Flexo 2003, the 4th flexographic machinery, equipment, materials and services exhibition, will run in Hall 17, at the NEC, Birmingham, UK, on March 4-6. Organized by Reed Exhibitions, the show will once again be co-presented by EFTA, the European Flexographic Technical Association. The EFTA Industry Awards Dinner will take place on Wednesday, March 5, at the Metropole Hotel, NEC, Birmingham. The Awards, celebrating the innovation and outstanding achievement within the industry, will be highlighted in the souvenir brochure to be circulated at the ceremony and with the March issue of Converting Today. A message from EFTA managing director Lesley Hide follows.

How to register

Visitors are invited to register now on the website www.flexoexpo.co.uk

or call the hotline on +44 (0)870 429 4632 for free tickets.

Entry on the day is £25, and the official catalogue costs £10.

Opening Times

Tuesday March 4: 10.00 – 17.00

Wednesday March 5: 10.00 – 17.00

Thursday March 6: 10.00 – 16.00

Getting there

by road

Birmingham lies at the crossroads of the UK’s motorway system with direct links to the M6, M5, M1, M42 and M40. A regular shuttle service will operate between the car parks and the main entrance to the NEC. For traffic advice and help on planning your routes you may find the following sites useful: www.theaa.com/travelwatch/planner or www.rac.co.uk/services/routeplanner

Taxis are also available outside the NEC entrances. Taxi freephones are situated within the foyer of the Piazza, Atrium and Arena.

by rail

Birmingham is served by two mainline stations – Birmingham New Street and Birmingham International. Birmingham International Station is part of the InterCity Network and is linked directly with the NEC. There are frequent services, including London Euston, Coventry and Birmingham. See these websites for timetable and train information: www.railtrack.co.uk www.thetrainline.com or call: the NEC Enquiry Line +44 (0)345 484950.

by air

Birmingham International Airport is one of the most accessible in Europe, providing direct links with more than 40 cities worldwide and easy access to North America and Europe. The airport is situated alongside the NEC. For information visit www.bhx.co.uk

by coach

Birmingham is served by National Coaches, to over 1,400 nationwide scheduled destinations every day. For more information visit www.nationalexpress.co.uk or call +44 (0)990 808080.

Need a hotel?

For special rates at selected hotels visit www.expotel.co.uk, tel: 44 (0)20 7372 2001, fax: 44 (0)20 7624 4847, email: events@expotel.com

Our preview of Flexo 2003 follows.



The UV flexo and combination UV flexo/screen inks Flexocure Gemini and Uvoscreen II CombiWhite will form the central focus of Akzo Nobel Inks’ stand. Flexocure Gemini is credited with lower odour and viscosity, better wetting, and better ink transfer qualities. Uvoscreen II CombiWhite is said to give a smooth, dense white screen printed base for subsequent flexo overprinting. Both ranges are aimed at extending the narrow web industry’s capability beyond traditional label print into secondary packaging and printing on unsupported films, wraparound sleeve labels, pouches, folding cartons, and in-mould labels. Stand 1210.

More information from Niklas Olsson, Akzo Nobel Inks – TEL: +46 (0)410 59302. WEBSITE: www.aninks.com

New products from Anguil Environmental Europe will include a patented integrated oxidizer and CHP (combined heat and power) system for simultaneous control of VOC emissions and generation of power and heat for use back in the plant. Thermal and catalytic oxidizers for the control of VOC and odorous emissions from printing plants will also be featured. Edlon Machinery is now Anguil’s exclusive representative in the flexo, gravure and web coating industries. Stand 1440.

More information from Mark Moreton, Anguil Environmental Europe – TEL: 01785 761910.

New from Apex Europe will be the Ultraquick ceramic coated and laser engraved lightweight sleeve, which is said to weigh under 15kg, even with a print width of 1,600mm – compared with the weight of conventional sleeves at approximately 30kg. Also to be featured is the Ultra Melt post-treatment technique to provide laser engraved anilox rolls with a melted layer. The result is said to be a remarkable quality improvement. Apex also provides a wide range of cleaning products, including BioClean Spray plate cleaner. The BioJet dry powder system is suitable for periodic deep cleaning of all kind of rollers, including anilox rolls, which are polluted with water based, solvent, UV, or even two-component inks. The Ravol liquid volume test enables printers to determine the real ink volume of anilox rolls. Within two minutes a printer can tell whether a roller is able to produce a certain colour density, or needs cleaning or renovation. Stand 1220.

