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FLEXO Magazine : September 2013
FQC Projects & Protocols: A Performance Report By Jean Engeleke, FQC Chair The Flexo Quality Consortium (FQC) is alive and well! Those of you who attended this year’s Forum in San Diego may have witnessed first-hand the interest shown by the membership. The pre-conference FQC work- ing session and talk on “Knowing Your Color Capabilities,” presented by Steve Smiley of SmileyColor & Associates and Kevin Chop of Diageo, drew a standing room-only crowd and we were able to sign up more than 60 volunteers for current projects. Thank you to all the members who are now active on these jobs! The general FQC Session, also very well attended, started with a report out from all of our project leaders. Since the Forum, our project groups have welcomed new members and have been actively working to fulfill their charters. The mem- bership will have another opportunity to learn more about the project status and participate in working meetings at the Fall Conference, Oct. 14 -16 in St Louis, MO. Current Active Projects: • Dr. Danny Rich, Sun Chemical – Standards Working Group • Sean Tuefler, Harper Corporation of America – Expanded Gamut II – CHARTER APPROVED • Steve Smiley, SmileyColor & Associates – Corrugated G7 – CHARTER APPROVED • High Resolution Printing A & B – CHARTER APPROVED • Dan Reilly, Plastic Packaging, Inc. – Anilox Gauge R&R II After the project updates the session featured three presen- tations. Two were follow-up projects from last year’s Forum and a third chosen from submitted abstracts. Paul Lancelle, All Printing Resources, and Andrew Hewitt, Repro3, presented “Do More with Four... and More!” The presentation was a continuation of the 2012 project that documented the color gamut achievable with new plate technologies. This year they highlighted how expanded gamut technology compared us- ing the same plate technology. Ann Michaud of 3M and Jeff Aker of SGS presented “Opti- mizing Mounting Tape With New Plate Technologies—A Case Study in Optimizing The Tape/Plate Package. ” T he discus- sion explored the characteristics of flexo mounting tapes and photopolymer plates and how their interaction affects print. They presented a case study, conducted at Hood Packaging, to document their findings. PJ Fronczkiewicz, Flint Group, finished the session with his expanded research from last year’s Forum, “Platemaking Negligence: From Bad to Worse.” PJ researched plate wear with extended plate runs in a laboratory setting and docu- mented his findings. All presentations were well received and exceeded their allotted time slots. Therefore, we are following up now with the questions that came in from the membership. FQC SeSSion QueStion And AnSweR PAul lAnCelle And AndRew Hewitt Q: We have heard that 7-color is actually less expensive than 4-color because of the ink savings. For example, creating green, using green ink, is half the ink usage of using cyan and yellow. Do you agree? Also, which method is more stable on press: creating green with green ink or using cyan and yellow? A: This is quite a subjective question and answer. We know that CMYK inks are the most cost effective, so pound for pound the green ink will cost more. That said, you need 200 percent ink coverage for a CY build against 100 percent green coverage, so we can understand that there may exist the opportunity for ink savings on some colors. However, ECG will, in most cases, need a second ink and even a third ink to achieve a full range of “greens,” so while the green ink may be a major influence in the makeup, it is not the only color. We agree the fewer primary colors to build an ultimate color is the easiest way to print; however, consideration should be taken on the complexity in prepress activities and print heads required on press to estab- lish a true cost comparison. On this point it is worth saying that if you run ECG and are happy with your “standard” densities that a conventional plate delivers, then next-gen plate technol- Hewitt Lancelle 18 FLEXO sEptEmBEr 2013 www.flexography.org FTA TODAY FOrum FLAshbAck