The SRA1 LED UV press replaces a ten-colour Heidelberg Speedmaster XL75, which, says sales and marketing director Martin Lett Jnr, had been described as the most productive of its type in the UK. However, that has not been enough in the face of squeezed margins and the company will cut its overhead by switching to the new machine. It will also gain additional space in the hard pressed factory, the SRA1 Ryobi being the same size as a B2 machine, but only half the length of the ten-colour press it replaces.
“This has been a cost reduction exercise,” he says. “The Heidelberg has been a very good machine but margins are very tight and we can save a significant amount each month by switching to the Ryobi, without a loss in productivity.”
This is because the SRA1 format will print eight pages to view and will deliver 16pp sections with two passes, running through the press at 16,200sph. This compares to eight-page sections printed at 15,000sph on the XL75 perfector. The larger format will be a big benefit in finishing, says Lett Jnr, halving the number of sections that need to be folded and gathered for stitching.
The LED UV will enable the business to look at printing on plastics with a range of opportunities in specialist magazine covers, point of sale advertising and retail to explore as it shifts emphasis from high productivity and low cost printing to more value add work.The press was previously installed at Precision Colour Printing and remains under a year’s warranty provided by Apex Digital Graphics.
“We also get the benefit of reducing the number of plates we need to use,” Lett Jnr says. It has meant buying a new platesetter and new workflow to replace the Heidelberg Prinect that was in place previously. The £5 million turnover company is now running Agfa’s Apogee workflow and producing plates on one of the Avalon N8 platesetters that had previously been in use at Anton Press.
Marstan had extended its foil blocking unit to cope with the extra press format, taking delivery of a converted Cylinder in November last year. Investment in inhouse foiling has proved a success for the business, helping generate inquiries. “We definitely get a more positive response from a prospect when we mention we have foil blocking than just talking about having a new press. By having blocking in house, we don’t have to charge to cover the trade house margin and we are totally in control of scheduling.
“In the run up to Christmas we produced millions of foiled vouchers for a retailer."
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