Features

The Milling And Mixing Report

By Bridget Klebaur, Associate Editor | January 23, 2014

The market for milling and mixing equipment is expected to grow in 2014, with sales rising in areas such as liquid inks

Milling and mixing are important processes for ink manufacturers, with challenges including maintaining the quality of products while


Photo courtesy of Buhler.
remaining competitive in the market. For milling and mixing equipment manufacturers, it is important to develop and deliver new quality products.

 Adrian Spillman, market segment manager, specialty battery applications for Buhler Switzerland, said that ink costs are a key driver for capital investments.

“Ink industries are continuously under pressure to reduce ink costs,” Spillman said. “Equipment must be developed to provide solutions on every process step in order to increase efficiency and reduce costs. However, with increasing capacities at each plant location, synchronization and adaptation of each step is crucial. There is a huge potential for efficient production, increased product quality and lower operating costs.”

Spillman noted that production volumes for most types of liquid inks, especially UV inks, have increased. “On the other hand, more paste applications for traditional offset printing inks are declining,” he added. “Therefore, the expenditures are shifting within the segments but a recovery of the industry was clearly visible in 2013. We also expect a slight growth for 2014.”

Dave Peterson, president of  EMI Mills, said that purchases of equipment in the ink industry remained similar to that of 2012. “I expect 2014 to follow suit as the ink industry consolidates and adapts to the changing marketplace and world competition,” Peterson said, adding that EMI Mills is seeing growth in the inkjet and nano type dispersions markets.

Cathy Strahan of Myers Engineering Inc. said that Myers saw an increase in activity at the planning stages. “Sales were slightly


Photo courtesy of EMI Mills.
higher than those of 2012,” Strahan said. “Due to the increase in quotation and planning activity, we are expecting 2014 to have an increase in equipment sales. It seems to imply that production increases are on the board.”

Ink Manufacturers’ Needs

Ink makers have a variety of needs. Spillman said that cost drivers in production are raw material, energy and water consumption, setup of the equipment and labor costs, traceability and quality control as well as building and property expenses.

“A particular issue is poor raw material quality,” he added. “Manufacturers are looking for equipment that is able to compensate in order to deliver a consistent, high-quality product.”

Strahan said that ink makers seek better product grind in faster periods of time, which will improve their bottom line.  

“Of course, we work closely to improve blade configurations and equipment geometry to meet needs,” Strahan said. “Fast and flexible tinting stations increase their users success as well. Though we are batch mixing creators, we have designed and manufactured multiple small batch tinting stations that can offer a highly flexible operating station handling multiple colors quickly.”

New Products

In order to reduce process steps and increase efficiency, Buhler introduced standardized production systems combining


Photo courtesy of Charles Ross & Son Company.
homogenizing, mixing, pre-dispersing and downstream fine grinding with two machines – the new inline disperser Dispernator and the MicroMedia X high-performance bead mill line.

Strahan said that Myers Engineering launched a new mini vacuum mixer, which isn’t normally ink related, but the design and flexibility of this mini power worker helps define formulation standards at the lab level.

EMI Mills introduced its Laboratory & Pilot Scale Dispersers/Mixers, which contain inverter driven variable speed AC motors allowing the user to process low to high viscosity fluid dispersions in both water or solvent based applications. The EMI mixer is available with standard or explosion proof controls and data collection, manual or electric lifts. In addition, a rotor stator can be attached to the mixer.

Charles Ross & Son Company launched its Large Capacity Dual-Shaft Mixers, which deliver a balance of bulk flow agitation and high speed dispersion required for viscous pastes, gels, suspensions, slurries and emulsions. These mixers feature two independently driven agitators that run at different speeds, imparting varying levels of shear and ensuring adequate turnover over a wide viscosity range. Production models are offered in many standard sizes up to 4,000 gallons capacity.

For more on the milling and mixing market, including growth segments, please see the online version at www.inkworldmagazine.com.

Related Equipment and Services:

blog comments powered by Disqus
  • American Coatings Show and Conference

    American Coatings Show and Conference

    Kerry Pianoforte, Coatings World Editor||March 29, 2016
    This biennial exhibition and technical program provides a platform for industry professionals to highlight research results.

  • The Milling and Mixing Report

    The Milling and Mixing Report

    Catherine Diamond, Associate Editor||January 25, 2016
    Suppliers report improvements in 2015 and are optimistically looking at 2016.

  • Packaging, Regulatory Talks Highlight 2015 NPIRI Technical Conference

    Packaging, Regulatory Talks Highlight 2015 NPIRI Technical Conference

    Dave Savastano, Editor||November 30, 2015
    Food packaging issues, new technologies are among key topics the ink industry is facing.

