Kennesaw, GA – Vista Color Corporation, a packaging printer in Miami, Florida, recently purchased a Speedmaster XL 106-6+L with AutoPlate Pro and Inspection Control 2, making it the sixth press they have purchased from Heidelberg in the last twenty years.
A Digital Press with Plates
The new XL 106 runs alongside an existing Speedmaster XL 106, seven color press with double coater and inline foiling. This new machine, equipped with Push to Stop technology, is streamlining production at Vista Color and decreasing turnaround times for their ever-demanding customer base.
“We designed our first XL 106 for the more complex packaging jobs that we typically run, but it was creating a bit of a bottleneck when we wanted to run more standardized jobs,” said Jess Hernandez, President of Vista Color. “The strategy for the new press is to create an express lane for less complex folding cartons and quickly turn those orders around. This new XL 106 is like a digital press with plates. We’ve just been amazed by the new technology – Heidelberg really hit a home run with the enhanced productivity improvements they’ve made.”
With Heidelberg’s breakthrough Push to Stop technology together with AutoPlate Pro, jobs can be autonomously changed over without operator intervention and continue to print until the operator steps in to interrupt if required. All of this is made possible with Intellistart 2, a new and unique integrated software system for effective job preparation, which reduces the number of operating steps during changeover by approximately 70%. The systematic elimination of time on every job change leads to consistent savings and increased efficiency.
According to Hernandez, “In today’s world, packaging as well as commercial customers want ‘just in time’ manufacturing; they want their products as soon as possible, with low inventory levels. This machine will really keep up our velocity as a company and provide the right level of service and quality.”
In the packaging arena, jobs not only need to be done quickly, they also need to be done with accuracy and precision. Many of Vista Color’s clients require that their packages pass the rigorous color consistency test of Graphic Measures International (GMI). GMI certifies, monitors, and measures the performance of packaging suppliers – certifying print facilities for scientific, repeatable measurement of global packaging. Printers must pass GMI’s test to deem their packages suitable for shelves at stores such as Target, Walgreens, and CVS.
Based on the rigors of GMI’s color qualifications, Vista Color decided to utilize the help of Heidelberg’s Prinect Color Services. The expert Prinect color team together with Prinect Color Toolbox software successfully calibrated and optimized the Speedmaster XL 106 to ensure the machine was producing standardized color and met all requirements of GMI. Additional color controls and checks also had to be performed to assess the level of quality and reproducibility of the processes moving forward. With the help of Prinect Color Services, Vista Color was able to achieve a 97% passing score to the specific color requirements of GMI – well above the minimum 80% that is needed to pass.
According to Luis Lachapelle, Plant Manager for Vista Color, “Color is critical in the folding carton industry. We have to be consistent – you can’t walk up and down the aisles of the grocery store and see 10 different variations of the same cereal box. It’s really a challenge to meet GMI standards. Heidelberg gave us the right tools to be compliant with GMI.”