Between them, they provided delegates with updates on Bobst’s latest offerings when it comes to gravure and flexo printing, lamination and cold seal coating and vacuum metallising. And these messages from Bobst were rounded out by presentation from partners, who focused on maximising quality and production in slitting/rewinding (Titan), bag-making technology (Lemo), prepress matters (Kodak), adhesives and coatings (Coim) and packaging needs from a brand owner’s perspective (Nestlé).
Eric Pavone, Bobst business director for its web-bed business unit, welcomed delegates and set the scene for the day’s proceedings. He then handed the baton to Bruce Beswick who provided an overview of Bobst products offered locally by Beswick Machinery.
Here’s a random dip into the many interesting presentations.
According to Fabrio Menini (area sales manager for gravure, coating & laminating) based at Bobst Italia, no other press manufacturer in the world can emulate the number of technology breakthroughs that Bobst has offered when it comes to gravure printing for flexible packaging. He proved this point with an impressive list of features such as the application of ES (electronic shaft) technology; integrated ‘on-board’ washing of all printing units; simultaneous automatic trolley changeover on all printing units; dedicated washing machines for off-line washing of complete trolleys; a no-trolley gravure press designed for very short runs; and TAPS (Total Automatic Pre-register Setting) that allows a single operator touch-button control.
On the flexographic printing front, a particular focus was on the almost zero waste achieved on the company’s latest Fischer & Krecke lines with their ‘intelligent’ sleeve technology and Smart GPS systems. Delegates were shown how the use of this technology could result in huge savings to provide converters with additional uptime of 609 hours/year – ‘That’s 25 additional production days per annum free to you from Bobst!’ declared Steve Chahidi, area sales manager for CI flexo printing.
On the metallising front, Matthew Fitzpatrick, area sales manager for vacuum metallising and coating, based at Bobst Manchester, focused on the General Hawkeye pinhole detection system and insisted that the African market for metallising is ripe for development.
Christian Karg of Daetwyler Graphics took delegates out of the pressroom and into the realm of prepress with a review of the latest gravure cylinder engraving and doctor blade technologies.
When it comes to slitting/rewinding, delegates heard from Mark Miles of Atlas/Titan who focused particularly on the automatic operation of the SR9-DT line that meets the challenges of operator skills – or, more likely in Africa, the lack of operator skills!
(To read more about Titan’s proud 50-year history, click here.)
Doing more with four
After the lunch break, Grant Blewett ensured there was no post-prandial snoozing as he explored the concept of ‘doing more with four’ – his contention being that flexo printers add colours, complexity and cost, when in fact all necessary colours can be achieved with four process colours.
‘It’s time for a realistic step change,’ he declared.
He also underlined Kodak’s new relationship with Thunderbolt Solutions in the promotion of the Flexcel NX system in South Africa (a full review of which was published in the last issue (PPM March 2014, p36).