Printers and converters face pressure to meet demanding timelines and quality control measures, so working with inks made with high-quality polymers can make a huge difference in operational efficiency and print quality.
These inks require the right formulation of color dispersions, water, defoamers, and emulsions and resins in order to achieve the proper resistance and attributes suitable for their respective applications.
They must also be pH-stable to provide consistent viscosity, reduce maintenance and prevent downtime, which can be substantial in print and packaging operations.
JONCRYL® LMV resin solutions and emulsions have been widely used in printing inks for many years, providing printers with significant cost savings in ink additives and spoiled ink, as well as improved pressroom efficiency and less print waste.
Hot off the press
Traditional water-based printing inks require a pH value above 8 or 8.5. If this value drops, the ink may become more thick or viscous, causing poor print quality and other operational issues.
“If ammonia or amines evaporate during printing of water-based inks, the pH can drop and cause an increase in viscosity and ‘dirty’ printing,” says David Tappa, Technical Manager of Printing and Packaging at BASF. “JONCRYL LMV polymers were developed to provide pH stability, reduce maintenance and generate less waste during the printing process.”
Maintenance reduction is a crucial capability of these polymers. Industry studies show that total press downtime in a flexible packaging operation can be as high as 50 percent, and 20 percent of that downtime is ink related.
As a low-maintenance vehicle, the JONCRYL LMV resins and emulsions work to carry pigments through the printing process, from initial pigment dispersion to the letdown phase near the end of the process.
“If an ink has poor resolubility and dries in during the printing process, eventually the press will reach a point where it’s no longer meeting acceptable quality standards for the printed material,” says Tappa. “In addition to the waste that generates, it may also require the printing press to be shut down to be cleaned.”
The cost of this downtime and extra materials can be considerable, and in some cases the entire ink batch may need to be replaced. Although ink formulators can add slower drying amines or glycols, this adds complexity to the formulation and can introduce undesired odours or VOCs.
Low maintenance vehicles can eliminate the need for these added amines or glycols, helping reduce complexity and the number of high-VOC additives in an ink. They can also help to create less odorous formulations, which benefits press operators working first-hand with the inks.
High performance, low maintenance
The versatile JONCRYL LMV 7000 series consists of 8 products designed to provide the printing industry with a complete selection of resin solutions and emulsions.
JOCNRYL LMV 7050 is a pH stable, non-film forming acrylic emulsion that provides fast drying times and excellent resolubility in ink formulations for paper and paperboard substrates. JONCRYL LMV 7051 provides similar benefits in addition to high-gloss capabilities.
“JONCRYL LMV polymers allow printers to get more usable life out of their inks and presses,” says Simon Foster, Industry Marketing Manager at BASF. “Printers are challenged to try and get as much out of their equipment and inks as they can, so these polymers increase operational efficiency and helps them reduce waste.”
JONCRYL LMV 7085 is well-suited to applications where color strength is paramount. It optimizes the dispersion of pigments in a neutral pH solution to provide excellent color development along with low foaming and good storage stability.
Another popular JONCRYL emulsion is JONCRYL LMV 7034, which can be used for printing inks for use on plastic films and other flexible substrates with strong adhesion and water resistance on those usually difficult substrates.
Choosing the right polymer for a formulation may seem challenging. That’s why BASF’s technical experts are always available for guidance and assistance.
Less downtime, more printing
By reducing maintenance in press operations, printers can spend more time managing their business with peace of mind knowing their inks will facilitate longer press runs with less downtime.
Based on test runs, ink formulations using JONCRYL LMV 7000 technology will print cleanly for hours at speeds from 100 fpm to 500 fpm, on bladed systems with anilox roll configurations from 600 to 1200 line, and on substrates from paper and corrugated board to film.
These ink formulations require fewer plate wash-ups, minimize rejects caused by dirty printing, don’t require ammonia additions or other press-side additives and improve color consistency during press runs.
“JONCRYL LMVs have been established products in the market for over 50 years, and we'll continue to bring new and differentiated solutions that help our customers be successful in the future,” says Foster.
For more information on the full line of JONCRYL LMV 7000 series, Click Here.