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Technology of Perfecting Presses Coming to Age Concludes GATF Research

Press release from the issuing company

Pittsburgh, Pa., February 19, 2002 — “Convertible perfecting is growing in popularity because of anti-smearing technology and the promise of great productivity,” says a new original research study published by the Graphic Arts Technical Foundation (GATF). The Foundation asked 13 printers with perfecting presses (four units over four units [4/4] or greater) to print the same images and then examined side-to-side print quality (first side printed and second side printed), sheet-to-sheet and unit-to-unit registration, and return on investment business considerations. Print Quality, Sheet Movement, and Return on Investment for Long Perfecting Presses documents the findings and helps printers determine whether perfecting presses are worth the investment. While printing simultaneously on both sides of the sheet significantly saves time, printers have been hesitant to adopt the technology. Historically, ink on the first side printed has not completely set when the second side is printed, resulting in first-side smearing if various interactions involving paper, ink, and impression cylinder sleeves or jackets are not allowed for. This study showed that technology has brought about less smearing in the perfecting process. GATF also surveyed early adopters of the technology about customer satisfaction of jobs run on perfecting presses. The information gathered indicated that, in most cases, customers did not notice lower print quality in comparison to jobs completed on more time-consuming offset presses, or customers considered it acceptable relative to the benefits of increased productivity and the ability to see both sides printed at the same time. Co-authored by John T. Lind, GATF associate director of research, and Gregory M. Radencic, GATF print analysis technician, the report also discusses the history of convertible perfecting to give some background for the project and workflow considerations. Graphics and tables detail print attributes of the press population, tone value increase (TVI) differences from the first side printed to the second side printed, and other factors. Print Quality, Sheet Movement, and Return on Investment for Long Perfecting Presses is the latest study in a series of Research and Technology Reports (RTR) published by the Foundation. As an independent, third-party organization, GATF reports are objective and original research studies designed to help printers evaluate technologies on their own by guiding consumers to ask the right questions. Methodology is described in all reports. Heavily illustrated with charts and graphics, Print Quality, Sheet Movement, and Return on Investment for Long Perfecting Presses (ISBN 0-88362-376-5) is a 52-page booklet available for $129 ($59 for GATF/PIA members), not including shipping. Orders may be placed by contacting GATF by phone at 800/662-3916 (U.S. and Canada) or 412/741-5733 (all other countries); fax at 412/741-0609; or online from the GAIN Bookstore. Mail orders to GATF Products, P.O. Box 1020, Sewickley, PA 15143-1020. Indicate Order No. 1624.