Flint GroupA re-introduction Rich Emmerling Technical Manager Flint Group Flexographic Products
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Quick Facts • 140 Facilities, in over 40 countries worldwide • ~ 7,500 People • Revenues of $3.5 billion in 2009 • 100% derived from sales to the printing and packaging industry • #1 or #2 in all markets served • Flint Group was formed from the merger of XSYS Print Solutions and Flint Ink in 2005 • XSYS was the combined companies of ANI and BASF Printing Products (2004) • Flint Group acquired Day International/Rotec in 2007
North American Plates Facility • North American Technical & Training Center In Charlotte, NC with nyloflex® FV flowliner, drier, top lift exposure unit, image analysis systems, and ablative lasers. • Team of experienced Technical Service people for plates set up and equipment installation & training.
Sleeves, Service & More! Flexo Plates Letterpress Plates Equipment & Solvents Product Portfolio
Differentiate to ThriveOffer something different to your customers Rich Emmerling Technical Manager Flint Group Flexographic Products
Surviving in a challenging economy requires differentiating yourself in the market. Offering new products to your customers – ones that address their need for quality and value – set you apart from your competition. In the spirit of differentiation, Flint Group is introducing two new products for the corrugated market, and a new, thinner plate that will address both quality and sustainability concerns.
Corrugated Industry Focus • For too long it’s been a " me too" world for corrugated post print plate products • Everyone was after the formidable leader to duplicate the performance of the market leading product • Each supplier has developed a product that is essentially similar to that market leader • But now it’s time to do something different . . . • Flint Group has refocused its product development on the corrugated post print market to introduce new products that take the print performance for corrugated to new levels
nyloflex® FAC • The premium, high quality plate for corrugated post print • Available in digital and conventional • Wide market share globally • Proven high quality printing plate • Conventional up to 52x80" • 32 Shore A
nyloflex® FCC • The " economic" alternative to FAC • Durable, ideal for line and halftone work on a variety of boards • Very good ink transfer and solids coverage, even on coarse liners • 32 Shore A
Requirements of Corrugated Post Print • Print Quality • Dealing with the trend to lower liner quality • Lower board quality demands a plate that will work with low impression to avoid compression of flute • The market needs a plate that will provide excellent solids coverage, print clean, open reverses, and minimize dot gain • Can these requirements be filled with one plate type? • What would be the effect of using a harder plate? • Would a softer plate be able to reduce impression while still providing smooth ink lay down and still print with low level of dot gain?
Introducing • New products for the corrugated post print market • FSC – a soft durometer (25 Shore A) plate for excellent solids coverage with fine, detailed reverse and positive printing on A-, B-, C-Flute, rough surfaces, recycled, and low quality liners • FHC – a higher durometer (38 Shore A) product for high end post print applications on C-, E-, Micro-Flute coated and uncoated liners
nyloflex® FSC – High Quality Print Conventional and Digital • Excellent solids coverage, particularlyon low cost liners • Very good ink transfer • Deep, sharp reverses, for excellent print results • Superior performance in line work • Also suitable for halftone work
nyloflex® FSC Digital – CostEfficient&Reliable Standard solid plate processing • Superior durability and long lifetime, no chipping • Processes in standard equipment • Established, proven technology • Easy handling – fast processing • Reduced plate cleaning • Excellent plate thickness tolerance
nyloflex® FHC Conventional and Digital • Excellent dot reproduction • Fine line and reverse printing • Excellent ink transfer • Wide exposure latitude • Longer press life • Excellent impression latitude
