As the flagship University of the State of Colorado, CU-Boulder is a dynamic community of scholars and learners situated on one of the most spectacular college campuses in the country. Founded in 1876, the University has more than 1,000 faculty members and serves about 30,000 students. Imaging Services has been the University’s print shop since 1923 and is operated by nine full-time employees and six part-time students.
Imaging Services was seeing a growing demand for longer run (in excess of 1,000 sheets) four-color work that was too costly to produce on its existing HP Indigo digital toner-based press. The department was looking for a solution that could more cost effectively produce this volume. In addition, to meet the University’s tough environmental policy requirements and to fit into its limited space, Imaging Services needed a press with a small physical and environmental footprint. The shop’s goal was to increase its approximately 20% share of the University’s printing volume to at least 30 percent with a more competitive production platform.
CU Imaging Services chose to acquire a Presstek 34DI digital offset press to position the shop for future growth and was able to justify this acquisition based solely on existing 1,000+ run lengths that it would be able to transfer from the HP Indigo press. “As a University Auxiliary operation,” explains Al Goranson, Manager of Imaging Services, “we must generate enough printing revenue to cover our costs and any investments we need to make.”
A perfect fit
The small physical footprint of the Presstek 34DI was a perfect fit for CU Imaging Services. Goranson is also pleased with the small environmental footprint of the Presstek 34DI. “As a University,” he comments, “we have very strict environmental regulations we must comply with. Our environmental folks were delighted with the press’ chemistry-free platemaking, waterless printing, and its lower VOCs as compared with the HP Indigo, which emits a non-toxic, but irritating, oil vapor.”
With the Presstek 34DI in place, Imaging Services is on its way to a more profitable operation as well as on a path to growth. “We believe our target of capturing at least 30 percent of the University’s total print volume is well within our reach,” Goranson states. “Our customers have been extremely pleased with the quality the 34DI delivers. In one case, we printed a postcard which had been done the previous year by an outside source on a 40-inch five-color conventional offset press. When we compared samples, our customer agreed that the quality from the 34DI was as good as or better than the larger press. And with a run length of only 3,000, we were able to be much more competitive than a conventional offset operation could ever be.”
“I am very happy with Presstek,” Goranson concludes, “and the entire manner in which this project was handled. I have installed a lot of equipment in my career, and there is almost always some sort of problem. With this install, there were minor issues, but everything was handled in a good way by Presstek. I have full confidence in their professionalism, and the skills of their technicians, trainers and installers. They are a terrific partner, and I look forward to working with them as we continue to grow our business.”