Steinemann readies inkjet coating tech for Heidelberg collaboration
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
Heidelberg’s Drupa tie-up with Steinemann appears to be linked to the upcoming launch of its B1 sheetfed inkjet press.
Steinemann will exhibit in hall 1 at Drupa, alongside Heidelberg. PrintWeek revealed that Heidelberg is readying a B1 inkjet device for the show last month, and for the first time the press manufacturer will share the hall with a number of partner companies.
Swiss firm Steinemann has developed an offline inkjet spot coating line, the Dmax, in co-operation with coatings specialist Schmid Rhyner and German printer Druckhaus Mainfranken, which has installed the first – and so far only – Dmax device.
Druckhaus Mainfranken is part of web-to-print giant FlyerAlarm’s printing set-up.
A Heidelberg spokesman told PrintWeek: “We are convinced that partnerships with renowned international experts along the value chain are the most efficient and fastest way to develop, manufacture and sell integrated technologies and services.
“It is not a secret that digital technologies will play a major role in the upcoming Drupa. Steinemann is a highly innovative company for digital finishing applications and therefore an ideal partner for Heidelberg and its digital printing equipment.”
The Dmax is a B1, industrial-scale digital spot coater that handles formats from 300x300mm to 1,080x780mm and can coat at up to 10,000sph or 100m/min. Resolution is 600x600dpi and speed depends on the thickness and amount of inkjet coating being laid down.
It means that Heidelberg could show variable content B1 inkjet printing, with accompanying variable spot coating.
Steinemann head of marketing and sales Markus Müller said the firm was also developing additional features for the device.
“We are working on several things, including the application of different coating thicknesses in one pass,” he explained. “We are also looking at the opportunity to implement our established roller coating technology within the machine as well – while you can do full-out coating with inkjet, the varnish is more expensive.”
PrintWeek understands that a foiling option for the Dmax is also in development. The recent Labelexpo event included a number of devices where inkjet coating was used to produce variable foiling.
Steinemann’s Dmax uses an inkjet ‘engine’ from fellow Swiss manufacturer Wifag-Polytype. Price depends on configuration but is from circa €600,000 (£445,000).
Of the Heidelberg cooperation, Müller said: “What is very interesting is that we have seen more and more printers looking for such a machine, and together with Heidelberg we can establish a complete concept for the customer for printing and finishing. It is a good combination.”
“The classical print finishing island of the past is just not the case anymore,” he added.
Surrey-based M-Partners is the UK distributor for Steinemann.