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MAN Roland Demonstrates Computer Integrated Manufacturing At VUE/POINT

Monday, April 07, 2003

Press release from the issuing company

April 7, 2003 -- Washington, D.C. — Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM) technology is ready to help printers streamline their workflows, be more responsive to their customers and improve their ability to compete in tight markets. That according to reports presented at a special VUE/POINT 2003 session co-sponsored by MAN Roland and Printcafe. "Utilizing advanced PECOM modules like JobPilot, PressMonitor and ManagementLink, a facility can equip its pressroom to take full advantage of the efficiencies CIM has to offer," says Hal Stratton, Manager of MAN Roland’s Graphic/Training Center. "That means printers can create a continuous loop from their MIS system to their pressroom and beyond." Featured on the session panel was Ted Ford, the co-owner of Knepper Press in suburban Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The company generates annual sales of $12-13 milllion with a workforce of 80 and an equipment array that includes CTP prepress, three UV webs, a ROLAND 300, a ROLAND 700 and a full service bindery. All of Ford’s systems are linked to a Logic MIS system from Printcafe, making Knepper Press one of the first graphic arts facilities anywhere to benefit from a start-to-finish CIM system. Example: Ford utilizes PECOM’s PressMonitor module to monitor the performance of his two MAN Roland presses both in real time and in the form of automatically archived files. That enables him to analyze such variables as press crew efficiency and the performance of different consumables. Ford also reports that PECOM adds to the consistency of his company’s work: "It makes all of our operators do everything the same, so the quality is always consistent." Providing evidence of the productivity of the advanced systems, Ford noted that his company bought out a competitor more than three years ago, and replaced its three 40" sheetfed presses with one 41" ROLAND 700. The difference was the 700’s CIM features such as PECOM, Power Plate Loading and Computer Controlled Inking. Now Ford’s crews are producing more on one press than this competitor was turning out on three. Ford also sees CIM as a way to enhance customer satisfaction. "On a press check, if they want more magenta, we can not only make the change, but show them with numbers on the PECOM screen precisely what they’re getting," he says. "That has made a tremendous difference for us." Ford was also featured on a VUE/POINT panel titled "How Real Is CIM?" "My partner and I are engineers by training, so we want to be as automated as possible," he told the audience. "The tools are there. Now it’s up to us to see how much we can get out of them." One of Ford’s favorite tools is JobPilot, the PECOM module that along with PressMonitor received a 2002 GATF InterTech Award. The system lets Knepper Press trim 15 minutes from each makeready by allowing the company’s operators to set dozens of press parameters for the a new job, while the current project is printing. "Our customers are flabbergasted when they see how quickly we can makeready our MAN Roland presses," Knepper reports. The VUE/POINT session is only the latest in a continuing series of CIM initiatives in which MAN Roland and Printcafe are partnering. They have also joined with Creo and the CIP4 organization to sponsor a seminar series titled "CIM in Print: It’s Here. It’s Working. It’s Ready for You," For more information about and registration to the complimentary event, printers can visit www.ciminprint.com.




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