In 2008, the company changed its name to Groupe Lettra Inc. and acquired industrial printing equipment making it one of the first companies in Quebec to move in this direction for wide-format imaging.
Lettra today specializes in all types of vehicle lettering and large-format printing on both rigid and flexible medias. The company’s new Anapurna M3200i RTR is a 3.2-metre wide roll-to-roll UV inkjet printer that produces indoor and outdoor applications at speeds of up to 123 metres square per hour.
The fully automatic Duplo DPB500 features a single-clamp design for speeds of up to 525 cycles per hour, while operators can adjust, program and save up to 20 different jobs. Its automation, explains Duplo, makes it well suited for short-run and variable-data production.
To change format sizes, for example, operators select one of the stored memories, load the book in the clamp, and press the size change key to initiate the process. The side glue wheels, scoring wheels and cover positioning guide will automatically move into the desired position, according to the thickness of the loaded book. Once the size change is completed, covers can be loaded into the cover-feed section which provides controls where the operator can make and verify any adjustments aligning it with the nipping section.
Friesens Corporation of Altona, Manitoba, installed a Heidelberg Speedmaster XL-75-5+L press with coating. The company is one of North America’s leading book, yearbook and packaging manufacturers serving publishers, institutions, schools and businesses from two facilities in Altona. The 110-year-old printing company employs approximately 600 people in more than 250,000 square feet of space.
The Speedmaster XL 75 is Friesens’ first mid-size press in a plant dominated by VLF offset equipment, including a 73-inch, 8-colour Manroland R900 HiPrint XXL perfecting press installed in mid-2015 (featured as PrintAction's September 2015 cover story, World Book Giant).
Friesens’ new Heidelberg XL-75 replaced an older generation Heidelberg CD 102 press. “This press will be predominantly used for book covers and, when we analyzed the business, 80 percent of the forms would fit the 23 x 29 format,” said Byron Loeppky, GM of Friesens. “ The other 20 percent we can simply run a few more sheets to make up for the smaller layout. It is a short-run market.”
The Speedmaster XL 75 is equipped with features branded by Heidelberg as Push to Stop technology, including: Inpress Control 2, automatic colour and register measurement, Auto Plate Pro fully automated plate loading, and automated wash programs. This technology is now driven by Heidelberg’s recently introduced (May 2016) Intellistart 2 press software, activated through the Press Center XL with Wallscreen. These features can allow the press to process jobs autonomously within Heidelberg’s Push To Stop operating philosophy.
“We may have downsized the format, but we have upsized the technology,” added Friesens’ Andrew Fennell. “The plan was to drive automation into our process. This press can make job changes in 50 percent less time than our older press, and doing it with one operator. The technology is like having a second man. We are putting more sheets on the floor each day. All the targets are being met or exceeded, and we are still in a learning curve.”
The Fifth Imaging Unit of the NexPress platform, to be leveraged by Innovative Design & Print, provides Dimensional Clear Dry Ink for a tactile feel with raised or textured printing for a 3D effect; Clear Dry Ink for watermarking, spot or flood-coating techniques; and Light Black Dry Ink for what the company describes as ultra high-quality printing, particularly with neutral tones, gray layers and flat fields.
“Innovative was looking for a new digital press with long sheet capabilities and high-resolution imaging for photo products,” said Calvin Frey, President, Innovative Design & Print. “We spent time doing our research and performing press tests and chose to proceed with the NexPress. We have been very impressed by the image quality, the flexibility of the press and the reliability.”
The Achieve T800, leveraging Kodak’s thermal imaging technology, features a compact footprint and consumes up to 70 percent less power than previous CTP generations. By combining this CTP installation with a switch to Kodak Sonora XP process-free thermal plates, Imprimerie BBM also eliminated plate processing and, therefore, chemicals in the plate-making process. The new technology is also designed to reduce water consumption and energy costs.
At 2,400 dpi, the Achieve T800 has a rated throughput, for plate sizes of 1,030 x 800 mm, of 16 plates per hour (S speed) and 22 plates per hour (F Speed). Plates go directly from the CTP to the press, which Kodak explains to eliminate processing variability, resulting in fewer remakes and higher quality on press.
