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FLEXO Magazine : August 2014
Peak Efficiency, Light Labor Digital & Hybrid Technologies Find Their Niche Robert Moran Time... Labor... Energy---Converters are looking for savings on all three. In pursuing new capabilities that promote exibility, they are turning to digital tech- nologies and expanding the business. eir niche is predominantly labels, though it does ebb into other packaging applications as well---sometimes carton; other times small exibles. Among the attractions: changing jobs on the y, eliminating both setup and changeover waste and little to no need for makereadies. Approaches entailed range from adoption of 100 percent digital technologies---ink jet, piezo, drytone electrophotography---to hybrid, combination or multi process printing and both inline and o ine nishing. Traditional digital press manufacturers like Domino or Epson list out what they describe as signi cant bene ts of adoption/implementation. Namely: • Economic production of spot colors • Custom ICC pro les • On press proo ng • Low power consumption • Single operator requirements • Smooth degradations • Fine detail • Crisp edges • Small point text • 7-color capacity, including the desired opaque white for the transparent, "no label" look • Abundance of substrates accommodated • Intuitive work ow controls e common web width is 13-in., with typical running speed gener- ally quoted at 250 fpm. Native print resolution is cited at 600 dpi, with nominal dpi of 1,200. Space saving, compact design integrates all of the functions required for label production, such as corona treatment, white ink laydown, digital varnish and an additional UV curing unit. Combination printing is critical and in high demand across exo converters in North America and beyond, according to major press manufacturers like Mark Andy and Omet. "Flexibility is key to success for the future of converters. Having the right interchangeable technology in place allows a converter to respond to a variety of de- " Space saving, compact design integrates all of the functions required for label production." 104 FLEXO | AUGUST 2014 PRESS BUYER'S GUIDE / DIGI TA L PRESSES