Sales of DB-Automation’s unique hot foil printing (stamping) equipment are experiencing significant growth, with an additional two machines recently shipped to a US multinational packaging company.
DB-Automation are a Leicestershire based company, specialising in the design and manufacture of bespoke high-speed injection moulding automation.
This growth can be directly attributed to some major technological advances, developed as part of the DB policy of achieving ‘automation excellence’.
These latest two-colour units will be used for the decoration of Xbox One game cases, with the application of both white lettering and a real metallic logo. In this instance, the foil is applied to raised lettering produced during the moulding process, but it can also be applied directly to a flat substrate.
The many benefits of the hot foil process over paints and inks:
– Real metallic finishes can be achieved.
– Foil can be applied directly to materials such as PP, no ‘key’ or primer needed.
– Very consistent colour density.
– No curing process needed.
– Greater wear resistance, making it ideal for marking sterilised medical containers where information is critical.
How does the DB solution take this technology to the next level?
Greater accuracy. As with any decorative process, presentation of the moulding to the print head is critical if highly consistent results are to be achieved. DB-Automation’s solution is to utilise a pick and place module to transfer the items into pockets on a servo driven conveyor system. Coupled with a high degree of adjustability of the print head, this provides superior accuracy.
The foil itself is heated to an extremely precise temperature and then pressed into place with a stamping cylinder, highly adjustable for both positioning and force. This guarantees optimal adhesion and finish.
Greater productivity. The highly automated nature and design of the DB-Automation solution provides a typical cycle time of 45 parts per minute, even with this 2-stage/colour application. This compares to industry typical speeds of 25 parts per minute.
Minimal wastage. The foil used on each station is fed from reel to reel. DB’s solution uses a DOUBLE motorised feed system that always delivers a set increment of correctly tensioned foil. This negates the traditional issue of the gap between each stamping increasing as the diameter of the take-off reel increases.
Superior quality. The combination of their servo-conveyor delivery system and fully adjustable print head (in terms of positioning accuracy, temperature control and application pressure), provides superior results and minimises reject levels.
The DB system also delivers all printed components to an integrated vision system. This continually monitors quality levels, any suspect components being automatically removed from the process and quarantined, without interrupting production.
DB-Automation’s expertise within the plastics sector means they can supply a complete automation system, not just a stand-alone unit. In this case study, the installation included:
– High speed side-entry de-moulding robot
– Cooling stations
– Hot foil stamping cell
– Film wrapping and collation stations
– Automated palletisation
This integrated solution results in zero operator handling, from machine de-moulding right through to palletisation.
What the customer says…
“We at Amaray recognise that DB Automation puts a lot of effort in research and development for what they provide and always find a solution for our equipment needs, featuring state of the art design sourcing the best components and providing continued and professional support to Amaray.”
So in conclusion…
If you are looking for a superior and wear resistant finish, then hot foil printing should be your first consideration. The solution provided by DB-Automation is compact, highly productive, delivers superior print quality and can be seamlessly integrated into the manufacturing process.