IML / FIM
(In-Mold Labeling /
Film Insert Molding)

Thieme's new industrial digital printing system offers new possibilities for coloured and decorated injection-moulded parts. It meets the same requirements in terms of durability, adhesion or formability as apply in screen printing. The digital printing system's particular benefits comprise improved reproduction of colour gradients and the display of fine writing. Its high flexibility enables a more cost-effective small batch production.

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  • Contact

    04/30/2012

    Bernd_Klammer

    General Manager Printing Division
    Bernd Klammer
    Phone (630) 513-1666
    Fax (630) 513-1999
    bk@thieme-us.com



    Joe_Klint

    Western Region Manager
    Joe Klint

    Phone (214) 202-8546
    jk@thieme-us.com

The process

Synthetic foils are imprinted on the back, formed, pressed and then injected with an injection-moulding tool.



Printing

The HydroGel Technology which was developed in co-operation with printing colour manufacturer TRITRON combines high printing quality with inexpensive printing costs.
In contrast to the traditional digital printing process, in which the printing ink is fixed by UV light, HydroGel uses water-based inks which are fixed drop by drop using a special fluid which was carefully applied beforehand using the inkjet technique.
Despite of the fine resolution, the process enables the same high printing speed as the traditional UV process. The ink is processable regardless of process conditions and adheres very well|.
If functional properties are required, barrier or guiding layers may also be applied using screen printing. Thieme's standardised machine technology enables ideal conditions for accurate alignment.

IML_digitale_Bedruckung


Forming

First, the foil is printed flat on the back and then formed into its desired three-dimensional shape using high-pressure forming. The HydroGel print layer is temperature-resistant so that even higher temperatures do not pose any problems during this process step. Decorations imprinted via HPF are accurately maintained.

IML-Tiefziehen

Cutting

Now, the desired shape is punched out of the printed, unformed foil.

IML-Beschneiden


Back-injecting

For extra stability, the trimmed foil is injected with liquid plastic.

IML_Hinterspritzen

Areas of application

Typical areas of application of the new digital printing process include foil prints for switches and control panels in cars or household and medical devices.
Owing to its high temperature resistance, the technology can also be used in other applications, e.g. in bank card manufacturing which involves high-temperature laminating processes.

Beispiele IML.jpg

Locations

THIEME Corporation
3605 Swenson Avenue
St. Charles, IL 60174

Phone +1-630-513-1666
Fax     +1-630-513-1999
info@thieme-us.com