Archive for the ‘Printing’ Category

Cert Stamp Usage

July 11, 2012

Aaron asks:

Out of curiosity, does it say anywhere that box stamps have to be round (our most common certs we use)? I was looking at maybe a redesign of our certs just to set us apart from other companies.

Well, maybe going to red or blue in an election years may not be a good option.

But seriously, one is not required to even place a BMC stamp on a corrugated box. If your customer is shipping by common carrier or rail, the stamp is there in the case of damage claims. Heard about any of those making the news lately? Some companies use the square stamp, but that has no legal legs in damage disputes. UPS has their own set of packaging guidelines. See the next issue of July/August BoxScore to learn more!

—Ralph

Plate Trends in Corrugated

November 4, 2011

Jean asks:

Ralph –
Can you comment on the trends you are seeing in corrugated market (pre-print, post-print and brown box) plate technology and needs? (ie: sizes, digital, flat plate vs liquid, etc.) What are the drivers of the trends?

As future product marketing manager I am always looking for opportunity to investigate market segments’ needs and identify whether or not we have technology that will meet those needs, or if we can innovate and develop technology that will be effective and make a difference to our customers.

I have been researching the corrugated market and identified what I believe are a couple of areas of opportunity:
a) pre-print linerboard using flexographic technology (to grow from the offset market) – high print quality, primarily web based, CI presses, coated paper substrates;
b) post-print corrugated (to minimize excess production steps, yet achieve greater print quality and density than is available today) E flute;
c) cost effective full plate solution to address any deficiencies in the cost competitive liquid market, potentially offering customers more options with respect to print quality (registration, cost reduction in mounting, etc.).

So, I ‘asked Ralph’ whether or not he had a good feel for trends in the independent corrugated print market on consumable needs, press sizes, etc. He has offered you all up to help provide comments! Thank you in advance!

Specifically, can you reply with your thoughts on the following statements/questions?

For pre-print liner production:
– Plate thickness would primarily be .067″ and digitally imaged (LAMS) flat plate technology.
– Most common size would be 50 x 80″ (based on current CDI imagers and processing equipment)
– Is this big enough?

For post-print production:
– What is standard plate thickness today (on E flute? Is this the most common for high end post print?)?
– Can presses (Bobst, Cuir) handle .067″ plates? What would be the challenges?
– What is the largest plate size needed? How is this achieve (full size plate from trade shop)? Is there a need to be over 50″ x 80″ size for a digitally imaged plate? Does anyone still use analog plates in this market? What are their maximum size?
– What is the price point for this solution (please describe).

For cost effective solution:
– What is the most common plate thickness used for multi-color work? (on Flexo Folder Gluer or die cutter)?
– What plate attributes would be ideal for this production work? (ie: transfer more ink, thinner, lighter, etc.)
– Today this work is primarily analog, do you see this moving toward a digital (LAMS) solution? (due to scarcity of film, imagesetters, etc.)
– What is the price point for this solution ($ per sq. in. – plate material only).

And finally, is there a “wish list” for a plate solution for any/all of your work? Please be as specific as possible, and if you are willing to talk directly about your needs, please include your contact information!

Thank you in advance for trying to help me understand the market’s needs.

Jean,
The associates I spoke to at the AICC National Fall Meeting would be glad to share their observations and insights to your question regarding the future of digital printing.

You can start by contacting the following folks…

George Cusdin at Flexographic Printing Services
Molly Mercer at Litho Press
Lisa Chaille at Litho Press
Jack Fulton at Printron

To everyone, please feel free to share your thoughts and comments here.
—Ralph

Maintaining Quick Response (QR) Code integrity when printing on corrugated

March 17, 2011

Dan Asked Ralph –

We have designed a corrugated box for a customer that features a QR code.  The Box manufactured is not sure the QR code integrity will hold up (so it will be scannable) with flexographic printing.  It is printing in one color (black) over a white base ink printed on the corrugated stock.

Do you have any advice or experience when printing QR codes on corrugated boxes?    Thanks.

I turned to my good network friend George Cusdin, President of Flexographic Printing Services.  He offers some very good advice below. One other thing Dan, don’t forget to put a non gloss varnish coat over the Quick Response Code. – Ralph

“There are upwards of 50 versions of Quick Response codes such as: ScanLife EZcode, MicroSoft TAG and the real brand “QR code”. They are the 2 Dimensional codes that hold up to 1000 times more info than the traditional single dimensional bar code.

The code is about 1 inch to 1.5 inches square and can be scanned using the modern cell phone, which then ‘passes the URL then can display the product info from the manufacturers web site. (more…)