Digital Flexo Printing: Advancements, Applications and More – EVER-POWER


Digital Flexo Printing: Advancements, Applications and More

A unit-type flexo press is a type of printing press used in the flexographic printing process. It is designed with modular units that can be combined and configured according to specific printing requirements. Each unit of the press consists of various components, such as a plate cylinder, anilox roller, inking system, and impression cylinder, which work together to transfer ink onto the printing substrate.

Advantages and Features

Versatility

Unit-type flexo presses offer great flexibility and versatility in printing applications. The modular design allows for easy customization and configuration of the press based on the desired printing process, substrate, and colors required. This adaptability makes it suitable for a wide range of industries and products.

High Printing Quality

Flexo presses have made significant advancements in recent years, achieving excellent print quality comparable to other printing methods. The unit-type flexo press provides precise control over ink transfer, registration, and color consistency, resulting in sharp, vibrant, and high-resolution prints.

Speed and Efficiency

Unit-type flexo presses are known for their high production speeds. They can handle rapid printing tasks, making them suitable for large-scale printing operations. Additionally, quick setup times and fast changeovers between jobs contribute to improved efficiency and reduced downtime.

Cost-Effectiveness

Flexo printing, including unit-type flexo presses, is generally considered a cost-effective solution for medium to high-volume printing. The presses utilize flexible printing plates, which are more affordable compared to other plate types. Additionally, the ability to print on a wide range of substrates reduces the need for additional printing processes, resulting in cost savings.

Wide Substrate Compatibility

Unit-type flexo presses are compatible with a variety of substrates, including paper, cardboard, films, labels, and flexible packaging materials. This versatility allows for printing on different materials, expanding the range of applications and market opportunities.

Environmentally Friendly

Flexo printing, including unit-type flexo presses, has made significant strides in reducing environmental impact. Water-based and UV-curable inks are commonly used, which have lower volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions compared to traditional solvent-based inks. Additionally, advancements in energy-efficient drying systems contribute to sustainability efforts.

Inline Finishing Options

Unit-type flexo presses can be equipped with various inline finishing options, such as laminating, die-cutting, embossing, and varnishing. This eliminates the need for separate post-printing processes, reducing production time and costs.

Continuous Innovation

The flexographic printing industry is continuously evolving, with ongoing advancements in technology, materials, and processes. Unit-type flexo presses benefit from these innovations, allowing printers to stay competitive and meet the changing demands of the market.

Working Principle

The unit-type flexo press works based on the following principles:

  1. Plate Cylinder: The unit-type flexo press has a plate cylinder with a flexible printing plate attached to it. The plate cylinder holds the image or artwork to be printed.
  2. Inking System: Anilox rollers transfer ink to the plate cylinder. The inking system consists of an ink fountain, doctor blade, and anilox roller. The doctor blade ensures an even layer of ink is applied to the anilox roller, which then transfers the ink to the plate cylinder.
  3. Impression Cylinder: The impression cylinder receives the substrate to be printed. It presses the substrate against the plate cylinder, allowing the ink from the plate to transfer onto the substrate.
  4. Drying System: After the ink is transferred to the substrate, a drying system is employed to evaporate solvents or cure the ink. Drying can be achieved through various methods, such as heated air, UV lamps, or infrared radiation.
  5. Repeatable Units: Unit-type flexo presses are designed with repeatable units, which can be combined to achieve multi-color printing. Each unit consists of a plate cylinder, anilox roller, inking system, and impression cylinder. The units can be adjusted and synchronized to ensure accurate registration and color consistency.

Applications

The unit-type flexo press is widely used in various industries and products, including:

  • Flexible Packaging: Unit-type flexo presses are commonly used for printing on flexible packaging materials, such as plastic films and laminates. They are suitable for applications like food packaging, pouches, bags, wrappers, and labels.
  • Corrugated Packaging: Flexo presses are widely employed for printing on corrugated cardboard used in packaging boxes and containers. Unit-type flexo presses can handle the large format and high-volume requirements of the corrugated packaging industry.
  • Labels and Tags: Flexo presses are preferred for printing labels and tags used in various industries, including retail, logistics, and manufacturing. Unit-type flexo presses enable high-quality, durable, and customizable printing on different label materials.
  • Folding Cartons: Unit-type flexo presses are utilized for printing on folding cartons, commonly used in the packaging of consumer goods, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and other products. They offer efficient production speeds and excellent print quality for intricate designs and vibrant colors.
  • Paper Products: Flexo presses are suitable for printing on a wide range of paper products, including newspapers, magazines, catalogs, books, and stationery. Unit-type flexo presses can handle high-speed printing and large print volumes required in the paper industry.

How to Choose a Unit-Type Flexo Press

When selecting a unit-type flexo press, consider the following factors:

  1. Printing Requirements: Determine the desired printing process, substrate, and colors required.
  2. Flexibility and Customization: Evaluate the modular design and configuration options to ensure adaptability to various printing applications.
  3. Print Quality and Registration: Verify the press's ability to provide precise ink transfer, registration, and color consistency required for high-quality prints.
  4. Production Speed and Efficiency: Assess the press's production speed, setup times, and changeover capabilities to ensure efficient and timely printing.
  5. Substrate Compatibility: Verify the press's compatibility with various substrates to expand the range of printing applications.
  6. Inking and Drying Systems: Evaluate the press's inking and drying systems to ensure proper ink curing and solvent residue control.
  7. Support and Service: Consider the manufacturer's support and service offerings, including training, maintenance, and spare parts availability.
  8. Budget and Return on Investment: Determine the press's initial cost and expected return on investment based on the printing volume and application.
  9. Industry Reputation and Reviews: Research the manufacturer's reputation and customer reviews to ensure quality and reliability.
  10. Future Expansion and Upgrades: Evaluate the press's expandability and upgrade options to accommodate future printing requirements and advancements in technology.

