE An Italian firm that has recently added such a press to its fleet of machinery, has been able to diversify its production, adapting to requirements at all times. It can productively print both the 3,000 meter runs and the 300,000 meter runs. Conventional in-line label machines have average speeds of around 100m/min. lower than the central drum machines. With an average run of 60,000 m and an average printing speed above 240m/min, the CI label press can produce more than 00 million labels per month, with a reduction in invest- ment costs and significantly less ink and substrate waste. Thanks to the addition of this press, the Italian company has improved its efficiency and productivity by more than 25 percent. That has enabled it to reduce prices, improve service and maintain consistent, repeatable performance results. This label production plant has optimized quality, efficiency and productivity. n About the Author: Jordi Puig is technical director/flexo for Comexi Group. The Comexi FLEXO F4 flexographic printer, FLEXOEfficiency, designed to satisfy the short run printing needs of the flexible packaging industry and the top quality printing needs of the plastic, paper and self adhesive label market, is available in 670 mm and 870 mm widths, 8 colors and print repeats up to 600 mm. Technologies, features and capabilities discussed in this article, are reflected in compo- nents of that press. Changeover is fast and simple as these standard and close up photos reveal. www.flexography.org august 2013 FLEXO 75 the control console.