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Aztec Label improves its die-cutting with AccuStrike

One of the UK’s leading narrow web trade houses, Aztec Label, is installing AccuStrike anvils for each of the three Nilpeter FB presses at its production facility in Kidderminster, as part of an ongoing programme of investment in production efficiency. The new equipment is Rotometrics’ answer to die wear and the problems posed by some of today’s tricky filmic substrates.

Founded in 1993 by Colin Le Gresley and now employing 25 staff, the company offers label printing in up to 10 colours on its dual water-based/UV press lines. A Rotometrics user from day one, Aztec buys all its flexible and solid dies from the Aldridge based supplier, and according to Le Gresley, a number of bespoke parts too. “The depth of knowledge at Rotometrics is second to none – they even rebuilt a gear-train on a print cylinder for us a few years back, and we now send all of our operators on their training courses, so they understand the science behind the technology, and learn good tool management skills,” he explained.

The new AccuStrike anvils will offer a high degree of die adjustability to the press operators. A simple drop-in installation, the new anvils require no modification to the existing die tool inventory, but by allowing movement of the bearers, either independently or together, the accuracy of die strike across the full web can be maintained. This prolongs die life and reduces cycle times with the resulting lower replacement cost and is all part of Colin Le Gresley’s drive to improve the operational environment and drive up productivity.

“I saw at first hand how AccuStrike improved the performance of flexible dies on the press, so now we need to educate our operators to a new way of thinking and setting the tool. I’m a firm believer in investing for efficiency and improving the working environment – it’s sound financial planning for the future and saves the extra cost of trying to play catch-up later,” he added. Aztec Label will produce sales of around £3m this year, with a target of £4m to take the company to the next stage. Having purchased and converted a 15,000sq/ft facility back in 2015 that now offers a state-of-the-art production and admin set-up, there is little doubt that Colin Le Gresley has a clear vision for the company’s future. This includes a policy of positive recruitment from the younger age group who will soon need to take on the roles of those members of staff who have been with Aztec since the beginning.

“We offer a quality service to our customers and need the best equipment to do so – but even that’s no use without first class support and service from our suppliers to back it up. Rotometrics ticks both boxes for us, and the new AccuStrike technology will make a significant difference our die cutting efficiency,” he concluded.