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Mal-Pol boosts productivity on Gallus RCS 330 with Martin Automatic

One of Poland’s leading label converters, Mal-Pol, based in Olesin near Warsaw, has fitted Martin Automatic technology to its Gallus RCS 330 press. The ten-colour UV-flexo press, which also has two screen print units and cold foil and varnish capability, was installed in 2016 to produce top-of-the-range labels from a variety of substrates including laminates for tubes and sachets, self-adhesive stock, and unsupported film from PP to PE and PET.

According to Company Director Maciej Malesa: “Because the items we produce on the Gallus are all top-end, the substrates are expensive, so we need to keep waste to a minimum. This is only possible with automated roll changing at both ends of the press.” The selection of Martin Automatic technology was based initially on the experience of one of Mal-Pol’s operators when he was working at another company. He gave the Martin equipment a glowing recommendation that prompted Mal-Pol to investigate what the American manufacturer had to offer.

After detailed discussions with Martin Automatic’s European Sales Manager, Bernd Schopferer, the decision was made to install an MBS automatic unwind/butt splicer and an LRD automatic transfer rewinder. Both machines are specified to handle tube material as well as opaque and transparent PS label stocks. They have a 430mm maximum web width capability and can meet the top running speed of the RCS press at 150m/min, with the facility to handle 76mm and 150mm inner diameter cores.

The MBS can unwind rolls up to 1016mm diameter and features integrated roll loading, motorised roll auto-side-lay, and the tube laminate package, which includes a splice-prep fault system to support the operator, and the ability to use 50mm wide splice tape, which is typically used with thick laminated films where higher web tension is applied in the printing process. The LRD can rewind rolls to a maximum diameter of 800mm, and features a lay-on roller for smooth surface material.

Key to the investment for Mal-Pol was the facility of the Martin equipment to handle tube laminate material. With the Gallus needing to change rolls on this job every 750-800 metres, it can lead to as many as 60 rolls changes per shift. Grossing up these numbers, the Martin technology is handling up to 40,000 roll changes per year of this heavy-duty material. On lighter PS label stocks, where there are more metres per roll, the number would be more like 6,000 changes per year.

Summing up for Mal-Pol, Leszek Zelazny stated: “We have seen a major improvement in productivity on the Gallus since we installed the Martin Automatic equipment, especially on the tube laminate jobs – in fact we should not consider running this type of work without the automation.” Compared with the year before the Martin equipment was installed, Zelazny reports a significant change: “We have seen a 20% improvement in the efficiency of the Gallus line, and managed to reduce our waste levels by around 6%, which is very satisfying!”

With the company looking to expand its premises and grow its business, there will be more space for the QI department, inspection rewinders, and a bigger ink kitchen to serve the additional presses it intends to install.