Speaking to PrintWeek India, Harshal Parakh, director, Parakh Agro, said, "The big advantage is the ability to produce spot colours just in time and that too right at the first time from a database of formulations without having to depend on the ink supplier."
The Inkmaker system ensures that just enough ink is mixed for the print job, thus reducing the amount of press returns.
For Siegwerk, the logistical issues in supplying a wide range of inks and colours to Parakh are reduced to supplying bulk quantities of base colours and additives.
Explaining the operation of the dispensing system, Umesh Bhende, head - application technology, Siegwerk India, said, “The system also has the ability to rework any press returns into different formulations and this reduces ink stock levels and ink waste dramatically. This also means that less space is required for ink storage and less capital is tied up in inks.”
To produce the required colour a number of base colour concentrates are blended together according to a recipe stored in the system software. The base colours are stored in barrels. While dispensing the ink, each base colour in the recipe is pumped from the barrel into a container through the dispensing heads. Parakh has opted for a 24-head system.
Bhende added, “Dispensing equipment streamlines the custom product creation process by using a database containing all components to create a precise and correct final product. This database is accessed via a computer that controls a series of valves and pumps that select the appropriate ingredients which are then weighed, one at a time, and dispensed into a container to be mixed into a final product.”
The USP of the system is its focus on fire safety because it handles solvent-based inks. "All the containers are equipped with static discharge earthling clamps. Plus a specially designed EEX-p purging cabinet has been installed to house the computer and electrical panel in EX area. This cabinet is certified and suitable to operate in hazardous environments. It houses all electrical and pneumatic parts necessary to operate the machine,” said Bhende.
“In addition to this, the ink dispensing head has been provided with Interlock Circuit - this option forces the operator to connect the bonding clamp to the vessel in order to start production. If bonding clamp is not properly connected the system will not allow production,” concluded Bhende.