Paragon Customer Communications UK has become the latest company to retrofit LED UV to a conventional litho press.
The Rotherham arm of the group has added a system from Benford UV to a Sakurai 566SD, helping to retain work in house that had previously been put to the trade. The company now operates twin Sakurais.
“Having just acquired our Sakurai Oliver 566SIP and with a desire to reduce the amount of outsourcing of print jobs for one of our major clients, we explored the possibilities of retrofitting LED UV to the press to help speed up our printing process,’ says operations director Kevin McGowan, “We needed instant drying for print on double and single sided work that we could send directly to our finishing department without worrying about set-off. The introduction of the Benford LED UV system was our chosen route to aid us meeting our goals.”
The Sakurai has become a popular press for LED UV printing. The first LED UV press in the UK was a Sakurai at B&B Press only a couple of miles from Paragon in a different part of Rotherham. Existing Sakurais have also been retrofitted with the LED technology from different suppliers. This is the first to opt for the Benford system.
The engineers that had fitted the lamp system stayed with the company to help the transition from one style of printing to the UV technology. “It was easier than we expected,” says McGowan. “From an operator’s point of view, it is very user friendly, a few buttons to turn it on in the morning and then it takes care of itself.”
The company has already noted a reduction in use of energy for drying compared to hot air or other UV curing. The greatest impact however has come from being able to finish jobs immediately because the sheets come off the press fully dry. “Previously we spent a lot of time waiting on jobs to dry before we could finish them.
“Our press now delivers what we have experienced within our digital arena for a long time, print, finish and ship in hours and minutes rather than days.”
The investment in the new Sakurai and LED technology is part of a wave of investment across the Paragon Customer Communications group. There have been new Heidelberg Speedmasters in Dagenham, a Pitney Bowes stitcher for the same plant and more Pitney Bowes equipment for Bristol and Rugeley while the Peterborough site has taken delivery of a Motioncutter laser cutter to develop different styles of marketing material.