Archive for the ‘Offset Presses’ Category

Flexpress Invests in RMGT LED-UV Technology

In Offset Presses on April 6, 2016 at 10:17 am

Leicester-based Flexpress Ltd has detailed its installation of two new Ryobi presses, both equipped with the latest LED-UV curing technology. The B3-format 524GX press with LED-UV replaced a similar format 524GX, whilst the SRA1-format 924 with LED-UV replaced a B2-format Ryobi machine, with the increase in sheet size allowing the business to handle an even wider range of work.


The products were supplied and installed by Apex Digital Graphics, Hemel Hempstead, the official RMGT (Ryobi) representative in the UK for presses up to SRA1 format, and the exclusive CtP and plate distributor for the Chinese pre-press manufacturer CRON for both UK and Ireland, and a company that has enjoyed a near 20-year relationship as an equipment supplier to Flexpress.

Commenting on this latest investment, Flexpress Managing Director Steve Wenlock said: “The big benefit of LED-UV for our business is the fact that the drying is instant. We work from a fairly small unit and therefore we can’t really afford stacks of paper sitting around the floor for too long, so the idea is that we can turn jobs around quicker, be even more responsive to our customers need, get the paper out of the door faster, and to an even higher quality than before is something that should positively delight our customers.

“From a customer angle, time is the number one advantage,” Steve explains. “No customer says I’m going to give you more time to produce this job! Speed of turnaround is ever more critical: LED-UV technology will allow us to move work quickly on to the next stage of production, whether that is backing-up or finishing the job for delivery.”

The new presses join a recently installed Cron computer-to-plate device, also supplied by Apex, ensuring a cost effective production system from plate production through to finished job. The 36-inch UV platesetter is able to image and process UV metal plates for Flexpress’s SRA1 and B3 printing equipment.

“Quality is the other important aspect: because sheets exit the machine dry, set-off issues are eliminated – something that can occur all too easily if a job is being rushed through, even in a company that is focused on quality production, especially when working with uncoated stock. The process also means that there is no absorption of ink into the stock, which means less ink is used as well as faster drying.

“The instant drying offered by LED-UV also means that we can consider printing on a wider range of substrates, such as plastics. We do produce such work already through our Indigo press, but higher volumes of such work will be significantly more cost effective to produce on a litho press. We believe that there is a growing market for this type of work.”

Why RMGT / Ryobi?

Commenting on the choice of presses for this latest investment, Steve Wenlock references Ryobi’s pioneering role with the technology: the company first exhibited the potential of LED-UV back at the Drupa show of 2008. The company has continued to develop and refine the technology since then, whilst both ink suppliers and the press competition have been playing catch-up.

“We have worked with Apex and Ryobi for nearly 20 years. We know Ryobi as a leading press manufacturer and Apex as a supplier that really supports its customers. Ryobi are undoubted leaders in this technology, so why would we need to look elsewhere? Our operators know the Ryobi architecture and technology already, so it is just a matter of adding the LED-UV knowledge on top of the extensive printing knowledge that they already have.”

Inking Up The Press

All of the leading ink suppliers now offer product for the LED-UV market, and all are working hard to establish their product as the ink of choice.

“We are working closely with Toyo inks,” said Steve Wenlock. “They seem very focused on providing quality products backed with good service. They have outlined workshops and training for our press operators. They are a supplier that is keen to invest in LED-UV.”

Inks for the process are referred to as “duct stable” inks, meaning that there is no need to wash up at the end of the day or re-ink first thing in the morning – a real time saver, and something that will win the hearts of press operators for sure!

The Cost Equation

According to Steve the cost equation is likely to be different for each print company. A range of factors will need to be considered. For those already using existing UV solutions, the electricity costs for LED-UV will be a huge winner, but for those entering UV printing for the first time, the savings on production speed may well be the deciding factor. Yes, ink costs will be higher, but with no need for spray powder or seals, the savings on such consumables can help offset these increases, along with the fact that drying is no longer relying on a degree of absorption of ink into the printed stock, meaning that less ink will be used on each job.

The performance of LED-UV technology on a litho press brings the process much closer to digital production in many ways, but with the creation of the best possible print quality and stock flexibility. Printers seeking to invest in litho equipment need to seriously examine the benefits offered by LED-UV in great detail before finalising their decision.

About Flexpress

Flexpress produces a wide range of general print for the education, local government and manufacturing businesses, including banners, flyers, leaflets, booklets, business cards and posters. The company also runs an HP Indigo 5600 and a range of Océ digital presses, an Océ Arizona 360GT flatbed UV printer for large-format jobs, and finishing equipment including guillotines, laminators, cutters and perfect binders. The business has a team of 27 and a turnover of £2m, which it is hoping to boost to £2.5m with this latest investment.

