Super Large-Format KBA Rapida 205 81-inch Delivers Quality and Efficiency

When the KBA (Booth 1255) Rapida 205 81" sheetfed press was introduced to the market, it was hailed for its size, its high-quality production, massive efficiency, and fast throughput. Today, printers continue to be attracted to the Rapida 205’s benefits and can boast of buying the largest sheetfed press in the world. This press complements large-format inkjet devices, provides economic gains for general commercial printers, and allows POP and packaging shops to optimize their sheets. It also provides designers with an extra-large sheet size for their work. The press has been embraced by an array of printers across North America in all market segments.

When Rand Graphics, a Wichita, KS, print specialist in point-of-purchase applications, installed a Rapida 205 five-color 81" sheetfed press with coater this past summer, it knew the new press would differentiate the company by more than just its size. “Not only were we excited to install this amazing press, but our customers were excited too,” says Randy Vautravers, President of Rand Graphics. “It’s an opportunity for them to create new work and an opportunity for us to gain in efficiency, faster throughput, and flexibility while being one of the few printers in the country with this award-winning press.”

The KBA Rapida 205 prints sheets up to 81x59". The press produces extra-large-format, high-quality products in a highly cost-efficient manner. This is the first press of this size to offer a wide range of automated technologies that provide for extremely high print quality and low makeready times. This press is significant because, with its one-of-a-kind configuration and high degree of automation, it brings massive efficiencies to the production of printed sheets. And, with its UV drying capabilities, it will print on any substrate. In 2005, Printing Industries of America awarded KBA the InterTech Award for the Rapida 205.

“Last summer, we began to talk to KBA about purchasing a Rapida 205 and the significant benefits it could bring us,” says Vautravers. “There’s no question it will make us much more efficient. It will significantly reduce our makeready, increase our speed, reduce our spoilage, and allow us to produce and output more jobs.”

In the spring of 2011, Minneapolis, MN-based Meyers, a leading producer of innovative retail marketing solutions, installed a new KBA Rapida 205 81" six-color press with coater and UV capabilities.

“Our $10 million investment in new technology is centered on this new KBA press which is designed and engineered specifically for the in-store signage and display segments of retail marketing,” says Fred Silloway, President of Meyers Retail Marketing Solutions Group. “This investment closely aligns the needs of our customers with our growing core competencies and demonstrates a clear path to market leadership.”

A number of important factors were considered before selecting the KBA press. A key requirement was that any new technology must support Meyers’ Lean/ Quick Response system by reducing cycle time and thus delivering promotional signage and display solutions to the market even faster.

“Our high level of success is due to our innovation and to the partnerships that we forge with our Fortune 500 retail and brand marketer customers,” says Silloway. “We’re very responsive to their needs. It’s been said we continually generate long-term value by creating highly effective solutions in a fast, low cost, easy fashion. Our new KBA press enhances these qualities and strengthens our commitment to our customers.”

“The new press is phase two of a $16 million investment,” adds Silloway. “It also includes a state-of-the-art, large-format digital flatbed press, custom print management information system, and other auxiliary equipment designed to provide wider capabilities and capacity at overall lower costs. Our KBA press installation is the key cornerstone of our investment in new technology, and we will be continuing to move into phase three and phase four of our overall growth and reinvestment strategy in the coming years.”