Sheetfed Offset

Komori America has announced it will be launching the digital presses it showed at drupa as early as 2013. The two prototype devices, the Impremia IS29 and the IW20, are collaborations with Konica Minolta, who will be supplying the inkjet printhead technology.

“Komori has been working on this new product line for the past several years, and we are very pleased that we are able to bring these cutting edge new technologies to market,” said Jacki Hudmon, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Komori America. “We listened to our customers, and are bringing what we believe is the best solution for the changing printing landscape.”

The IS29 is a B2-format sheetfed UV inkjet press that can operate in perfecting or straight mode, printing on up to 18 point board substrates. It runs at 3,300 sheets per hour in straight mode. The IW20 is a 20-inch webfed machine which prints at up to 150 meters per second. According to Komori, this machine will be available as a roll-to-roll, roll-to-sheet, roll-to-saddle stitching or roll-to-perfecting binding configurations.

Being UV devices, the company says they will be able to print on a variety of stocks, as a precoating is not required.

“We are excited about this introduction because we know these Impremia presses are truly game changing,” said Hudmon. “We have taken what Komori knows best—precision manufacturing—and married it with inkjet technology. No one knows sheet path better than Komori, and quite frankly, the quality of our inkjet output was far superior to any other sheets shown at drupa."

At drupa, Heidelberg unveiled the Speedmaster XL 75 (19.69 x 27.56 inches) with an Anicolor inking unit, following the 2006 introduction of its smaller 13.78 x 19.69-inch Speedmaster with the same Anicolor technology. Heidelberg states that more than 1,000 13.78 x 19.69-inch Anicolor printing units have been installed worldwide.

When comparing the technology to a press with conventional inking units, Heidelberg describes its Anicolor in a "90-50-50" principle: Anicolor inking results in 90 percent less paper waste, 50 percent shorter makeready times, and 50 percent higher productivity.

The Speedmaster XL 75 Anicolor will initially be offered as a straight-printing press with up to six inking units (with or without coating unit) and with a print speed of up to 15,000 sheets per hour. It will be available from the end of 2013.

Heidelberg also announced the commercial release of a new flagship press in the Speedmaster XL 106, following the drupa 2004 debut of the Speedmaster XL 105 (now resulting in over 1,200 units installed). The Speedmaster XL 106, with a 29.53 x 41.73-inch sheet format, reaches speeds of up to 18,000 sheets per hour in both straight and perfecting modes. It works with substrates of up to 1.0 mm (0.039 inches) thick (in perfecting mode, up to 0.8 mm/0.031 inches thick). 

Depending on the job structure, the XL 106 can produce between 60 and 80 million sheets a year and change between 90,000 and 100,000 printing plates a year on an eight-colour press.

Heidelberg also introduced its new Speedmaster SX series, comprising the Speedmaster SX 52, Speedmaster SX 74, and Speedmaster SX 102, which build upon the recently introduced Speedmaster CX 102. The SX series combines features from both the Speedmaster XL and the Speedmaster SM platforms.

Presstek has announced new options to its flagship 75DI press. Automatic convertible perfecting and UV printing are now available options to the 29" direct imaging press.

“Adding automatic perfecting and UV printing options to the 75 DI press significantly expands the range of applications a 75DI owner can address,” said Stan Freimuth, Presstek’s Chairman, President & CEO. “Each 75DI press will be configured to meet the needs of its buyer, and we expect that there will be a great deal of interest in these new developments at drupa, especially from larger printers, specialty operations and the packaging industry.”

According to Presstek, the new perfecting option allows the 75DI to print at up to 15,000 sheets per hour, a number it claims is among the fastest in the industry. The UV system, with its interdeck dryer and coater, allows for the use of special substrates, such as metalized paper, film, and even lenticular.

“We will continue to investigate ways to add more value to the 75DI going forward,” added Friemuth. “We are excited about the progress we have already made in a relatively short time, and will be looking to our customers for insight and feedback on other capabilities they can utilize to grow their businesses with the 75DI.”

KBA, now self-described as the second-largest printing press manufacturer,  revealed what it will be demonstrating at drupa in May. Under the theme of "sprinting ahead," the company plans to launch several new products and upgrades, including a new 30.70-inch inkjet web press.

Called the RotaJET 76, the Würzburg-built machine features a production speed of 3,000 A4 pages per minute, or 85 million pages per month. It employs water-based pigment inks out of its two arrays of 56 inkjet heads each (a total of 112 piezo inkjet heads) and prints at a native resolution of 600-dpi. According to KBA, the machine is designed to produce four-colour books, brochures, commercial products, mailings and magazines.

According to KBA, the RotaJET is able to produce good copies even during its start-up phase. At drupa, it will be shown connected to Muller Martini's SigmaLine system, which allows it to produce hardcover and softcover books, as well as a variety of stitched products.

