KBA Rapida 205 81-inch Super Large Sheetfed Press Wins PIA/GATF Award
Press release from the issuing company
KBA North America, a leading supplier of sheetfed offset and digital presses based in Williston, VT, has won the prestigious Printing Industries of America/Graphic Arts Technical Foundation InterTech Technology Award for its Rapida 205 81-inch extra-large sheetfed press. The award winners were announced on July 22, 2005.
The Rapida 205 81-inch sheetfed offset press from KBA North America is a revolutionary and unique piece of technology designed for large format printers, book printers, packaging houses, poster printers, screen printers, and general commercial printers to produce extra large format, high quality products in a cost-efficient manner. The Rapida 205, the world’s largest sheetfed offset press, features a maximum sheet size of 59.5 x 81-inches and runs at a speed of 9,000 sph. Its users benefit from being able to run paper and board stock ranging from 50 lb to 64 pt. This is the first press of this size to offer a wide range of automated technology, such as a fully-automatic plate changer, automatic blanket and impression cylinder washing systems, inline anilox coating system and drying options such as IR, UV, or hybrid.
An engineering benchmark
In determining the award, PIA/GATF judges said, “The Rapida 205’s high print quality and low makeready times take sheetfed press technology to an acme of productivity in a sheet size (59½ x 81 inches) that has never been printed before. Printers can replace two to four older presses with just one high-tech Rapida 205. The technology, an engineering benchmark, is packaging friendly, but it gives offset printers a way to go after the large-format market.”
To date, KBA has sold nine Rapida 205 presses in the U.S. with three presses already installed since the press was introduced at Drupa 2004. These customers are: Imagine! Print Solutions, a large commercial printer located in Shakopee, Minnesota; Kubin-Nicholson, a leading large format, commercial, and digital printer located in Milwaukee, Wisc.; and Loupe, a large-format printing operation located in Gahanna, Ohio. As one user commented, “The press has differentiated us from our competitors by showcasing how we can handle this press’s unique extra large format abilities and provide customers with products they didn't know they could afford.”
Inline features add to productivity
The press has other important inline features such as KBA’s own Qualitronic inline sheet inspection system, KBA’s Densitronic quality control system, and inline perforating and slitting. An automatic camera register control system provides an extremely efficient system for fast color registration on a press of this size.
The press is significant because it allows printers to produce extra large format jobs with extremely high print quality and low makeready times in a highly-automated 81-inch press format. The press is equal to running four 40-inch presses; the Rapida 205 can print one sheet in the same amount of time with less manpower and greater productivity thus providing a fast ROI. Its high degree of automation brings massive efficiencies in overall makeready time and allows printers of all shapes and sizes to expand their customer base and better differentiate themselves in today’s competitive market place.
The coveted Lucite InterTech stars, recognized industry wide as a symbol of technological innovation and excellence, will be presented to 2005 award recipients at an annual banquet, which hosts an impressive audience of industry leaders, at the 2005 PIA/GATF Fall Administrative Meetings, held November 10–13 in San Francisco, California.
“We are deeply honored and thrilled to be the recipient of the PIA/GATF InterTech Technology award for 2005,” says Ralf Sammeck, president and CEO of KBA North America. “The award is particularly gratifying because it shows that KBA is committed to focusing on our customers’ needs and helping them move into new markets.”
Inaugurated in 1978 to foster awareness and understanding of advanced graphic arts technology, PIA/GATF's InterTech Award honors excellence in innovative technology for the graphic communications industry. The nomination criteria stipulate that the technology be recently developed but out of beta and be proven in industrial application, but not yet in widespread use. The technology must also be expected to have a major impact on the graphic communications industry over the next five years. Over 80% of past recipients have gone on to commercial success in the marketplace.
PIA/GATF sponsors the award as a service to the graphic communications industry, and the organization coordinates the award process but does not select the recipients. InterTech Technology Award recipients are chosen by an independent, anonymous panel of judges. The judges, distinguished within the industry, all have demonstrated experience in evaluating or commissioning new products or technologies, plus expertise in premedia work, printing, binding and finishing, and related software and services. The judges review each nomination thoroughly.
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