Designed to be run by a single operator, the Océ ProCut flatbed cutter leverages a modular tool system, which can simultaneously cut and crease a piece of cardboard, or transition from routing a piece of Dibond to kiss-cutting a roll of vinyl. The machine’s vacuum system automatically adjusts to materials put on the table.
The Océ Arizona is a UV-curable inkjet printing system aimed at mid-volume print producers. It is available with a Roll Media Option and features Océ VariaDot grayscale printing technology.
The drives and controls upgrade involved replacing existing consoles with new Omnicon and Omnicolor consoles, new Siemens PLC CPU hardware, controllers and drives. Goss technicians rebuilt the ink fountains on eight existing units and added new four- and 16-channel driver boards, embedded controller boards, ink fountain balls, and single piece ink keys. The Omni Make-Ready package, a combination of hardware and software functions, is designed to reduce waste.
“We have invested a significant amount of money into this press to ensure longevity and reliability, says Ted Schneider, Maintenance and Engineering Manager of RBW Graphics. “The new upgrades will also help to gain efficiencies and help to provide consistency in quality. By adding the Omnicon control system to this press, it aligns with the operating platforms on our other Goss Sunday presses which all run the Omnicon system.”
Their new finishing systems purchased from KBR Graphics, the exclusive Canadian distributor for Standard Horizon, includes a CRF-362 creaser/folder that will be primarily be used for handling digital colour output across a range of coated or uncoated light and heavy weight stocks.
In 2009, Imprimerie Bourg Royal, led by President Yves Paquet, shifted its production toward digital printing. The CRF-362 can be used for one-pass processing of applications like restaurant menus, greeting cards, book covers and many types of marketing collateral.
“Attaining an accurately finished product is categorically the most-important step the production of digitally printed material,” said Karl Belafi Jr., Vice President KBR Graphics Ltd. “The CRF-362 is a really good fit for them and we are so pleased on how the operators have easily taken to the equipment and have hit the ground running.”
In addition to the creaser/folder, Imprimerie Bourg Royal purchased a Horizon SPF/FC-200A booklet-maker with a VAC-1000 collator. This upgrade replaced a 20-year-old Horizon system. The SPF/FC-200A is described as a high-performance inline bookletmaking system with collating, stitching, folding and fore-edge trimming.
The SPF/FC-200A can process up to 4,500 books per hour and features a 200-job memory storage and an icon-based touch-screen for job set-up. The 10-station VAC-1000 collator features a patented rotary-pulse vacuum feed system, which can operate at speeds up to 9,900 sets per hour. The system is expandable from one to six towers, with the ability to run in both directions at full rated speed.
Driven by Agfa’s Asanti workflow, the Jeti Tauro LED is a 100-inch (2.5 metre) wide hybrid UV printer with an integrated roll-to-roll system. It is designed to reach speeds of up to 2960 square feet per hour and can feed a range of media including corrugated board.
The Tauro uses an adaptive vacuum system to hold corrugated and thin media flat for accurate ink placement. Its automated board feeder (ABF) can process up to four boards automatically, which Agfa claims to increase production efficiency by up to 30 percent. The white ink capability of the Tauro expands applications to backlit POP/POS or for using white as a spot colour on both rigid and roll media.
The new Jeti Ceres RTR3200 LED, aimed at higher-quality work, reaches speeds of up to 2,002 square feet per hour (186 square metres) on flexible media for both indoor and outdoor applications. The 126-inch (3.2-metre) wide roll-to-roll system provides six colours plus white to enhance the opacity, boost colour contrast, and improve text readability.
Earlier this month, CJ Graphics announced the addition of a six-colour Heidelberg XL106 press to its existing sheetfed-offset line-up of two 6-colour XL presses. The company’s most recent XL106 press is equipped with an Anilox AQ coater and Inpress Control, which CJ Graphics explains will be directed toward Heidelberg’s recently introduced Push To Stop operating philosophy. In late September, CJ Graphics began to install two fully loaded Xerox iGen 5 presses.