More information from Apex Europe – TEL.:+31 (0)497 36 11 11. EMAIL: info@apex-europe-b.com WEBSITE: www.apex-europe-b.com

The “world’s first” three-beam high power laser engraving system for flexo, dry offset, letterpress and 3D embossing will be displayed by Applied Laser Engineering. Using ALE’s Progressive technology, production of direct laser engraved sleeves and plates is said to be a one-step ‘computer-to-press’ process – eliminating films, mask removal, exposure, wash-out, drying and mounting. The company says its multi-beam technology using CO2 and YAG lasers is superior to the single, high power laser solution. It has been upgrading the old lasers with its own technology. Upgrades are available for all types and make of laser engraving machine, as single, dual or triple-beam YAG and CO2 laser, to provide customers with improvements in quality, productivity and reliability. Stand 1319.

More information from Alison Birch, Applied Laser Engineering – TEL: +44 208 941 1101. EMAIL: alison@appliedlaser.co.uk WEBSITE: www.appliedlaser.co.uk

Arpeco will introduce its Injector System to the European folding carton industry. Injector is billed as an innovative processing system for web based printing and converting of folding cartons. It uses flexible steel tooling to process printed webs in-line without the use of repeat-specific magnetic cylinders, to balance the cost benefits of flatbed with the speed benefits of rotary die cutting. It can also be used as a conventional rotary cutter. By changing the operating mode and installing repeat-specific rotary tooling, the Injector System acts like a rotary die cutter/creaser. This is said to offer carton converters a single solution for both short and long run production. Video presentations, literature and samples will feature on the stand. Arpeco offers a range of fully integrated modular systems – from label finishing machines to label, laminate and carton printing and converting. Stand 1200.More information from Fred E Zinnbauer, Arpeco – TEL: +44 (0)161 406 8330. EMAIL: salesuk@arpeco.com WEBSITE: www.arpeco.com

Artwork Systems is to demonstrate ArtPro and Nexus 7.0, the latest releases of its high-end prepress and workflow systems, which provide support for Mac OS X. Nexus workflow is billed as a highly productive packaging workflow that drives all common output devices. Integrated tools and editing files are available for viewing at all stages. Customers and operators can even preview their documents over the internet using a standard browser. PlateCell Patterning, the latest introduction of Artwork’s patented technology, is said to allow printing solids with less ink and minimize the typical flexo halo. To guarantee quality assurance at the end of the flexo workflow, the company will introduce its “extremely fast” DotSpy (Mac OS) application to check the digital film or plate information before output. Stand 1513.

More information from Elly Schietse, Artwork Systems – TEL: +32 9 265 8411. EMAIL: info@artwork-systems.com WEBSITE: www.artwork-systems.com

Asahi Photoproducts promises to demonstrate how its new Fast Frame technology will help plate makers control plate production “to obtain optimum results consistently”. The company will also show results from two AFP materials – digital DSH and analogue AFP SH – designed for a wide range of printing substrates and conditions. They are said to be especially suited to state of the art, fast running flexo presses, cationic UV and the latest water based inks. In addition, new cost saving ideas will be displayed with the water wash APR system.

More information from Frank Lyons, Asahi Photoproducts (UK) – TEL: +44 (0)1277 232877. FAX: +44 (0)1277 224414.

To be shown for the first time in Europe by Advanced Vision Technology is ProoFit, an automatic inspection solution that compares PDF data to ‘good copy’ masters, printing plates, screen prints, film, print or other digital data. The company says it gives printers maximum quality assurance. Also on the stand will be the PrintVision/Argus 100 per cent inspection solution, the PrintVision/Genesis with options for bar code and cold seal inspection, and the pRegister register pre-set solution. Stand 1016.

More information from Aviva Haleva, AVT – FAX: +972 9 9509393. EMAIL: avivah@avt-inc.com

The new ECO-Version of the BHS Type Flexline Intro press is making its debut at the show. This high performance press for paperboard printing is offered as a cost effective alternative to offset print. In combination with an integrated BHS flatbed or rotary die cutter, maximum productivity is promised. It can be equipped for water based or UV ink systems. Advanced technologies for drives, quick change, waste reduction and high printing quality are claimed. The configuration also features reverse printing, hotfoil stamping, embossing, and varnish stations. In-line cutting technology supplementing the BHS-Flexline is available for widths from 560-1,420mm. Fast makeready is said to be provided by motorized setting and computer control, while use of servo drives “achieves the ultimate” in print to cut register. Stand 1336.

