Print Communications Expands Postpress with Heidelberg Stitchmaster ST 400
Press release from the issuing company
KENNESAW, Ga. – April 14, 2004 – Print Communications, Inc., a full-service commercial printer located in Indianapolis, Ind., recently installed a six-pocket Heidelberg ST 400 Stitchmaster stitcher trimmer with cover feeder to address capacity issues resulting from what PCI president Gregory A. Flora terms the company’s “controlled intensive growth” over the past 12 years.
“Our addition of the Stitchmaster ST 400 has enabled PCI to address the growing demand for short-run products delivered within a compressed timeframe,” Flora said. “The quick changeover requirements of our customers, combined with the ST 400’s ability to deliver fast, efficient makereadies and enable frequent format changes were key considerations in the purchase.”
The versatile Stitchmaster ST 400, winner of the 2003 GATF Award, is the first saddle stitcher for industrial booklet production that can be completely adapted to each product. Highly automated with on-the-fly, independent adjustments and mobile hoppers with servo drives, the ST 400 promotes maximum flexibility for editions of all sizes, making it ideal for applications requiring frequent format changes. Key features include:
- Integrated automatic format presetting, parallel and simultaneous in all hoppers
- Automatic synchronization of all units
- Fast makeready
- Easy on-the-fly changes and adjustments
- With multiple machines, hoppers can be shared to reduce capital investment
According to Heidelberg, the Stitchmaster ST 400 is designed to permit optional workflow integration using the CIP3-PPF protocol via Heidelberg’s Prinect platform. To date, more than 100 Stitchmaster ST 400 stitcher trimmers have been installed worldwide.
PCI’s new Stitchmaster ST 400 joins a Heidelberg 855 10-pocket saddle stitcher trimmer with in-line stacking and addressing, already at work in PCI’s bindery department.
PCI’s job mix combines insert and commercial printing for clients in the retail and real estate markets. The company employs 180 workers, operates eight half- and full-size heatset web presses with in-line gluing, cutting and folding capabilities, and a pair of multicolor sheetfed presses. It provides a full menu of services from design and electronic prepress through bindery, shipping, mail and fulfillment around the clock, five days a week.
While the company is equipped to handle jobs ranging from hundreds to millions of books, magazines and inserts, it also provides short-run, fast-turnaround jobs.”
“Computer-enabled makeready on the all-digital ST 400 is a key function and a critical part of its appeal,” Flora says. “As a result, we’ve been able to significantly cut expenses and increase capacity, which in turn will help drive revenue and profitability.”
PCI is so pleased with the results of its enhanced postpress capabilities, in fact, that Flora said the company is considering a further expansion of its bindery within the next year.
Helping to reduce makeready, maximize production and minimize material and labor waste and associated downtime is what Flora terms a “fail-safe” downstream inhibit system that signals a delay in sequential pocket feeding in the event a signature is misfed. This prevents further mishandling, eliminates the need for additional decollating and makes it possible for a single operator to monitor the entire operation from a 10.4” color touch screen display. Additional control panels on each unit permit the ST 400 to be operated from almost anywhere.
“The standalone ST 400 can be used with any of PCI’s web or sheetfed presses and it can handle any product coming off of our machines,” Flora said.
Steady growth – even in spite of the recent economic downturn – has been PCI’s reward for its record of incredible customer service, which has been the company’s trademark strategy since its 1991 founding. PCI recorded revenue of $29 million in 2003 and expects continued growth looking forward.
“Heidelberg,” Flora said, “has been a valued supplier from the inception of our business.”
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