Accessorize Your Inline Press


BOUCHERVILLE, QUEBEC, CANADA—Mondi Packaging, Durban, South Africa, has accessorized its Bobst Masterflex inline flexographic press for the paperboard and corrugated markets with an intelligent inline ink viscosity measuring and control system from InkSpec. Mondi's challenges included:

  • The extreme temperature variations in their plant caused many printing issues including colour inconsistency due to changing viscosity conditions.
  • Necessity for press operators to perform frequent ink viscosity checks.
  • Frequent press stoppages.
  • High ink consumption and reject substrate wastage.
The main challenge with the viscosity variations was to the wide temperature fluctuations (highs over 104°F and lows less than 50°F sometimes, even during the same day).

Based on studies sponsored by the Flexographic Technical Association (FTA) and several university research projects, InkSpec reportedly is able to statistically demonstrate a viscosity comfort zone—a range of viscosity which does not affect the color as perceived by man or machine.

As temperature affects the ink viscosity, the InkSpec IIS sensor, because it is installed in-line between the pump and the ink metering system, reportedly detects and corrects even minute increases in ink viscosity. The placement of the sensor ensures that the ink viscosity measurement is as close as possible to the actual conditions of the ink during the application process. The elimination of manual adjustments using an intelligent adjuster supply system also stabilizes the ink viscosity and color consistency.

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