The 2011 inaugural Harper Road Show held at the Mark Andy Inc. campus in Chesterfield, Missouri, was a great success. With 70 attendees representing converters and suppliers from across the midwest, it was a packed house. The focus of the day was Short Run Flexo and presentations and demonstrations focused on increasing converter profits for short run work using flexo technology.

Presentations were provided by Harper Corporation, Actega WIT, FLXON, RotoMetrics, 3M and DuPont, all with valuable technical information for converters on how to efficiently increase short run productivity throughout the in-line flexo press workflow. After the presentations, attendees witnessed a live press demonstration in which the Mark Andy Performance Series ran three different jobs, highlighting the incredibly efficient press design and providing a compelling story for flexo in the short run world.

Elimination of waste was a significant message for the press demonstration with actual material being pulled off the rewind to show a 7 ft (2.1 m) material requirement for initial set up of a 4-color wine label job on 80T print cylinders. After a version change on the wine label, a health and beauty label run was started, demonstrating a 4-color full job changeover in 3 minutes and extremely low changeover waste of 20 ft (6.1 m) from the first job to the next. Ease and efficiency of repeat changes were then demonstrated with the changeover to a third job run on 96T cylinders.

In addition to the press demonstration, attendees were guided on a manufacturing floor tour where they witnessed Mark Andy’s significant progress in its Lean transformation. The implementation of Lean throughout the company has been significant with lead times reduced and more impressive output quality by focusing on elimination of waste, adoption of standard work and incorporating visual management tools.

“We are honored that Harper Corporation chose Mark Andy as its inaugural stop in the 2011 Road Show tour. We are always excited to see converters taking an interest in flexo issues and by hosting this tour we have played a role in furthering the education of our existing and future customers,” states Paul Brauss, president & CEO, Mark Andy Inc.