Massilly North America based in Brantford, Ontario, has installed Esko’s software suite to drive a new computer-to-plate system focused on print-packaging work in the food and beverage industries.

Massilly North America, a subsidiary of The Massilly Group, a France-based supplier of closures, food cans, decorative tins, and aerosol cans through 20 subsidiaries located around the world, is focused on metal twist closures and sealing machines for the sector. Last May, the Brantford operation installed Esko’s DeskPack, Plato, FlexRIP, and FlexProof products to drive the then newly installed CTP system, based the company’s decision to bring platemaking in-house.

“For starters, we wanted a one-click step & repeat operation, from a one-up image to a full sheet layout, integrated with print production controls, such as color bars and trim marks,” stated Julius Stampacchia, Quality Assurance Manager, Massilly North America. “We did not want to manually manipulate files of all artwork sizes to make a plate. We wanted something that was quick, consistent and repeatable.”

Stampacchia explains the operation wanted a workflow that integrated with Adobe Illustrator and supporting plug-ins. Adobe Illustrator at Massilly is used for design and trapping, driven by Esko DeskPack PowerTrapper for Illustrator. He continues to explain Esko’s Automation Engine is then used to take the file and drive the rest of the process. Plato automatically conducts the step & repeat functions, providing optimized sheet layouts. FlexProof provides contract proofs. Device independent FlexRip delivers flexibility and quality control tools to ensure plate consistency and accuracy during RIPping, sending the final file to the platesetter.

“[With Automation Engine] we are able send email messages to the customer, or larger supply chain groups,” explains Stampacchia, “to approve the artwork with a link to the files – saving the file to a folder to wait for reviews… We are also able to check the diameter of one-up images, check colour accuracy, make sure filenames match up, and that all corrections have been applied.”

BOLDER Graphics of Calgary has installed three new EFI VUTEk wide-format inkjet systems, which the company describes as the largest single such installation in Canada, delivering a combined 6,250 square feet of output per hour on rigid or flexible materials.

“The new capacity will have a huge impact on our retail advertising, outdoor display, vehicle graphics and corporate packaging products,” stated David Watt, Vice President of Bolder Graphics.

BOLDER’s new VUTEk GS3250LX roll-to-roll and two Vutek GS2000LX super wide flatbed inkjet printers also provide white ink channels and LED UV curing. BOLDER was founded more than 40 years and currently employs 60 people.

Moveable Inc. of Toronto has installed two Xerox Versant 2100 presses, which represent the first installation in Canada of this new toner press platform first unveiled in April 2014.

The redesigned imaging system of the Versant press uses a new compact belt fuser handling substrate weights from 52 to 300 GSM at 100 pages per minute (ppm), as well weights of above 300 to 350 GSM at 80 ppm. The press prints with what Xerox labels as new Ultra HD Resolution, in which reproductions are rendered at 1,200 x 1,200 dpi at up to 10 bits. For registration, Versant 2100 uses Production Accurate Registration in addition to what the company refers to as Full Width Array technology.

Joe Kotler, Principal of Moveable, in an email outlines three key advantages that the two Versant systems will provide Moveable:

1. Outstanding image quality: These presses boast double the output resolution of our previous Xerox 7000s.

2. Wider range of compatible stocks: We recently ran a job on 130-lb Cougar Cover and it ran like a charm. We could not have done that on our previous machines. The Versants also perform well with linen sheets.

3. No fuser oil: This is a big one. Unlike previous generations of toner-based digital presses, the Versants do not apply fuser oil to the surface of printed sheets. Rather the fusing agent is built right into the toner, avoiding that oily sheen that characterized output from older digital devices. Sheets coming off the Versant 2100s are hard to tell apart from offset.

Moveable, founded in 1983, is one of Canada’s earliest adopters of digital printing technology having installed Canon 500s systems more than 20 years ago. Moveable then upgraded to the Canon 550s before moving to Xerox technology with the DocuColor 40s. The company’s digital-printing platform change was soon followed with an upgrade installation of two Xerox 2045s, then two Xerox 7000s, and now the two Xerox Versant 2100s.

Moveable has also maintained a healthy technological growth in bindery equipment to produce short- to medium-run projects based on its digital printing engines. Working closely with the design community, the unique company also provides services like typesetting, proofreading, colour correction, retouching and scanning, in addition to large-format printing. A sister company Moveable Online provides digital strategy and web/mobile development services.

Today, Kotler explains approximately 25 percent of Moveable’s overall printing revenue is generated through the Xerox toner presses, while 75 percent remains offset produced by Heidelberg technology.

