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Michigan-Based Printer Becomes First In U.S. To Utilize Heidelberg's Saphira Chemfree Thermal Plate Solution

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Press release from the issuing company

KENNESAW, Ga., June 7, 2006 – Heidelberg today announced that Lee Printing Company of Clinton Township, Mich., has become the first print shop in the United States to install Heidelberg’s Saphira Chemfree Thermal Plate solution. Released at PRINT ’05, Heidelberg’s new package combines the company’s negative working, offset aluminum plates with its latest computer-to-plate thermal platesetter, the Suprasetter, to form an unparalleled market combination. Lee Printing installed its first four-color press, a Speedmaster SM 52 from Heidelberg, in April 2005. Shortly after the purchase, the shop transitioned from film processing to computer-to-plate technology and installed a Suprasetter 74 to keep up with the increased speed and capacity of the new press. Since the installation, Lee Printing has increased its productivity by approximately 70 percent. “During the purchasing process, we immediately were attracted to the combination of the Suprasetter and the Saphira Chemfree plates,” said Keith Lesperance, chief operating officer, Lee Printing Company. “The Suprasetter dramatically increased our speed and productivity. A job that used to take us three days to process with two prepress employees now takes our press operators only four hours. The chemistry-free plates do not require any maintenance, so we’re saving time and money.” The Saphira Chemfree Thermal Plate is a traditional aluminum grained printing plate that uses a new coating technology called micro spheres. The latex-based micro sphere coating is non-ablative and eliminates traditional thermal plate processing variables. The Suprasetter’s patented thermal laser (830nm) is used to bond the micro spheres to the base metal and expose the plate, forming the printing image. Designed for a wide range of sheetfed commercial printing applications, the Saphira Chemfree Thermal Plate uses no developer, no water and no large footprint processor. The technology reduces chemical costs by eliminating high-volume water and waste associated with the traditional thermal process and is environmentally friendly. “Using Saphira Chemfree Thermal Plate technology in conjunction with the Suprasetter, printers can produce high-quality products while accruing tremendous savings and simplifying production from the prepress department to the pressroom,” said Rick Boggess, director of consumables, Heidelberg USA. “We are looking forward to installing this solution across the country to help printers increase efficiency.” Lee Printing purchases its consumables products exclusively from Heidelberg. The company orders its consumables and accessories, including blankets, sleeves and grease for its Heidelberg Speedmaster SM 52, Printmaster QM 46 and GTO presses online through Heidelberg’s Web site. “The convenience of dealing with one supplier for all of our consumables needs is invaluable,” said Lesperance. “Heidelberg’s service support is excellent, and we know that we can rely on them to deliver our supplies on time. If we ever have an urgent request, it’s solved or fulfilled almost immediately.” Founded in 1889, Lee Printing Company is a family-owned commercial printer that houses nine employees. The shop prints a variety of general commercial materials, including business cards, letterhead, envelopes, fliers, programs, brochures, posters and labels for a local client base. Lee Printing offers design, printing, cutting, die-cutting, folding and direct mail services.




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