Operators at ABOX Packaging in Kaufman, TX, are thrilled to be putting the company’s Heidelberg Dymatrix 106 CSB die cutter through its paces.
When the new die cutter was installed in late 2009, company President Keith Thompson commented on the outstanding user friendliness of the machine that was responsible for an increase in productivity of around 25% over the plant’s existing competitive die cutters. With the Dymatrix 106, Thompson says, “We can die cut, strip, and blank, and go direct to the gluer. There’s no more manual scrapping or offline blanking. The Dymatrix 106 CSB is incredibly efficient.”
Now ABOX operators—all of whom had worked on competitive die cutters for years before being introduced to the Dymatrix—are having their say.
Love is all you need
“The Dymatrix was a big change,” says first-shift operator David Harris. “At first, I was uncomfortable with the Dymatrix, but after a couple of months I got used to many of the automated features that make setting it up and running it easier. Now that I appreciate how easy it is to use, I like it better than our other die cutters.”
Shorter runs, frequent job changes, and exacting quality demands call for flexibility and the potential for high profitability, no matter how small the run. Heidelberg’s Dymatrix die cutting systems deliver fast makeready times, optimum net outputs, and outstanding quality.
“We used to do our blanking offline, which added steps to the process of moving die-cut forms to gluing and assembly,” reports second-shift operator Mike Giles. “The integrated cutting, stripping, and blanking features of the Dymatrix help us work more efficiently.” Furthermore, Harris adds, “Computerized control was a whole new thing for us. The user interface on the Dymatrix is easy to work with and the controls are simple to understand. Now that we’re used to it, we strongly prefer the Dymatrix over our other die cutters.”
Gratitude for labor- saving features
That may be because Heidelberg designed the Dymatrix die cutters with real people in mind. “We no longer have to bend over or stand on tiptoe, and the access windows are nice and large,” Giles says. “The controls are easily accessible and arranged so the operator has a clear view of what is happening.”
Above all, the Dymatrix delivers precise, reliable diecutting within minimal tolerances. Each sheet is die cut, stripped, and blanked at exactly the same position, while the moving upper platen prevents vertical motion of the sheet.
“The horizontal sheet travel is amazingly smooth,” confirms die-cutting supervisor Travis Jones. “We don’t have to use as many nicks when preparing the sheet. This shortens our makereadies and lets us reach production speeds up to 9,000 sph on most of the substrates we run.”
The servo drives of the Dymatrix’s sheet feeder ensure reliable feeding, while double-sheet detection makes sure sheets are supplied to the feed station one at a time. ABOX takes advantage of Heidelberg’s optional DySet technology, which guarantees exact sheet feeding at high production speeds—even with unjogged piles.
“The automatic nonstop feeder with guiding system is a time saver that frees us for other tasks during queues and uploads,” Jones acknowledges. “We get very few wraparounds [jams].”
On a die cutter, of course, the stripping is only as good as the tooling, and the Dymatrix 106 CSB’s tool frame kit and centerline positioning system permit the use of universal and standard tools. Dedicated tools can be precisely adjusted both in and against the direction of sheet transport.
“The cutting and blanking tools are easy to reach and can be changed quickly,” Giles explains. “It’s nice to have access to all of the stations without risking damaging the windows. The hydraulic chase is also quicker to lock down the die, making it easier to change from job to job,” he adds.
But the last word goes to first-shift operator David Harris, who states simply, “It’s the best machine I’ve ever worked on.”