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Featured:     European Coverage     Production Inkjet Analysis

Caraustar surpasses a billion impressions on three MAN Roland presses

Monday, July 10, 2006

Press release from the issuing company

One of the nation's leading manufacturers of folding cartons has surpassed one billion impressions on a trio of MAN Roland presses. The Chicago Carton Plant of Caraustar’s Converted Products Group achieved the longevity milestone earlier this year on an offset press combination comprised of a ROLAND 900 seven-color with coater and two ROLAND 700 seven-color presses. Brian Coffee, General Manager of Caraustar’s Chicago facility, says that all three presses have been producing around the clock at or near their top operating rates — six days a week — from the day they entered commercial production. The plant’s first ROLAND 700 went into operation in 1992; the second began producing in 1995; and Caraustar’s ROLAND 900 was activated in 1997. That amounts to a cumulative total of 34 years of production, and Coffee recounts those years as highly successful ones. “Considering our high run speeds and the number of impressions we produce, these presses have proven very reliable,” he says. “We have replaced very few items during the years we've been running these MAN Roland presses, and there have been no major repairs to speak of.” Endurance Run Producing over one billion impressions amounts to what could be seen as the ultimate endurance run for sheetfed presses. “We are entering unknown territory with these machines,” Coffee notes. “But MAN Roland has provided a great deal of support to get us whatever we need to keep our presses very productive.” The presses’ main assignment is the production of cartons for food and consumer goods products, so quality and color consistency are key considerations. The ROLAND 900 and the two ROLAND 700s deliver with ink trains engineered to maximize ink coverage and minimize dot gain. The presses’ ability to productively handle a wide array of stock types and thicknesses also comes into play at Caraustar. These machines typically print on coated recycled board ranging from 14 pt to 32 pt; solid bleached sulfate (SBS) and solid unbleached sulfate (SUS) paperboard — material typically used to package frozen foods — are their mainstays. All three presses — the 56” ROLAND 900 and the two 41” ROLAND 700s — are configured with seven printing units each. That gives Caraustar the flexibility to meet a variety of client demands. “Most of our customers run four color process with two special colors,” Coffee observes, adding that his MAN Roland presses also provide inline coating capabilities. Short Run Longevity Coffee points to the industry-wide trend toward shorter runs and faster turnarounds, as clients have shifted to just in time production to reduce storage and inventory costs. This is just one example of how the industry has changed since the billion impression presses were installed. But that doesn’t mean it’s time for a change at Caraustar. Coffee says his MAN Roland trio are more than capable of keeping pace with the aggressive demands of the marketplace: “Makeready times are good. Time to get register and color is excellent. And production speeds are very high and consistent.” Plus the countdown to a second billion impressions has already begun.




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