Future of Rotary Die Cutting – Size & Automation Matters
Die-cutting machinery must increase in width if it is to meet the changes demanded by the market, says Mark Laurence, Sales Manager of Daco Solutions. The market drivers pushing the physical boundaries of die cutter design are two-fold, he maintains.
“There is a crippling lack of even semi-skilled labour out there capable of operating expensive machinery. Like it or not, there is no option but to take some of the human factors out of the equation,” he says. The second market dynamic is cost. Higher capacity machines will be a fact of life to counteract the effects of rising label stock prices. “Over the quite recent past paper prices have rocketed. This has had a direct effect on the price of paper label stocks.” Laurence predicts that the next five years will see a marked shift towards wider web widths, bigger unwinds, and automation to reduce downtown and increase the throughput of the machine. A typical 700mm (27.5”) unwind a few years ago increased to 1m (40”) which is now becoming the norm, and we are now getting requests for non-stop unwind systems to reduce downtime further. “Five years ago, label producers were buying 250mm (10”) machines. Customers have since seen their profits decrease, particularly following the paper cost increases. We all need to work smarter and more efficiently, and that means higher capacity machines with a lower unit production price.” Daco Solutions has put its R&D money where its mouth is by developing the Daco PLD350, three spindle semi-automatic turret rewind with rotary die-cutting and auto cut and apply head, job storage, 700mm (27.5”), 1000mm (40”) & non-stop unwind options and the Daco TD350 with 1000mm (40”) standard unwind with optional non-stop unwind and a non-stop fully automatic turret rewinder.
Bigger unwinds creates the problem of the machines needing to stop for waste matrix roll removal and machines with waste trim removal systems from suppliers such as Lundberg is now being considered by labels converters at the time of purchase.
The Daco DF350SR and DF350SRD Semi-rotary die cutters for digital print finishing, and short-run plain label production are now becoming very popular. Daco Solutions recently spent considerable R & D effort in bringing the machines up to 65m/minute (213 feet/minute) in semi-rotary mode and using full rotary tools 175m/minute (575 feet/minute).
Daco PLD350 – https://youtu.be/xcGi-K92zng
Daco TD350 – https://youtu.be/d3Y7FjB6YXU
Daco DF350SR https://youtu.be/xUC8_1lmcfU