Packaging Resource Center: The Latest in Coding and Labeling Equipment
A company offers an in-line flexographic printer that is about half the size and weight of the company’s other printers. The FlexPrint Mini has a footprint of 11.5 × 11.5 in. and weighs approximately 200 lb. Like the larger models in the company’s FlexPrint line, the FlexPrint Mini can print up to 50 cycles per min. and is available with up to 600 mm of printing area width. It features a self-contained inking system for simplified operation and a Teflon-coated ink tray for quick, easy ink changeover. Bell-Mark Corp., Pine Brook, NJ; 973/882-0202; www.bell-mark.com.
A small-character ink-jet printer combines continuous and drop-on-demand technology. The 1120 Micro Valve prints codes with fast-drying, solvent-based inks. It features a sealed, rugged printhead, simple maintenance, and a single fluid-ink system that reduces fluid usage by up to 80% and provides low solvent-emission levels. It can print variable codes on primary and secondary packaging materials, such as plastics, cardboard, glass, metal, films, and shrink wrap. It also features a color touch screen interface. The system prints two lines of text at heights from 2 to 30 mm without losing production speed. Videojet Technologies, Wood Dale, IL; 800/843-3610; www.videojet.com.
A company offers a new version of its labeling software system. A major change to Easylabel 5.5 is that it no longer functions without a hardware protection key. The Easylabel 5.5 Platinum XML Monitor is designed to watch a file directory or TCP/IP port and automatically print labels whenever a compatible XML file is received. The software’s RFID Wizard has been revised to make creating RFID labels easier. Support for DoD 64- and 96-bit encodings and the Gen 2 RFID tag type have been added. The software’s newest feature is called a Job List File. Job lists can be created and saved to a print queue. This provides a way to automate repetitive printing. The company offers a demo version of this software that can be downloaded online. Tharo Systems Inc., Brunswick, OH; 330/273-4408; www.tharo.com.
Wrap Labeling System
A high-speed labeling system is designed to accommodate a variety of round and tapered products from 10 to 250 ml in capacity. The system can handle up to 200 containers per minute. It includes a sanitary conveyor, bar code scanner, eject station with verification, and a thermal-transfer printer for date and lot number on each label. System options include a vision system, PLC control, color touch screen operator interface, and a full validation package. Quadrel Labeling Systems, Mentor, OH; 440/602-4700; www.quadrel.com.
Digital In-Line Printing
A provider of industrial printing technology for product identification and coding information offers a digital in-line printing system designed to simplify in-plant printing requirements and reduce or eliminate the cost and time associated with printing-plate design and development. The system features software called TASC that allows printing layouts to be easily created, stored, modified, and accessed. This also enables quick changeover. The system prints variable data, sequential numbers, and scannable bar codes on packaging and label materials such as aluminum, polyethylene, polypropylene, PVC, paper, and cartons. Both sensor-controlled synchronization of the image onto each label as well as scattered printing capabilities are possible. The printing system requires no drying time and produces no ink bleeding. CSAT America, Louisville, CO; 303/666-9993; www.csatamerica.com.
A corner-wrap label printer and applicator can affix a label around the corner of a carton. The Model 5200 offers a selection of print engines that provide various print speeds and resolutions. The system is available with optional RFID encoding. Standard thermal/thermal-transfer print engines produce text, bar codes, and graphic images at 203 or 300 dpi. When equipped with an RFID encoder, the system is designed to encode and verify RFID inlays to meet the specifications of EPC Gen 1 and 2 protocols. The system handles labels up to 4 in. wide and 12 in. long. It can print and apply labels to 15 cartons per minute. Weber Marking Systems, Arlington Heights, IL; 800/843-4242; www.webermarking.com.