Can You Put a Price Tag on Knowledge?

Daetwyler Finds a Nearly $1 Million Savings


A large corporate printing company had to spend $400,000 to replace multiple anilox rollers in the same year, and downtime for the switchover was adding up to nearly $1 million in lost business and equipment.

The client’s press team believed the deep scoring issues they were having were due to doctor blade defects or design, and asked Daetwyler to examine the issue.

Sandon Sleeve vs. Competitor Sleeve


All of the damaged anilox rollers suffered from the same problem: Damaged Ends

  • Unprotected ends allowed caustic cleaning chemicals to penetrate the roller interior over time.

  • These chemical residues caused fractures and splintering between the layers of the anilox.

  • As tiny fractures grow, small fragments of the anilox chip off the surface.

  • Chipped fragments typically end up getting picked up during the inking process, then get stuck on the edges of doctor blades.

  • The hard, sharp chipped piece gets pressed against the anilox, causing scoring.

Severe Score Lines
  • Doctor blades are also damaged by the hardened chipped pieces, creating problems with inconsistent lay down as well as ink leakage near the end seals.

Damage to Doctor Blade from ceramic particles
Damage to Doctor Blades from chipped ends

Besides the equipment damage listed above, the entire operational process becomes messier as leaking ink “slings” onto the web, and causes huge clean-up issues with every run. Even when chips are found and removed, blade and anilox damage still result in poor print quality and continued leaking until components are replaced. That kind of waste and downtime simply isn’t acceptable.


Sandon Global Anilox with End Protection + Non-Chemical Cleaning

While Daetwyler could have easily helped replace all the damaged anilox rollers, our main goal was to make sure the client wouldn’t have to repeat this process outside of normal useful equipment lifespan. That meant delivering a proposal that would help avoid future damage.

  • Sandon Global anilox rollers have bonded acrylic seals on the ends as well as solid, threaded end rings to minimize exposure of anilox ends and keep out caustic chemicals. The radius edge design also helps avoid chipping and similar damage.
Sandon Sleeve
  • LaserClean is a chemical-free process that thoroughly removes inks, adhesives, and other residues, without exposure to liquids that could penetrate anilox ends.
  • AniCAM HD is a microscopic hand-held tool that can identify potential end damage before chips start occurring, and can also identify even tiny score marks that may be impacting print quality.
  • Filtration on the ink system can remove foreign particles before they get trapped against doctor blades or anilox and cause damage.

  • An in-person or remote training session can demonstrate proper anilox handling methods to prevent damage from multiple sources.

  • Regular anilox audits and quality checks can catch anilox problems when repairs are still possible, rather than waiting for catastrophic failures.


It is incredibly common to think one issue is the source of all print quality challenges. The truth is that it’s almost always several factors that come together to create a “perfect storm” type situation.

While improper doctor blade set-up is known to cause anilox scoring, it may not be the only issue, or root cause. Anilox end damage is actually one of the most common causes for anilox replacement, and it’s also a problem that can be almost entirely avoided with the right cleaning, care, and maintenance procedures in place.

Without Daetwyler’s full Analyze, Design, Implement, Measure approach, the client would have spent $400,000 in new anilox, only to have scoring issues happen again after chemical cleaning caused the exact same damage.

Daetwyler’s proposal not only saves another round of replacement cost, but also helps preserve profitability by extending the life of equipment and ensuring peak print performance on every run (and with less mess).