Bema, Inc., Elmhurst, Illinois, has the trifecta of cleaning systems from Flexo Wash: an anilox cleaner, a parts washer and a plate washer. All were installed in succession after the company reportedly realized how much more time they could spend printing just by automating their cleaning processes.
Founded in 1957, the “Bema Transparent Bag Company” began with one bottom-seal bag machine. That one bag machine produced bags for clients such as Mars Candy and Jewel-Osco. In 1999, Glen Galloway purchased the company and changed the name to Bema, Inc. This new company has expanded its capabilities to include a fully-integrated manufacturing process from creation of the bags to printing them on its flexographic presses.
Prior to its introduction to Flexo Wash cleaning systems, the company devoted more than six hours a day one day a week for a “big cleanup” where one to two employees would spend their shift manually cleaning the anilox rolls, press parts and plates. Continued cleaning lasted from Friday afternoon/evening and finished up Saturday morning before the printing on Monday began. Previously employees would clean parts manually in wash tanks with alcohol. They also used a media blasting cleaning unit.
Bema connected with Flexo Wash sales agent Bill Malm at various trade shows in the area and saw live demonstrations of the cleaning systems. Bema employees then traveled to the now-closed Fox Valley demo center with their own anilox rolls and press parts to clean them in Flexo Wash machines. The demo went well and cleaned their anilox rolls and press parts to their satisfaction.
They purchased the anilox cleaner in January 2017 and the parts washer in April 2017.
Their overall process improved with the introduction of both of these cleaning systems. According to Production Manager Jason Galloway, there were “faster wash up times for the press, better cleaning and less damage on the aniloxes were immediate benefits.” Also automating the cleaning process cut the cleaning time in half.
Galloway noticed a difference right away. ROI was about six months, but in reality, it was less than that in actual working days.
After success with both of these cleaning systems, Bill Malm introduced the Flexo Wash Plate Washer to Bema in 2022. He brought it to Bema for the employees to clean their plates in their pressroom. They purchased a plate washer in January 2023.
Now armed with a trifecta of Flexo Wash machines, Bema press manager Jason Galloway statedthat they “allow us to run a clean press with less issues due to dirty ink pump parts, chambers, and drip trays. It allows us to spend more time printing and less time cleaning week to week.”
When asked why Flexo Wash cleaning systems worked for them, the answer was: “Good reliable cleaners allow us to focus on printing with repeatable results.”