KBA will also be showing a new addition to its Rapida line, the Rapida 145. It is a large-format (41.34 x 57 inches) press which prints at speeds of up to 17,000 sheets per hour (15,000 sheets per hour in perfecting mode). At drupa, it will be shown in a six-colour plus coater configuration and include sidelay-free infeed DriveTronic SIS and DriveTronic SPC for simultaneous plate changing. KBA attributes the fast speed of the press to its latest generation AirTronic delivery.

The company will also show the Rapida 105 with an inkjet printing system, which made its debut at the All in Print China fair last November. Based on the same platform as the Rapida 106, the 105 will feature KBA's new high-speed package, raising the production speed to 17,00 sheets per hour. At drupa, it will be shown as a hybrid offset/inkjet version, which sees the addition of an inkjet unit with two Delta 105iUV printing systems from Atlantic Zeiser. This allows for personalization options for pieces produced using a primarily offset process. The company claims it is a unique offering in the marketplace.

The Rapida 106, first introduced at drupa 2008, will also see a speed increase through an optional package, bringing the speed up to 20,000 sheets per hour (18,000 sph in perfecting mode). It will be shown in a 12-unit configuration to show four-colour print and inline coating for both sides of the sheet.

On the commercial web offset front, KBA will show off improvements to its C16 and Commander CL products to cut down on time between jobs.

KBA will also show off the new Varius 80, a variable-format (21 to 34 inches) web offset press that implements the same waterless technology as the Genius, aimed at the flexible packaging market. KBA claims the Varius produces market-ready print in as little as 100 metres of print, a savings of 80 percent compared to traditional flexo presses. Its plates are also less expensive than flexo sleeves.

Mississauga-based K-North Inc., a Canadian sales and distribution agent for press maker Komori, has introduced a new service system called REMOTE-ACCESS, which is designed to reduce machine downtime for its customers.

REMOTE-ACCESS is a tool that enables K-North technicians to remotely diagnose equipment installed at a Komori user’s facility via the Internet. The technology allows for 24/7 online connectivity between the press equipment and the K-North Service Team.

K-North points out that the new service is of particular importance in Canada with its varied time zones. The initiative is being led by Peter Boyle, Manager of National Service for K-North.

In addition to its partnership announcement with Konica Minolta, Komori also disclosed what it plans to exhibit in its Hall 15 booth this May in Dusseldorf. Under the theme of "Komori OnDemand" the company will show its technology under seven sub-themes:

1. OffsetOnDemand
2. Package Print
3. Efficient and Multi-flexible Print
4. DigitalOnDemand
5. KOMORI Assistance
6. KOMORI Ecology
7. KOMORI Web, Chambon and Security Printing

Komori will show two new offset presses as well as two new configurations of existing presses. World debuts include the Komori Lithrone GX40 Carton press, shown as a six-colour, H-UV and coater configuration. The company will also show a new press called the Lithrone A37, a four-colour, 37-inch sheetfed offset press, designed for the Chinese market.

New configurations on hand will include an 8-colour G40 H-UV equipped convertible perfecting press, as well as the 5-colour Enthrone 29 convertible perfecting sheetfed offset press.

Of course, as previously announced, the company will show three new "digital machines" that are the result of its collaboration with Konica Minolta: two inkjet machines, both webfed and sheetfed, as well as a toner-based machine based on Konica Minolta's bizhub PRESS C8000.

New press technologies shown will include Komori's K-ColorSimulator, which made its debut at IGAS 2011. The system matches the colour output of an offset press to that of a print-on-demand system.

The company will also show off its Asynchronous Automatic Plate Changing system (A-APC), which changes all plates in approximately 75 seconds.

Komori will demonstrate its PDC-SX Spectral Density Controller, which measures colour densities and register control based on colour bars that can be located anywhere on a sheet.  

Using technology from its security printing division, Komori-Chambon, Komori's Print Quality Assessment System for Sheetfed (PQA-S) uses cameras to check both sides of every sheet printed on the company's long perfector presses. The system, to be fitted on the company's Lithrone GX40 Carton press, also measures colour density in real time.

At a press event promoting the upcoming drupa show, Heidelberg announced plans to debut a new line of presses at the quadrennial trade show. The new Heidelberg Speedmaster SX is intended to slot between the existing SM and XL series,

Heidelberg CEO Bernhard Schrier made a presentation to journalists worldwide along with management board member Stephan Plenz. According to the two, the company will show 60 pieces of equipment in its Hall 1 booth.

Among the new announcements was also the news that Heidelberg plans to rebrand offerings from Ricoh into its Linoprint series: it will be offered as Linoprint C series. An internally developed packaging printing line, containing technologies from its acquisition of CSAT GmbH and Gallus, will be known as the Linoprint L series. Existing Linoprint models will be discontinued.

