This had been the Berforts South West factory before the merger of the two Sussex businesses at the end of last year and decision to consolidate on one site. As there was a Komori Lithone A37 HUV in place in Hastings, Scantech decided to sell an XL75 rather than move it from the Heathfield factory.
“We then realised we needed the capacity,” says director Craig Stephens. It also needed a press capable of handling thicker materials and plastics that are needed for packaging jobs. A Speedmaster CD was the obvious choice.
The company looked at both new and pre owned machines, landing on a press from White Horse Machinery. “It has been the smoothest install of any press that we have ever had. We have had some issues in bedding in as with any new machine, but they have not been as we expected. It has hit the floor running.”
It has needed to. Scantech has been very busy, says Stephens, something he attributes to working with a loyal set of customers paying sensible prices. “Customers seem to have been reducing the number of suppliers they use and directing more work to the one or two printers they continue to work with, and we are getting the lion’s share,” he explains.
The press has been fitted with JDF controls to link to its Agfa Apogee prepress and to a new Tharstern MIS that is replacing an Accura system. This opens the way to end to end integration and to greater production efficiencies. “It’s all starting to come together,” says Stephens.
“Our minders seem to prefer working on the CD than they did the XL. It’s a more manual press and they are able to make ready faster.” That amounts to being good to run in around 100-150 sheets and running eight or more jobs a shift. It is as quick to make ready on the litho press as on a digital machine. “The automation means that the hard threshold between digital and litho is disappearing. The CD is simply hammering through the jobs and doing exactly what we want it to do.”
By Gareth Ward