Edison Litho Installs Second KBA Rapida 205 81-Inch
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Edison Litho & Printing, one of the largest large-format litho printers in the Northeast, is operating its second KBA Rapida 205 81-inch—a five-color sheetfed press with coater and custom plastics package—making it the only printer in North America to operate two such large presses in the same facility. In addition, Edison is operating a KBA Rapida 162 64-inch six-color sheetfed press with aqueous coater, which was installed in January 2007. The newest KBA Rapida 205 81-inch press was delivered to Edison’s facility in the spring of 2008.
“Being able to print on different substrates on the Rapida 205 81-inch press sets us apart,” says George Gross, Edison’s president. “The short-run plastic styrene market is growing and we’ve got the press to produce these jobs. Customers like the fact that the substrate produces a beautiful application display that is pliable and holds up well in a variety of conditions, such as moisture and humidity, yet will not curl. We’re also producing point-of-purchase signage, packaging displays, huge posters, and outdoor signage materials, such as opalene with backlit and Flexcon’s Busmark self-adhesive vinyl. All of these specialized jobs give us higher margins and a double-digit increase in our profits.”
Special features enhance speed, quality, and flexibility
The newest KBA Rapida 205 at Edison Litho is equipped with UV coating and chillers on the cylinders to enable long runs and allow special substrates to be produced with no deviations. Without these special features, press cylinders overheat, plastic substrates have a tendency to stretch, ink will not adhere, registration is poor, and it is difficult to dry correctly. “The Rapida 205 enhances the speed and quality of this specialized type of printing,” says Gross. “Having the additional capability of printing on substrates like plastic, vinyl, and styrene really rounds out our ability to service our customers with their entire large-format printing needs. We’ve found that there are very few printers who have this ability, thus we are differentiated from our competition.”
For example, Edison recently completed a job for a high-end car manufacturer who required a large-format sign printed on styrene. The customer was not happy with the quality of the job printed by its silk-screen printer. So the customer turned the job over to Edison to produce on its Rapida 205. “We got the job at 11 a.m., outputted their file, and printed, cut, and delivered the job in one day,” says Roger Morel, Edison’s quality control manager and prepress supervisor. “The car manufacturer couldn’t believe the high quality and speed with which we produced this job on 30-pt styrene for them.”
Another recent large-format job called for Edison to print over white foil stock with one hit of color. The Rapida 205 gave Edison the flexibility and speed it needed to complete the job while retaining the silver effect; it produced the job in one pass ready for use.
“Since the installation of the new Rapida 205 with the custom plastics package, we’ve had a 25% increase in revenue, and our customers are amazed at the diverse substrates that we can put through the press and the high-quality output,” says Joe Ostreicher, vice president of sales and chief operating officer. “We’re now able to offer our customers a variety of new substrates for their large-format jobs, such as plastic, styrene, opalene, and foils. We held a very successful open house at our facility in North Bergen, New Jersey, where we entertained about 100 guests who learned about our capabilities, got to see the new press in action, and took samples. We also took part in the GlobalShop trade show in Chicago, where we showed how our press can produce eye-catching banners, signage, and other marketing materials on a variety of substrates in large format.”
Setting Edison apart from its competition
“Having two of the largest presses in the world under our roof propels our reputation above that of all our competitors,” says Ostreicher. “Our quality, turnaround, and service already differentiate us from our competitors, but having this third press gives us the ability to service the entire large-format market.”
Since the installation of the first Rapida 205 81-inch sheetfed press, the world’s largest press and the winner of the prestigious GATF InterTech award, Edison has had the press on a 24-hour shift producing commercial printing, point-of-purchase, packaging, poster, retail signage, and other high-quality jobs for both existing and new customers.
“We’re proud that KBA has partnered so successfully with Edison Litho and enabled the company to become a leader in large format and differentiate itself, especially in this challenging market,” says Ed Heffernan, KBA district sales manager. “We’ve provided a custom-built press that completely serves the needs of Edison and its customers.”