Business & Marketing

Things to Know About Anilox Cleaners

When cleaning anilox rolls, there are several factors to keep in mind. First of all, you have to make sure that you are using the correct cleaner. Some types of cleaners are not safe for aluminum. If you use one that is not aluminum safe, you risk damaging the base, engravings, and skin. Always look for the “aluminum safe” label.

Laser Cleaning

Laser cleaning with anilox cleaners is a new technology that is helping flexo printers improve print quality. Compared to chemical cleaning, this process does not use water or chemicals, making it a green option. However, many flexo printers are still determining their effectiveness. This new technology makes use of the same laser parameters that are used for engraving anilox cells.

Laser cleaning with anilox cleaners can be used on different types of inks and various materials. It is an excellent choice for cleaning ceramics because it uses a gentle, chemical-free method. It can also be used in inline applications, making it ideal for large cylinders. In addition, it does not use heat or chemicals, and the anilox roller can be reinstalled immediately after cleaning.

Laser cleaning with anilox cleaners is a fast, waste-free process. It can clean multiple narrow-web rolls or a combination of narrow and wide-web rolls in one cleaning cycle. In addition, there is no need for any safety equipment. This makes them an excellent choice for those who want to save time and reduce their environmental impact.

Ink Metering Systems

Anilox roller cleaning systems use a cleaning solution that is added to a reservoir filled with ink. This solution then cleans the cells of the anilox roller. Although relatively new, these systems could be more effective. The solution does not remove deeply embedded materials and may contaminate the printing process. Additionally, these systems often require a large amount of machine downtime.

Various chambered blade systems are also available. However, these systems require an operator to properly set up the chamber. This is critical as improper setup can result in uneven metering, ink film remaining on the anilox roll, and uneven ink delivery to the plate. Ink metering systems can be divided into chambered doctor blade systems and open systems. Chambered doctor blade systems have a chambered design and a manifold. The ink is pumped through a hose and into the chamber until it reaches a specific capacity. In these systems, one blade acts as a retaining blade, and the other removes excess ink from the anilox roll. 

Sodium Hydroxide

Sodium hydroxide is used in many industries for a variety of applications. It is commonly used as a strong chemical base in soaps and detergents. Its high pH makes it effective in cleaning a variety of industrial materials. It dissolves water-based inks and cleans surfaces. Sodium hydroxide has many uses and may be listed under different names on cleaner labels.

When using an anilox cleaner, it is imperative to use the right materials for the job. Cleaners containing sodium hydroxide should be rinsed off thoroughly after use. If you use the wrong materials, the solution may damage the anilox roll and cause it to crack or peel.

Ultrasonic Cleaning

An ultrasonic cleaning system is the best solution for regularly washing anilox rolls. These cleaning systems are gentle on the rolls and leave them clean in less than 30 minutes. Conventional mechanical cleaning methods are unsuitable for ceramic anilox rolls, as the cell cavities are too small to accommodate fine brush bristles. Although blast systems can be effective for coarse anilox rolls, ultrasonic cleaners are ideal for cleaning fine anilox rolls. They are also effective in cleaning all types of ink.

The technology of ultrasonic cleaning is quite simple to use. The object to be cleaned is placed inside a chamber containing a suitable solution, usually an aqueous one. The aqueous solution will usually contain surfactants to help dissolve non-polar compounds. An ultrasonic cleaning system sends an electrical signal to the object being cleaned at a high enough frequency to produce microbubbles. These bubbles create high forces on dirt and can penetrate through cracks and blind holes.