Print Trials • Two separate print trials were conducted with all products • Trials were done at Clemson University on the Bobst press and at Fox Valley Technical College on their Grant International Workhorse press
Hard Plate – Coated/Dot Gain Hard Standard Hard Standard
Hard Plate – Coated/Solid Hard Standard
Hard Plate/Reverse Print Coated Hard Standard
Soft Plate – Coated/Dot Gain Soft Standard Soft Standard
Soft Plate – Coated/Solid Standard Soft
Soft Plate – Reverse Print/Coated Standard Soft
Soft Plate – Uncoated/Dot Gain Standard Soft Standard Soft
Soft Plate – Uncoated/Kraft/Solid Uncoated Kraft Soft Standard
Soft Plate – Reverse Print/Uncoated Standard Soft
nyloflex® Product Range Product Application Board Quality Hardness Shore A
nylosolv ® • Low odor • Rarely requires balancing • Low plate swell for shorter drying times • Low plate swell prevents chipping in washout unit • Largest market share of washout solvents in Europe
Conclusions • The softer plate produces excellent solids coverage at lower impressions levels, with clean, open reverses, and comparable dot gain to harder plates • The harder plate prints as well as current 32 Shore A products but has the durability of a harder plate • The harder plate provided a higher impression latitude without showing distortion of the finer detail
What are Ultra Thin Plates? • Flexographic plates with a thickness of .030" (0.76 mm) • Have a relief depth/polymer layer of .023" (0.58 mm) • Have a base PET film thickness of .007" (0.18 mm) • Have no " floor" polymer, plates are washed down to the PET layer • Typically a hard plate, 62 Shore A, (ASTM) Polymer Layer PET Base Layer
Why Ultra Thin Plates Now? • Flexo platemakers and printers are looking for technology/quality advancements • Speed to press, up to color time, registration, print quality are at measured by higher standards • Platemakers and even packaging buyers want to use eco-efficient technologies to reduce waste and carbon footprint • Most wide web presses are fitted with sleeves, allowing for the necessary change in tooling
Weight • Raw material has about ½ the weight • 40% more plates per box = less packaging • Less handling boxes, crates, skids • Easier to carry sheets of material
Weight • Finished plates have 1/3rd the weight • Easier handling • Lower shipping costs • Example: 7 color job, 42x60" plates, shipped UPS Next Day from Chicago to Dallas: • 0.067" plates cost $191.85 • 0.030" plates cost $138.70 • Savings per shipment of $53.15 • 5 Shipments per week @ 50 weeks would be a savings of $13,288 Source: UPS.com June 1 2009
Productivity Comparison of a Single Plate • Solvent Processed 0.067" • Exposure – 10 min. • Processing – 8 min. • Drying – 120 min. • Light Finishing – 10 min. • Total – 148 min. • Solvent Processed .030" • Exposure – 8 min. • Processing – 6 min. • Drying – 30 min. • Light Finishing – 6 min. • Total – 50 min.
Reduced Cupping, Thanks To Being Thinner Cupping on solids happens more on thick plates Thinner plates cup less, print more even, require less impression
Print Quality In 1996, the FQC Program had leading suppliers and printers evaluate the optimum plate thickness for flexography in wide web printing.
Print Quality 2009: Equal or Better with .030" SID 1.1 SID 1.4
Print Quality: Conclusions • As was concluded in the 1996 FQC Study, the 0.030" plates still print with less dot gain than 0.067“ plates. • Medium to firm cushions tapes and sleeves are recommended for use with 0.030" plates.
Eco Efficiency • Eco Efficiency was calculated from 0.045" and 0.067" plates with a degree of solvent recycling at 87.5% • Data was not specially optimised for better processing conditions (exposure) for 0.030" plates • GWP incl. plate, packaging and transport contribution is estimated to be 32% lower for 0.030" plates compared to 0.067" plates • Energy consumption incl. plate, packaging and transport contribution is estimated to be 40% lower for 0.030" plates compared to 0.067" plates
Eco Efficiency GWP of 0.030" plates (.76mm) versus 00.067" plates (1.70mm) extrapolated estimate 0.067" .030"
Eco Efficiency Energy of 0.030" plates (.76mm) versus 00.067" plates (1.70mm) extrapolated estimate 0.067" .030"