About Apex Digital Graphics 

Apex Digital Graphics Limited is a specialist in the supply and service of pre-press and press equipment. Apex is the official UK distributor for the Ryobi Mitsubishi range of printing presses through to SRA1 format and Cron metal-based platesetters. Apex also distributes the Konica Minolta range of digital printing equipment. The company offers national service coverage, and a one-stop shop for print consumables featuring next day delivery. Apex Digital Graphics can be contacted on 01442 235 236 or via the web site.


Em. de Jong Invests in Second 96-page LITHOMAN Press

In Offset Presses, Web Presses on March 14, 2016 at 9:13 am


Royal printshop Em. De Jong ordered a second 96-page LITHOMAN to expand its capacity. The LITHOMAN S is expected to take up duties in 2016, while existing equipment will be expanded for a wider product diversity.

In June 2014, Dutch Princess Laurentien pressed the start button on the first 96-page LITHOMAN at printshop Em. de Jong. The system runs outstandingly well and the Dutch have now invested in a second high-volume rotary press in Baarle-Nassau. In the first half of 2016, the 96-page LITHOMAN will take up operation and continue to increase the performance in supplement production.

“For us as a press manufacturer, repeat purchases are, of course, a fantastic confirmation of our work. Recently customers have purchased several 96-page LITHOMAN presses, proving their unique performance,” states Sixten Zapf, Executive Sales Manager at manroland web systems.

The customers of Em. de Jong will benefit from the innovative technology and fast order processing. Managing Director Stijn de Jong represents the fourth generation in this printing dynasty and knows: “We have to expand our company applying an integrated approach. This is why we are also modernizing the existing equipment at our sites, in addition to our new investment. Two further LITHOMAN presses will receive technical upgrades for more variable production.”

Automation as the Key to Success

For a market leader like Em. de Jong, not investing means taking a step backwards. High capacities, premium printing quality, and folding accuracy: this is what the 96-page LITHOMAN, which will replace an older press, has to offer the pressroom. “On the one hand, the customer appreciates that maximum productivity is ensured permanently. On the other hand, the customer commends the absolutely reliable production process,” states Sixten Zapf, adding, “For Em. de Jong, the flexible production options and enormous, maximum output are also important.” Stijn de Jong: “This investment is necessary for us to maintain and reinforce our position in the increasingly globalized printing industry. In addition, with the new press we can produce new products and offer them to our customers.” With the two 96-page presses and the upgraded LITHOMAN systems, Em. de Jong can now respond even better to increasing demand from the international market.

This high market demand is the result of the hard work of the Dutch over the past few decades, with innovative products such as POS packages and online solutions. The high level of automation at Em. de Jong is the key to successful production for trade, as Managing Director Stijn de Jong explains: “The flexible, automatic plate changes and job changeovers, and the special folding equipment make our production enormously versatile and dynamic. We are able to efficiently print the runs we need and do not lose valuable production time or waste any paper.

Most Productive Heatset Systems 

The two 96-page LITHOMAN systems will be the most high-performance heatset printing presses in the Benelux region. With a web width of 2,860 mm and eight ribbons, the 96-page LITHOMAN will produce nearly five million A4 pages per hour. The Inline control systems for cut-off and color register, as well as ink control, ensure optimum product quality. APL (AutomaticPlate Loading) changes the printing plates on the printing couples fully automatically. The folding configuration realizes a wide variety of printed products – the customer was already impressed with this product diversity with the first 96-page LITHOMAN.

Upgrades at Further Locations

Customers of printed products want variable, creative print and advertising products and Em. de Jong will align further locations to these requirements. Upgrades to increase product diversity will take top priority. The 72-page LITHOMAN in Baarle-Nassau will be equipped with an additional folding unit to produce special printed products. After moving to Mercator in Jabbeke, a recently purchased, used 72-page LITHOMAN will be equipped with a folder superstructure and a second delivery for cross-fold products.

About Em. de Jong

Em. de Jong and its subsidiaries Mercator Press, Janssen/Pers Rotatiedruk, and Kampert-Nauta are counted among the most important players on the European market for retail advertising. In the subsidiaries in the Netherlands and Belgium, around 750 employees work on print solutions for the main distribution countries of the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, France, and England.


TT Litho on the Move with New Ryobi B2

In Finishing, Offset Presses on March 11, 2016 at 1:57 pm

TT Litho Printers Ltd, Rochester, Kent, has installed a new B2-format offset litho press from RMGT (Ryobi MHI Graphic Technology). The compact RMGT 765E press is configured with five printing units. The product was supplied and installed by Apex Digital Graphics, Hemel Hempstead, the official RMGT exclusive distributor in the UK for presses up to SRA1 format, and the exclusive CtP and plate distributor for the Chinese pre-press manufacturer CRON for both UK and Ireland.


