|Publication number||US20070033979 A1|
|Application number||US 11/504,534|
|Publication date||Feb 15, 2007|
|Filing date||Aug 15, 2006|
|Priority date||Aug 15, 2005|
|Also published as||EP1915224A2, EP1915224A4, WO2007022197A2, WO2007022197A3|
|Publication number||11504534, 504534, US 2007/0033979 A1, US 2007/033979 A1, US 20070033979 A1, US 20070033979A1, US 2007033979 A1, US 2007033979A1, US-A1-20070033979, US-A1-2007033979, US2007/0033979A1, US2007/033979A1, US20070033979 A1, US20070033979A1, US2007033979 A1, US2007033979A1|
|Inventors||Robert Deis, Matthias Hoelle, David Burkhart|
|Original Assignee||Deis Robert M, Matthias Hoelle, Burkhart David G|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (14), Referenced by (5), Classifications (12), Legal Events (1)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This application claims priority to U.S. Provisional Application having Ser. No. 60/708,196, filed Aug. 15, 2005, entitled “METHODS AND APPARATUSES FOR MAKING LITHOGRAPHIC PLATES,” which application is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety for all purposes.
The present invention relates generally to the processing of lithographic plates. More particularly, the present invention relates to equipment for bending lithographic plates for the purpose of mounting and securing such plates on a press plate cylinder.
High-speed press operations are commonly used to print multi-color images such as those used in newspapers and the like. In such operations, individual lithographic plates are used to print the different colors found in a multi-color image. Such multi-color images therefore comprise a superimposed color image. The lithographic plates are carefully mounted on a printing press with respect to each other so that the individual color images formed on the printed surface are sufficiently registered to provide the desired clarity and sharpness in the final superimposed image. Otherwise, the final image can have ghost-like characteristics as a result of any plate misalignment.
A typical lithographic plate includes features such as flanges and openings that enable it to be mounted on a printing plate cylinder of a printing press. The configuration of these flanges and openings defines the alignment between plural plates installed on a printing press and provides the registration of the various colors of the printed image. Accordingly, precision metal working techniques for bending such flanges and forming such openings are used to ensure precision alignment between plural plates mounted on a printing press.
A typical machine used for forming a precision bend in a lithographic plate includes an anvil provided at the end of a supporting surface, a clamping device for clamping a plate to be bent to the supporting surface, and a mandrel for bending the plate around the anvil to form a flange. The anvil has an end with a forming surface that has a predetermined radius and a bend is made by rolling the plate around the radius of the forming surface of the anvil. In this way, the material of the plate conforms to the shape of the anvil to form a bend radius in the flange that is defined by the radius of the forming surface of the anvil. Machine tools for bending lithographic plates are described in U.S. Pat. No. Re. 31,938, reissued Jul. 9, 1985, to Klukow, U.S. Pat. No. 5,970,774 to Burgess et al., and U.S. Pat. No. 5,454,247 to Powers et al., the disclosures of which are incorporated herein by reference in their entirety for all purposes.
Lithographic plate bending machines, as presently known, suffer from certain limitations. Printing presses manufactured by different companies have lithographic plate receiving slots that require lithographic plates with mounting flanges having angles and bend radiuses different than those of other manufacturers. This requires the printer to either have multiple benders each with an anvil having an angle and radius unique to the printing press on which the lithographic plate is to be mounted or to remove and replace the anvils each time a lithographic plate is to be bent for a different printing press.
The present invention provides bending apparatuses and methods that can form lithographic plates for different printing press configurations without the need to use different anvils. In this regard, a single bending apparatus can be used to form lithographic plates having different configurations for printing presses made by different manufacturers. Methods and apparatuses in accordance with the present invention include forming a mounting flange on a printing plate. The mounting flange comprises first and second portions having an arcuate portion therebetween that defines a mounting flange angle. A bending device comprising a forming surface having a radius that is less than a desired radius for the arcuate portion can be used to form the arcuate portion in accordance with the present invention. This can be done by forming the arcuate portion to have a plurality of spaced apart bends that cooperatively define the arcuate portion.
