McLoone, the La Crosse, WI, USA-based supplier of industrial labels, decals and nameplates, has installed a SPGPrints DSI UV-inkjet label press in order to bring about production efficiencies and penetrate the mid-run self-adhesive decorative label market.
Keith Rosenthal, vice president of manufacturing at McLoone, says: “We sought a solution that would reduce costs and setup times when printing runs from just a few hundred units, and give us the necessary productivity to compete for orders of up to 250,000 labels. SPGPrints’ DSI press was the perfect choice thanks to its robust, ergonomic build, modular design and ability to deliver controlled quality on a wide range of plastic substrates.”
SPGPrints – formerly known as Stork Prints until November 1, 2013 – custom-built a 13" (330mm)-wide version of the DSI for McLoone as a stand-alone printer with CMYK plus opaque white. With speeds of up to 114fpm (35 m/min), the DSI will be responsible for 25 percent of McLoone’s production, approximately half of the company’s flexible material output.
The first large-scale roll-to-roll printer in the company’s 60-year history, the DSI offers a leaner and shorter workflow than McLoone’s existing flat-bed screen printing and thermal transfer machines.
“The DSI has given us new levels of flexibility,” says Rosenthal. “We can print all colors in a single pass, eliminating the logistically
intensive task of printing each colour on a separate machine, and reducing the production steps from 30 to just six. We can run 20 micro-runs consecutively in less than an hour, whereas before on a screen press, this workload would have taken three days.”
The high specification of the press and the performance of SPG’s proprietary UV inks also influenced McLoone’s investment decision. At present, McLoone’s DSI system prints on exclusively plastic substrates, including polycarbonates, vinyl, polypropylene and polyethylene, between 0.002" (51µm) and 0.01" (254µm) thick. The DSI’s chill drum, which comes as standard, ensures these heat-sensitive substrates remain at a constant, cool temperature, eliminating the risk of material shrinkage, and ensuring stability through the print process.