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Creatively configured KBA Rapida 106 at Ruksaldruck in Berlin

Friday, October 17, 2014

Press release from the issuing company

Art and technology unite in the press room

Ruksaldruck has become a household name in Berlin, Germany, for the fine arts, even the piece of art “Turmtext” by Wolfgang Nieblich displayed at reception is eye-catching.

The printing firm’s 34th art calendar will be finished soon. This is in addition to further numerous art catalogues printed at Ruksaldruck over the last 75 years.

Art has also recently become a feature of the company’s press room with the arrival of a new medium-format Rapida 106 whose KBArt printing units and side frames were decorated in the company’s colours. At the end of 2012 the management questioned the future of the firm’s printing activities. The choice was between updating an older sheetfed press, purchasing a used machine and investing in a new one. Ruksaldruck decided on a brand new press. KBA came out on top with regard to the total investment amount by offering the best price/performance ratio. The press operators were also informed about the offer in a staff meeting and took part in the investment decision as it also has an impact on their daily work.

Highly flexible for creative ideas

The new KBA Rapida 106 with four inking units and coater is equipped with a board-handling package, automatic plate changing, CleanTronic systems,VariDry IR/TA dryers, QualiTronic ColorControl inline colour control and it is linked to pre-press, production management and MIS via LogoTronicProfessional. As almost half of the company’s jobs are produced in four colours or less, more than four inking units were not necessary. One of the firm’s specialities is duplex or triplex printing. A further six-colour press can also be found in the press room. The company was looking for the maximum level of substrate flexibility possible including various types of board, as display manufacturers, agencies and publishing houses also belong to its customer base. Furthermore, unusual ad campaigns often demand printed products on board.

The Rapida 106 showcased its potential in the very first three-shift weeks: The makeready times were cut substantially. Anilox roller changes are easy thanks to the Anilox-Loader in the coater and a press operator can change the anilox rollers in about three minutes with little physical exertion. In the past two people had a hard job of changing the rollers which took approx. 15 minutes. Nearly 90 per cent of the jobs at Ruksaldruck are coated. These consist of solids, products with areas that are left blind, e.g. for the back covers of books, or spot coatings in art catalogues. The substrate’s haptic qualities should often remain unchanged whereas the images, depending on the desired effect wet-on-wet or wet on dry, are finished with coating. Drip-off coatings are also possible.

Recycling where possible

Inline colour control with QualiTronic ColorControl is one of the Rapida 106’s key features according to Ruksaldruck managing director Werner Schmidt and his team. Even the smallest colour deviation can ruin an art catalogue. The company’s printers are still used to cutting out parts of a sheet in order to create the optimum image extension on the next sheet.

The new Rapida has reduced waste levels and washing agent consumption significantly which fits well to Ruksaldruck’s ecological philosophy. All waste has been strictly separated since 2005 and as much as possible is recycled. The firm does not simply separate waste paper according to type or recycle used printing plates, old pallets are used to create raised vegetable beds in Prinzessinnengärten (Princess Gardens), an organic farming area for the community in Berlin-Kreuzberg, Germany. Scrap rubber blankets are used as seats for garden chairs and in the future use will be found for old wash cloths.

Strictly ecological

Many further projects are conceived with an eye on protecting the environment, for example the firm feeds power into the grid via a photovoltaic system. It amounts to approx. seven per cent of its own energy consumption. Since 1 January the company has printed using 100 per cent green energy. It costs slightly more, but still results in savings as long-term respective quotas are obtained via an electricity exchange. A current compensation system ensures that energy is used up fully. This also helps to save costs.

Ruksal aims to be the first printing firm in Berlin to deliver its products emission-free with an electric vehicle from October 2014. The starting point was a student project “courier services on an industrial estate” which focused on networking the companies based in Großbeerenstraße, an industrial area. 50 companies located here work together to liven up and strengthen their estate which offers more than 6,000 jobs. A courier service company bought an electric vehicle and has pooled it as part of this network. Ruksaldruck has installed a plug socket in its courtyard to charge the car that can drive up to 400km a day (248miles). Two further students from the School of Economics and Law in Berlin are coordinating the upcoming EMAS certification of the printing firm.

Ruksaldruck continually expands its market position in Berlin with various ideas and activities and finds unique positions and niches in the competitive commercial market.


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