In one aspect of the present invention a method of forming a mounting flange on a printing plate is provided. The mounting flange comprises first and second portions having an arcuate portion therebetween and defining a mounting flange angle. Generally, the method comprises the steps of defining a desired radius for the arcuate portion of the mounting flange, providing a bending device, and forming a plurality of spaced bends in the printing plate. In accordance with the present invention, the bending device comprises a forming surface having a radius selected to be less than the desired radius for the arcuate portion of the mounting flange. Each of the spaced bends is defined by the radius of the forming surface of the bending device wherein the plurality of spaced bends cooperatively define the desired bend radius for the arcuate portion of the mounting flange.
In another aspect of the present invention a method of forming a mounting flange on a printing plate is provided and includes moving a forming surface of a bending device relative to the printing plate to form a plurality of spaced bends. The mounting flange comprises first and second portions having an arcuate portion therebetween and defining a mounting flange angle. Generally, the method comprises the steps of defining a desired radius for the arcuate portion of the mounting flange, providing a bending device, and forming the arcuate portion in the printing plate. In accordance with the present invention, the bending device comprises a forming surface having a radius selected to be less than the desired radius for the arcuate portion of the mounting flange. The step of forming the arcuate portion of the mounting flange comprises positioning the forming surface of the bending device in a predetermined position relative to the printing plate, forming a first bend at a predetermined location in the printing plate wherein the first bend is defined by the radius of the forming surface of the bending device, and spacing the forming surface of the bending device relative to the first bend and forming at least one additional bend spaced from the first bend wherein the first bend and the at least one additional bend spaced from the first bend cooperatively define the desired bend radius for the arcuate portion of the mounting flange.
In another aspect of the present invention, an apparatus for forming a mounting flange on a printing plate is provided. The mounting flange comprises first and second portions having an arcuate portion therebetween and defining a mounting flange angle. The apparatus comprises a bending device that includes a supporting bed, an anvil and mandrel arrangement, means for selectively varying the relative position of the forming surface of the anvil of the bending device and a predetermined portion of a printing plate when positioned on the support surface, and a control system. The anvil comprises a forming surface having a predetermined radius and the mandrel is positioned relative to the forming surface of the anvil. The mandrel is capable of being controllably rotated about the forming surface of the anvil to bend a printing plate when positioned on the supporting surface. In accordance with the present invention, the control system comprises programming instructions that can direct the bending device to form a plurality of spaced bends in a printing plate. Each of the spaced bends is defined by the radius of the anvil of the forming surface of the bending device. The plurality of spaced bends cooperatively define a desired radius for the arcuate portion of the mounting flange and the desired radius of the arcuate portion is larger than the radius of the forming surface of the anvil of the bending device.
In yet another aspect of the present invention, a printing plate that can be mounted on a plate cylinder of a printing press is provided. The printing plate comprises a mounting flange comprising first and second portions having an arcuate portion therebetween and defining a mounting flange angle. The arcuate portion has a radius and comprises a plurality of spaced bends that cooperatively form the radius of the arcuate portion. Each individual bend of the plurality of bends has a radius less than the radius of the arcuate portion.
These and other features, aspects, and advantages of the present invention will become better understood with regard to the following description, appended claims, and accompanying drawings where:
Preferably, the first mounting flange 20 includes an alignment notch 34 and the second mounting flange 22 includes an alignment notch 36. The alignment notches 34 and 36 are used to align the printing plate 10 in a lateral or side-to-side manner when mounted on a plate cylinder of a printing press as conventionally known. The printing plate 10 also comprises an image 38 provided on a surface 40 of the body portion 28 of the printing plate 10. The image 38 preferably comprises first and second fiducial marks, 42 and 44, that can be used to align the image 38 on the printing plate 10 with an image on another printing plate such as when printing a composite color image, for example. The printing plate 10 may also include indicia (not shown) in the form of a bar code or other mark or means of identifying the printing plate 10. Such indicia can be used to identify a particular page of a newspaper or the like to be printed by the printing plate 10, for example.
