“The quality of plate laying is beyond what we have ever seen before”

Paul Larkin, technical director at Hamilton Adhesive Labels Ltd. describes the challenges of an ever faster evolving world, with much faster communication and technology, as follows:

“Speed to market, shorter print runs, tighter print tolerances and standardisation on a global scale are just some major challenges that Label manufacturers have to face.”

He says that the rise of digital printing with its ability to produce short run work quickly and effectively has exposed the weaknesses in traditional technologies. For Hamilton Adhesive Labels to survive and prosper it needed to do something different, advance its capability beyond our competitors. To adequately meet these challenges, Hamilton set the following goals:

First, the company wanted to take an scientific approach. It wanted to deliver a predictive printing system, raise quality parameters and last not least: standardise print. The project came under the heading “Measurement and Control” a total colour management solution for enhanced quality and competitiveness

“The results have been outstanding”

Building upon the success the business has examined any remaining weaknesses within the system.

Understanding tolerances

“To execute Flexographic printing well, you have to understand tolerances” says Paul Larkin. And he continues: “One of the most difficult areas to understand and measure is the effect the plate laying process has on tolerances. So much so that Printers have to make difficult decisions on grips and traps, white out text in process, do they risk it will work or do they case the text.

Hamilton invested in the FlexoMatrix© technology  by LEHNER

Lehner had developed a fully automatic contactless plate laying system. Hamilton bought into the technology and invested. The effect of this technology on our workflow was outstanding says Paul Arkin:

“The success of the investment has closed the loop on everything we set out to do. The quality of plate laying is beyond what we have ever seen before, contactless and measurable in microns. The impact has been immediate, and has opened up whole new fields of opportunity such as extended gamut printing.”