Question for Newspaper Production Managers?
How many vision cameras does is take to fully automate colour register control, plate to plate control taking into consideration register on all plates and splitting the difference automatically or selecting a main plate, fan out on blanket to blanket presses, density control that controls both ink ductors and ink keys, and water system control (spray bar or turbo) when scumming occurs?
Answer: 1 (Yes, just one!)
One single camera per web side to manage the entire printing process was our aim from the outset, and that’s what VP2025 Newspaper Print Automation system offers printers today.
It wasn’t just an idealistic notion back then, instead it was derived after understanding the print process and many a night of production study. Our engineers saw that having a different camera for each different adjustment a printer made, made for a lot of cameras and a high investment and maintenance cost. 3T was then, and is now part owned by printers and high investment costs, complexity, multiple cameras was from the off (set) a no no…
Simplicity outperforms Complexity – Finding a better way.
Those nights understanding the production process gave our designers the breakthrough they were looking for. Register control had a motor driven response, with the critical factor being the speed on the press manufacturer’s register motors – it was fast and predictable, but ink and water changes required many copies to show their impact on paper – nothing new, printers have known this for years! Depending on the press, the ink tray, the gap between ductor and film roller, the inks used, some presses take longer than others for results to change on paper. But even the fastest presses in terms of ink changes on paper, and the widest KBA triple width or manroland XXL format presses, the difference allows each ink zone to be visited every twenty seconds, much quicker than it takes the press to make a change, which is generally around one minute, the optimum time to revisit each individual ink key. A concept was born, a single camera that had the time to perform all newspaper print automation duties in the most optimum way taking into consideration latency in the control loop.
10 years later that original concept is now packed with additional functionality and features and is called the 3TControl VP2025 “Virtual Printer” Newspaper Automation System, and our first customers have been relying on the original register system for over 10 years, and density control for over 7 years, 3T’s Virtual Printer concept has proven its worth over time.
We look forward to continuing our story in the coming weeks.
Your 3T Team