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JohnsByrne’s Custom-Configured, 15-Unit "Concept Press" from Heidelberg Is A Tool To Ignite the Imagination

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Press release from the issuing company

Kennesaw, Ga. – JohnsByrne (Niles, IL) is no stranger to pushing boundaries. The company took delivery of a 15-unit Speedmaster XL 106 from Heidelberg in December of 2014. When it launched the new press last month, the company invited its customers to indulge their limitless imaginations in the robust capacity and in-line capabilities of a one-of-a-kind, “concept” press.

Designed from scratch and built to satisfy a rigid set of parameters years in the making, JohnsByrne’s new press—dubbed “Press384”— is configured with three coating units, eight print units and four dryers, enabling the company to execute virtually any “coat-print-coat-print-coat-dry” combination at speeds up to 18,000 sheets per hour, even on challenging substrates. Stretching almost 130 feet long and with a format size of 29×41”, Press384 is the latest addition to the JohnsByrne’s Limitless Pressroom.

JohnsByrne is a master in the creative application of cutting edge, high-end print, structural design and manufacturing technologies,” said Clarence Penge, Vice President, Sheetfed Product Management, Heidelberg USA. “This custom-built press places JohnsByrne among the forerunners of elite, single-source suppliers able to provide comprehensive services from structural design to finishing, assembly and fulfillment—all in house.”

“The idea of a ‘concept press’ took form and shape over several years as we became more deeply involved in packaging and knew our high potential markets,” said Corey Gustafson, President at JohnsByrne. “We wanted a press to fit our vision for the future of our company. We felt strongly that the ideal press for us should be flexible enough to produce any job our customers could conceive; enable us to experiment with different coatings and sequences; and create the widest range of next-generation tactile and visual effects, all while being budget friendly. The custom-configured Speedmaster XL 106 delivers the whole package.”

Fully Loaded

The new Speedmaster XL 106 functions as the nucleus of an intelligent combination of processes and technology operating around-the-clock in JohnsByrne’s G7-certified pressroom. Elements of Heidelberg’s Prinect workflow management system ensure the seamless integration of presetting and data collection functions on the new press with the company’s existing production workflow. Key elements of the configuration include:

  • Upfront coater to disperse flexographic white, metallic or pearl coatings, and to create barrier properties for plastic, Mylar and “exotic” substrates.
  • Two dryer units after the up-front coater to cure UV coatings at high press speeds.
  • Second and third coaters for UV or aqueous, grit, soft touch, pearl, silver, gold and particulate coatings.
  • Eighth and last print unit (in between 2nd and 3rd coaters) for precision fit registration and smooth laying down of varnishes for special effects and  overprinting.
  • Coater units with multi-loaders allow four on-board anilox rollers for quick changes of different coating volumes, creating unique visual/tactile effects.
  • Flexible arrangement of customized interdeck UV dryers for 100 percent cure, regardless of substrate or speed.
  • Versatile drying configuration: IR/Hot Air/UV/Moisture Extraction (DryStar Combination UV dryer).
  • Automatic feeder logistics system for increased throughput. 

In addition,

  • Extended delivery from third coater to dryer for maximum flow time achieves smoother finish and highest gloss values.
  • Cold air “shower” for plastic and thin substrates prevents blocking.
  • Automatic in-line register and closed-loop color correction, with Prinect Inpress Control ensures the tightest tolerances to original LAB values.
  • Prinect Image Control, a press-linked spectrophotometric scanning of the entire printed image, captures more than 50 million pixels for exact color matching on any substrate.
  • Detailed run data and spectral analysis with quality reporting for every job.

Looking Ahead

Prior to commencing live production, the company launched an intensive research and development phase to test a variety of “futuristic” ideas, Gustafson said. As a result, he continued, “We now have the expanded ability to collaborate with our customers in real time to find the right application for any effect they can imagine. The possibilities truly are limitless.” 

JohnsByrne’s customers now enjoy more creative freedom to combine multiple coatings, inks and varnishes such as soft touch, grit, glitter, gloss, dull and reticulated, all of which can be applied in-line, potentially in one pass. This state-of-the art press also has an automated, computer-monitored feeder logistics system that allows for a non-stop supply of sheets for even more efficient makeready times and faster throughput.


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