Bobst has shown off a new wide web flexo press, the Vision CI, and revamped the rest of its range so that the 20Seven has now been upgraded to become the Expert CI, while the 40Six has been quietly abandoned.
For now, the Vision CI is offered as an 8-colour press, though Bobst will add an option for ten colours in the middle of next year, presumably just in time for Interpack and Drupa. It can be used with either solvent or water-based inks and will print to a wide range of substrates types and thicknesses. The press can handle web widths from 920mm to 1520mm, with a repeat of 820 to 1100mm. It has a maximum speed of 400 mpm.
The Vision CI has been designed to be simpler and therefore cheaper than Bobst’s previous generation. It has a compact and ergonomic, modular design, making installation and set-up very easy. It lacks some of the more sophisticated technology such as the SmartGPS though Bobst has developed alternatives, such as SmartKey, which offers a tapered plate reference, and SmartSet for semi-automatic on-press impression and registration, which together appear to fulfil similar roles. This includes bearings for plate cylinders that automatically open and close and automatic face to face winders, which should also lead to quicker job set up times, with less material wasted on makeready.
Herman Koch, Bobst’s sales director for DACH and preprint, explains: “We also have a feature called SmartView, which is a window on top of the CI after deck 8 to watch the print and adjust the printing from the mezzanine to use as little waste as possible.”
Koch says that Bobst has fundamentally redesigned the CI, which has given rise to these new Smart features. He explains: “The whole print deck design is different and we have a star configuration rather than a linear design. That means that we can use a smaller CI, which gives us a little better printing contact point.”
The press is able to recover some of the heat generated and to re-use this energy, called SmartHeat, which makes for a more sustainable design that should also cut running costs. There’s also a SmartClean system that’s said to save on ink and solvents.
Mark McInulty, Managing Director CI Flexo Printing. “It combines the very latest technology with the highest manufacturing standards at the best price/performance ratio, putting premium print quality, reliability and highest standards of efficiency at the fingertips of converters everywhere.”
McInulty says that the press can be installed and printing within four weeks of arriving, adding: “Its compact dimensions will save valuable space, and its smart ergonomic design will ensure the operator a convenient, intuitive and fast operation. The Vision CI flexo press brings outstanding accuracy and repeatability of performance in terms of output quality and waste-saving operation to a wider number of flexible packaging printing operations.”
The Vision CI becomes the new entry point into Bobst’s wide web flexo press range. This is complemented by the Expert CI, essentially an upgraded version of the 20Seven, which I covered here, but with a number of improvements to optimise the use of water-based inks. Koch says that while the Vision CI is suitable for widths of 1-1.3m, the Expert CI can go up to 1.7m. The Vision CI should cost roughly €1.3m to €1.8m, depending on the configuration, while the Expert CI starts at around €1.7m, though pricing on both depends heavily on applications and configuration. You can find further details at bobst.com.