Digital Magazine

Process Management

Patlite Display Boards Aid Productivity

VE Series LED Display boards from Patlite are said to aid lean manufacturing and reduce waste and downtime

Honeywell, SKF Partner for Machine Protection

Higher productivity is one key result from SKF’s partnership in Honeywell’s PKS Advantage Program

Manage Data with Honeywell Software

Intuition Executive software from Honeywell offers enterprise-wide information management and decision support to help executives make better decisions

Time To Say Goodbye

After writing some 41 columns, it is time for me to move on into new business areas. Working with the PFFC staff has been a uniquely enjoyable experience

Digital Printing, Part 2 | Commercial

Some part of many converters' total business is now more suited to digital rather than analog printing. This could be as much as 10%-15%, and use of a digital press frees up the analog presses for the business to which they are better suited.

Digital Printing, Part 1 | Technology

In the most recent columns, the competition between flexo and gravure printing was examined. It seems that digital printing is becoming a factor in this

Gravure Sleeves: The Time Is Now

One technology that can help the gravure process is the use of lightweight sleeves in place of steel cylinders

Gravure Versus Flexo Printing Part 2

Last month I outlined the rapid growth of flexo printing in packaging and suggested that gravure printing had been out-marketed in North America by a

Gravure Versus Flexo Printing-Part 1

Gravure and flexo, two primary printing processes, continue to compete head to head in the packaging market segment. Both have strengths and weaknesses,

How To Measure Total Asset Utilization

The concept of Total Asset Utilization (TAU) was introduced in an article by Jeffrey T. Luftig, Ph.D., titled An Overview of a Productivity Metric for

Why So Many Anilox Rolls?

A standardized process can be defined as one that represents a single way of doing an activity in which all employees do the activity the same way all

Ink Room Audits Expose Deficiencies

Management of ink rooms takes many forms and may be controlled and staffed by the converter or by the ink supplier and sometimes a combination of both.

How To Use Color Books

Pantone Color Systems are the most popular means of color communication in use today. Pantone tools facilitate color management during concept, design,

How To Find Green Projects

One of the sad responses to the sustainability movement has been bogus compliance, sometimes known as This involves invalid claims, no proof, hidden tradeoffs,

How To Become a Green Printer

What is sustainability? According to the World Commission on Environment & Development, it is Meeting the needs of the present without compromising the

Special Causes: Enemy or Opportunity?

All converting processes are subject to variation, and product at the end of the line is shipped within a narrow window of performance specifications.

Tune Up Your People

The cause-and-effect diagram shown below (also known as the or diagram after its creator Kaoru Ishikawa) is used to systematically list all the different

Solvent Retention in Packaging

Solvent-based gravure and flexo inks used in packaging always retain small amounts of solvent in the final package. When measured and controlled, this

Lightfastness in Package Printing

When you take into account the time and effort spent on supplying packaging with precise colors, it follows the expectation that these colors should stay the same during the product use cycle

COF Testing: Why Does it Matter?

Coefficient of friction (COF) is a property critical to the optimum processing and handling of packaging from filling operations through to the consumer.

Dyne Levels Part 2

Last month's column focused on dyne levels relating to surface wetting. This column expands the concept to include surface modification to improve adhesion.

Dyne Levels Part 1

Surface energy is a fundamental property of solids and varies from low in plastics such as PE to high for glass and metal surfaces. Surface tension is

Process Management: Drying Part 1: Liquid Inks

In the next three columns, we will cover the basic mechanisms of ink drying. This month we look at inks drying primarily by evaporation and absorption

Hierarchy of Value: Part II

Last month’s column offered a value model as a way of visualizing the value of a product or service based on price/performance ratio

Hierarchy of Value: Part I

Everyone in business wants to deliver and receive value, but what is it and how is it measured?

Let's All Get Together Now

At a recent FTA meeting, C. Wayne Barlow, a buyer for Sears, berated both converters and buyers for not working closely together to form mutually effective partnerships, and even after all these years these comments still hit home. So, how do we work together, for what purposes, and are our efforts adding value?

Improving the Process

Converting industry trends include shorter run lengths, regional designs, special promotions, and quicker turnaround times. These trends can have an adverse effect on performance measures in the pressroom, since set-up costs, downtime, substrate waste, and press return inks are being supported by fewer print impressions. At some point we will see diminishing returns where current converting practices are no longer capable of meeting Consumer Product Company (CPC) needs at acceptable levels of profit to the converter.

Design & Color: Part I of II

It is interesting to examine the world of those responsible for conceiving and managing brand colors and designing the incredible array of attractive packaging that is now available.

Color 101: Part II

Last month we discussed control of raw materials, and now we look at a simple check list of procedures required for color measurement and control. If any of these are missing or are suspect, the result will be waste and failure.

Color 101: Part I

It has been my experience that color theory basics are communicated well by suppliers of color measurement devices. This month we will explore the practical application of this information.

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