Monday, 14th April 2014
Since relinquishing his role late last year as long-time manager of Durban-based ACF Repro, Craig Oliver has formed a fresh strategic partnership with Jamie O’Neill and Callie Hill of AFS (African Flexographic Solutions), establishing an independent business called Repro Flex.
By pooling their combined resources and expertise in reprographic design, brand marketing and platemaking, and employing top-class staff and equipment, they’ve created an innovative and dynamic packaging design and mock-up enterprise complemented by a world-class platemaking service.
One of the latest equipment acquisitions under the new company name is a Screen Platerite FX 1524 platesetter, purchased from Kemtek technical representative, Rob Bezuidenhout. ‘In the 1980s, when I was cutting my teeth in the printing industry, I worked on various Screen technologies, so I know the brand very well,’ comments Craig. ‘Quality, durability and high performance are the key characteristics of every Screen product so, when it came to selecting the best platemaking technology for our requirements, I knew exactly what we needed,’ he adds.
‘The unit we’ve installed can convert LEN and TIFF output files and is compatible with any RIP (raster image processor) on the market today, plus, most importantly, it exceeds the benchmark 4 000dpi needed for producing genuine HD (High Definition) photopolymer printing plates every time.’
Easily handling flexo plates, letterpress plates and thermal ablative film up to 1066mm x 1524mm (42" x 60"), other key features include a multi-channel laser diode, which is a long-life, reliable, high-powered laser for imaging the black mask layer of resin plates.
Sharp relief patterns can be created to provide superior reproduction of fine lines and white knockout text, as well as highlight relief patterns and shadow cut-outs for accurate minimum and maximum halftone dot sizes across a wide range of image densities.
Additionally, there’s a time-saving button-operated efficient loading mechanism, with leading and trailing edge clamps and a manual plate loading option, so the operator can choose the optimal plate loading procedure depending on the size of plate being used.
The unit also comes complete with high-end Spekta 2 AM/FM screening and Flexo Dot, specifically designed for flexographic printing.
‘Overall, the Screen Platerite FX 1524 offers us the highest resolution and productivity, delivering top-quality plates in perfect register. It can’t get better than that!’ declares Craig.
Efficiency and flexibility
Kemtek has also provided the team with a Flint nyloflex Washer FV – a fully automated system for washing, rinsing, after-cleaning and pre-drying of larger format plates.
‘Top-quality printing starts with the perfect plate, so we’ve invested in a washout system that offers the right flexibility for our operation,’ states Craig.
Standard features on Repro Flex’s unit includes an automated brush height setting for optimum pressure according to plate thickness, which provides fast washout speed, minimum plate swelling and mechanical stress; standby mode for automatic feed of the next plate; temperature controlled washout solvent with a highly efficient heating/cooling device; integral reverse-side plate cleaning for efficient plate mounting; and a closed continuous inline washout system, including pre-drying.
‘The Flint nyloflex Washer FV is an all-round top performer with excellent environmental credentials. By regulating the amount of solvent per plate it minimises emission and energy rates and its touchscreen control makes it really easy to operate,’ adds Craig.
‘Overall, we’re delighted with our latest Kemtek purchases. They perfectly complement our existing proofing and printing systems and Rob and the team are always on hand to provide in-house training and service support. Because they understand our unique business needs they also offer expert, professional advice on getting the best out of our technologies,’ he continues ‘We’re backing up our industry know-how by delivering exceptional quality printing plates to some of South Africa’s leading household brands and, as a result, building a solid reputation as a one-of-a-kind platemaking, packaging design and prototype enterprise.’
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