Meeting the needs for consistency demanded by brand owners as they produce millions and millions of products has continued to be a priority for suppliers throughout the print industry. When repeatability and brand recognition are everything, the rollers relied on maintain that image must be up to the task. Listening to printers and continuously looking for new products and compounds has never been more important. I would like to provide some insight into rubber rollers and help you, the printer, make an educated decision when selecting a new roller.
Thirty years in the offset printing industry, I have enjoyed working with great leaders, people, and companies. Over the course of three decades, I have been exposed to a variety of machines within the offset market, which includes the high speed offset/packaging market. It is always exciting to see the creativity of the offset industry. Somehow the industry consistently figures out a way to convey a message on a substrate. In the case of high speed offset/packaging market, that message is printed on non-absorbent substrates such as plastics, aluminum and steel.
Printing on non-absorbent substrates brings challenges that traditional offset rarely sees. The speeds in the high speed packaging market are only matched by web presses of traditional offset. While the high speed packaging speeds are similar to those of traditional offset web presses, the high speed packaging market does not enjoy some benefits of traditional offset. The speeds coupled with added difficulties mean that non-absorbent substrates are more challenging and expensive. Although all offset printing has in common is rollers, how a roller is produced and how it is mechanically set will ultimately dictate the efficiency of the ink transfer. The ink roller train must efficiently transfer ink to the printing plate. Herein lays the greatest challenge high speed packaging market.
Stay tuned for more information about making the right rubber roll choice for your application.