Today, a product’s design, most significantly its surface, is a key factor with regard to purchasing decisions. Thanks to inline decoration with digital printing, you can give “bare” plastic parts an individual “face” or make them feel more pleasant to the touch. Extremely fast motif changes included.
For inline printing, ARBURG, working with partners FPT, has combined injection molding with digital print. InkBOT technology allows you to print even on curved molded parts in a borderless, extremely flexible process. Because the robotic system forms the basis, additional downstream process steps, such as assembly or packaging, can be easily integrated. The production of individual name plates on a production cell built around an electric ALLROUNDER EDRIVE injection molding machine demonstrates the enormous potential of inline printing.
- Time-to-market of a few days: no need for the procurement, printing, cutting, transporting or cleaning of films
- Printing in the injection molding cycle dynamically adjustable print speed
- Rapid motif changes: print data can be changed for each cycle without set-up requirements
- High print quality: 600 dpi resolution, high precision at 2 pixels per inch
- 3D geometries: borderless 4-color printing without a fixed printing form – height difference of up to 6 mm possible
Part weight: 6 g
Cycle time: 18 s
Precise robotic system kinematics and special inkjet print heads for UV paints and inks form the basis for finishing the surfaces of plastic parts in the injection molding cycle. The name plates undergo a multi-stage process, involving plasma pre-treatment, the application of a primer, 4-color digital printing and UV drying.
The system is centered around an electric ALLROUNDER 370 E with a clamping force of 66 tons. It produces two curved name plates and the corresponding fasteners in a cycle time of 18 seconds. The EDRIVE series has been designed for standard applications of this kind.
to the electric machines
A six-axis robotic system removes the molded parts, transfers them to a turning station and then moves them to the inline printing system in the correct position. The SELOGICA user interface on the robotic control system allows operators to change sequences independently.
to the six-axis robots
Technical injection molding
In almost all sectors, there is an increasing need for flexible production systems that enable cost-efficient production even as batch sizes get smaller and product types change with increasing frequency. Individual inline printing using the InkBOT process is a good example of how this can be achieved.
to the industry