Last updateWed, 29 Nov 2023 12pm

Inks and holders make marking extrusions easier and safer

Three inks, two MEK-free alternatives and one universal silver ink, plus a newly designed bracket for quick and safe printhead repositioning, help manufacturers maximise uptime, performance and quality.

As in most industries, manufacturers of cable, extruded products and tubing are looking to improve productivity as measured by overall equipment effectiveness (OEE). OEE is a standard metric for measuring manufacturing productivity, made up of three key performance indicators: availability, performance and quality. At the same time, companies seek to minimise cost and effort. The inks and fixtures introduced today make it possible to achieve these goals.
Availability: Universal ink
To ensure that a print is always legible, it is often necessary to use different coloured inks on different substrates. In this industry, it is most cost-effective to use one printer per ink colour because of the particularly high cost of downtime.
With the new MC469 silver ink, all extrusion products - regardless of colour - can be marked. This makes it cost-effective and time-efficient to use: inventory can be optimised and it enables manufacturers to achieve maximum production capacity with fewer printers and operating equipment. Inventory management and logistics are simpler, while production becomes more flexible and convenient - there is no longer a need to change machines when changing products in a line.
Performance: MEK-free inks for secure labelling and easy exporting
MEK-free inks reduce volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions while increasing worker safety and well-being. Their use for product labelling also simplifies import and export, as MEK-based inks are on the list of controlled substances in many countries.
Until now, however, the use of MEK-free inks in the cable and extrusion industry was not possible: the drying time and adhesion were unsuitable for most cables.
The newly introduced MEK-free inks, have proven in extensive customer testing prior to market launch, that they deliver the required performance in these particularly demanding applications. Employees in these production environments can now benefit from better working conditions and manufacturers can optimise their sustainability footprint. The compliant formulation of these two MIPK-based inks, made from methyl isopropyl ketone instead of MEK, thus also simplifies the administrative burden for companies.
Two colours covering a wide range of extrusion products are available: White EW581, and Yellow EC582. In production environments at 20 °C, they have the advantage of reducing consumption and waste by up to 40% compared to standard MEK-based fluids. The savings are even greater at higher temperatures, as MEK-free fluids evaporate less quickly than MEK-based products.
Quality: Reliable positioning every time in just one second
Markings often need to be printed on very small areas. Some cables, for example, require imprints as small as one millimetre. If the printer and printhead are not repositioned after maintenance and cleaning, the marking can miss the desired surface, resulting in rework and waste.
With the Intelli'Swap principle of the new quick-change mounts for the 9450 E printer, operators only need ONE second to position the printhead EXACTLY where it belongs. It's so simple that only one hand is needed. Fiddling with screws in uncomfortable places is a thing of the past.
The above benefits of the new inks and mount extend the advantages already offered by the 9450 E inkjet printer. These include a fail-safe user interface and up to 3,000* kilometres of cable marking without printhead cleaning. The automatic cleaning system, combined with Intelli'Jet technology, ensures clean, trouble-free production starts and high-quality coding every time. High-contrast, durable prints are applied at high speeds, even to polyethylene (PE) that is particularly demanding in terms of adhesion. As a result, identification printed with this combination of printer and ink lasts in the field, even under tough environmental conditions.
* Measurement based on 190 million printed characters


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