Every press operator knows what gear marking is, and it’s the last thing he or she wants to see on a print job. Operators who know their machines well learn how to compensate for vibration when setting impression and while running a job, even if it means giving the old press a whack or two.
Along comes Nu Tech Coatings, of Atlanta, GA, USA, which says it has a solution to the gear marking and banding problem. Its Performance Enhancing Cylinders (PEC) “provide a mounting platform for plates that allows for impression and absorbs vibrations.” According to VP Jim Wyman, Nu Tech uses a proprietary polymer to coat cylinders.
“We eliminate impression as a variable as the operators go to print,” Wyman says. “Our product is an energy absorbing coating. As as result of eliminating impression as a variable, it can increase press speeds, and can mean a lot less downtime for re-registration.”
The product, he says, takes an impression set. “We ask operators to adjust the impression as they normally would, and once they find the kiss impression to left and right, then they should start coming in on the impression until they achieve the results they are looking for. And this cylinder prints a solid dot, not a typical flexo donut dot.”
The cylinders are available in two ways. Nu Tech has an arrangement whereby customers get a discount if they order a premachined cylinder from RotoMetrics. Or a customer can send a print cylinder to Nu Tech to have the coating applied. The company machines the roller down to the proper diameter and adds about three-eighths of an inch of coating. (A third way is for the converter to machine the roll himself.) This process can eliminate the cushion-backed tape common in flexo shops. The tape that is used to mount the plate on the PEC is 0.005".
“I think they’re onto something,” says Jim Pec, VP of production at Marathon Label, Wausau, WI, USA. “We had two rolls covered as a trial, and we tried some problematic plates on them using various substrates. I was impressed. It did a very good job, especially on screen areas. I expect to pick up a few more to round out the set.”
Nu Tech’s Performance Enhancing Cylinders are distributed in the USA by Print Products, Fernandina Beach, FL,