Comexi showcased its new Offset CI8 press to brand-owners in Spain recently. Visitors from more than 20 companies were present during open day demonstrations at Inplacsa, the first converter to install the new machine, and pastry producer Inpanasa. They were able to see two different printing jobs, thanks to the C18’s quick change capabilities. These presentations were the beginning of a series of events that Comexi will continue throughout 2013.
Five years in development, the C18 is Comexi’s response to the flexible packaging sector’s requirement for enhanced print quality, minimised time to market, reduced costs and protecting the environment. It is an offset press with a central impression (CI) drum and variable format that uses solvent-free inks — claimed to be a market first.
One of the new machine’s most striking innovations is its sleeve and servomotor technology. By means of light sleeves made from aluminium or PU composites, the continuous process typical of this type of printing becomes highly repeatable and the job changeover process is streamlined. A run changeover can be performed in a matter of minutes as the sleeves can be prepared with the plates and blanket cylinders in place.
The servomotors on the individual printing cylinders, combined with the CI drum technology, make it possible to configure colour-to-colour registrations rapidly and to maintain registration accuracy throughout the entire run.
Another feature helping to minimise time to market is faster prepress, thanks to the offset plates. Their economical cost compared with flexo and gravure makes it possible to change the design in every print run (to change the language or a logo, or to add promotions). Short and medium print runs can be printed with fewer costs per square metre, it is claimed.
The offset technology for printing on flexible material also enhances print quality, thanks to both the central drum and the wide variety of screen technologies. According to Comexi, the new machine can reproduce 2% and 98% screens, and more than 80 lines/cm, making it compatible with the latest digital screen methods.
A key feature for sustainability and printer efficiency, is electron beam curing. In contrast to UV-cured inks, EB-cured inks contain no photoinitiators, making the process perfectly suitable for food packaging. As EB curing produces much less heat, it avoids deformation and tolerance problems as well as the expense incurred by the cooling system needed for UV curing.
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