Modular capability has been a target of the manufacturing process for some time. Seeing two of the biggest names in printing working together to create a modular printing press for the modern age is, frankly, gratifying.

The VariJET 106 brings the benefits of digital printing such as running multiple versions of the same carton as well as customised cartons, which opens up new business opportunities for industrial production printers.

End clients love modular because it often means shorter lead times, more control over the process and lower costs. Modular printing presses like the Varijet 106, built by KBA and powered by Xerox Impika inkjet technology, make the production process much more streamlined and user friendly.

The press is capable of printing 4,500 sheets an hour, which is pretty impressive – especially for a modular setup. Because everything can be done at one station, rather than having to transport the product around a production facility at various stages of development, a lot of time can be saved rather than wasted. That on it’s own, as you will no doubt understand, can slash lead times and increase the potential for profit growth.

The next printing generation

KBA have taken a very different approach to the printing process, than their competitors. By taking control of as many printing and production processes as they possibly can, in one machine.
The Varijet 106 takes care of the travel of the initial sheet; from infeed to grippers, to conveyor. From there the sheets are passed underneath the Xerox Impika piezo print heads, before going back into the gripper system for the second stage. This stage would include the exterior coating and any other inline processes. Timings for the different steps in production are controlled by servos.
Users can configure the Varijet 106 as 7 colour, inkjet only press that incorporates the Impika inkjet modules or, as needed, as a ‘hybrid’ machine that makes use of both inkjet and traditional offset printing units.

As you would expect from a modular setup, the KBA press makes available a wide range of finishing options such as cold-foil, in-line coating, rotary die-cutting, perfing and several others. Mass production companies may never need another press ever again (or, at least, never need a different make and model printing press).

Xerox and KBA are very much launching a full frontal attack on the carton printing space and, if this machine is anything to go by, the war may well be already over.

Source: Print Press