Dutch book printer, Printforce, has installed a Contiweb Digital Fluid Applicator (DFA), a remoistening applicator developed to significantly improve the quality of digitally printed products.
Specialising in the digital production of soft and rounded hardback books, journals and magazines, Printforce focuses on print-on-demand to achieve zero warehousing for its customers, with job run-lengths averaging just 1.6 copies. With highly automated press lines, the company prints and ships direct to end-users in most cases: “We never want our customer to have to say they are out-of-stock!” asserts Rik Thijssen, Operation Manager at Printforce, Netherlands.
Printforce’s Contiweb DFA operates inline with a Canon ProStream web-fed inkjet printer. “It was actually recommended by Canon to utilize a remoistening device. The communication capability is seamless, it talks with the printer, knows when to start, when to stop,” says Thijssen, adding, “As a Plug & Play system we’ve found the DFA provides a highly controllable, measurable process. You know whether the setting is correct before getting any customer complaints. It’s simple, there are just two settings, front and back. It’s tuneable with a simple calculation, and once you have the correct value, you don’t have to set anything.”
Based on the popular Contiweb Fluid Applicator for heatset web offset applications, the Digital Fluid Applicator ensures constant coverage, even with changing press speeds. The system mixes tap water and a surfactant, rather than using specially treated deionized water, which is then continuously circulated to remoisten paper intelligently and precisely on digital web presses.
According to Thijssen customers are extremely enthusiastic about the quality of premium inkjet, comparing it positively to offset, but less enthused about the waviness of the paper: “The Prostream uses the best inks and provides excellent quality, but it’s very intense. With the Contiweb DFA we get same quality with a fast turnaround, without the waviness.”
“This is an issue we see more and more in digital printing as the quality becomes more sophisticated and more applications require high ink coverage for example,” explains Rutger Jansen, CEO at Contiweb, “This requires higher temperatures in the printing process, resulting in significant loss of moisture. This is why we developed the DFA, to ensure product quality is not diminished and why we’re delighted to work with printers such as Printforce.”
Thijssen concludes, “Following a smooth installation we’ve received excellent customer service from Contiweb. Contiweb engineers will proactively spots errors on our system remotely – before I’ve even been alerted – we can see Contiweb takes our work very seriously!”
As inkjet print quality just gets better and better, the quality of final products can suffer from the increased temperatures in the drying process. Curling and waviness are problems that often arise.
This case study shows how the installation of a Contiweb Digital Fluid Applicator helped Printforce to resolve these issues.