Sussex, Wisconsin, USA – Newspaper printer Union Druckerei Weimar GmbH (Nohra, Thuringia state) has become the first printing house in Germany to install QuadTech's newly enhanced Register Guidance System, with fan-out control to eliminate web-growth during production, and full ribbon control.
The QuadTech press control and guidance systems were installed on Union's only press, the manroland REGIOMAN. The installation package includes the Register Guidance System and Ribbon Control System with the acclaimed MultiCam cameras on the press's four towers and 16 ribbons.
Since it was installed ten years ago, the REGIOMAN has been responsible for the company's total output, printing Berliner and broadsheet format newspapers and inserts at a rate of six million copies per week. A subsidiary of Meckenheim-based Schenkelberg Druck- und Medienhaus, Union Druckerei prints regional newspapers for several major population centers across Germany, and the country's most-read football title, kicker Sportsmagazin.
With the addition of QuadTech's motorized bustle wheels, which automatically compensate for fan-out, the Register Guidance System provides a complete, fully integrated control solution that requires no external intervention. Bustle wheels act on the unprinted areas of the web, bringing the register into alignment once again as the web runs through the printing couples. Because the QuadTech systems are bases on the ICON integrated platform, Union benefits from a central control station, from which staff can recall and apply stored job setup data for all networked press controls, and monitor each press from a single point. Register guidance and ribbon control had been labor-intensive tasks that required dedicated observance of output by one of the four press operators throughout the shift. Now these aspects of quality control have been fully automated, operators at the plant have more time to focus on other quality issues, such as color management.
The MultiCam color register cameras on each tower identify marks as small as 0.36 mm (0.014"), at speeds of up to 17.6 m/s (3,500 ft/min). Making up to 30 searches per second, it enables immediate detection of web-tension upsets, especially during the make-ready phase of the production run. As a result, the Union Druckerei team expects to reduce start-up waste by as much as 30 percent.
Furthermore, QuadTech will provide Union Druckerei with a remote diagnostics service, scanning for and proactively resolving potential problems on a 24/7 basis via broadband Internet connection with the customer's IT server, to dramatically reduce downtime.
Recently, Union Druckerei added extra folding facilities to the REGIOMAN press, boosting productivity to a maximum of 144,000 copies per hour. René Arndt, plant manager at Union Druckerei Weimar GmbH, commented: "Our presses run at very high production speeds, and this leverages the impact of machine down-time and production waste on our business. Thanks to our partnership with QuadTech, we cutting edge technology, coupled with round the clock support, to overcome this challenge. We are delighted with this installation, as it provides an effortless, failsafe means of meeting the exacting tolerance standards required by advertisers, publishers and an increasingly discerning readership."
Vincent Balistrieri, head of QuadTech's newspaper and commercial SBU, comments: "QuadTech succeeds only when we provide solutions that result in our customers' having real success. By that I mean optimizing their efficiencies, reducing their waste and labor, and ultimately raising their profits. We're very gratified that Union Druckerei is realizing quantifiable results in all of those areas, and staying ahead of their competition by utilizing QuadTech technologies. It's the reason we've enjoyed a ten-year partnership-they're getting proven results."