Possible Issues and Solutions

When using a unit-type flexo press, the following issues may arise:

  1. Ink Smearing or Blurring:
  • Problem: Ink smearing or blurring can occur during the printing process, leading to poor print quality and reduced clarity of the printed image.
  • Solution:
    • Ensure proper ink viscosity and consistency.
    • Adjust the doctor blade pressure to achieve a clean and even ink transfer.
    • Verify that the anilox roller is clean and free from dried ink or debris.
    • Check for excessive plate wear or damage and replace if necessary.
    • Optimize drying parameters to ensure proper ink curing.
  • Registration Issues:
    • Problem: Registration problems result in misalignment of colors or images, causing a distorted or offset print.
    • Solution:
      • Verify that all mechanical adjustments, such as gear settings and tension controls, are properly calibrated.
      • Check for worn or damaged gears, cylinders, or rollers and replace as needed.
      • Ensure the plate cylinder and substrate tension are correctly set.
      • Align the printing plates accurately and securely on the plate cylinder.
      • Regularly clean and maintain the registration sensors and control systems.

    Installation and Maintenance

    When installing and maintaining a unit-type flexo press, follow these guidelines:

    Installation

    1. Site Preparation:
    • Ensure a suitable location with adequate space, ventilation, and access for the press installation.
    • Prepare a level and stable foundation to support the press's weight and minimize vibrations.
    • Install necessary utility connections, such as electrical power, compressed air, and water supply, as per the press specifications.
  • Unpacking and Assembly:
    • Carefully unpack the press components, following the manufacturer's instructions.
    • Assemble the press units, including the printing units, drying systems, infeed, and outfeed sections, according to the provided assembly guidelines.
    • Install and align the necessary mechanical components, such as cylinders, gears, and rollers, ensuring proper fit and functionality.
  • Electrical and Control System Setup:
    • Connect and wire the electrical components of the press, adhering to the electrical safety guidelines and local regulations.
    • Install and configure the control system, including the operator interface, sensors, motors, and drives, ensuring proper communication and functionality.
  • Testing and Calibration:
    • Conduct a thorough testing and calibration process, following the manufacturer's instructions.
    • Verify the functionality of each press unit, including the printing, drying, and control systems.
    • Perform test runs using sample substrates to ensure proper operation and identify any issues that need to be addressed.

    Maintenance

    1. Regular Cleaning:
    • Clean the press components, such as cylinders, rollers, and ink systems, on a regular basis to remove ink residues, debris, and contaminants.
    • Use appropriate cleaning solutions and methods recommended by the manufacturer to avoid damage to the press parts.
    • Pay special attention to critical areas, such as doctor blades, anilox rollers, and plate cylinders, to maintain optimal print quality.
  • Lubrication:
    • Follow the manufacturer's guidelines for lubricating the press components to ensure smooth operation and prevent excessive wear.
    • Use recommended lubricants and apply them at the specified intervals and locations.
    • Regularly inspect lubrication points for any leaks or insufficient lubrication.
  • Inspection and Replacement:
    • Conduct routine inspections of the press components, such as gears, bearings, belts, and sensors, to identify signs of wear, damage, or misalignment.
    • Replace any worn or damaged parts promptly to prevent further issues and maintain optimal performance.
    • Keep a stock of essential spare parts recommended by the manufacturer to minimize downtime.

    About EVER-POWER

    EVER-POWER is a professional manufacturer of flexographic printing machines. We are based on the transformation and application of aerospace optoelectronic technology, relying on precision machining and manufacturing capabilities. We are dedicated to the research and development of printing and packaging equipment, precision coating equipment, and special electromechanical equipment. Our main products include printing equipment, precision coating equipment, new energy and new material production lines, complete sets of water treatment film materials production lines, complete sets of decorative materials production lines, intelligent production lines, and precision processing businesses.

    EVER-POWER has a core technology group including tension system coupling modeling and decoupling control technology, equipment intelligent control technology, precision coating composite technology, high-speed high-definition printing technology, coating curing and solvent residue control technology, and multi material adaptive winding technology. We have obtained over 239 national patents, more than 10 national high-tech achievement awards. EVER-POWER has obtained ISO9001:2015 international quality system certification, SGS certification, and EU CE safety certification, and has a complete after-sales service system.

    If you're looking for a unit-type flexo press that replaces other brands' products, look no further than EVER-POWER. Our products are reliable, efficient, and cost-effective, making them perfect for all your printing needs. Contact us today to learn more.

    Questions and Answers

    1. What is a unit-type flexo press?
    2. A unit-type flexo press is a type of printing press used in the flexographic printing process. It is designed with modular units that can be combined and configured according to specific printing requirements.

    3. What are the advantages of unit-type flexo presses?
    4. Unit-type flexo presses offer great flexibility and versatility in printing applications, achieve excellent print quality, have high production speeds, are cost-effective, are compatible with a variety of substrates, are environmentally friendly, offer inline finishing options, and benefit from continuous innovation.

    5. What are the applications of unit-type flexo presses?
    6. Unit-type flexo presses are widely used in various industries and products, including flexible packaging, corrugated packaging, labels and tags, folding cartons, and paper products.

    7. What factors should be considered when selecting a unit-type flexo press?
    8. Printing requirements, flexibility and customization, print quality and registration, production speed and efficiency, substrate compatibility, inking and drying systems, support and service, budget and return on investment, industry reputation and reviews, and future expansion and upgrades should be considered when selecting a unit-type flexo press.

    9. What are the possible issues that may arise when using a unit-type flexo press?
    10. Ink smearing or blurring and registration issues are the possible issues that may arise when using a unit-type flexo press.