  • 2016 Annual Buyers’ Guide

    2016 Annual Buyers’ Guide

    October 1, 2015
    Ink World’s Annual Buyers’ Guide has what you need, including additives, pigments, resins, varnishes, waxes and equipment.

  • Herman Hockmeyer, Hockmeyer Equipment Company

    Herman Hockmeyer, Hockmeyer Equipment Company

    Dave Savastano, Editor||May 20, 2015

  • NAPIM Celebrates 100th Anniversary During Annual Convention

    NAPIM Celebrates 100th Anniversary During Annual Convention

    Dave Savastano, Editor||May 20, 2015
    Celebrates ‘Century of Success: Commitment to the Future’.

  • 2015 NAPIM Printing Ink Pioneer Award Recipients

    2015 NAPIM Printing Ink Pioneer Award Recipients

    Dave Savastano, Editor||May 20, 2015

  • 2015 Milling Report

    2015 Milling Report

    Catherine Diamond, Associate Editor||January 23, 2015
    Suppliers have reason to be hopeful in 2015.

  • International Distributors Guide

    International Distributors Guide

    October 6, 2014
    A select listing of companies that distribute raw materials and equipment used to manufacture paint and coatings industry.

  • The Buyer’s Guide

    The Buyer’s Guide

    Dave Savastano, Editor||September 1, 2014
    From adhesion promoters to zinc oxide and attritors to waste management services, Ink World’s Annual Buyer’s Guide has everything you may need, as well as important information on suppliers, distributors and trade associations.

  • The Milling Report

    The Milling Report

    David Savastano, Ink World Editor||January 18, 2013
    Milling and mixer manufacturers are working hard to develop new equipment that meets the needs of the ink industry

  • The Buyers

    The Buyers' Guide

    Staff||September 27, 2012
    From adhesion promoters to zinc oxide and attritors to waste management services, Ink World’s Annual Buyers’ Guide has everything you may need, as well as important information on suppliers, distributors and trade associations.

  • The Milling Report

    The Milling Report

    Kerry Pianoforte, Ink World Associate Editor||January 25, 2012
    Milling equipment manufacturers must innovate to stay ahead in these challenging economic times

  • The 2011 Buyers' Guide

    Staff||September 22, 2011
    Ink World's Annual Buyers' Guide has everything you may need, from adhesion promoters to zinc oxide and attritors to waste management services, as well as important information on suppliers, distributors and trade associations.

  • Introducing High Viscosity Immersion Mills HCP S Series

    Introducing High Viscosity Immersion Mills HCP S Series

    Barry Cullens, Hockmeyer Equipment||January 20, 2011

  • The Milling and Mixing Market

    The Milling and Mixing Market

    David Savastano, Ink World Editor||January 20, 2011
    With the worst of the recession apparently over, ink companies are starting to move forward on their equipment needs

  • The Milling and Mixing Market

    The Milling and Mixing Market

    David Savastano, Ink World Editor||January 12, 2010
    For manufacturers of milling and mixing equipment, 2009 was challenging, but there were some signs of improvement near the end of the year.

  • Fine Grinding of Carbon Black

    Harry Way, Netzsch Inc.||October 16, 2009
    Dispersion of carbon black pigment in water via bead milling is very difficult

  • The Milling Report

    The Milling Report

    Kerry Pianoforte, Ink World Associate Editor||February 2, 2009
    As a result of the economic downturn, milling and mixing manufacturers are further emphasizing the importance of service and new technologies.

  • The Milling Report

    The Milling Report

    Kerry Pianoforte, Ink World Associate Editor||February 1, 2008
    Milling equipment manufacturers are seeing particular interest in process improvements and new technologies, including nanotechnology.

  • The Milling Report

    The Milling Report

    Kerry Pianoforte, Ink World Associate Editor||January 26, 2007
    Milling and mixing equipment manufacturers have reported that increasing interest in UV, digital and nanotechnology is creating new opportunities.

  • The Milling Report

    The Milling Report

    David Savastano, Ink World Editor||February 6, 2006
    With the ink industry showing some growth in 2005, mill manufacturers have seen some improvement in terms of capital expenditures.

  • The Milling Report

    David Savastano, Ink World Editor||October 25, 2005
    Process improvement and greater efficiency, reliability and repeatability are among the qualities milling manufacturers are emphasizing.

  • The Milling Report

    David Savastano, Ink World Editor||September 12, 2005
    As 2004 opens, mill manufacturers are waiting to see if the economic recovery in the U.S. will lead to greater capital expenditures.

  • The Milling Report

    David Savastano, Ink World Editor||September 9, 2005
    Equipment manufacturers are hopeful that the gains they saw in capital expenditures at the end of 2002 will continue into 2003.