More information from Wolfhard Erling, BHS – TEL: +49 (0)961 3939 402. EMAIL: wolfhard.erling@bhs-print.de

Bieffebi will launch a mounting machine, model UNICA 333, for mounting flexo plates on cylinders or sleeves for geared or gearless printing presses. Specializing in the manufacture of mounting and proofing machines for flexo plates, the company claims to have sold more than 10,000 units worldwide. Stand 1440.

More information from Lucia Marani, Bieffebi – TEL: +39 051 768580. EMAIL: bieffebi@bieffebi.it

Bobst Group companies to be represented at the show include Schiavi, presenting its flexo printing solutions for flexible packaging. Information will be available on the company’s gearless CI flexo presses, all using sleeve technology for plate cylinders and anilox rollers. The Sigma gearless CI press also has an automatic wash-up system. Bobst will feature its flexo presses for web-fed carton and corrugated packaging applications. These include the Lemanic 82-F, said to be ideal for general folding carton manufacture, and the Masterflex, which is hailed as “the benchmark” for printing high quality graphics on corrugated board. Martin will represent its range of flexo folder gluers, such as the 924, capable of handling cases up to 2.4m in width, and the 1628NT rotary die cutter, which handles blanks of up to 2.8m. Stand 1504.

More information from Alistair Smailes, Bobst – TEL: +44 (0)7768 110922. EMAIL: alistair.smailes@bobstgroup.com

Q clean, a new range of cleaning products for ceramic anilox rollers, is to be displayed by Cheshire Engraving Services. The company is also planning to feature its laser engraved and chrome plated anilox rollers, cleaners and brushes. Stand 1144.

More information from Paul Smith, Cheshire Engraving Services – TEL: +44 (0)161 224 2949.

Dantex Graphics will present its latest developments In Toreflex water wash flexo plate material for use with water based, UV and solvent inks. Also on display will be the latest generation of Aqua-Flex equipment, specially engineered for use with Toreflex, offering automatic in-line, semi automatic and manual processors, and exposure units. In addition, Dantex will demonstrate the latest developments in direct laser engraving, together with Torelaser direct digital plate materials. The company will also exhibit digital system integration, workflow and proofing solutions. Stand No 1406

More information from David Parr, Dantex Graphics Ltd – TEL: +44 (0)1274 777777.

The new range of laminators offered by DCM includes a combination machine with a coating trolley unit (exchangeable by one operator) that allows conventional rotogravure and flexo coating, as well as multi roller transfer process. This Laminastar 2 Combi model can therefore handle solvent and water based, and solventless adhesives. The eight metre length horizontal dryer allows both solvent based and solventless lamination at 300m/min. Single, semi or fully automatic unwinds and rewind can be provided. Touchscreen control and production data storage are other features. Stand 1021.

More information from Colin Farrant, CFM – TEL: +44 (0)1635 37232. EMAIL: colin@cfmachinery.com

Cyrel Uptime is the new name for DuPont’s Cyrel FAST marketing programme, intended to show the extra press utilization that can be achieved with it. It is also said to offer a way of using FAST without heavy capital investment. The company will also feature Cromalin iCertification, said to allow for rapid and reliable remote proofing “globally safely, securely and recordably”. The latest Cyrel continuous photopolymer plate uses a robust thin sleeve claimed to provide excellent continuous print results and “genuine productivity gains for the printer whilst remaining financially viable”. Stand 1120.

More information from Graham Harris, DuPont Cyrel – TEL: +44 (0)1438 734000. EMAIL: grahamharris-1@gbr.dupont.com

EFTA, in conjunction with FPTG Swansea, is to launch the Ink Colormetrics Standards for the flexo industry. The association will also be promoting the benefits of EFTA membership, which include training courses, FACE CDs, training tools, and the FLIPSS troubleshooting and fault finding CD. In addition, Flexo 2003 will see the launch of a series of training programmes on Lean Manufacturing for the flexo industry. Stand 1450.

More information from Lesley Hide, European Flexographic Technical Association (UK) – TEL: +44 (0)1458 241455. EMAIL: hiding@efta.co.uk WEBSITE: www.efta.co.uk

The WV3000 video based web inspection solution to be launched by Eltromat provides both close visual inspection of the print and automated web fault detection. It can also be expanded to incorporate a wide range of additional functions. Said to be “truly modular”, the system is suitable for use with all types of web based printing: offset, flexo, gravure and screen. Utilizing three-chip cameras (including digital), for “fast and precise image capture of the highest quality” and 16-fold zoom lenses, it will provide detailed feedback at web speeds of up to 1,000m/min. For ease of use, the operator console incorporates touchscreen and ‘frame’ touch-technology, allowing just a finger touch to re-position the camera on a specific area of the web, and vary the zoom and iris settings. All settings can be stored for use in repeat orders and initial set-up is said to be simple. An additional module uses two extra cameras for simultaneous inspection of both sides of the web. Another module is for measuring the quality of printed bar codes. Stand 1300.

