Talk to any small-sized commercial print firm and he will explain how the print potential is changing – even though there are more products, print runs shrinking and margins falling. In order to cope with the situation, these firms need to re-look at shopfloor operations so as to keep costs under control and maximise the printing machine utilisation because time is money and every wasted sheet is impacting the bottomline.
When Heidelberg launched Speedmaster CS 92 at China Print in 2015, it was addressing this situation. This 37-inch format machine is a cost-effective buy for printers looking to consolidate multiple older machines or wanting to upgrade from a half-size press to widen their market offering.
The new press is available in standard four- and five-colour configurations with or without coater, or as a six-colour plus coater model.
Since the launch, Heidelberg has installed three CS 92 presses in India. Peter Rego, general manager for Heidelberg India, says, “The CS 92 is well suited for small commercial printers needing to print 1.5-crore impressions and upwards per year on one machine. Based on its productivity versus price performance, the new press offers the lowest cost per sheet against any other competitive press in its class.”
The format size of 25x37-inch is a big advantage. It can print nine A4 repeats on one sheet or as many as three A4 flyers with fold-outs.
Elaborating on flexibility that the press offers, Rego says, “The press is apt for the Indian market, as most commercial printers here use a double-demi size format. They can greatly benefit by utilising power of the additional one cm (0.39 in) in the circumferential direction resulting in unique imposition layouts like 18 and 36 pages.”
Consider a book of 144 pages. With traditional 16-page layout, one needs nine printing sections whereas with 18 page layout only eight printing sections suffice. “As a result, not only printing but also subsequent post-press operations will be reduced thus improving the profit in double digits,” adds Rego.
The Speedmaster CS 92 is based on the Heidelberg’s legacy Speedmaster CD 102 platform, which according to the company, makes it a “future-proof” investment.
“Most of the 36-inch (92cm) presses available on the market are scaled-up 29-inch presses and thus the sideframes, gripper bars, bearer, and cylinder among others are not capable of handling higher mechanical forces resulting in quality issues and reduced reliability,” adds Rego.
The CS 92 prints up to 15,000 sheets per hour and comes standard with preset plus feeder and delivery thereby allowing for using a diverse range of substrates. Additionally, Heidelberg’s Intellistart technology shortens the makeready times on the CS 92.
Rego claims that the Speedmaster CS 92 offers the lowest cost per sheet in its class on the basis of its productivity versus price performance. He attributes this to the four USPs of the machine.
First, a patented Roller Check Assistant software that helps checking roller settings in “just five minutes”. Two, the print free area is completely used and a combination of freely positionable sheet brakes and Venturi sheet guidance system ensures rapid work-and-turn printing. Three, there’s an automatic sheet arrival control. “It ensures non-stop production resulting in higher net production of 1,000 sheets per hour.”
Finally, the feeder and delivery are designed for piles up to 1.3 metres (50.98 in). Rego explains, “This helps in reducing print interruptions as a result of lesser pile changes. The 50% higher piles reduce pile changes by about 33% in case of long run jobs. Plus 33% less storage space is required.”
Additionally, for printers looking to diversify their print mix, the CS 92 is also available with UV curing.
Ideal for book work
Bhubaneshwar-based Print-Tech Offset is a Heidelberg loyalist. Besides four web-offset presses, the book printing company is equipped with two Heidelberg SM 74 presses, a Heidelberg SX 52, and a Heidelberg CS 92 four-colour press that was installed in April 2015.
Brundaban Behera, director at Print-Tech, says, “When one of our clients, the publisher of a leading Odia language magazine Kadambini hinted at improving the print quality, we decided that we wanted a new press. A detailed analysis of our business made it clear that the 65x92cm format was much better suited to our product range. And this has shown to be correct thus far. As it perfectly accomodates eight-up A4 size pages, there is minimum paper wastage and we are able to achieve 20% plate savings over traditional 40-inch presses. Also, the eight-up imposition enables ease of folding and gathering. It also reduces the number of sections for certain jobs, resulting in the reduction in time taken for binding.”
The Prinect Easy Control measurement and control system and its integrated spectrophotometer make colour management easier. “Our profitability has improved significantly. We spend very fewer minutes on makeready. With Prinect, once the file is uploaded to the system, the data generated is automatically passed on to the Heidelberg Suprasetter A-75 CTP and to the machine, which ensures that the first printed sheet is a saleable copy.”
“The machine fully meets our expectations in terms of value for money. We run the machine at full speed of 15,000 sph. With this installation, our productivity has bolstered by 35%. It has been three years since the installation. As we see an increase in volume for books, we are contemplating on investing in another CS 92 press,” concluded Behera.