“Our digital printing focus has always been on high-quality projects that require fast turnarounds. Our clients are mainly designers and creative agencies who are very demanding when it comes to colour fidelity and image quality, but at the same time are always under the gun to get projects turned around quickly,” says Kotler. “That's the sweet spot for us and for these new Versant 2100s. They are 50 percent faster than our previous generation Xerox machines, and the output quality is superior. Those attributes go to the heart of our service offering, which is why it was an easy decision for us when it came time to replace our old 7000s.”

Albion Screen Printing of Gatineau, Quebec, expanded its wide-format-printing capabilities with the recent installation of a new Agfa Titan HS inkjet system.

Founded 40 years ago, Albion, using traditional screen-printing methods and wide-format inkjet systems, produces applications like labels, decals, nameplates, displays, signs, murals and vehicle graphics.

Building on Agfa’s existing Jeti Titan series of UV-curable wide-format printers, the new Titan S and HS machines incorporate the latest generation of Ricoh Gen 5 print heads with 1,280 nozzles. The Jeti Titan S is equipped with one row of print heads, but it is field upgradeable to two rows. The Jeti Titan HS (high-speed), such as the machine purchased by Albion, is equipped with the two rows from the outset.

The ink system on both the Jeti Titan HS and Jeti Titan S is set at six colours plus white (CMYKLcLmWW). Both Jeti Titans feature a 2x3-metre flatbed design and produce a 7-picoliter droplet size, which allows for the production of photorealistic images with fine 4-point text.

Multi-Action Labels of Quebec City continues its growth into short-run and prototyping label work with a DSI UV inkjet press, a North American-first installation, that remains as the only such system in Canada.

Developed by SPGPrints of The Netherlands, the unique 330-mm (13-inch) wide, eight-colour DSI press, which has been running at Multi-Action since 2012, is designed for high-quality, just-in-time label production. It is described by Multi-Action as a complete print-converting line for single-pass production and complements three existing ETI flexo lines in the company’s pressroom.

“The quality achieved by the DSI press and SPGPrints’ inks has been amazing, and has enabled us to deliver high-impact designs that have enhanced our customers’ brands and boosted their sales,” stated Jonathan Bourbonnière, President of Multi-Action Labels. He continues to explain Multi-Action is working to leverage its unique press position by collaborating with other label printers, particularly those with flexo-only assets, who need fast turnaround or variable-imaging work.

Bourbonnière describes the UV inkjet-based DSI as producing identical quality to the flexographic process, which provides Multi-Action with the flexibility to switch any analogue job shorter than 10,000 square feet [3,048 metres] onto the inkjet machine. Multi-Action’s job run lengths on the SPGPrints DSI average 260 square metres (850 feet). The press is rated to reach speeds of up to 35 metres per minute (114 feet per minute).

In addition to CMYK, the DSI at Multi-Action has been customised with options including orange and violet, to cover over 90 percent of the colour gamut, opaque white, and a digital primer. The press features intermediate LED pinning and a chill drum, as standard features, while Multi-Action also installed some inline converting options on its press. This includes a flexo coating station and semi-rotary diecutting technology supplied by AB Graphic.  

The press uses SPGPrints’ proprietary inks that provide BWS-7 lightfastness and high scratch resistance relative to traditional inkjet systems. The company also leverages Esko’s Automation software to automate step-repeat functions.

Best Color Press Ltd. of Vancouver, British Columbia, expanded its trade-printing operation with the installation of a six-colour Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 75 with coating and UV capabilities.

The Speedmaster XL 75, running a maximum sheet size of 530 x 750 mm (20.87 x 29.53 inches), reaches production speeds of up to 15,000 sheets per hour with UV production. Best Color, founded in 1989, runs a range of sheetfed presses, as well as prepress and post-press services.

In addition to continuing to run its original single-colour Heidelberg MO for small print jobs, Best Color’s press fleet includes the Speedmaster XL 75; a 10-colour Heidelberg Speedmaster SM 102 perfector; and a 6-colour, 40-inch press also equipped with UV decks.

“Many jobs do not require a 40-inch press; short runs, 6-page brochures, presentation folders, etcetera,” says Best Color CEO Sunny Chan, describing some of his rationale behind installing the 29 ½-inch XL 75. “We can plan jobs more efficiently, which increases productivity. UV print is a very important part of the Vancouver market, so I must have this ability to serve my clients. This press suited all of my needs at this time.”

