NPE2018 New Technology Focus: Decorating, Printing & Finishing
See new equipment ranging from upgraded corona and open-air plasma surface treaters to a variety of printing equipment, including several being controlled by one software system, and the latest films in the water transfer printing process
A versatile, high-performance and compact corona treatment system is spotlighted here by 3DT Systems (W4283). Using the newest science in surface treatment and electronic technology, PolyDyne Pro reportedly improves the surface tension on numerous materials resistant to printing, adhesive, bonding and coating processes. The unit is engineered with multiple feedback devices for precise performance monitoring. Its generator and transformer are said to adapt well to many applications, such as 3D plastic parts, cup treating lines, plastic sheets and foam.
Key features include: a universal input that allows operation between 100-240 VAC, 50/60 Hz; a sophisticated remote interface that can enable the generator and set and monitor output power level; and, color touchscreen whereby the user can monitor all system parameters, view the data log, the alarm history and receive troubleshooting help.
Lectro Engineering (W1831) is showcasing the smallest Lectro-Treat true open-air plasma surface treating system in its 58-year history. The unit is designed for new applications and existing product lines where space is at a premium. The new LT 2100VD surface treater is only 38” wide and 48” long, now even smaller than a standard flame treater footprint. It can reportedly solve adhesion problems in a variety of applications including labeling, foaming, printing, painting and silk screening.
Matthews Marking Systems (W8263) is featuring seven marking systems: three laser inscribing units, one drop-on-demand (DOD) unit, and three thermal ink jet units. All seven systems are being controlled by the company’s MPREIA software at the same time, something that reportedly no other competitor currently can do.
Apex Machine Co. (W1553) and its sister companies Desco Machine and Capex Corp. are featuring several of their popular and updated dry-offset printers including: the C-400 cylindrical part printer that can print on just about any cylindrical component in up to five colors, and is capable of running multiple size pars ranging from 2.5 to 12 in. at speeds over 200 parts/min.; the C-9 vertical syringe printer, a low-cost solution for high-quality, two-color, 360º decoration at 150 parts/min.; the DRCP-4 rotary closure printer, designed to maintain print concentricity at speeds over 4000 parts/min. with up to four-colors; the C-4000, a popular sidewall printer for printing the sidewalls of parts like caps, closures and wine corks; the S-11-C strap printer said to provide the same quality print as larger, costlier strap printing systems at considerable savings. It handles up to 6 lanes, prints in up to three colors at speeds over 300 ft./min.
TWN Industries Inc. (W8087), the pioneer of the unique water transfer printing process – an innovative surface coating process that is compatible with a wide variety of substrates including multiple types of plastics, is featuring the latest in its line of films. This process is said to provide companies a competitive edge by giving them the ability to apply high definition designs that wrap seamlessly around the contours of their products. TWN also now offers a full two-day certification program that is included at no charge with any equipment purchase—includes guidance through the process with hands-on, small group instruction.
For manufacturers who wish to utilize this technology but do not wish to bring it in-house, TWN has a network of high-volume water transfer printing facilities it can recommend. The latest film product lines are Wonrate Vayel, developed in collaboration with Wonrate Gear, which is a distinct camouflage pattern inspired by the natural frequency of the heartbeat; and four new luxurious wood-grain films, developed in collaboration with Yuan Heng Tai water transfer printing company, and designed for automotive and aerospace interiors and furniture.
Robots are gaining the ability to monitor their internal systems for remote troubleshooting and predictive maintenance. They also are reporting production data.
Tier 1 automotive molder’s home-built production-monitoring and ERP systems, designed for “the little guy,” boost its efficiency rating and profits.
Research scientists at Ford Motor are finding the ways and means to make more-sustainable plastics for use in their vehicles. And some of the bio-materials being used may surprise you.