The five-colour plus coater press will join a ten-colour perfecting Speedmaster XL75 providing both back up support for that press and additional capacity. It is also the first press that the 36-year-old company has bought with a dedicated coater.
Managing director Tim O'Shea says: “We have a regular customer with four-colour and gold metallic print which we seal, but still need to handle carefully. The full coater would eradicate any concerns straightaway which is why we went for the five-colour and coater configuration.”
When the ten-colour machine was installed in 2009 Chapel had an SM74 as back up. After a year or so this was sold as the XL75 was eating up all the work the company had. “But in the last year or two it has been working to full capacity, so at the end of last year we started looking around for another machine,” says O'Shea.
The business considered secondhand machines, but could not find anything suitable at the right price and visited Komori’s showroom in Utrecht and Heidelberg in Germany. That was to look at the SX model, but this does not support a coater, leading to investigation of the CX75. “The XL75 would have been overkill for what we want and considerably more expensive and while the Komori was impressive, we felt that the Heidelberg ticked more boxes than the Komori for us. And it would be easier to operate as we already have the Speedmaster,” he says.
Originally the press would have arrived in August, but when Heidelberg said that with a delay for a month, Chapel Press could have the new version with more bells and whistles as O'Shea puts it, “we agreed to the delay”.
The company installed a Kodak Nexpress last year and will be taking delivery of a Duplo DBM600i in the next few days to cope with both digital and fast turnaround litho work. A replacement for a very reliable, but quite slow, Kodak Magnus platesetter is perhaps on the cards for the next move.
“We have both litho and digital technology but it seems to be the litho side that is expanding currently,” says O'Shea. “The ten-colour is working 24 hours, five days a week but we still need weekend overtime often. The CX75 will relieve the pressure and will be great for shorter runs and single-sided work and the coater will help with quick turnaround work.”
Chapel Press has built up a diverse customer portfolio from design and marketing agencies to large corporates and public bodies where it has passed a rigorous tendering process.
The company has recruited a new press operator to run the ten-colour while the new press will be under the control of its pressroom manager. Chapel has also taken on Dave Hatton, former managing director of Gask & Hawley, as production director.
By Gareth Ward