Chan also points to the XL 75’s flexibility to change sheet size and thickness on a job-by-job basis, which is primarily driven through the press’ new generation Intellistart Operating System. Best Color’s XL 75 also includes Wallscreen and AxisControl systems for automating operator control. The press’ UV system, developed by IST METZ GmbH, features interdeck and end of press curing, allowing Best Color to expand its use of substrates into more plastics and foils.

Employing more than 50 full-time workers, Best Color provides its services primarily to the print community of Greater Vancouver, but also to surrounding areas and south into the United States. “I offer good service, good quality and timely delivery to my clients. As a result of this many of my daily print runs are from repeat clients. That tells me I am doing something right,” says Chan. “We don’t advertise in traditional ways, and you won’t find me on Twitter, but we grow and put the equipment in our plant that our clients need to be successful.”

SupremeX Inc. of Montreal announced a $500,000 investment to install a Winkler + Dunnebeir 234DL inkjet-based press into its Ville LaSalle plant.

The 234DL machine was developed specifically to produce full-colour, personalized direct mail and can print static and variable images on a range of substrates at speeds of up to 30,000 pieces per hour.

SupremeX, self described as Canada’s largest provider of envelopes and related packaging products with approximately 500 employees, plans to launch this new printing service to its Canadian and United States’ customer base in the fourth quarter of 2014.

“[The] press will enable us to offer value added, full colour print services to our valued direct-mail and corporate client groups on both sides of the border,” stated Stewart Emerson, President and Chief Operating Officer of SupremeX. “Mailing a printed envelope continues to offer marketers the highest open and read rates and recall values when compared to all other media and remains an important tool for building customer relationships and brand equity.”

Bassett Direct of Richmond Hill, Ontario, one of Canada’s variable-data-printing pioneers, has installed Canada’s first Xeikon 8600 press, which is unique in the market for its combination of true 1,200-dpi resolution, four-bit depth and 20.2-inch format.

“The Xeikon 8600 has given us the ability to do something in our shop that very few companies in North America are doing,” stated Rich Bassett, President and owner of Bassett Direct, which works closely with clients to build marketing programs. “The press is a powerful tool for the growth of our variable colour, one-to-one marketing applications. It’s the right technology to produce the volume and quality our customers expect.”

The Xeikon 8600 prints at 1,200 x 3,600-dpi resolution and is capable of handling monthly duty cycles of up to 6-million pages. The press prints on both sides of the substrate simultaneously and can handle web widths of up to 20.2 inches. The 8600 is also capable of handling media weights from 27-lb text up to 350-gsm/130-lb cover stock.

“We’re proud to partner with a leader like Bassett Direct,” stated Todd Blumsack, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Xeikon America. "They’ve been at the top of their game for two decades and their innovative use of Xeikon technology is validation of our team’s position in the market.”

Tri-Tech Canada of Pickering, Ontario, installed a Duplo DPB-500 perfect binder. Founded in 1974, Tri-Tech focuses on commercial printing and publications, including magazines, books and catalogues.

The Duplo DPB-500, purchased through Sydney Stone, features a single-clamp design and is rated for a top speed of 525 cycles per hour. The machine is designed for short to medium runs, handling book sizes of up to 14.17 x 12.6 inches, as well as variable data production. It also includes automatic book-thickness detection for side glue and cover scoring.

Sina Printing of Markham, Ontario, which operates SinaLite, installed a Brausse 1050 SE a few months ago and is now in full production with the industrial die-cutting system.

The Brausse 1050 SE handles a maximum sheet size of up to 41 1/8 x 29 1/2 inches at a top speed of 7,500 sheets per hour. Sina plans to use the system primarily for the production of presentation folders, door hangers, and a range of packaging products. The device complements a recently installed B&R Moll Marathon folder and gluer, which is also focused on producing presentation folders and packaging products.

The Markham trade printer explains the Brausse 1050 SE provides the ability to handle all of their customers’ die-cutting needs in-house. Sina also explains the installation is in line with its vision to enter deeper into packaging work.

Capital Colour of Edmonton, Alberta, added a new Kuda 115 cutting system, sold through K-North Services, to its production floor.

Capital Colour was founded in 1979 as a graphic design and prepress shop before purchasing a press to offer printing services. Today, Capital Colour is described as a full-service printer with a 6-colour Komori press with coater and a 29-inch four-colour Komori, among other systems.


Les Entreprises Lamcoil Inc. of Laval, Quebec, boosted its finishing department with the addition of three Standard Horizon finishing systems, including a StitchLiner 5500 saddle-stitcher, a AFC-566FG automated folder, and a BQ-280 PUR perfect binder.

