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Paint brushes

What do Paint Brushes and Doctor Blades have in Common?

Would you paint your house with the same brush an artist uses for a landscape or a portrait? Probably not: it’s not the right tool for the job.

So why would you use the same doctor blade for fine line work and for process printing?

The most common answers are because the operator (a) didn’t know different blade profiles were needed for these jobs or (b) had been told to use one type of blade for all jobs because it was less expensive. Both answers work great — until a customer calls to ask why the print quality on that last run of labels went south about 8,000 feet in.

This is one of the flexographic printing challenges Provident Group will be talking about with customers about in Booth 534 at INFO*FLEX, coming up April 30 to May 3 in Phoenix, AZ. The inking systems technology experts from Provident will be helping attendees understand the importance of matching doctor blade profiles to the application being printed.

It’s not a complicated process but is important relative to the range of jobs being run in a typical flexo shop and to the experience of flexo press operators,” says Andy Gillis, General Manager of Provident.

Gillis and his team often encounter press operators who aren’t aware of the relationship between blade profile, ink laydown and the quality of the label or package being printed. “At INFO*FLEX we’ll be working with them to show how taking a few minutes to change blades can make a big difference in the quality of a job,” says Gillis. “It’s really a matter of using the right tool for the job.

No doctor blade is ideal for every application. To help understand which blades are right for your presses and the jobs you run, make a point of meeting with the Provident Group team at INFO*FLEX and learn more about selecting the right tool for the job.