How to effectively improve the speed of carton flexo printing

When the cartons are processed by flexo, the typical production speed is 300 - 1000 feet per minute. Although many flexo presses can reach speeds of up to 2,000 feet per minute, if they are actually produced at this speed, many unexpected things will happen. Printing failure. The reason for this is not the printing press itself, but it is influenced by many factors such as ink formulation and substrate surface treatment.

Ink supply: The closed squeegee system ensures that less surface area of ​​the ink contacts the anilox roller. In high-speed printing presses, it is necessary to have a good ink supply device in order to maintain a good ink supply for the ink system. At the same time, the ink supply pump and the infeed position need to be optimized.

Squeegee and Friction: The use of a double-edged ink system increases the friction between the doctor blade and the anilox roller. As the printing speed increases, the anilox roller surface temperature reaches 1400 degrees Fahrenheit. Under the effect of high temperature, the ink in the anilox roller begins to dry. When the solvent is instantaneously reduced, the surface tension of the ink will increase, and the surface wetting performance of the ink will decrease. If water-based inks are used, the shape and volume of the cells also affect the ink flow rate. Rhombuses such as rhombuses and hexagons have spherical meshes with surface tension dynamics to provide better ink flow.

Printing substrates: Another notable problem when printing at high speed is the tightness of the surface of the printed substrate used. In general, the higher the tightness, the better the ink's moisture absorption and flow properties and the better the drying performance.

Hygroscopicity of the ink: High-speed printing reduces the residence time of the ink before it reaches the drying device, so the ink needs to be rheologically adjusted to meet the high-speed printing conditions.

Drying: Although many drying equipments have strong drying ability, as the drying speed increases, the residual solvent should be considered whether it is within the requirements. In actual production, the drying temperature may be increased as necessary to match the drying speed of some inks (such as water-based inks).

Ink: The ink itself should be reprocessed to accommodate a print speed of 1,500 feet per minute. The reprocessing process includes: adding a firm mixed solvent; or adjusting the pH; or adding a more suitable surface moisture medium. The color intensity of the high-speed printing ink should be properly improved, thinner ink can obtain better printing effect, and the drying of the printing product can also be well improved.

Foaming: In the high-speed printing of water-based inks, foaming of another phenomenon often occurs. In high-speed printing, the air remaining in the ink cannot be released quickly, resulting in micropores on the print. To effectively solve this problem, defoamers are usually added to the ink system.

Reprinted from: China Packaging News

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