Responding to market needs and the continuing expansion of digital printing’s reach in the pressroom, offset press manufacturers are developing new technologies, supplying machines that can quickly and efficiently change over between jobs and produce good, sellable color using the minimal amount...
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Jobs should be put on equipment that can produce it for the lowest cost, says Doug Schardt, product manager, Komori America Corporation. “That raises the question of moving crossover points. And they do move…they are different shop to shop and job to job. It’s a function of just how efficient a printer is on a particular piece of equipment. The more efficient you are on a sheetfed press, the lower the crossover point, and the shorter the runs you can profitably produce on the sheetfed.”
That is the key to Komori offset equipment design, says Schardt; the lowest cost to produce possible.
Within the Komori press line, the production costs that are targeted for reduction are pretty broad based. Komori press technology can stabilize ink and water balance in as little as 20 sheets and that’s regardless of the type of stock or the amount of coverage, says Schardt. “To keep that low waste consistent, there is self learning software that monitors the amount of correction that is required as conditions change and compensates for those changes on future jobs thereby holding consistent the low makeready waste to achieve stable ink density. Self learning is also utilized for air presets and register presets."
Error detecting cameras that instantly catch any changes in the print that may occur during the job run can also be utilized to monitor running waste. This includes automatically and continuously adjusting ink keys to make sure there is no color fluctuation.
KBA’s new Rapida litho press offers cutting-edge technology, high productivity, fast makeready and speeds of 20,000sph, says Eric Frank, KBA North America Vice- President of Marketing. “Many of the automation options offered for honing competitiveness, slashing turnaround time, and making life easier for a press crew when handling fluctuating, diminishing print runs are unique to KBA – and now offered in all formats,” says Frank.
For example, DriveTronic SIS no-sidelay infeed for optimum substrate flexibility with no manual intervention, DriveTronic SPC simultaneous plate changing with dedicated plate-cylinder drives, CleanTronic Synchro for simultaneous washing cycles, and flying job changes are popular technology features available from KBA on most of its presses, explains Frank.
KBA has just presented a raft of new technology at drupa that addresses shorter run lengths. Its RotaJET 76 digital inkjet press, which made its debut at drupa, provides the high quality and fast turnaround for short-run jobs, says Frank. KBA also unveiled its new Rapida 105 41-inch press in a hybrid offset/inkjet version, featuring five offset printing units and coater tower joined by an inkjet unit with two Delta 105iUV printing systems from Atlantic Zeiser for personalized imprinting and coding applications. Its Rapida 106 41-inch press features an optional package that raises the maximum production speed to 20,000 sph in straight printing and 18,000 sph in perfecting mode.
Digital and Offset Together
Manufacturer manroland is responding by offering both digital and offset solutions, to service customers with the best suitable solution for their production portfolio, explains Robert Wiedemann, Marketing & Communication, manroland web systems GmbH
In the sheetfed arena, manroland showed flagship model ROLAND 700 HiPrint LV with technology necessary for high productivity in the packaging environment. These include a new generation indexed InlineFoiler system for savings of up to 50 percent of metal foil; a high speed of 17,000 sph; fully automatic plate changing with APL; InlineColorPilot D+F print quality measuring and regulation system using both densitometry and colorimetry; and DirectDrive, which makes it possible to change plates and wash blankets simultaneously.
At drupa, manroland announced a partnership with Benny Landa to adopt the Nanographic Printing as the base of its digital printing process for the sheetfed market.
In the web offset arena, the ROTOMAN incorporates DynaChange technology to switch imprints automatically on both sides at high speeds. “Our APL systems for both commercial and newspaper presses enable short print runs and therefore regionalization or target-group publications,” says Wiedemann. “Our autoprint packages and our new operating system allow measureable consistent production at very low costs.”