Koenig & Bauer Durst GmbH has announced plans to bring the VariJET 106 to market with the first installation of the single-pass digital printing press at a customer site early next year prior to a formal unveiling at the rearranged drupa in Dusseldorf, Germany, from April 20-30.
Targeting the folding carton industry, the much-anticipated B1 6,000sph VariJET 106 is at the heart of the collaborative development between Koenig & Bauer and Durst. It integrates inkjet technology into the platform of the high-performance Rapida 106 offset press.
The VariJET 106 combines the strengths of digital inkjet with those of classic offset printing and inline finishing. It is this unique flexibility which defines the VariJET 106 as a productive and cost-efficient hybrid printing system for digital packaging printing. The VariJET 106 can produce personalised and individualized print products or alternate between short and medium runs.
The announcements from the joint venture company, which was set up by Durst and Koenig & Bauer in 2019, have also included updates on its single-pass corrugated presses – the Delta SPC 130 and the CorruJET 170 – which have a specific focus on delivering for the stringent requirements of the packaging sector.
A digital priming unit for uncoated media will broaden the applications customers can address on the Delta SPC 130, as well as extend the range of media that can be used for printing. And special colours being introduced for the fifth and sixth colour stations will enable converters to meet brand colour requirements.
The Delta SPC 130 FlexLine Automatic combines a well-engineered mechanical design with easily accessible sub-assemblies and selected components to guarantee durable quality, high performance and reliability. It can manage small formats from 500 x 600mm through to very large formats with maximum dimensions of 1,300 x 2,100 (optionally 1,300 x 2,800 mm) and print a maximum thickness of 12 mm with water-based, food safe inks. The Delta SPC130 FlexLine machine includes feeder, six-colour single-pass printing, cooling section and stacker.
For the CorruJET 170, successful beta testing has been completed at the Kolb Group in Bavaria, Germany, a company that develops and produces packaging, packaging materials and specialist products made in corrugated cardboard. Based on Koenig & Bauer’s RotaJET inkjet web press for commercial printing, The CorruJET 170 post-prints sheets of corrugated up to 1.7m wide at up to 137m/min on water based, food safe inks.
All three presses meet the stringent requirements for food safe primary packaging utilizing proprietary water-based ink technology. The VariJET 106, Delta SPC 130 and CorruJET 170 are designed with core technologies to provide automated, productive, food safe printing systems. They deliver shorter response times, more variants, shorter run lengths, individualization and enable more and more small value orders. They also answer the increasing customer demand for brand security, sustainability and the ability to meet brand owners’ requirements for multichannel communication including e-commerce.
Robert Stabler, Managing Director, Koenig & Bauer Durst, said: “We’re really excited by the opportunities and progress with our much-anticipated VariJET 106. We have a number of existing customers that would like to be beta sites, and we plan to show them the press after the summer. The customer we choose will have a vision for mass customization and be a good partner for a beta site. Feedback from our customers is that shorter run lengths, mass customization and the need to be more agile are the compelling reasons for moving to digital production.
“Successful companies need to be able to embrace the trends that are occurring and offer solutions. Brand owners continually want their products to stand out, require shorter lead times, while at the same time eliminate waste and conform to sustainability and track-and-trace requirements. Brand owners are also looking to ensure the new production methods are reliable, compliant and cost effective while converters need to have the capabilities and competencies to mass customize without any compromise on quality. We deliver on this.”