The company’s most recent XL106 press is equipped with an Anilox AQ coater and Inpress Control, which CJ Graphics explains will be directed toward Heidelberg’s recently introduced Push To Stop operating philosophy – unveiled at drupa 2016 in conjunction with its Press Center XL 2 with Intellistart 2 technology.
The Push to Stop concept is to have the press initiate a series of print jobs that are properly queued up by Heidelberg’s Prinect software, which also relies on the new-generation Press Center XL 2 console, Intellistart 2 and assistance systems such as Intelliguide.
Depending on ink layout down and imposition, print jobs can then run consistently without operator intervention. Ultimately, the technology platform can also leverage colour management tools to reach pre-specified Delta levels and tagging systems in the press delivery.
Push to Stop is available for the new generation Speedmaster, covering the series XL 75, CX/SX 102, XL 106 and XL 145/162, which are equipped with the Prinect Press Center XL 2, the Wallscreen XL, and AutoPlate Pro or AutoPlate XL 2 and Inpress Control 2 automation components.
The press is driven by Heidelberg’s recently introduced Press Center XL featuring Intellistart 2 operating software, which the press maker describes as providing for autonomous processing of jobs at speeds of up to 18,000 sheets per hour.
Premier Printing explains, as a manufacturer of school, college and university agendas, as well as general commercial printing, when agenda season hits, the plant must double production and meet stringent deadlines. This created a backlog on its current sheetfed offset presses, including a Speedmaster XL-106-10P and a Speedmaster SM 74-8P+L. The new Speedmaster has filled the gap for the 2/2 signatures that are typical in this printing business.
“AutoPlate Pro is a gift,” said Tom Bennet, Special Projects Manager, Premier Printing. “Agenda run lengths are 300 to 1,500 per form, so we are performing up to 150 plate changes per day. Job changes on the 4P were as low as 1½ minutes. Keeping plates coming is the new challenge.”
Another of Premier’s recent investments for productivity improvement came in the installation of a TH-82-P Stahl folder with PFX feeder. Capable of running signatures at 18,000 pieces per hour, the company explains this folder has doubled the amount of throughput in its finishing department.
“This new folder is a game changer. Of all the areas in our plant, folding was the real bottleneck,” said Ted Gortemaker, Operations Manager at Premier. “The ease of operation, set up and throughput is amazing. Watching skids of print disappear is stunning. Using the pallet feeding and Palamides stacking table has greatly reduced the operator work level required.”
Founded in 1962, Premier Printing today employs 80 full-time staff, and up to 120 part-time staff during agenda season, in a 75,000-square-foot facility in Winnipeg’s St. Boniface Industrial Park.
The postpress upgrade made by the company over the past several months includes a series of equipment installations to better support a growing range of work. The equipment package includes a Mohr 80 NET paper cutter, Morgana Digifold PRO, Morgana AF System 2000 bookletmaker with square fold unit, Horizon BQ 140 perfect binder and a Challenge EH3C drill.
“With developing our new e-commerce Website, we knew our finishing capabilities needed to be looked at to ensure we can meet the demands and expectations of our client base,” said Nabeela Anjum of Mr. Printer. “Maximum efficiency with quality output was the foundation for our selection of the equipment. More Specifically, we now have the ability to do short, medium and longer run booklet making.
“We are now offering quick turnaround perfect binding jobs which we previously could not do,” continued Anjum, “and with the addition of the Digifold PRO creaser/folder we can offer a wide range of paper stocks for folding applications that are full colour without any cracking.”
Sydney Stone, established in 1951, focuses on the distribution and service of digital finishing technologies by representing global brands like Morgana, MOHR, EBA, Vivid, Watkiss and Duplo.
The Xerox iGen 5 digital presses hold a complete set of available features and options. “The new iGen 5 technology is a game changer, with revolutionary capabilities, including matte toner, extended gamut to achieve up to 93 percent of reproducible PMS colours – with orange, blue, green, white and clear dry ink – and 24-point thick stock kit,” said Mandarino, CEO and President of CJ Graphics Inc. “The iGen 5 is fast, and with the new features you are only limited by your imagination. We’re proud to be the first in the world to have the complete set of features to deliver more value to our clients.”
