Miraclon, home of Kodak Flexcel Solutions, has taken to its first Miraclon Innovates virtual event to launch its new PureFlexo Printing solution.
PureFlexo Printing enables Kodak Flexcel NX System users to produce high-quality flexo print within a wider operating window on press by controlling unwanted ink spread. Designed specifically for wide web solvent ink on film applications, PureFlexo Printing aims to maximise press efficiency, repeatability and overall performance while enabling printers and prepress providers to experience cleaner print, stable colours and a better bottom line for their businesses.
Miraclon chief marketing officer Emma Schlotthauer said, “For brands who rely more than ever on the power of packaging to connect with customers, brand consistency and eye-catching flexible packaging is increasingly important.
“Printers need solutions that help them meet the ever-expanding demands of graphic reproduction, without needing to operate at less than optimum production speeds or risking press downtime from continual adjustments and unscheduled stoppages.
“A wide print latitude is the key to profitable production. PureFlexo Printing addresses a core technical issue – unwanted ink spread – which helps to widen print latitude and reset the quality-efficiency balance.”
Miraclon director of advanced print applications Dr John Anderson said unwanted ink spread affects print latitude as ink that flows easily is a natural characteristic of printing with solvent flexo inks on film.
“When that ink flows in unwanted places it can fill in, cause bridging and build-up, creating ‘dirty print’. It’s not always easy to manage and is often made worse by practices designed to address other print issues – such as the use of harder tapes, higher ink volumes and over-impression,” he said.
“PureFlexo Printing addresses the issue head-on by using sophisticated plate surface patterning to resist and control ink spread, and sets a new standard for clean, predictable print.”
Schlotthauer added that PureFlexo Printing and the reduction of unwanted ink spread has major financial benefits for both printers and pre-press providers.
“For example, if an unscheduled press stop to clean plates takes about 10 minutes, and with a typical billable press rate of around $700/hour you can easily start doing the math about the financial benefits in eliminating some of these stops. Add in the reduction of waste material and post-print capacity implications, and the need to address unwanted ink spread proves to be a particularly significant one,” she said.
According to Dr Anderson, with lower dot gain and significantly reduced ink build-up during a run, PureFlexo Printing not only brings a more predictable match to a press colour profile, it also reduces the need to stop the press to clean plates.
“This results in much greater production efficiencies while producing a high-quality result. The complete prepress and printing process becomes more efficient,” he mentioned.
Schlotthauer also said the benefits of PureFlexo Printing are felt throughout the value chain as the Flexcel NX Plates with PureFlexo Printing can typically use a softer mounting tape without compromising image reproduction. This helps reduce voids and the need to over-impress – further increasing plate life.
As for pre-press providers, they can break the cycle of chasing colour, retouching and remaking plates, according to her.
“PureFlexo Printing is the next step in unlocking the full potential of the Flexcel NX System, enabling flexible packaging printers to lead the charge in pushing the boundaries of flexo printing within a controlled, sustainable manufacturing environment.”
PureFlexo Printing is now available to all Flexcel NX System users through the Kodak Flexcel NX Print Suite for flexible packaging.