Masterbatch colour consistency from batch to batch
To supply quality masterbatch, it is very important to be able to reproduce colours that are consistent from batch to batch, this in turn provides the end user with the peace of mind that each time they use our colour masterbatches, they will be producing a shade very close to the standard. There are a number of factors which influence the colour consistency and all these need to be managed carefully, both by the masterbatch producer as well as the end user of the product.
Factors that the masterbatch producer needs to take in to consideration are:
1) Correct formulation type and initial matching, this includes the choice of the most suitable pigment, process aid and if required additive system.
2) Correct initial establishment of the colour standard and retention of standard sample
3) Correct storage and maintenance of the colour standard on the computer/spectrophotometer data base
4) Management of the batch vs the standard with each production run.
Factors that the end user needs to take in to consideration are:
1) Correct establishment of the standard and recording of the masterbatch code used to produce the standard, which must include polymer grade used, dosage, machine type and all processing conditions.
2) Correct storage and housekeeping of standards, with standards being signed off by authorised personnel.
3) Management of standards on computer/spectrophotometer database with no changing of standards unless communicated with the masterbatch producer.
4) If any changes are to be made to Polymer Type, Machine Type, or Processing conditions, the masterbatch is sampled first to check if these factors have an effect on the desired shade. The most important factor in all of the above is that the standards that are established by both the masterbatch producer and the end user is one and the same, ideally via a common colour chip being signed off by both parties and then being stored on both parties colour database/spectrophotometer if possible.