Plastics News reporter Mike Verespej gathered the following news briefs during NPE 2006, held June 19-23 in Chicago.
Trumpf showcasing its on-the-fly printing
Fabricating and laser-marking machine manufacturer Trumpf Inc. of Farmington, Conn., showcased its new optional marking-on-the-fly feature that allows for continuous workflow, which is particularly useful in tube and wiring applications.
The product is designed for use with the company's VectorMark c5 compact laser, which marks plastics with pigments or additives, and the VMc6, which provides high-contrast photochemical marking without additives and resins and marks without burning or engraving.
Trumpf Inc. is the North American subsidiary of Trumpf GmbH & Co. KG in Ditzingen, Germany.
Bell-Mark offers new in bag-printing series
A new series of flexographic printing machinery for one- or two-color configurations for plastic bag making was introduced by Bell-Mark Corp. of Pine Brook, N.J.
The Series 1230/1830 printers operate on a friction drive on widths of 4-94 inches, said Glenn Breslauer, director of marketing and information technology.
Isimat printing unit integrates UV curing
A semiautomatic screen-printing machine with an integrated ultraviolet-light curing system for printing and decorating bottles and containers was introduced by Isimat North America Inc. of Des Plaines, Ill.
The 1000 P-UV has an optional-registration system that positions a tube accurately prior to printing the next color, according to the company.
The system enables multipass, multicolor printing accurate to within 0.1 millimeter.
ITW unit introduces plate-making device
A new laser plate-making device was introduced by Carol Stream, Ill.-based ITW Trans Tech, which also displayed three pad printing machines that debuted this spring.
The compact, desktop Pulsar LPM laser device reduces printing to minutes from hours, thanks to a user-friendly screen that guides the operator through a click-and-print dialogue, according to the company. It allows for quick changeover between jobs.
The single-color, sealed-ink-cup pad printing machine Aries 130, the two-color Gemini 130 and the Orion 130 multicolor pad printing machine have steel box-frame construction for pad printer rigidity and can print 750-1,500 parts per hour.
ITW Trans Tech is a unit of Illinois Tool Works Co.
Admet debuts at NPE with table-top tester
With table-top machines for universal material testing becoming more affordable, first-time NPE exhibitor Admet Inc. said it is gaining more plastics customers.
The Norwood, Mass., company, which got its start retrofitting and upgrading machines, also is known for marketing large machinery for testing metals. That may be changing.
``There's just so much more opportunity with the variety of plastics,'' said sales engineer Orick Kelley.
Admet rolled out several table-top machines, grips and fixtures. The machines are used for testing polymers and films in tension, compression, flexure and shear.
The 560x in the Expert series has a stand-alone controller for cyclical testing that does not need to be hooked up to a computer. Kelley said the unit costs less than $5,000 and does the testing work that may have cost $35,000 a few years ago.
Admet also is offering a 760xx series that can be connected to a computer for more memory capacity. The firm also introduced a larger, 26xx testing machine.
The company was founded by Richard Gedney in 1989 and now employs 12.
Admet's products include material-testing frames, software and specialized control units. The company also retrofits machines.
United Silicone touts its decorating system
Another ITW unit, United Silicone of Lancaster, N.Y., introduced the Impulse-HT, a high-speed heat-transfer system for applying full-color graphics to as many as 300 blow molded containers per minute.
A dual-head, multiple servomotor applies labels to both sides of a container using a heated silicone rubber roller.
The Impulse-HT can be used with pre- and post-flame treatment, as well as flameless transfer technology.
3M details strength of new microspheres
3M Performance Additives said it has developed the first microsphere capable of withstanding injection molding and extrusion pressures of 30,000 pounds per square inch.
The iM30K additives combine light weight and strength as alternatives to conventional fillers such as talc, glass fiber and calcium carbonate, said Louis Lundberg, 3M's business development manager for automotive markets.
3M said tests on a Hyundai instrument panel compared polycarbonate/ABS with a new polypropylene material filled with the new microspheres. Nineteen months of tests showed the PP/microsphere part cut weight by almost 17 percent and the finished-part cost was 50 percent lower. As well, better flow and dimensional stability were seen vs. the current talc-filled PP part.
Agr*TopWave unveils new pressure tester
Agr*TopWave LLC of Butler, Pa., introduced its PPT3000 packaging pressure tester for the container market's off-line use.
The laboratory instrument represents the second generation of a decade-old line of equipment, said Ron Puvak, business development director with parent firm Agr International Inc.
Beta tests began at several customer sites in April. The tester integrates computer capability that was separate in earlier products.
The $26,000 tester can perform high-precision pressure and temperature-compensated volume expansion testing for plastic containers. It is being tested for possible use with spouted pouches and aluminum bottles. The equipment can test about six units per hour.
The M-Rule model can measure material use and shelf-life predictive functions for individual PET containers.