ROLAND 900 XXL previews at Graph Expo, World's widest sheetfed printing unit
Wednesday, October 01, 2003
McCormick Place, Chicago — The 73-inch ROLAND 900 XXL — the widest modern sheetfed press on the market — makes a pre-Drupa preview at Graph Expo. A full-scale unit of the jumbo press will be on display to give showgoers a first-hand look at its productive potential. The 900 XXL delivers 328% more printable area than a conventional 40” machine, and 22% more printable area than even the largest 47” X 64” press. That means big profits for the printers who run it and huge savings for their customers. “There are a lot of old generation large size presses out there,” says Eric Belcher, COO of MAN Roland Inc’s Sheetfed Division. “But it’s getting tougher to make money with them because they take so long to makeready from job to job and their run rates are low compared to what you can accomplish on a modern 40” machine. So we see these new wide presses replacing the old. We’re also seeing printers with 40” machines trading up to wider presses.” The ROLAND 900 XXL combines the advantages of an expanded sheet size with the full automation of a state-of-the-art 40” machine. The result: makeready times and runs rates are just as fast as a 40” press, but productivity is three times higher because of the larger sheet. “One new automated 73” press with CIM can do the work of two or three new 40" machines,” Belcher notes. “It’s simple mathematics — Triple the size of the sheet. and you’re tripled the productivity, once you’ve equalized all other variables like makeready time and run rates.” The ROLAND 900‘s PECOM Press Center networks the press to all of the advantages of Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM) and is the basis for print quality and automated print production. The system allows off-press/online makeready of all print jobs with the InterTech innovation JobPilot. That significantly improves the press’ ability to speed from job-to-job. With Prepress Link, the 900 can transfer job parameters, such as ink zone presetting, directly from prepress files. It also can interface to PECOM PressMonitor to facilitate accurate performance evaluations. “The mechanics of a press must be100% automated if a printer is going to reap the benefits of CIM production,” says Belcher. “Many of CIM’s advantages are derived from presetting a press — not just its ink fountains, but everything from feeder to delivery. To maximize uptime you need to be able to preset all parameters online but off-press. That way the press can be producing the current job while the next project is being preset. “ The ROLAND 900 XXL is fully JDF compatible and can connect with an increasing number of Management Information Systems. “You need to be able to feed your MIS with the production data it needs to make your presses participating members of your plant’s CIM universe,” Belcher declares. Automated plate loading and sheet size thickness adjustments contribute to quick makeready. The 900’s Power Plate Loading (PPL) system requires less than a minute per unit to load/clamp plates. The press’ printing units incorporate a double-size impression cylinder that reduces stress exerted on the stock and a “seven-o’clock” cylinder position that does not allow a sheet transfer until the sheet has left the contact printing zone. Result: The ROLAND 900 provides the flexibility to print a range of jobs on thin papers up to 1.2 mm/0.048" carton stock. That means the 900 XXL can work as a package-printing powerhouse. It handles everything from folding boxes to corrugated microflute. Plus, its heavy substrate capabilities can open up display/POP markets for the shops that use it. Book production, catalog printing, and labels and plastics production are all on the 900 XXL’s expansive agenda as well. The method of applying coating to meet job requirements can be varied by using either a laser-engraved Anilox roller and doctor blade or conventional two-roller coater. The Anilox roller can apply UV coatings, water-based coatings and metallic pigments. The press is available with single or double coating units. The delivery for the ROLAND 900 has been designed to provide higher productivity through smoother sheet travel, improved sheet control, and more efficient sheet slowdown through the suction wheels. Benefits include savings in makeready time, in materials (including spray powder and paper waste), and in cleaning and maintenance. With the introduction of the XXL model, the ROLAND 900 is now available in six formats: 32.3” x 44.5” (820 x 1,130 mm), 35.0” x 49.6” (890 x 1,260 mm), 40.1” x 55.9” (1,000 x 1,400 mm),. 44” X 63.7” (1,120x1,620 mm), 47” X 63.7” (1,200x1,620 mm) and 51” X 72.8” (1,300x1,850 mm). A host of ROLAND 900 options can be selected, including a back printing unit, an equipment package for printing E-flute, and a slitter for sheet halving.