The bend 50 has a radius R1, the bend 52 has a radius R2, and the bend 54 has a radius R3. As illustrated, the radiuses R1, R2, and R3 are nominally equal meaning that the radiuses R1, R2, and R3 are preferably defined by the same forming surface as described in more detail below. Together, the radiuses R1, R2, and R3 of the spaced bends 50, 52, and 54 define a bend radius R4 for the arcuate portion 26 which preferably corresponds with the design of the particular printing press that the printing plate 10 is to be mounted to. Because the bends 50, 52, and 54 are spaced by the linear portions 51 and 53, the bend radius R4 of the arcuate portion 26 is not a true geometric radius and can be thought of as an effective bend radius.
With reference to
After the printing plate 10 is exposed, it is chemically treated by the developing device 106 in a conventional manner and then transferred to the bending machine 108. The bending machine 108 then functions to bend the plate 10 to form the first and second flanges 20 and 22. In accordance with one aspect of the present invention, this can be done in such a way that a printing plate, such as the printing plate 10, can be formed to fit the particular press on which it is to be mounted without being limited by a specific radius of an anvil of the bending machine 108 as described in detail below. Different printing presses can have different mounting requirements including bend radiuses, flange angles, flange lengths, for example. The bending machine 108 can be used to make printing plates for such different mounting requirements as described below without having to retool the bending machine as is conventionally done. Another exemplary system that can be used to make the printing plate 10 is described in U.S. Pat. No. 5,502,993 to Powers et al., the entire disclosure of which is incorporated herein by reference for all purposes.
The process described above for forming the first and second bends 130 and 138 can be repeated as many times as desired to form a mounting flange having any desired geometry in accordance with the present invention. For example, as shown in
The mandrel 174 and clamping device 176 are designed so that they can be translated in a direction 184 generally perpendicular to the machine direction 166. In this way the clamping device 176 can clamp a printing plate to the anvil 172 during a bending operation. In order to function this way, the support structure 182, as shown, comprises a bracket 186 that supports the clamping device 176. The bracket 186 is slidably mounted to a shaft 188, as illustrated, and driven by a linear drive device 190 such as a pneumatic cylinder or the like that is mounted to the support structure 182. Preferably, the support structure 182 supports the clamping device 176 with a similar bracket drivable by a drive device 192 mounted to the support structure 182, as shown.
The mandrel 174 is mounted to the bracket 186 so that it can be translated together with the clamping device 176 in the direction 184 and so that it can controllably pivot with respect to the bracket 186 to bend a mounting flange in accordance with the present invention. As shown, the mandrel 174 is pivotably mounted to the bracket 186 with pivot plate 194. The mandrel 174 is also pivotably mounted to a bracket (not shown) of the support device 180 that is preferably similar to the bracket 186 by a pivot plate 196. The pivot plate 196 is functionally connected to a timing pulley 198. The timing pulley 198 can be driven by a drive pulley 200 of a servo motor 202 by a drive belt (not shown). This drive arrangement also includes an idler pulley 204, as shown. The illustrated pulley and motor drive arrangement is exemplary and any known or future developed device that can function to controllably pivot the mandrel 174 for bending a flange of a printing plate in accordance with the present invention can be used.
Preferably, the bending unit 158 is designed so that the bending unit 158 can be controllably translated along the machine direction 166. For example, the beam 178 can be supported by rails or slides (not shown) as supported by a support structure or frame or the like (not shown). As can be seen in both
The present invention has now been described with reference to several embodiments thereof. The entire disclosure of any patent or patent application identified herein is hereby incorporated by reference. The foregoing detailed description and examples have been given for clarity of understanding only. No unnecessary limitations are to be understood therefrom. It will be apparent to those skilled in the art that many changes can be made in the embodiments described without departing from the scope of the invention. Thus, the scope of the present invention should not be limited to the structures described herein, but only by the structures described by the language of the claims and the equivalents of those structures.
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|Cooperative Classification||B41F27/1281, B41C1/1083, B41N1/08, B41N1/14, B21D5/04|
|European Classification||B41C1/10S, B41N1/14, B41N1/08, B21D5/04, B41F27/12E|
|Oct 27, 2006||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: NELA TERNES REGISTER GROUP, INC., MINNESOTA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:DEIS, ROBERT M.;HOELLE, MATTHIAS;BURKHART, DAVID G.;REEL/FRAME:018467/0754;SIGNING DATES FROM 20061011 TO 20061017