← back to all news Habo DaCosta produces alcohol-free with Tower Millennium fount
Tower Products Europe, a specialist in pressroom chemistry, is helping Habo DaCosta in The Netherlands to go alcohol-free, thanks to advances in technology opening up new opportunities for printers.
The glossy magazine printer has two identical web presses. One produces alcohol-free with fountain solutions from Tower.
Geert-Jan de Vaal, (pictured above), web-printing coordinator at Habo DaCosta is a careful craftsman: "I want stability, but you have to improve from time to time. We put Tower on a web press and the colours splash from the paper.”
Habo DaCosta is big in printing in the luxury, glossy magazine market. It uses a variety of machinery including one sheet-fed press, an offline UV lacquering line, a binding line and two heatset web presses.
De Vaal said: "We work here 24/7. Of course, you want to avoid disruptions in the production process as much as possible. The aim is to keep all printing parameters as stable as possible. But yes, paper and ink each have their own specific properties and your blanket does not always react the same way.
"We strive for alcohol-free printing, or if that is not possible, printing with as little alcohol as possible. Customers demand that, legislation is heading in that direction and - importantly - it is much better for the health of our operators.”
In May 2018, De Vaal started using the fountain solutions from Tower Products Europe. His printers use Millennium HSW-100, suitable for heatset web presses that produce alcohol-free at very high speeds.
"Our print operators were immediately super-enthusiastic,” said De Vaal. “Trouble-free production and the colours splashed off the paper. I apply the brake, I am a little more cautious. It's not about that one good run, or those few orders with less paper waste; it's about stable production over a long period, without alcohol. What does the fountain solution do to your blanket? What about the contamination of the fountain solution? What does it mean for cleaning and maintaining the press?”
De Vaal sums up the advantages: "We use less ink and less moisture. The dampening system remains cleaner and the plates have a longer lifetime. We used to wash the rubber blankets after 60,000 copies, but now this can be longer. And - in these times of fierce price competition and rising paper prices not unimportant - the paper waste has fallen to less than a thousand copies. That's immediate profit.”
The pluses are clear and De Vaal has no questions about the stability of the solutions from Tower as Habo DaCosta nears the completion of an initial year-long trial.
“I am therefore confident that in time we will produce alcohol-free in both web presses with less waste and with a higher quality,” De Vaal concluded.
Ivan Kraaijenvanger, managing director Tower Products Europe, which uses fellow Dutch company Wifac B.V. to exclusively distribute its products in BENELUX, said: “Habo DaCosta is a shining example of how companies can make a real difference to their production technologies by investing in first-class press chemistry, which can be delivered quickly.
“Many of the products, such as the Millennium HSW-100, are tailored to alcohol-free printing. Among the benefits are higher producitivy and print quality, less cleaning, a more stable printing process and a healthier working environment.”