Lamcoil, which began operating in 1995, specializes in offset and digital print finishing. The company provides services like lamination, die-cutting, gluing, die-making and now short-run PUR perfect binding, short-run saddle-stitching and folding services.
The range of new equipment from Standard Horizon was purchased through KBR Graphics, which is to also provide support for the equipment. This new round of equipment for Lamcoil follows its late-2013 purchase of a Standard Horizon CRF-362 creaser and folder, which was also acquired through KBR Graphics.

“With the addition of these new automated machines, we [can] now provide a combination of speed and flexibility, which will enable us to provide shorter time delays for our customers while still delivering on the quality that they have come to expect,” stated Patrick L'Écuyer, President at Lamcoil.
The Standard Horizon StitchLiner 5500 saddle-stitcher, designed for flat-sheet collating of short to long production runs, runs at up to 11,000 two-up booklets an hour. A 4-page signature concept scores and then folds, explains KBR Graphics, thus eliminating the time-consuming intermediate folding process required for 8- and 16-page formats. The device, with inline three-knife trimming, delivers stitching on booklets up to 10-mm thick.
The Standard Horizon AFC-566FG automated floor model folder is equipped with six fold plates, allowing for a wide variety of fold patterns, runs at speeds of up to 42,000 sheets per hour.

The Standard Horizon BQ-280PUR perfect binder is a single-clamp PUR system with speeds of up to 400 books per hour. It is described as being well suited for the production of digitally printed books, personalized photo books, smaller sample runs, and other ultra short-run work. It also includes an automated, sensor-activated digital caliper system for consistent measurement of book block thickness. It allows for producing an extended spine length up to 15.5 inches.

Calculated Design of Cambridge, Ontario, has upgraded from its DigiFold MK1 finishing system to the new Morgana DigiFold PRO.

The DigiFold PRO, purchased through Sydney Stone, is an automatic creasing and folding machine designed specifically to provide such processes on toner printed materials, as well as heavyweight or cross-grained stock. The system reaches a top speed of up to 6,000 sheets per hour and features what Morgana refers to as a new smart screen setup.

Calculated Design, founded more than 15 years ago, also purchased the optional Narrow Crease matrix in order to crease and fold text weight stocks.

The Toronto Public Library is now offering visitors a book printing service called Asquith Press, which enables people to both design and print paperback books.

The Asquith Press is located on the main floor of the Toronto Reference Library in the recently opened Digital Innovation Hub, which provides workshops and a range of information sources. (Read Victoria Gaitskell’s article on the Digital Innovation Hub, which also provides 3D printing services, PrintAction April 2014.)

“For the first time ever, we’re able to print books right here at the library. We’re excited to offer this service to everyone – authors, aspiring authors and hobbyists – and to see their books come off the press,” said Jane Pyper, City Librarian at Toronto Public Library. “Asquith Press is the latest in a series of innovations that we’re introducing to give Toronto residents access to new technologies.”

There are also options to print books from the library’s digital archive, as well as a database of more than three million book titles. The Toronto Public Library is one of the world's busiest urban public library systems. Every year, 19 million people visit Toronto Public Library branches and borrow 32 million items.

Advocate Printing & Publishing acquired a new Duplo 646 finishing system with all-in-one capabilities as a slitter, cutter, creaser and perforator for its production facility in Dieppe, New Brunswick.

Purchased through Sydney Stone, the mid-range Duplo DC-646 device was first launched in January 2014 to succeed the DC-645. The new version performs up to six slits, 25 cuts, and 20 creases in a single pass (compared to six slits, 15 cuts and 10 creases on the DC-645). The DC-646, according to Duplo, prevents toner cracking on fold lines at up to 30 sheets per minute.

The DC-646 has an optional rotary tool and cross-perforating modules, as well as enhanced feeding for the ability to produce business cards, without a dedicated business card module, as well as new options for perforating. With the DC-646, users can produce 24-up business cards on 12 x 18-inch sheets or 36-up on 14 x 26 sheets, as well as produce work like slit-score greeting cards, micro-perforated coupons, and direct mailers with tear-away cards.

“With other Duplo equipment at our plant in Dieppe, New Brunswick, we had confidence in the product range, and after previously reviewing the Duplo 645 at Graph Expo we recognized the additional features with this latest model and knew it was the correct solution for us,” stated Jason Hamilton, Director of Digital Operations at Advocate.

With business roots dating back to 1891, Advocate is based in Pictou, Nova Scotia, and collectively runs more than 10 printing and publishing operations in Eastern Canada.

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