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FLEXO Magazine : January 2014
eration the DFTA-TZ research that lower impression between the anilox and plate contributes to sharper print, there exists a better opportunity to control the defined lower impression between the anilox and plate to transfer the ink only to the surface of the plate and not into the sides and relief areas of the plate. In the near future, a new KYMC 33 in. (850 mm.) mid web press will be installed in a Belgium customer’s plant after ex- tensive engineering and trials were completed. This new mid web 8- and 10-color all servo CI press has been engineered to meet the challenges of shorter runs and at the same time be able to run at high speeds to handle longer runs profitably. We have not sacrificed the latest advances in modern flexo technology, only applied this to the mid web approach to meet today ’s markets. The Belgium converter wants to achieve gravure print quality with higher screens—175 lpm—that can be achieved easily with the flexo process, while running multiple SKUs using extended gamut and HD flexo, at a lower cost. How is this possible? • Closer Tolerances Larger diameter plate and anilox sleeve mandrels for greater stability and accuracy Mechanical locking of the plate and anilox sleeve man- drels for quick changes Anilox sleeves hold closer tolerances even though they are larger in diameter Overall press and bearing tolerances are tighter Closer tolerances of the plate and bridge sleeves because of width • Lower Production Costs Less ink waste from run to run through better ink man- agement Flexo plate costs are less because of overall smaller plate areas Plate mounting time and materials are reduced with better register accuracy; in the round seamless plate sleeves are cheaper Lower energy consumption • Faster Job Changes Changing plate and anilox sleeves is easier because of weight and size—easy anilox sleeve change by means of push out assistance Setup times for printing pressure adjustment and regis- ter accuracy is achieved faster because the mid web is more operation friendly • Faster Ink Changes Sincroclean Constant Ink Flow Technology (CIFT) with individual ink flow control at each color sta- tion with a new ink pump (see photo at right) Ink flow settings can be stored for repeat runs Sincroclean (dual pump), constant flow in and out to control cleaning of each deck independently Three settings for light, medium and heavy cleaning Enclosed chamber doctor blade leakage is reduced through controlled chamber ink and cleaning pressure Spare enclosed chamber doctor blades are lighter and easier to handle for off line changing of blades and end seals • Reduce Material Waste With micro dot auto register there is less material waste without marks. Register setting while the press is not running also reduces material waste Auto impression setting without using marks, instead by using torque pressure setting Downgauging to thinner materials is easier handled and overall material waste during set up is lower all due to the width Additionally, a defect detection unit is used. If run at more than 2,000 fpm, it requires shorter measuring times. The mid web press, running at reasonable speeds in the 1,200 to 1,400 fpm range, can handle 100 percent defect inspection easier. With the advent of HD flexo, expanding use of extended gamut or G7 implementation in combination with Gray Com- ponent Replacement (GCR); the mid web concept takes on an entirely new appeal for shorter runs. It is a known fact that a mid web press makes it easier to set and control the impression, making it easier to consistent- ly hit set target points on press. By combining higher printing speeds with the ability to better maintain control of the print process, it is possible to meet the demands of the changing needs of the packaging supply chain. n About the Author: Wallace Nard’s career in the printing and converting industry spans more than 55 years. He started his career in flexo in 1957 working for Porter and Dugas in Chicago. He became general manager of that company in 1964. He then became vice president of Reilly Lake Shore Graphics in Chicago in the 1970s. He then joined Anderson & Vreeland in 1973, working his way up to marketing manager. In 1989, Nard formed Novaflex, based in suburban Chicago, a printing and laminating sales/service group. He has served as the FTA national workshop chairman in 1978 and 1979. He was elected to the FTA Board of Directors in 1979 and again in 1982; he also served as chairman of the board. He served as secretary, treasurer and chairman of the planning committee and as a member of the compensation committee. He was chairman of the FTA Annual Forum in 1983 and has spoken at numerous gravure and flexo associ- ation meetings. He was an editor for Flexography: Principles & Practices and the holder of several patents related to the graphics industry. Nard was inducted into the FTA Hall of Fame in 1988 for his lifetime contribution to the industry. 46 FLEXO JANUARY 2014 www.flexography.org