Koenig & Bauer Evo XG takes on flexible packaging

K&B's Evo XG CI flexo press scores with AR & PrintTronic

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Koenig & Bauer
Koenig & Bauer XG press in action producing high-quality flexible packaging Photo K&B

In response to the ever-increasing demand for flexible packaging, Koenig & Bauer says it is gaining a leadership position as it positively responds to its growing customer base. “With Koenig & Bauer’s rich 200-plus-year history of technical innovation, we have demonstrated the experience and ability to grow a customers’ business. We offer more proactive innovative solutions and support, ensuring our customers receive the maximum uptime and throughput in their facility and allow them to remain ahead of their competitors,” says Preston Neetzel, director of sales at Koenig & Bauer. 

Neetzel adds, “We offer precisely what more and more customers are demanding – high quality, a broad product portfolio, and environment-friendly technologies. We’ve been recognized with awards honoring our innovative and impactful technology for the ever-evolving package printing and converting industry.”

Augmented Reality–DataGlass

Many flexible packaging printers are finding that orders are smaller with shorter lead times in today’s competitive market. Being able to remain fully operational to produce these orders is a necessity. Real-time service support is one of the premium methods offered by K&B. It has developed its own remote maintenance and modern communication channels known as Augmented Reality-DataGlass Remote Support.

At a 2019 Flexographic Technical Association’s (FTA) InfoFlex meeting, Koenig & Bauer received the FTA’s Technical Innovation Award for its Augmented Reality-DataGlass Remote Support. This system provides K&B remote maintenance specialists with the ability to experience, in real-time, what a customer’s technical team can see and hear.

 By providing this one-to-one conversation between Koenig & Bauer’s technical team and the customer, Koenig & Bauer is better able to help them immediately diagnose the problem and get their flexo production system up and running. No longer is there a need to wait a crucial few days for a technician to visit and diagnose the problem.

 “A remote support specialist can see and follow the actions of a press technician on-site live and in real-time while he or she works on the press, and see exactly what the technician is seeing,” explains Neetzel. “It’s been extremely popular with our flexo customers.”

“Koenig & Bauer and its AR-DataGlass technology has enabled us to increase our uptime and supports our goal of providing consistent, high-quality printing that our customers have come to rely on,” says Beth Smith, director of marketing at Great American Packaging, a Los Angeles-based supplier of flexible packaging. “We continue to grow our applications and further enhance our press’ total capabilities.”

Evo XG at production speeds of 600 meters a minute

Flexo printers seeking the highest quality and productivity are turning to the K&B Evo XG automated flexo press for processing film, paper, and cardboard at production speeds of up to 600 meters a minute.

In all versions of the Evo XG, solvent, as well as water-based inks, can be used and UV and EN cured inks. The Evo XG configuration with additional individual printing units using flexo or gravure printing technology is a further option for extending the performance range of the press. True-to-register printing, varnishing, coating, or laminating in recto and or verso printing are thus possible.

“The Evo XG is precisely the kind of machine we were looking for. We are convinced that we have made the right decision and that we will now be able to further strengthen our position as European market leaders,” said Jürgen Popp, owner and managing director of Zöllner-Wiethoff

“The print quality of the Evo XG is outstanding and gives us new capabilities that enhance our customer portfolio and product positioning,” says Louis Figueria, director of printing at Yellowstone Plastics, a supplier of flexible packaging located in Idaho Falls, Idaho in the United States. “The press shows the true capabilities of high-quality flexo printing.”

PrintTronic

The technical team at Koenig & Bauer is always seeking to offer new press capabilities and features for its customers and, more specifically, to enhance the press operators’ experience. One of its most popular features is the PrintTronic system. With simplified controls and navigation and robust help functions, PrintTronic provides flexo operators with a more efficient process to keep operations running quickly and smoothly.

PrintTronic’s automatic impression settings ensure automatic control of print impression positions with minimized material waste and increased production uptime. Integrated into the HMI, PrintTronic delivers practical benefits such as quicker printing impression adjustment on all printing decks at once. There is no requirement for video cameras or additional external equipment, no need for dedicated marks or RFID embedded sleeves, no ink consumption during the process, and compatibility with any type of material, plates, or inks.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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