Time is arguably the most valuable asset that any business or individual can possess. It, of course, is completely unavailable for purchase. Time must be acquired by other means. To harness time is to become efficient, and the profitability of any business is measured by that efficiency. Properly maintained speed and uptime positively alter efficiency and, therefore, profitability. Weather you measure it in feet per min, meters per min or Kicks per hr. It is this ever higher target we strive to exceed. We want to maximize the output from existing equipment that may be 20 years old while we also investigate current and future equipment options for the growth of our business.

Thankfully, over the years, equipment choices have improved exponentially. These advancements aid us in reaching our efficiency goals. The equipment available in our industry today outperforms its ancestors to an amazing extent. Simple but tedious processes, such as moving materials from one spot to another, have vastly improved with the help of technology and automation. Systems like corrugated carton load formers, pre-feeders, vacuum transferring systems, and conveyors make laborious tasks into processes that are far more manageable. With all this technological innovation, speeds have steadily increased, and production times have lessened as a result.

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Along with improvements in speed and systemic capabilities, the areas of quality and accuracy have also seen great amounts of growth in recent years. Those older machines can’t catch the tiny details that the sophisticated equipment of today is able to detect. For example, folder flexo gluers with cameras that can distinguish whether a carton has been glued properly, is unaligned, or has poorly registered print. There are ink monitoring systems that help operators maintain the proper pH levels and viscosity; these systems are bringing efficiency and safety to a higher standard. Not to mention that all these new developments are running while the machine produces. The uptimes are extraordinary.

improved efficiency goals

The extraordinary doesn’t end with the uptimes, however, because these improvements also mean higher long-term profitability. Typically, the more a facility can produce in the allotted eight-hour shift, the higher the gross income will be as a result. For example, producing 350 blanks per minute versus 110 blanks per minute. Time is money; with better speed and uptimes, the efficient business is creating more time in their work day and, in doing so, providing more space for increased revenue as well.

So new equipment brings added value, productivity and profit, but what about my 20-year-old flexo folder gluer or wide web press? How can I squeeze as much value out of it as well? Let’s start with ink to control the metering of the correct ink film thickness, with the correct drying characteristics and apply it to the sheet accurately. To do this and do it consistently form the cool mornings to the boiling hot afternoons requires technology. Viscosity control systems like GAMA continuously monitor ink viscosity and pH making subtle adjustments to insure proper drying of the ink and its ability to run cleaner on press. So think about it this way, proper pH and viscosity allows the job to run cleaner, run longer without operator intervention. This yields more consistent print and lower reject levels. Back to production efficiency, more output in a given time is more dollars of profit.

Does the anilox roll contribute to increased efficiency? It sure does, this is the key reason that we offer plant audits where we focus on inspection of all anilox in house, review processes and procedures and offer training on care and handling. Proper anilox maintence procedures can make the difference between a successful print one or one that requires press side ink toning to hit color, consuming valuable run time through an extended setup. Setting up a daily, weekly, monthly protocol for anilox maintence will produce noticeable results in short order and at the same time save on ink consumption.

To sum it up, it is clearly in the best interest of any company to improve its efficiency through greater speed and better uptimes. Technological advancements that are currently available make achieving efficiency far less daunting than it has been in the past; take advantage of these possibilities and avoid missing out on the future. It is worth a few minutes today to find out what would make your process more efficient.

Pamarco takes a holistic approach to increasing efficiency, it starts at the heart of the press, The Anilox, and covers all critical aspects from single blade and chamber systems, plates, ink and of maintence. Take advantage of the services we offer and see how together we can make a difference in your operation.


Author : Chris Maisonneuve

Designation: PSP & Canadian Corrugated Services
Bio: Past 15 years in the corrugated covering industry (customer service, expediting, production manager). Started a new challenge with PSP & Canadian Corrugated Services in 18’!

Questions or comments?
404.691.1700 ext 105 or katie.graham@pamarco.com.

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