The installation of the press has taken place at the company’s new premises on the Medway City Trading Estate and was the first component of the transfer of the business to the new site. TT Litho Director Lucy Fogarty explains: “We had taken the decision to replace our ageing Heidelberg MO machine after twenty-five years of sterling service, but quickly realised that any new press would require significant changes to our original premises – a listed building. That would also require a major additional spend. It made sense for us to seek new, modern premises in order for us to move the business forward.

“The Medway City Estate was our desired location, but premises rarely became available. We had a good relationship with a finishing company, Rochester Print Finishers, who were based on the estate, and on further discussion with them realised that the owners were fast approaching retirement age. It made perfect sense for us to acquire the business, along with the existing staff, and use that unit as our new home.” The finishing business continues and now runs alongside TT Litho.

The family run Medway print business celebrated its 40th anniversary last year, having been founded back in 1975 by Tom Fogarty. Sadly in 2002 Tom died from a brain tumour, leaving the business to wife Sue, who was soon to be joined by eldest daughter Lucy, who decided to leave her civil service job at the Department of Education.

“I had always enjoyed being involved in the business from an early age, whether it was helping in the bindery, filing, cleaning the darkroom, doing the sandwich run, or doing a delivery in the company van to central London a day after passing my driving test,” said Lucy.  “I quickly realised when Mum was left to run the company that this was my destiny, and accepted her offer for us to work together. My Dad had an uncompromising work ethic and always encouraged us to be anything we wanted to be, to be nice along the way, and not to take “no” for an answer! Above all he had a fun approach to life and work, and this spirit still runs through the “veins” of the business even now.”

The search for a new press began over a year ago. It was critical for the company to make the right investment in order to move the business forward. “We were placing an increasing amount of work out to trade printers because our own press could not cope with the volume of work. We knew that if we wanted to keep the business moving forward positively we had to replace our printing press – we could see the productive benefits in more modern machinery, but we needed to be certain that we invested in the right product.”

The directors of the company went to see Ryobi machines at various printing companies, and quickly became convinced of the brand. “We were impressed by the comments that users gave us with regard to both the quality of the press and of the supplier, Apex,” said Lucy. “These presses produce high-quality work and print extremely efficiently: what more could we really have asked for!”

The installation of the new press began over the Christmas holidays in order to minimise disruption to print orders. “The installation went very smoothly, and the training was conducted efficiently by the Apex team. We are delighted to be up and running now in the new building and printing on the new machine. It has given everybody in the company a positive injection of enthusiasm.”

TT Litho employs a team of 15 at its new Medway City Estate premises and offers one of the only in-house graphic design services in the area, as well as pre-press, print and finishing services. Work undertaken at the company includes a wide range of commercial print work, including local and national government agencies, charities, the medical and education sector, museums and galleries, corporate literature. The company expects the addition of the new machine to take the current turnover of the business over the £1 million mark.


The compact construction of the five-colour B2 format litho press provides a footprint some 25% smaller then traditional B2 equipment.

Handling paper sizes through to 765 x 600mm (30.12 x 23.62 inches) the new press has a maximum printing area of 765 x 545mm. A double-diameter impression cylinder and transfer drum aid stable and efficient paper transport, even when printing heavier stocks. The machine handles substrates from 0.04 through to 0.6mm, and the 765E press is capable of printing up to 13,000 sheets per hour.

Semi-automatic plate changing is supplied as standard, for fast and efficient job changeovers. Ryobi-matic continuous dampening ensures uniform dampening of the plate and together with the heavy duty inking system, help produce the sharpest of dots and heaviest of solids.

Ryobi’s highly acclaimed program inking automatically selects the right conversion curve for each colour according to the image area ratio data that has been calculated during the pre-press stage, and the Ryobi PDS-E SpectroJet provides ‘on-the-run’ closed-loop colour management.

About TT Litho Printers

Established in 1975 by the Fogarty family, TT Litho Printers Ltd has been established for over forty years and has a reputation for high quality service. TT Litho has grown to become one of Kent’s leading lithographic and digital printers, with the business owners attributing this success to hard work, a deep understanding of the processes, and a customer focused approach. Situated in the historic city of Rochester, at the heart of the South East of England, the business enjoys easy access to London, the Home Counties, and to the European mainland. The company’s design and print focus has expanded over the years to include additional services, including digital print production and a wide range of in-house finishing solutions.

About Apex Digital Graphics 

Apex Digital Graphics Limited is a specialist in the supply and service of pre-press and press equipment. Apex is the official UK distributor for the Ryobi MHI range of printing presses through to SRA1 format and Cron metal-based platesetters. Apex also distributes the Konica Minolta range of digital printing equipment. The company offers national service coverage, and a one-stop shop for print consumables featuring next day delivery. Apex Digital Graphics can be contacted on 01442 235 236 or via the web site.



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