More information from Thomas Eulenstein – TEL: +49 5208 7002 0.

Esko-Graphics will show a full flexo workflow from prototyping to production, including structural design (CAD), graphics solutions and plate imaging on a Cyrel Digital Imager. With an emphasis on productivity and complete systems integration, the product line-up will include a range of new flexo solutions. Among these will be an animation module in ArtiosCAD v5.0, the latest versions of the PackEdge prepress software, Plato for on-screen imposition and DeskPack – “bringing high-end packaging design and trapping tools to the desktop”. Files will be ripped using FlexRip, the company’s “flexible, fast” software RIP, then output to the CDI imager. Stand 1130.

More information from Esko-Graphics – TEL: +32 9 216 9211. EMAIL:info.eur@esko-graphics.com

Fischer & Krecke’s latest products are the Flexpress 36 S 8/10 colour flexo press, a 2,100mm width, sleeve press with a 520-1,350mm repeat length; and the Flexpress 96 S, an eight colour, 2,500mm width sleeve press with a repeat of 750-1,800mm for linerboard. Also featured will be the Flexpress 16 S 8, 8/10 colour 1,700mm width sleeve press with 320-800mm repeat, and handling systems for quick change-over. Visitors can also hear about the company’s acquisition of Kochsiek last year. Stand 1440.

More information from Lawrence Wild, Edlon Machinery – TEL: +44 (0)1707 828798. EMAIL: wild@edlonmachinery.co.uk

Centrepiece of the Focus Label Machinery stand will be the new compact Centraflex, a 250mm width six colour flexo press for film, labels and tags. Another exhibit is to be the Webflex modular in-line press, which will be using Rotometrics tooling and materials supplied by Cascade to convert boxes. A new anilox roll cleaning system will also be featured, also cold foil application, video inspection and video plate mounting equipment. This year, Focus is investing £1.5M in a purpose built factory. Stand 1110.

More information from Antony Cotton, Focus Label Machinery – TEL: +44 (0)1949 836223. FAX: +44 (0)1949 836542.

Manufacturer of UV flexo inks Intercolor will be showing new ultra brilliant silver inks and the Lustre Index measuring system. Lustre Index is claimed to be the first reliable method for measuring both the metallic brilliance of a silver and its colour. Its capability for effective quality control has led to Tesco appointing Intercolor to monitor the printed silver on the latest designs for Tesco “Finest” packaging. The company is challenging visitors to bring their best silver prints, to see where they stand in the Lustre Index test, and if they match the quality of its products. In addition, it will introduce UV flexo inks for cartons and flexible packaging. Stand 1010.

More information from Mark Bowman, Intercolor – TEL: +44 (0)1708 89 90 91. EMAIL: info@intercolor-ink.com. WEBSITE: www.intercolor-ink.com

The Evolution eight colour in-line and Infiniti II 10 colour wide web flexo presses are to be promoted by PCMC, together with the eXtreme drying system. Also of interest will be the Webtron/ZigZag range of in-line equipment, now part of PCMC’s portfolio. Stand 1519.

More information from Lisa Prunty, PCMC – TEL: +1 920 494 5601. EMAIL: lisaprunty@pcmc.com WEBSITE: www.pcmcpreprint.co.uk

Plastotype will show a new plate cleaning system which, according to the company, will revolutionize cleaning and extend plate life. Visitors to the stand can also obtain information on its solvent recovery and technical anilox audit services, Flex-E photopolymer plate processors, and distillation systems. Stand 1314.

More information from Plastotype – WEBSITE: www.plastotype.com

New from Saueressig will be a reel to reel proofer and digital Nyloprint plates. Also on the stand will be a CD-Rom containing colour proofer videos and the complete flexo delivery programme, as well as details of the e-business and e-commerce available through the company’s new website. Saueressig says it is also working on stochastic screening and a 3D laser line for flexo. Stand 1129.

