Since its commercial launch last spring at drupa, the much anticipated Kodak (Booth 1221) FLEXCEL Direct System has been producing an increasing number of direct-engraved sleeves for live production jobs, with results that are exceeding initial expectations.
Miller Graphics, a multinational prepress firm with a presence in nine countries, evaluated the Kodak solution for six months in its Limoges, France location. “We are very experienced in the production of ITR [in the round] sleeves for flexo,” said Claude Vriet, ITR Production Manager at Miller Graphics, “but we are always looking to improve our services and offer better performance for our customers at a competitive price. The FLEXCEL Direct System has exceeded our initial expectations, both in our own production operation and on press with our clients, and we are already supplying sleeves for production jobs, and even winning new business as a result of the improved quality.”
The FLEXCEL Direct System uses innovative, energy efficient, high power laser engraving to produce superior quality, press-ready elastomer sleeves with increased production throughput,” Vriet added, “Our customers are impressed with the increase in print quality, greater consistency, and faster press setup times. Combine that with the fact that we have increased our sleeve production throughput, and you can see why we are excited to continue our cooperation with Kodak.”
Kodak’s approach in supplying not only an engraver, but a complete optimized solution that includes hardware, workflow, and media, is a real strength.
Laserflex, a large German prepress provider and a subsidiary of abc packmedia and Horst Gries, was the first site to install a FLEXCEL Direct System and has conducted extensive testing.“With its simple and straightforward operation, together with the media designed to optimize engraving speed and ink compatibility, the FLEXCEL Direct System will truly be a complete system. Having the equipment and media developed by the same supplier is truly unique,” declared Sascha Paus, Laserflex Plant Manager. “Current results from our testing, which included customer jobs and research print trials at DFTA, lead us to believe that the Kodak FLEXCEL Direct Imager is a good fit for our flexographic market needs.”
The FLEXCEL Direct System joins the award-winning FLEXCEL NX System in the line-up of flexographic solutions from Kodak that are designed to increase shelf impact while driving production efficiency. “The FLEXCEL NX System remains our flagship solution and has revolutionized the flexo plate industry with high-definition flexo printing that is consistent and cost-effective to produce,” commented Mohan Garde, VP and GM of Kodak’s Packaging Solutions Business. “With the addition of the FLEXCEL Direct System to the portfolio, we can now make affordable, high-quality ITR flexo sleeve production a reality and demonstrate Kodak’s ongoing commitment to deliver truly differentiated solutions into the packaging segment.”