Choosing a CIJ Printer: A 60-Second Analysis

Choosing a continuous inkjet (CIJ) printer can be complicated. Choosing what is right for you is always best done by working with a solutions representative. However, to get you started, it is best to know which manufacturers offer a specific key advantage you need- extended service intervals for more production time, lower maintenance costs, printing speeds, etc.

Here, I will provide you with an overview of key advantage areas of the Linx 8940 vs. four leading competitors’ comparable models.

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Many continuous inkjet printers sport similar advantages, but the Linx 8940 leads the industry in energy consumption and operating temperatures, while matching  many industry-leading advantages as well. Blending these advantages together provides for a high-quality CIJ printer with a low total cost of ownership (TCO).

Additionally, printing speeds up to 1,230 feet-per-minute (FPM) allow users to print very quickly, despite other machines being able to print faster. 1,230 FPM is about 4,920 20-ounce soda bottles per minute. Printing that fast and only consuming a fraction of the energy certain competitors consume provides for a significant operating cost advantage.

The very best way to see the benefits the 8940 can bring to your operation is by requesting an on-site demonstration. To do that, fill out this short form here and comment that you’d like us to demonstrate our leading CIJ model!

Questions?

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http://www.rvevans.com

800-252-5894

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Marking Pallets: Branding vs. Printing

Marking your pallets’ lead boards is an essential means of communicating information about the pallet or the timber from which it is constructed. Many manufacturers will mark their pallets with an electric brander or other pallet branding tool (see Figure 1).

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This traditional method of producing pallet markings is used by many pallet manufacturers to stamp their pallets with logos, lot codes, IPPC compliance, and any other information. However, this application is labor-intensive, time-consuming, and potentially dangerous due to the hot iron.

A much better alternative to manual pallet branding is the implementation of a printing application. Such an application provides manufacturers with the ability to avoid many direct labor costs, eliminate potential injuries from the heated brander, and increase speed and throughput in the pallet marking process.

The FoxJet ProSeries 384e is an industry-leading pallet-marking solution (see Figure 2)

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With the ability to print small images and up to 14 lines of text at high resolutions, this powerful printhead produces a clean, crisp marking every time.

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Additionally, the higher the volume, the higher the realized savings after switching to this alternative to expensive pallet branding.

Contact R.V. Evans Company for assistance in implementing your new pallet marking system!

Call us at 800-252-5894 or click the 5-line “tell me more” form below!

Tell me more!

 

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The Linx 8920 and 8940 Models

The new Linx 8920 and Linx 8940 combine the proven benefits of the Linx 8900 with a series of additional enhancements that deliver even faster line speeds and easier set-up along with a further extension to service intervals, enabling the coders to deal with the most demanding of applications.

A unique feature of the new models is the first-in-class Advanced System Monitoring feature.  The Linx 8920 and 8940 have extended the original 8900’s already impressive service interval of 13,000 hours or 18 months, to 18,000 hours or 24 months.  At the same time, in recognition that all printers are used differently, Advanced System Monitoring provides a continual check of the printer’s operation in terms of ink system running parameters and environmental conditions.  This enables it to identify simple actions that users can take to prevent unscheduled stoppages, helping to ensure the continuous reliable operation of the printer and avoiding unplanned downtime.

The two new models also offer a ‘50 named lines’ feature that further increases flexibility and ease of set-up, ideal for operations that have frequent changeovers.  The coding requirements for each different production line can be given a specific name, which can be called up and selected from a pre-loaded list.  This both saves time and minimizes the danger of set-up errors.

In addition, the Linx 8920 and Linx 8940 are able to print up to five lines of code.  Both offer a top speed of 6.25m/s for single line coding, with the 8940 being able to print up to 16% faster than the Linx 8920 for other print formats.

The Linx 8940 meanwhile improves on the IP55-rated construction of the 8900 and 8920 with an IP65 rating that prevents dust ingress as well as providing wash down protection, offering a higher level of protection for a coder that has to operate in more challenging environments.

Linx says the new models are part of its continuing Voice of Customer program that ensures its ranges of coders remain in line with current and future market requirements.

“Feedback on the Linx 8900 has been hugely positive with customers particularly highlighting its ease of use, simple servicing and reliability,” explains Charles Randon, Linx’s Senior Product Manager.

