The Label Makers will be the beta site for the Durst Tau 330 RSC label press that receives its official launch at Labelexpo.
It will be the Bradford company’s third Durst Tau 330 and managing director David Webster believes it will be a game changer.
“It looks the same as the previous presses,” he says. “But it has new heads printing at 1200dpi, it has an extra green ink which will give us coverage of 98% of the Pantone range and it can run at 78m/min. The ability to print at this speed and this resolution is a massive game changer.”
The press will be shipped in October and will have the new Durst web to print workflow as well as Fuji Samba printheads. The company bought its first Durst Tau 330 five years ago and two years ago bought a second and at the same time as upgrading its Xeikon to a faster CX3 model. At the time, says Webster, he thought that this would draw a line under the need for further investment.
“But now we are spending another £2 million,” he says. As well as the new inkjet press the company is buying a further MPS flexo press as there are production needs that inkjet cannot yet reach.
“We have a love of inkjet and have sold its benefits to our customers and because their products have sold well, the volumes we need at going up and we are producing considerable runs because people love the inkjet look.
“It’s a natural progression to run faster and still give the customer what he wants.”
The speed increase is an important factor. The existing Taus run at 50m/min, slightly slower for high definition jobs. This is already comparable to flexo where the inclination is to run at a steady 25m/min while the job is adjusted and then to accelerate to 45m/min for what can be a quite short run job rather than take the press to full speed. With the digital press set to run at full speed, this is not really an option.
There is no need for platemaking, nor plate mounting before a print runs considerable labour and materials saving. “And we will only need to store CMYK, white and orange green and violet inks rather than having to mix say 5kg for a special colour and find we have 2kg to store after the job,” he says.
“But flexo is not dead,” Webster says. “Inkjet does not do metallic inks, a job may need foiling or embossing which is not an inline process for inkjet and which can be more efficient to run inline with flexo. The jobs we handle are so varied there is no point in running inline on the digital presses.”
It can offer some of these embellishments on offline finishing. A faster Digicon Series 2 is coming from AB Graphic to match the additional inkjet press. This will run at 150m/min with semi-rotary die cutter and turret rewinds. Set up is automated.
The Label Makers will be the beta site for the latest Durst label press. The Tau 330 RSC has a higher speed, improved resolution and improved colour handling. It will eat into volumes that have previously been the preserve of flexo printing and beyond the reach of inkjet. Now says Webster customers who prefer the look of inkjet print will be able to stay with the technology as the runs increase.