Product labels communicate information such as ingredients, proper use and handling, and safety warnings, all through the process of label converting. They clearly identify brand names, trademarks, and logos; provide decoration; grab the attention of potential consumers; offer chances to win a prize, encourage buyers to make a purchase, and even provide instructions on how to properly dispose or recycle the item or packaging when finished.
In label converting, manufacturers around the world rely on UV cured inks, coatings, and adhesives to create highly decorative, durable, and functional product labels that exhibit significantly brighter and bolder colours than water- or solvent-borne formulations. Labels are often film laminated with a UV curable adhesive, further protected with a UV curable matte or gloss varnish, and ultimately applied to a wide range of consumer and industrial goods and packaging. When brand managers want products to stand-out from the competition, they insist on UV cured labels.
mercury lamp and LED cassettes easily removed in seconds using a single Allen key
remote performance monitoring and troubleshooting of all internet-connected lamps
Narrow web flexographic printing
Flexographic printing, also known as flexography or flexo for short, involves shorter press set-up times; lower-viscosity chemistry; and ease of inline laminating, die-cutting, and finishing compared to gravure and offset. Flexo processes deliver graphics, text, adhesives, varnishes, and other coatings to web substrates one transfer at a time, via anilox cylinders and flexible photopolymer plates.
Flexo presses seamlessly integrate UV curing lampheads after each print, coating, and adhesive station to enable the production of high quality and high functioning labels on rolls of plastic, shrink film, metallic film, foil, cellophane, paper, and cardboard at narrow web label press speeds up to 300 m/min (1000 ft/min). You can read our narrow web flexo case studies here.
UV digital inkjet label presses offer an economically viable means of producing short runs, variable data and graphics, and jobs printed directly from electronic files to an incredibly broad range of substrates. UV curing is easily integrated into single pass, digital inkjet presses to partially cure the under white, pin the colours, and provide final cure of fully printed labels.
UV LED curing is the preferred technology for white inks and inkjet pinning, and depending on the ink set, GEW mercury arc lamps or LED systems are used for final cure enabling UV digital inkjet label press speeds up to 100 n/min (300 ft/min).
Web offset label presses create high-resolution images by offsetting high viscosity paste inks through a combination of multiple rollers, aluminium printing plates, and transfer blankets. Each colour is applied individually using dedicated print decks with UV interdeck curing integrated after specific colours, after a series of colours, and after coatings.
High-quality roll-to-roll or roll-to-sheet labels are generated on narrow and mid-web plastic films, metal foils, and paper at press speeds that can exceed 300 and 600 m/min (1000 and 2000 ft/min). Web offset printing can lay down 1/3 the ink of flexo printing.
Other variations commonly found in East Asia include web offset and waterless (dry) web offset designed for use with less expensive PS (pre-sensitised) aluminium and silicone plates. In the case of waterless offset, no fountain solution is necessary.
In addition to flexo, digital inkjet, and web offset, GEW’s mercury arc, UV LED, and hybrid curing solutions are easily integrated into other label presses including:
flexo inline rotary screen
screen – flatbed and R2R
letterpress – inline and CI, rotary and semi-rotary
web offset waterless
GEW will be pleased to assist your evaluation and decision-making process to ensure that the optimal mercury arc, LED, or hybrid solution is matched to your application, process, and integration needs. Please contact our experienced team. We are available to offer guidance on product selection and can deliver the level of experienced system integration and ancillary components you require.