At drupa, Heidelberg will be showing the Linoprint C901 and Linoprint C751 machines. A Linoprint L model based on the CSAT 600 will also be shown.

The newly announced Speedmaster SX line will be small (35x50 cm to 70x100 cm) format and contain technologies seen in the recently introduced Speedmaster CX series, itself a technology transfer from Heidelberg’s XL flagship line.

A final new announcement to journalists is the increased focus on carbon neutrality through its HEI Eco banner. According to Plenz, all Heidelberg machines can be ordered CO2-neutralized, with all Anicolor presses delivered that way.

Plenz and Schreier announced that more announcements will be in store for drupa visitors this May.

“There are indications that investment in our sector is once again picking up in the USA,” announced Schreier. “The investment bottleneck is finally starting to clear. That is why we expect our customers to increase their investment levels and thereby boost our order books considerably.”

Fifty years since it first participated in Drupa 1962 with a letterpress, Sakurai Graphic Systems Corp. will present its lineup of offset and screen cylinder presses in Hall 3 at the Düsseldorf trade show this May.

Highlighting the Sakurai exhibit will be its new 580SDC press, which is a 23 5/8 x 31 1/8 five-colour machine with coater and extended delivery; as well as the new MS-80SD Maestro Servo-Driven cylinder screen press (31 5/8 x 21 3/4 inches); and the MS-102AII cylinder screen press with a 29 1/2 x 41 5/16-inch sheet size.

Sakurai’s new 80SD Series sheetfed offset press is available in four through six colour configurations, plus coating and perfecting. The automated 80 SD Series operates at 15,000 impressions per hour, while featuring a double-diameter, 7-o’clock cylinder configuration. Automation features include plate changers, sheet size presets (feeder, delivery and impression), automatic, programmable blanket and ink roller washers with water rinsing, CIP 3-4 with JDF compatibility, QSS (Quick Standby System) with pre-inking and de-inking.

The Maestro Servo Driven MS-80SD features an optical camera registration system and monitor. It operates at speeds of up to 2,000 impressions per hour and accepts stock from .001 to .0031 inches. The Maestro prints on a range of substrates such as plastic film for electronic applications, membrane switches, display panels and touch screens, as well as paper, board and foil.  The MS-80SD will be operating in-line with a Natgraph combination dryer and stacker.

manroland has been awarded the 2011 Harold W. Gegenheimer Corporate Award for Industry Service from NPES, the Association for Suppliers of Printing, Publishing and Converting Technologies. The award, named after one of technology innovators who helped printing become widespread in the 20th century, was presented to manroland “in recognition of [its] industry leadership through participation in NPES and industry activities, civic leadership and technical innovation.”

The press manufacturer was also cited for being a top developer of computer integrated manufacturing (CIM) for over a decade. “Despite our industry challenges, manroland still manages impressive technological innovations and leadership in support of our industry,” said Ralph Nappi, President of NPES. “This was a key reason for manroland receiving the [Gegenheimer Award].”

The award is named after former NPES President and Baldwin Technology Company Chairman Emeritus, Harold W. Gegenheimer, who invented the convertible offset perfecting press.

“manroland is honoured to receive this prestigious award from NPES," stated Vince Lapinski, CEO of manroland North America. "Mr. Gegenheimer provided an example to all of us — giving us a vision, not only what print is capable of, but also where we can take print if we can imagine the possibilities. We hope to continue in his footsteps as industry supporters and innovators in print.”

On September 28, 2011, Heidelberg celebrated the official opening of the third construction phase at its Qingpu site near Shanghai in China. The completion of this phase extends the plant's production area to 45,000 square meters - a threefold increase in the space of just four years. This expansion will let Heidelberg fulfill the increasing demand from Chinese shops as well as export machines to neighbouring countries.

"China is now our number one individual sales market and plays an important role in our business development. The demand for print products is growing all the time in China and has more than tripled over the past ten years. Every third machine sold by Heidelberg in China now comes from Qingpu. Offering locally produced machines has enabled us to tap into additional customer segments in our industry's most important future market. Our strategy of taking full advantage of the potential in emerging markets is thus paying off," said Heidelberg CEO Bernhard Schreier at the opening ceremony.

The Qingpu plant has 400 employees and has been manufacturing small- and medium-format presses and folding machines for the Chinese market since 2005. The company is now also producing presses in the 27.56 x 39.37 -inch segment at Qingpu.

