The new machine is a five-colour plus coater Speedmaster XL106-5+LX3 configured to run both conventional inks and UV inks with a twin-lamp system in the extended delivery. The new press replaces two five-colour Heidelberg presses, a ten-year-old CD102 with UV and an XL105.
John Mooney, managing director of the Zenith Group, says: “We anticipate a split of 75-25% between conventional and UV packaging work on this press and an output of up to 40 million sheets a year.”
The press is configured with separate lines and tanks for blanket and roller wash and for the coatings. Moving from one set up to the other is a matter of replacing the blankets for the different chemistries and stripping the ink from the rollers. A full changeover will take around an hour, says Heidelberg's Matt Rockley. The press will run with combination rollers able to take the UV as well as conventional inks.
The press will be installed in the Zenith Media press room at Pontypool alongside a push to stop eight-colour perfecting XL106 which was installed over the summer months. It replaced a five-colour XL106 and XL75. It will leave the company with a high productivity and one high flexibility machine.
Zenith Print Group offers both commercial printing and through Zenith Media a packaging operation that focuses on the needs of numismatists and medal collectors. The company has installed the UK’s first Promatrix 106 FC foiling die cutter this year, following earlier investment in a Promatrix 106 die cutting platen with stripper and a Diana Smart 80 carton-gluer.
The hybrid configuration is something that more and more companies are considering, says Rockley. “We have done a few in the last couple of years,” he says. “Some of the carton printers like them to print with lower cost conventional low migration inks with a UV varnish to provide the shelf appeal that retailers and brands are looking for with the cost of the UV low migration inks.”