Akshara Offset ups quality with Heidelberg SX 74

Thiruvananthapuram-based Akshara Offset has installed a Heidelberg Speedmaster SX 74 four-colour press to boost its commercial printing operations.

06 May 2019 | By Sujith Ail

Akshara Offset manufactures books, magazines, leaflets, booklets, brochures, catalogues, diaries, calendars, and invitation cards. Recently, they also ventured into the printing of duplex cartons for packaging.

The new machine will supplement the existing six-colour Heidelberg CD 102 and a two-colour SM 102. Rajalakshmi, the proprietor of Akshara Offset, said “With the Heidelberg SX 74, we expect to set exceptional benchmarks in print quality and explore new growth platforms. The SX 74 will empower our business to deliver unprecedented levels of performance, and prioritise our customer experience.” 

She added, “The SX 74 combines the best of both worlds - the path-breaking technology of the XL class with the tried-and-tested stability of the SM platform. The press is a true hybrid. The SX 74 is 30% more productive than SM equipment, at price points lesser than XL machines.”

The SX 74 accommodates a wide array of substrates from thin sheets to boards, ranging in thickness between 0.03 mm and 0.6 mm with a maximum production speed of 15,000 sheets per hour. “We were facing a lot of inconveniences as we did not have a mid-size press in between 28x40-inch and 19x26-inch. Any print job in size 19x26-inch or bigger had to be printed on CD 102. Now we have more option in allocating jobs of various sizes,” added Rajalakshmi.

Rajalakshmi did consider other prominent machines, but was impressed with the print quality of Heidelberg CD 102 which tilted the scale in favour of Heidelberg SX 74.

“Heidelberg India’s approach has been one prime reason for opting to partner with Heidelberg. We have a feeling of reassurance right from the time of placing the order which continues beyond installation. They have been very supportive at every stage,” said Rajalakshmi.

Designed to be eco-friendly, the Speedmaster SX 74 is equipped with special rollers in the Alcolor dampening system to reduce alcohol usage from 10% to 3%, saving172 litres of alcohol for every ten-million printed sheets. 

The SX 74 is supported by surface technology to boost service life and extend wash-up intervals. According to Heidelberg, the Colour fast soultion feature speeds up the response of the inking unit which further helps in enhanced productivity.

Heidelberg’s proprietary Intellistart component, which is integrated with the SX 74 - aids intelligent and dynamic job changes, by facilitating 70% fewer operations for every job change, reports Heidelberg. “Setup times can be scheduled, saving a lot of time between job changes,” added Rajalakshmi

Commenting on the plans for the next five years, Rajalakshmi said, “Consistent upgrades are a must to meet the changes and challenges in a print environment that is continuously and globally evolving. We believe in responsible and sustainable growth. Our short term plans include expanding the space area by at least 10,000 sqft and providing more thrust on the packaging.”

About Akshara Offset

From humble beginnings as a DTP centre in Kerala established in 1985, today, the print facility is an ISO 2008 certified organisation and recognised as a star printer in SAARC countries.

Akshara houses separate unit for pre-press and digital print with Kodak CTP, Epson 9900 printer for large format printing and proofing, Ricoh colour and Konica Minolta black and white digital presses.

Printing and post-press facilities are spread over two locations with a combined space of 20000 sq/ft and staff strength of more than 100.

Her husband Madhusoodanan, who is an engineer by profession has now joined her and the unit is presently managed by the couple.