Böttcher designs smoother rollers to reduce print-run changeover times

Metal decoration equipment specialist Böttcher Group has developed a new printing roller with the capability of cutting print-roller changeover times by half on sheet presses.

The German company’s Easy Clean System (ECS) comprises offset printing rollers that are made from a proprietary rubber formula of polymers and additives and are coated with a new finish that makes the surface smoother and easier to clean during print-run changes. The innovation also helps the roller retain less ink, reducing volumes of the most costly consumable in the printing process. 

The ECS, which is already being used by Ardagh in the UK and tested by Crown in Italy and Germany, has been designed to meet growing demand for shorter print runs.

“Companies want the flexibility to be able to personalise their packaging and produce special editions. They also no longer want to stockpile cans,” Böttcher director Graham Macfarlane told The Canmaker. “So, they are increasingly asking for shorter print runs. By reducing the time it takes to change print rollers for different designs, we can help them meet those demands.”

Cologne-based Böttcher said the ECS can reduce roller cleaning times by 25 to 50 per cent, depending on how many different ink colours are required in a run. The rollers are also compatible with conventional and ultraviolet inks, each of which can be used on the same press.

The company also said the new compound is less prone to shrinkage and can last longer, achieving further savings for printers.