More information from Diana Saueressig, Saueressig – TEL: +49 2564 12 440. EMAIL: mail@saueressig.de

Sericol has entered the flexo market with a range of UV curable inks for narrow web roll label printing. The UVivid Flexo FL ink is claimed to represent a technological leap forward in consistent quality and productivity when producing combination print labels. Significant performance and productivity gains are said to be inherent without having to modify the UV flexo inks to enable screen combination printing. UVivid is designed to produce high quality results on coated paper, pressure sensitive vinyls, top coated and corona treated polyesters, PE and OPP films straight from the pot. Excellent hold-out, minimal dot gain and fast cure are also claimed. Stand 1036.

More information from Richard Cotterill, Sericol – EMAIL Richard.Cotterill@sericol.com

A compact, bench mounted ultrasonic anilox roller cleaner for the label industry is to be given its European launch by Sonic Solutions (Caresonic). The company also offers a range of detergents and cleaning agents for anilox and ancillary items, and an anilox contract cleaning service. Stand 1037.

More information from Nigel Haddock, Caresonic – TEL: +44 (0)151 356 4013. FAX: +44 (0)151 356 4037.

Stanley Press Equipment will be showing a print unit from Rotatek’s new Ecoflex flexo converting system. Also to feature is the range of ink and coating pumping systems from Graymills, and a Berra Model S2-250 hotfoil stamping and die cutting machine. Stand 1119.

More information from Robert Stanley, Stanley Press Equipment – TEL: +44 (0)1625 429211. FAX: +44 (0)1625 614900.

New products to be exhibited by Tendring Pacific include the PBI-Dansensor oxygen and water vapour transmission rate tester, and the Fibro PG3 pocket goniometer. Other products are the IGT F1 flexo proofer and Fibro dynamic contact angle tester. Stand 1249.

More information from Tendring Pacific – TEL: +44 (0) 8702 401886. EMAIL: sales@tendringpacific.com WEBSITE: www.tendringpacific.com

3M has chosen Flexo 2003 for the first public showing in Europe of its latest flexo plate mounting tape. The new Cushion-Mount Plus E1020 uses patented 3M ‘microreplication’ technology to form a micro structured liner that prevents air entrapment. Its cross-hatched pattern creates a continuous network of microchannels in the adhesive, allowing air to flow on both sides of the tape. In this way, according to the company, air escapes from between the tape and sleeve/cylinder, and tape and plate, delivering excellent surface contact and consistent adhesion. It says this can improve the consistency of print quality dramatically, due to virtual elimination of air bubbles that can cause blemishes in line, solid and process jobs. In addition, with no bubbles to reduce with a syringe or knife point, less time is spent on plate mounting and productivity may be greatly enhanced. Stand 1230.

More information from Dave Graddon, 3M – TEL: +44 (0)1344 858 499. EMAIL: dgraddon@mmm.com

The Rotomec EG400 series gearless flexo press will be featured by Valmet Converting. The company says complete change-overs of eight or 10 colour jobs are possible within 10min. Rotomec also supplies conventional stack and CI geared presses. Titan will have details of its latest developments in slitting and rewinding, including the new CT 600 turreted slitter, the SMA range of fully automated systems, and the “world leading” SR7 slitter for flexible packaging materials. Stand 1206.

More information Roger Astell – Valmet Converting – TEL: +44 (0)1234 852553. EMAIL: roger.astell@valmet.com

Watson-Marlow Bredel will display the new, improved 620R pumphead, which has a strengthened inner shell and improved tube clamping arrangement to increase tube life. It is said to be extremely easy to load with tubing elements while cleaning is quick and simple. The 620 series pumps can handle both water and solvent based inks. The company has also developed LoadSure technology for its 700 series range of peristaltic pumps. Ideal for printing where high flow rates are required, it is said to allow significantly easier and quicker pump installation and tube change-over. Watson-Marlow Alitea, a recent addition to the group, specializes in high precision, low flow pumps for OEM applications. Stand 1414.

More information from Mike Sullivan, Watson-Marlow Bredel – TEL: +44 (0)1326 370370.

Zed Instruments is promising to show new versions of the ZedMini direct digital laser engraving system, and its FlexoDirect control system and electronics. A key feature of the ZedMini is said to be its ability to vary the height of highlight dots below the surface. According to the company, this ensures minimum dot gain and provides print with high solid density and very fine highlights using the same plate. The new system will include features for improved ease of use and a higher powered laser to boost productivity. Stand 1435.

More information from Zed Instruments – TEL: +44 (0)1932 228977. EMAIL: info@zed-inst.co.uk WEBSITE: http://www.zed-inst.co.uk