Built for Speed
ganged onto digital presses where they can run without stopping, even though each job may only be for a small number of labels. Meanwhile, the flexo presses are fired up for the long runs they do best. This is the somewhat invisible ability that a digital press often brings to a converter. While the real-world effectiveness varies from shop to shop, it is further proof that digital and flexo are very much complementary, rather than competitive technologies.
Although McJury admits to having had to adjust to the higher cost of ink for the Tau, both he and his customers appreciate other features, such as not having to make plates or screens, saving on both labor and materials, while the integrated laser cutter has drastically cut the need for dies.
“If we added up the cost of the dies we have stored to meet all the different job needs, they could be worth as much as our building,” jokes McJury. “Having the laser cutter means we don’t need to make as many dies and we expect to see die purchases decrease by as much as 50 percent.” And that kind of savings, for the company and its customers, is not a joke, nor is the process time saved by not having to wait for a die to be made and delivered.
Of course, the laser can’t cut every material and PVC, BOPP and some other go-to materials for many industrial labels don’t react well to the heat of a laser beam. Yet this is not posing a challenge for TLF. A modular ABG International Digicon sits but a few feet away from the Tau, ready to take jobs that need different cutting and finishing options than the Tau can offer.
Quality not an issue