Minimising labelling downtime & rework

Minimising labelling downtime

LAUNCHED in May 2020, Markem-Imaje’s 2200 Production Interface, locally available from Pyrotec PackMark, reduces the risk of rework and recalls. It does this by minimising the scope for operator error since label data and formats can be more easily controlled.

Downtime is reduced thanks to the ability to preview and adjust labels digitally, and a large intuitive touchscreen that helps operators work faster.

With downtime, rework and recalls eating into profits, manufacturers need to minimise these elements. The 2200 Series Print & Apply labelling system for cases and pallets has long been proven to save up to six days’ downtime per year. The launch of the Production Interface builds on this achievement by incorporating new features that limit the potential for operator error, speed up changeovers even further, and reduce the likelihood of rework and recalls.

Traditionally, labels are created and stored away from the production line. Untrained or distracted operators can make mistakes by picking the wrong product label and/or inputting the wrong data from the remote location. With no label preview function at printer level, mistakes can only be spotted once printing has begun. This results in production stops and rework and undetected can lead to recalls.

The Production Interface minimises the scope for mistakes and accelerates changeovers. It also makes case and pallet labelling less resource-intensive to manage, freeing up operators to do other, higher priority activities.

The improved storage capacity means labels can now be more effectively stored en masse at printer level with limited image editing capabilities. This protects layout and data integrity, while increasing speed. For even greater accuracy and efficiency, enhanced connectivity also makes it easier for label formats and data to be retrieved on demand from a remote location directly to the printer via the CoLOS® information management system.

Incorrect label selection by operators can also be eliminated by enabling keyboard-free label selection and variable data updating through a connection to a hand-held barcode reader that can be linked to a production manifest.

The Production Interface’s large touchscreen shows exactly how variable content will appear on the printed label. If needed, operators can easily make six types of minor adjustments, such as label position and print contrast, digitally via the interface. With other labellers, setting changes can be so difficult to access that operators commonly resort to manually moving the printer product sensor that could result in equipment damage and personal injury.

The highly streamlined and intuitive, full colour interface also makes it quicker and easier to switch between jobs and deal with other printer issues. Operators are no longer distracted by extraneous detail of limited use in day-to-day printing.

Available in 261mm or 396mm touchscreens, colour-coded printer statuses are more visible at a distance so problems can be spotted and addressed without delay.

Warnings and alerts can easily be viewed in the user’s chosen language, which also speeds up problem resolution, without needing to look up complex error codes.

The entry-level Production Interface controls one 2200 Series Print & Apply system while the advanced version can handle two on the same or different lines. The CoLOS® Line Terminal variant can manage up to four printers of any type (not just print & apply) while also deploying other applications, such as COLOS® Mark & Read and CoLOS® Printer Performance, for the ultimate solution in accuracy, traceability and efficiency.