The most common issue is that affects printing quality is doctor blades. They are one of the most crucial parts when it comes to print quality. This is because they are deceptively simple. They are basically small strips of steel or plastic. However, there are plenty of differences that can cause issues when it comes to performance.
Train Your Technicians
Your plastic or metal blades are designed to clean the excess ink off your anilox roll. Often, untrained printers put whatever blade is available inside and fire up the press. While this seems okay for a few prints, it won’t last long. As you progress through whatever you are publishing, you can start to have issues. These will be noticeable on the final product. You will often first notice them when they appear as streaks. To avoid this problem, you need to train your technicians to set up the right blade for your machine and job. This prevents you from needing to stop the press in the middle of a job and restart using something more appropriate while giving you great prints.
Use Steel Doctor Blades
While you will need to change any blade eventually, the more expensive options are better because they tend to last longer. Cheaper options that are left in place too long can shed shards that can damage your anilox roll and lead to costly replacements. Therefore, you want to spring for high-quality steel. These will not only last longer but reduce the amount of damage to your anilox roll, saving you money in the long run and enhancing the quality of your print.
Doctor blades are crucial to the quality of print you produce. Training your technicians to pick out the right blade and using high-quality steel gives you better products and helps you avoid costly shutdowns or replacement anilox rolls.