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Sheetfed Drying/Curing — No Limitations

February 2004 By Erik Cagle
Senior Editor
Your ultraviolet (UV), infrared (IR) or hot air drying/curing system serves a valuable purpose for sheetfed offset presses. It dries, it cures and, most of all, it stays out of the way of completing the job.

And that’s just the way it should be, according to John Crosby, project manager for drying systems at Baldwin Technology. “It’s all about flexibility,” Crosby says. “The customer does not want the drying system to be any kind of limitation. He wants to be able to run the full range of substrates, and at high press speeds. He doesn’t want to limit the process because of the dryer.”

Baldwin’s latest offerings are the GraphiSet GS1 IR drying system and the GraphiSet GS4 IR and hot air drying system. The GS1 is geared toward low-pile delivery presses. It features short wave IR modules with water and/or air cooling. The GS4 is a fit for sheetfed presses with a high-pile delivery and coater, and can dry inks and water-based coatings on paper, card and carton stocks.

It is important not to base decision-making solely on current needs, admonishes Bill Bonallo, president and CEO of technotrans america. Current and future UV potential should be considered in order to make an investment that is beneficial in the long term.

“It’s a proven fact; few printers, if any, know what kind of opportunities may come their way once they have UV capability,” Bonallo says. “These future opportunities may require additional UV hardware to accomplish. We try to configure our systems to offer the maximum flexibility, on the widest variety of applications and substrates, looking into the future, as well.”

technotrans america is the exclusive representative for IST UV curing systems for sheetfed applications, the latest of which is a concept of UV curing in an inert atmosphere, called CoolCure. The technology, while common to web presses, is relatively new to sheetfed applications. It involves replacing the oxygen with nitrogen in the area where the curing takes place, increasing efficiency. It results in lower output of the UV curing system necessary to cure the ink or coating, reducing heat to the substrate.

New Generation Dryer

technotrans has also introduced a new generation, thermal drying system designed to provide the highest levels of ink- and water-based coating drying at maximum rated press running speeds. The system is configured to provide drying starting from the first sheet of the delivery, and its design allows complete interchange ability with IST UV components.

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