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Advantages and disadvantages of flexographic printing

Flexographic printing has various advantages and disadvantages. It is a printing style that makes use of a fed material to make high quality prints with a high speed. You can use this style of printing for printing in large quantities and it is suitable  for all types of product labels. Flexographic printing is suitable for various materials or substance. You can use various inks for it to make prints of high quality.

Advantages of flexography

i) High automation

Flexographic printing uses high automation. Its material enters from a huge roll that goes through each plate, used one after the other. It is the plate that rolls the ink into the material. After completely printing the label, separate the cutting die for each design, uniform and properties. This is an advantage of flexographic printing because this type of printing completes all the process, separating the cutting die for each of the design to uniform and proper sizes. You can complete all the process for printing with flexographic method. This is unlike other methods of printing that uses a more manual printing method.

ii) Saves cost

This method of printing saves cost when you compare it with other printing methods. This is due to the low cost of labour, low cost of materials and a fast turn around time. Example of such materials is the ink that is cheaper than other methods of printing. The major costs of flexographic printing are the costs for the plates, since each colour will have its own plate and there is a cost for each. However other aspects of printing with flexographic printing have a lower cost.

iii) A faster way of printing

Flexographic printing uses web-fed materials that gives the printers space. This fits the design horizontally and vertically. You can use these printers to produce more content on an hourly basis. A flexographic printers can make about 750 metres of printing per minute, which is about 45km per hour. This makes flexographic printing, a faster way to print, than other types of printing.

Disadvantages of flexographic printing

i) Initial set up can consume time

The set up time for flexographic printing can take a lot of time. This is because of the automation of the entire process. A person will have to install its material, set colours to relevant plates, use relevant plates to wrap the plate cylinders and install proper cutting die. This can take time.

ii) Not suitable for small quantities

Such time spent is not suitable for printing in smaller quantities. The time it takes to set up flexographic printing is not recommendable for printing smaller quantities. Use other methods of printing for such printing. It is up to companies to compare and analyse whether to use flexographic printing or not depending on the sizes of what they print.

Complex equipment

This equipment is a complex one to use with various integral systems in the process. The number of mechanical & systems components are essential for planning regular schedules that are based on routine maintenance. This is to prevent repairs and expensive downtime.

The operational cost is lower. Its material and ink costs are lower and there are no special coatings required. The ink costs for this type of printing is low, compared to the cost of digital inks.

Dave Castillo

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