“Nevertheless, many companies now have to ask even more of their coders in response to the changing requirements of their customer base.  While retaining all of the proven features of our original model, the new Linx 8920 and Linx 8940 models have therefore been developed to meet ever-more demanding applications.”

Launched in 2015, the Linx 8900 has proved an instant success with strong sales.  Popular user features include its large high resolution touch screen, which is able to be customized for quick access to regularly used functions and features on-screen message editing prompts for accurate inputting, and the simple Self-Service Wizard, which guides operators through the process for an engineer-free service module change that minimizes downtime.

One of the range’s most innovative features is the ability to provide at-a-glance real-time data on the overall production line performance.  This enables operators to identify patterns or reasons for any stoppages, allowing them to quickly implement changes, solutions or countermeasures to improve efficiency and productivity.

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Source: Linx, 2016

The QuickSwitch Plus: Make it Easy!

Production should be as seamless as possible. Changeovers can inhibit seamless production. If you are a manufacturer that runs multiple products down the same line, we’ve got a solution to help you switch to different batch/date/lot codes more simply, accurately, and timely.

By combining the Linx 7900 CIJ printer with the QuickSwitch barcode scanner, operators can scan codes to automatically call up a pre-defined message from the 7900’s memory. This message contains the message, date, and other parameters pre-determined by the operators. Data can also be sourced from a PC or PLC, providing more automated code set up options. With this capability, there is no need to manually search for and select a message during each change over. Simply scan, confirm, and resume printing!

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Check out a video demonstration by clicking here!

For an on-site demo or to inquire about pricing, click here!

For another perspective on high-speed, low maintenance continuous inkjet printing, click here!

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Rising Turnover Costs in Manufacturing: Mitigation Through Automation

Employee turnover can be expensive. In fact, Josh Bersin of Deloitte believes the cost of losing an employee can range from tens of thousands of dollars to 1.5–2.0x the employee’s annual salary. These costs include hiring, onboarding, training, ramp time to peak productivity, the loss of engagement from others due to high turnover, and higher business error rates. (Altman, 2017).

In a time when speed-to-market, low defect rates, and low cost-per-unit levels drive profitability more than ever, manufacturers are particularly affected by employee turnover. In 2016, manufacturers experienced turnover rates of 16%. (Bares, 2017). Doing the math, one can see that if their company turns over 16% of their operating workforce, and turnover costs are 2x the lost workers’ salaries, then annual turnover costs can equal up to 32% of your total operating payroll per year (assuming equal wages for simplicity’s sake). The “learning curve” effect also plays its part in higher defect rates and lower productivity, decreasing product quality and speed-to-market (Argote and Epple, 1990). In other words, turnover can severely affect profitability, especially in manufacturing.

So, what can manufacturers do about it? The psychology and social science on this subject has been published for many years, yet turnover rates are still high and have risen consistently over the past five years. Let R.V. Evans Company take a different approach. If you’re a manufacturer, do any of these activities fall under any of your workers’ job descriptions?

  • Forming cases and boxes
  • Closing and stapling boxes/cases
  • Sealing/taping cases
  • Bagging parts
  • Stretch-wrapping pallets
  • Printing images, date and batch codes, or barcodes on products or cases
  • Applying labels
  • Manually creating void-fill protective packaging for cases
  • Manually shrink-wrapping products
  • Applying strap to bundles, boxes, pallets, etc.

If you answered yes to any of those, there is room for automation.

Automation doesn’t always come in the form of complete robotics; there are ways to semi-automate as well. Semi-automation reduces the amount of laborers required to perform certain tasks in the manufacturing process, particularly in packaging processes. Examples of automation and semi-automation include:

  • Incorporating a WFPS 3290 Combo to allow a single operator to form, pack, and seal up to 30 cases per minute
  • Using an AutoBag 550 to allow a single operator to bag up to 45 parts per minute
  • Install an Orion Flex Series stretch wrapper to wrap pallets much faster than by hand
    • with a 260% pre-stretch that can save up to several thousand dollars in stretch wrap per year
  • Implementing a Samuel Model P715 automatic plastic strapping machine to apply plastic strap to your packages at speeds of up to 60 straps per minute- without an operator
  • Connecting many of these systems and others via conveyor equipment
  • Much, much more

There are numerous ways R.V. Evans and its team of packaging solutions representatives can help you reduce turnover by eliminating some of those high-turnover positions entirely. This is not a recommendation to replace your good, high-quality people that make your operation great. This is a recommendation to allow R.V. Evans to help you find ways to eliminate positions that are difficult to keep occupied due to high turnover. Equip your good workers with the means to produce more and add more value- at a lower total cost. Automating, semi-automating, and/or streamlining your processes can increase your speed to market, decrease your cost-per-unit, lean out your labor force, and make you more money. 

