Brief analysis of the three commonly used printing

2022-08-14
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Brief analysis of three commonly used printing processes for printing corrugated boxes

release date: Source: China paper industry

corrugated boxes are logistics packaging containers that integrate transportation and sales functions. Consumers constantly put forward new requirements for the appearance, environmental protection and function of commodity packaging, which makes the carton industry continue to meet the comprehensive requirements of external packaging quality and cost in the end market through technological innovation

explore the carton packaging industry only from the perspective of printing processing, and the domestic market can obtain perfect but not aesthetic, moderate but not excessive high-quality outer packaging. China's printing industry has a large number of Manroland, Heidelberg and gaobao offset printing machines, including a new generation of printing machines that directly print high-volume (above 400g/m2) and micro corrugated, which can meet the printing of high-quality, medium and short version cartons/boxes; It has nearly 600 unit flexo printing machines, which can meet the printing of medium and long version cartons/boxes; With many flexographic preprint/gravure machines, the printing quality is close to offset printing, and it can also meet the printing of large quantities of color boxes/boxes

offset printing

except that micro corrugated boxes can be directly offset printed, generally corrugated boxes need to adopt the method of offset printing and mounting boxes. This method has simple equipment, complex processes, and a long dry waiting time between printing and mounting processing (generally about 48 hours); The printing process is not environmentally friendly, and the processing process consumes a lot of energy. The basic process flow is: production of single-sided corrugated board + offset paper → mounting synthetic board → die cutting and slotting → bonding nail box. The exquisite effect of offset paperboard is obtained by sacrificing the strength of the box, because when the opposite paper and single-sided corrugated board are mounted on the veneering machine, the corrugated is compressed and deformed, which will reduce the compressive strength of the box by 10%, and the automatic corrugated production line cannot give full play to its advantages, It can only play a semi-automatic role. In order to make up for the loss of strength, the quantity of paperboard remains high, which is inconsistent with the "low quantity, high strength" process advocated by the industry for many years

considering only the printing effect, offset printing is still at the top of the pyramid, and the number of lines added up to 250 lines/inch is far ahead of flexo printing, which is also the fundamental reason why businesses have always adhered to offset printing. However, in fact, some domestic flexo preprint production lines have been developed, and the demand will continue to grow rapidly in the future, up to 150 lines/inch, and the visual effect is comparable to offset printing. Cartons are mainly used for transportation. Usually, the commodity display function is reflected at a distance of 1m from consumers. At this time, the effect of flexo printing is completely acceptable. From the perspective of carton processing technology, carton manufacturers are more optimistic about flexo direct printing

flexographic direct printing

its production process is corrugated board production → direct flexographic printing of paperboard → die cutting and slotting → bonding nail box

foreign countries have always advocated flexo printing for two reasons: first, flexo printing uses water-based ink, which is relatively environmentally friendly; Second, the flexibility of post printing processing is large, the speed of version change is fast, and the scrap rate is very low. Flexible post printing is not only suitable for large-scale long order printing, such as corrugated box printing of beer, beverages and food, but also suitable for small-scale short order printing, especially for expensive large-scale computer and household appliance packaging boxes. The biggest advantage of post printing is that it can be produced online, that is, printing, glazing, die cutting, slotting, gluing boxes and bundling can be completed on one machine. The newly-built corrugated box factory can be put into production only by configuring corrugated board production line and flexographic press, while adopting offset printing and pre printing methods requires multiple equipment

there is a certain degree of over packaging in China's packaging market, which hinders the promotion of flexo printing technology regardless of the size of the investment scope. However, there are still many factors that will promote the continuous promotion of flexo printing technology in the corrugated box industry

(1) frequent revision or version increase of products, such as Festival Promotion and small package subpackaging, make the printing batch miniaturized. The flexo printing method printed directly on corrugated board has the advantages of high speed, low cost and good quality

(2) brand awareness, corporate image and group design are becoming more and more popular. Many multinational enterprises not only require their printing quality in China to be consistent with that of their parent company Universal Experimental Machine plunger pump company, but also have requirements for printing methods, which will undoubtedly promote the flexible printing of the packaging market

(3) the market is developing towards intensification and scale, customer inventory is reduced, and more and more packaging materials are required to be directly used after delivery. Flexo printing has a faster customer response speed

pre printing

pre printing is to first print the face paper roll by roll, and then send the printed web paper to the face paper station of the corrugated machine to produce corrugated cardboard, and then process it into cartons through the subsequent process. Pre printing can produce medium and high-grade cartons, which can not only meet the requirements of exquisite printing, but also reduce the strength of corrugated board as small as possible. Prepress is divided into gravure prepress and flexographic prepress. Because the printing plate is expensive and the printing speed is fast, the initial printing volume of pre printed cartons can generally not be less than 500000 cartons, which is not applicable to small and medium-sized customers and short version live parts. European and American flexo corrugated boxes account for more than 80%-90%, but flexo preprint only accounts for 30% or less, and the development speed slows down. Preprint is a new technology in China, which has a certain development space

as an advanced printing process, pre printing requires the use of advanced equipment and technology. At the same time, it also puts forward higher requirements for the corresponding materials, which not only requires corrugated board to have high edge compression strength and burst resistance, but also requires good smoothness of the paper to achieve good printability. After comparison and testing, Budweiser beer finally chose 185g/m2 coated kraft linerboard from M-real company in Finland. This low weight, high-strength paper has greatly reduced the cost of cartons

the protective performance of pre printed corrugated boxes is more outstanding, which can not only better protect the corrugated boxes from damage, but also improve the compressive strength of corrugated boxes by 10% compared with the previous ones, which can better ensure the quality of products during transportation. In addition, pre printed corrugated boxes have high printing accuracy, clear and exquisite graphics and texts, rich and saturated colors. After pre printing and laminating, the effect can be equivalent to that after offset printing, and good printing quality can still be maintained after long-distance transportation, storage and handling. The pre printing process is especially suitable for the printing of milk, beer and high-end beverage packaging boxes

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