Heidelberg claims to be the only press manufacturer based in either Europe or Japan to have a production facility in China. "Our customers can always rely on products from Heidelberg being of the highest quality, irrespective of whether a machine originates from Germany or China," said Stephan Plenz, member of the Management Board responsible for Heidelberg Equipment and thus for the Qingpu site. "This is confirmed by the more than 1,000 presses and folding machines already supplied from Qingpu. To ensure high quality standards, we train our staff with support from Germany and approve all our suppliers in accordance with very strict standardized criteria."

manroland, in cooperation with a consulting firm called ClimatePartner, introduces new software for printers to calculate and compensate for CO2 emissions, and ultimately claim climate-neutral printing status.

manroland and ClimatePartner have been working together on the project since early 2011, with the goal of allowing its printers to move toward climate-neutral production. The resulting IT-based solution will enable CO2 emissions from print jobs to be calculated and offset online through manroland’s Website.

According to manroland, after entering their emissions-relevant data, including information like power, heating, and vehicle fleet, printing companies are advised of their personal carbon footprint. The press maker explains that printing companies can use this calculator to ascertain all CO2 emissions for every job, from paper grade through printing and up to and including transport.

This allows a printing company to then offset the calculated results with the support of recognized climate protection projects. manroland will then supply companies with a ClimatePartner logo, allowing them to claim “climate-neutral printing” with an individual certificate number for each job.

Heidelberg plans to preview its Prinect Business Manager, described as the company’s new Management Information System (MIS), at Graph Expo, being held this September in Chicago.
Heidelberg’s Prinect Business Manager system employs what the company calls an intuitive interface to guide users through steps for costing and to ensure their equipment is running at full capacity, while also providing an overview of materials they have in stock.

Based on existing scheduling systems, Prinect Business Manager is designed to allow a printer to pick the most cost-effective and profitable press, and indicate where it will cost the least to manufacture a job, based on the user’s equipment mix and the specifications of the job.

This includes the ability to calculate for toner-based presses for identifying the break point between offset- and toner-based production.

Prinect Business Manager is scalable from single-seat job estimating up to multiple-user integration with estimating, production, and materials management, as well as accounting, logistics and delivery.

Komori America Corporation has launched a new 40-inch press (720 x 1,030-mm sheet size) called the Lithrone G40. Based on technologies used by both the Lithrone SX40 and S40 machines, the new press employs Komori’s KHS-AI technology and reaches a maximum printing speed of 16,500 sheets per hour.
“We are very excited that we can now take the KHS-AI-equipped Lithrone G40 and marry it with our newly introduced H-UV system,” said Doug Schardt, Product Manager for Komori. “The entire system is very efficient. With KHS-AI, you can make your first pull at 20 sheets, dramatically reducing make-ready waste, then print the job on the H-UV equipped Lithrone G40, and literally produce a high quality, bindery-ready job in minutes.”

Komori’s H-UV curing system, which last month won a 2011 InterTech Technology Award, is designed with a single lamp mounted in the delivery. 

The Lithrone G40 includes a suction-tape feeder board equipped with one belt in the centre and no brushers or rollers, which, according to Komori, provides for more accurate feeding regardless of paper weight. The new press uses a pre-soaked-cloth technique for blanket and impression washer cleaning. It also features a new, fully automatic plate changing system that employs a bender-less clamp.

The Lithrone G40 is being positioned as “the backbone of Komori's innovative Offset-on-Demand concept.”

Following the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan on March 11, Komori Corp. last week announced that normal production has resumed at its Tsukuba and Yamagata factories.

“We are very pleased at the news coming from our factories in Japan,” said Kosh Miyao, President and COO of Komori America Corporation. “I also want to express my appreciation and gratitude for the many kind thoughts and wishes we have received from our customers and the printing community. The support has been overwhelming and is much appreciated.”

While Komori expects minor delays in press shipments through mid-April 2011, the Tokyo-based company announced marked improvements in both fuel and power restrictions. 

manroland has introduced a Lightweight Paper Performance Package (LPPP) for its ROLAND 700 series of sheetfed presses. LPPP is described as having technical enhancements within the feeder, infeed, delivery, and antistatic equipment employed by the company’s offset presses.

LPPP is designed for printers who consistently produce work, such as mailings, inserts, and forms, on substrates that are less stable than the typical commercial printing stock of between 0.1 and 0.3 millimeters thick. Traditionally, production with lightweight papers can result in dog-eared corners, creasing, and small tears when trying to run at higher speeds.

manroland states that its LPPP testing illustrates how speeds of 15,000 sheets per hour, and above, are achievable with paper in the 60 to 60 GSM range. The company points to the following primary factors for the efficient printing of lightweight paper: Room temperature (ideal 18 until 22 °C), air humidity (ideal 55 until 60 percent), pile humidity (ideal 45 until 55 percent), pile storage (separate, not stacked), and pile acclimatization time in the pressroom (ideal at least 48 hours). 

According to manroland, LPPP can increase production output by 25 percent or more, based on a higher average printing speed, while also reducing or press stoppages in the feeder or infeed area.

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