KYMC introduces CI UV LED hybrid Ultraflex

By 02 Nov 2020

Taiwan-based Kuen Yuh Machinery Engineering (KYMC), which has more than 50 years of experience in flexographic press design and in-application integration, has teamed up with TSLC and Rainbow Pigment to develop the next generation of CI flexographic press — the Ultraflex.

The Ultraflex

TSLC is the leading LED manufacturer and technology developer with more than 10 years of experience in the LED industry. Rainbow Pigment is the ink expert with a strong R&D team to meet the demand of the market spanning across product lines and industries.

According to Kunal Mehta, director, KYMC India, the Ultraflex press is an integration of three key technologies, the UV-LED ink application, solvent/water-based ink application and the central impression (CI) design.

“This type of application was never to be seen in the Asia Pacific region. The Ultraflex is a representation of flexibility, cost reduction and efficiency. There are many advantages to the UV-LED ink application. However, UV LED is not without flaws. Therefore, with the Ultraflex, printers can select between UV LED ink or solvent/water-based ink or both at the same time for different production jobs. On top of the hybrid design, the UV LED application on CI drum design is superior over the inline UV design in terms of production speed, registration and tension control,” Mehta said. “With the Ultraflex, printers can obtain three technologies with one press.”

He said, from the business standpoint, the Ultraflex will open up new business opportunities with the expanded production line for printers. PET shrink films, in-mould label, pouch packaging that are traditionally produced on the inline UV presses can now be achieved easily on the Ultraflex press.

From the quality standpoint, the high opacity of the ink is perfect for reproducing solid designs. When it comes to the ink operational efficiency, the UV LED ink stable characteristic can reduce setup time and reduce the amount of time needed to control the ink properties. It does not require the operators to make constant adjustments.

In terms of waste, the UV LED print deck allows for low printing speed during print setup as the ink does not dry up under room temperature. This will reduce the amount of substrate and ink being wasted during print job setup.

When compared to hot air drying, the UV LED curing operates at a much lower noise level. Therefore, it will greatly improve the working conditions for the operators.

Lastly, the UV LED is an environment-friendly solution as it does not emit VOCs.

“In the constant changing market, to take on the challenge and to remain competitive, printers need to adjust to the needs of the market. To be flexible, cost-effective and production efficient, the best quality comes with high cost. The question is will the customers pay for it? Low quality can be achieved through low cost. The question is will the customer accept it? The printers that are able to find the balance between quality and cost are the ones that will remain competitive on the market,” Mehta added.

He added that there is no one right formula for production as there are various types of customers on the market, but KYMC understands printers’ challenges by responding with the Ultraflex.

“The best part of Ultraflex is that you do not need to choose between a UV LED press or a solvent/ water-based press. You can have it all in one. Printers can take advantage of the UV-LED print stations on the Ultraflex when they can, and draw back to the solvent-based or water-based print stations when needed. In a nutshell, Ultraflex is a two-in-one investment designed to help printers get the most out of their investment.

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