«Baldwin established itself as a supplier of offset systems, primarily for cleaning and drying. Then, with the decline of some important markets, we started to put our skills at the service of other industries. Starting from the realization that, in terms of quality automation, offset is much more advanced than other technologies, where many operations are still manual: where the cycles are measured in seconds, here we are talking about hours». Michael Stürmer, Vice President of Baldwin’s Product Line Cleaning BU, introduces the American multinational to ICE Europe, for the first time at the fair with all its divisions, to present a complete range of systems for the quality and optimization of printing and converting processes. In addition to in-line cleaning systems and Baldwin Vision Systems products (color management and inspection systems), the stand also featured those of the newly acquired Ahlbrandt Systems (Corona treatments) and AMS Spectral UV (UV and UV-LED drying technologies), primarily flexo printing, first and foremost of corrugated cardboard, and the lamination and extrusion of plastic film. Thanks to process optimization and automation, a series of significant advantages are offered in terms of greater productivity, reduced waste, healthier operating conditions and quality assurance of proceedings.
The awareness that comes from doing one’s sums
«If, for example, we equip a line for converting corrugated cardboard with an adequate dust filtration system, perhaps associated with vision systems capable of identifying defects and automatically discarding them, we cause a small revolution», considers Stürmer. «Today, in fact, everything is in the hands of the operator: he is the one who identifies the hickings during printing, who stops the machine, opens it, sees where the defect is, cleans it, closes everything, goes to the console and starts the job up again. And how long does that take? At least 5 or 6 minutes. With our systems you do everything in few seconds. And now that corrugated cardboard is also in color, such an increase in productivity makes a huge difference.
Not to mention the quality guarantees: if there are hickings on the Samsung blue and black box, nobody will buy that TV… ».
The problem with the converter is that he is often unaware of the costs of the processes, considers Stürmer, fresh from a recent, emblematic meeting, with a big Campania based company. «You just have to do your sums: 5 seconds versus 5 minutes of standstill at an average of 6 times a day for 250 days of production a year makes a lot of money: enough to amortize your investment in quality in a twinkling. A customer installed our systems and quantified the savings by discovering that 30% of production time was absorbed by cleaning operations».
4 seconds instead of 5 minutes. The shortest time required by a flexographic machine to print corrugated cardboard with Baldwin’s automatic inline quality controls. And if we estimate that on average one stops 5 minutes for 6 times a day, for 250 days a year…