C.J. Graphics’ Xerox iGen 5 presses, as mentioned, include the fifth colour station with an abilty to swap in White Dry Ink for specialty effects. The flagship press platform for Xerox was introduced in mid-2015. It provides 2,400 x 2,400-dpi imaging, as well as what the company labels as Object Oriented Halftoning, Xerox Confident Colour and Auto Density Control.
With purchase of the new building, renovations and new equipment, C.J. Group explained at the time of the announcement in early 2017, that it will be investing more than $25 million in its expansion. In addition to the new Xerox presses, Mandarino explained the company is adding full mailing services, a new sheetfed litho press, and a new large format press as it moves into the plant, in addition to expansion of its bindery and other divisions.
The MGI JETvarnish 3D Evolution is described by Konica Minolta as the world’s first B1+ scalable sheetfed digital enhancement press. The technology eliminates the need for films, dies, screens and make-readies for the efficient production of foil stamping jobs from one to thousands of sheets, with an ability to run fully personalized short, medium and long runs for complex print and packaging applications.
“Innovation and market leadership have always been our guiding principle at Horseshoe Press,” said Dickey Tam, President and Owner of Horseshoe Press, which was founded in 1988. “Working with an experienced team from Focus Pre-Press and Konica Minolta helped us recognize the opportunity to rapidly grow our business.
"We are excited to expand our offering and bring differentiated products and services to our clients at price-points that simply cannot be matched with traditional finishing methods," said Tam. "With the continued support of both companies, we are confident that this will prove to be a wise investment for Horseshoe Press.”
The JETvarnish 3D Evolution also leverages MGI’s industry-unique Artificial Intelligence SmartScanner (AIS), which provides precision accuracy by using AI to automate varnish and hot foil registration for inkjet heads over the pre-printed sheet.
The enhancement press provides digital foiling with an upgradeable inkjet expansion system with three substrate size options ranging from 52 x 120 cm (20 x 47 inches) to 64 x 120 cm (25 x 47 inches) and 75 x 120 cm (29 x 47 inches). It produces digitally embellished images, text, data and brand designs using spot varnish, 3D raised varnish and digitally embossed foil in a single pass.
“Having recently delivered our first MGI JETvarnish 3D Evolution in Ontario, we are excited to see the adoption of this innovative technology gaining momentum across Canada,” said Chris Dewart, President and CEO, Konica Minolta Business Solutions Canada. “By delivering shorter-run, personalized and high-impact printed material, Horseshoe Press has a premium print offering that will delight their customers and grow their business profitably.”
With this addition, WestKey Graphics becomes the first print provider in North America to have all five ink options for the iGen 5’s fifth station, enabling the company to take on new applications that replicate client brand colours.
Alfie Karmal, President and CEO of Westkey, explains the company previously relied on offset for colour matching. Additionally, some he explains some clients had a preference for more matte-quality finishes, which meant jobs needed to be outsourced. At Westkey, demand was also high for weighted stocks in the production of short-run, point-of-sale materials and packaging.
With the I Gen 5, Westkey explains it will be able to produce digitally printed folding carton packaging, such as gable and wine boxes, as well as flexible labels and high-end point-of-sale pieces with full variability. Along with digital colour accuracy, the fifth station allows for matte-finish options, short-run flexibility and the use of thicker stock materials, and additional orange, green, blue, Clear Dry Ink and White Dry Ink capabilities.
“We are excited to be investing in the innovative technology behind the iGen 5 and White Dry Ink. Now, we’ll be able to continue our leadership in the market. This technology, along with our partnership with Xerox, allows us to do more work in digital than we previously did on offset,” said Karmal. “We’re able to lead our market in short-run packaging and now have the means to grow our business with existing customers, by offering more innovative applications.”
Introduced at PRINT 17 in Chicago, White Dry Ink will be available for installations beginning October 2, 2017.
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Labelexpo Americas 2018
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