Table Rock Printing Posts Double-Digit Sales and Productivity Gains with KBA 74 Karat Press
Monday, August 08, 2005
KBA North America, a leading supplier of sheetfed offset and digital presses based in Williston, VT, has installed a 74 Karat digital offset waterless press at Table Rock Printing, a conventional and digital offset printer located in Boise, Idaho. The press was installed in the summer of 2004. “We had been using a 14 x 20-inch conventional offset press with polyester plates,” explains Justin McGee, Table Rock's president. “But a lot of our jobs are short-run and it was taking too much time to make new polyester plates for each job. We believed that a direct imaging press was the way to go. So we replaced the traditional press with the 74 Karat.” Within one year, the firm has dramatically increased its sales and throughput productivity. “After installing the 74 Karat, our business increased 20%,” says McGee. “I attribute that to a number of reasons. First, we're able to put more work on the press due to the Karat's fast makeready and quick drying time. It used to take us 45 minutes to an hour to makeready on our older press; on the Karat it only takes 15 to 20 minutes. By having the Karat equipped with a coater, we're able to quickly dry the sheet with a coating and turn it around to our customers.” Customers are pleased with Karat's quality In addition to the faster makeready, McGee has found that his customers are attracted to the 74 Karat's higher quality. “We sell lots of jobs on quality,” says McGee. “Our customer's expectations weren't as high on the conventional. But the Karat has stepped up their expectations and we're fulfilling them. For a handful of our customers, color consistency and color matching is very important. They might have a logo that needs to be matched and we can do it on the Karat. Or they order short-run jobs and re-order several months later. They're looking for both jobs to be color consistent. The Karat delivers. Since the Karat is a waterless press, it prints crisp dots with no dot gain and lays down a nice ink coverage.” Another benefit of using the 74 Karat is its faster throughput and paper savings. “We're able to offer our customers 24 hour turnaround,” says McGee. “We get orders for posters at 5 p.m. one day and they need it by 5 p.m. the next day. We're able to send the file directly to the press to print. The 74 Karat also allows us to get up to color very quickly in 25 to 50 sheets, which has reduced our paper waste dramatically”. Before McGee purchased the 74 Karat, he visited KBA's headquarters in Vermont and Germany. “It certainly is a different press than our current press” he says. “Our operators quickly learned how to use the computerized console and adopt the new Gravuflow inking system. They love to run the press now. We built a separate room for it to maintain the correct temperature.” McGee plans to hold an open house next spring in conjunction with the firm's tenth anniversary. The open house will allow the firm to show off its 74 Karat on the offset side and its HP 3050 variable data digital press. Established in 1996, Table Rock Printing serves the Boise, Idaho area catering to a wide variety of customers. Its key clientele, however, are local ad agencies who require brochures, posters, pocket folders, and business cards. The firm's 30 employees are located in a handsome remodeled 12,000 sq ft facility with 6,000 sq ft of extra space behind the building.