Why R.V. Evans? Because we are a team of experts whose core competencies are creating packaging solutions and giving great customer service. We spend every day staying up to date with the latest technology, studying that technology, and creating ways to implement it in various manufacturing environments. You are the expert in your operation, and we are packaging solutions experts. Team up with us so we can create a packaging solution that is right for you. We will forever follow up with great service.

Here is how to get started. 3 options are included below.

  1. Click here to schedule a site needs analysis with one of our packaging experts
  2. Click here to request general information about a specific product or product line
  3. Call 800-252-5894 to speak to one of our wonderful customer service representatives

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High-Speed, Low Maintenance CIJ Printing: The Linx 8940

The Linx 8940 is part of the Linx 8900 range of CIJ printers designed to make your coding life easier.  With its IP65 rating (dust and washdown tight) and highest printing speeds (up to 16% faster than the Linx 8920), the Linx 8940 is designed for the most challenging coding applications.  The Linx 8940 makes code creation easy with the large touch screen interface, and downtime is reduced with the self-servicing module, unique system monitoring and click-into-place fluid cartridges.

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The Linx 8940 offers crucial advantages: 

  • Printing speeds up to 1,230 feet-per-minute (one line of text)- up to 30% faster than most high-speed CIJ printers
  • Extended service intervals- up to 18,000 hours!
  • Simple printhead cleaning- cleans in just a few minutes and can go up to three months without cleaning!
  • Prevent avoidable downtime via the system monitoring capability 
  • Flexible capabilities: 5-line coding, Data Matrix and QR code printing 
  • Self-servicing with the Easi-Change® Service Module which can be changed in minutes with no Service Engineer visit required
  • No pump change requirements during periodic services- guaranteed for life!

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These advantages allow the user easily produce clear prints at high speeds in challenging environments- with very little maintenance! To complement this, the Linx 8940 also sports a number of usability features, such as:

  • 10” color touch screen with icons, drag-and-drop field positioning, and zoom function for longer messages
  • Ability to store 1,000 messages
  • On-screen, real-time output measurements
  • USB port for copy and back-up of message and printer settings
  • Much more, just ask!

The Linx 8900 series is highlighted in this video here

For more information, please call 800-252-5894 or click here

Successful Value-Added Application: The HandJet EBS-260

Pre-Solution Application
The client, an aluminum supplier to the die-casting and gravity-casting indust
ries was preprinting and applying labels to identify multiple batches of
aluminum sows for their clients. Due to the fact that the aluminum sows are often stored outside,the labels frequently came off and required employees to continually check on each batch to ensure all remained correctly labeled.
The R.V. Evans’ Value Added Solution
After performing a Site Needs Analysis and thorough review of the application, an R.
V. Evans Packaging Solutions Specialist determined the appropriate value added solution.
The recommendation:
The HandJet EBS-260, EBS’s newest portable inkjet system.
download
Key Benefits of the HandJet EBS-260
  • Portable and lightweight – only 3.5 lbs
  • Capable of printing detailed messages an
  • 2D images including logos and 2D barcodes
  • Up to four separate lines can be printed in a single pass
  • 3.5” diagonal touch-screen controller to simplify on-the-fly adjustments
  • Built-in laser guidance for the precise positioning of the message
  • Variety of inks and colors available
  • Cleaning cartridge can be installed in seconds for near-effortless clean up and maintenance
Measurable Savings Realized
This handheld printing solution has proven to provide the client with consistent and permanent marking of each batch of aluminum sows allowing them to eliminate the purchase of labels and reallocate labor to other areas of their facility. After using the HandJet EBS-260 for a short time, they were also able to identify other areas to
utilize it throughout their facility.
See the HandJet EBS-260 in action right here in our YouTube video!
For more information, visit our website by clicking here.