St Albans – Despite its name, PlotFactory AG is no production-line operation: it produces a vast range of different advertising and promotional products at its enormous facility in Weisslingen, Switzerland, from one-offs to print-runs of thousands. As such, when the company required updated equipment in late 2017, it chose a Zünd G3 3XL-3200.
"The production workflow varies with each job and may involve different departments every time," explains Rinaldo Fochetti, who founded PlotFactory in 1999. "It also demands new solutions; the approach keeps changing, and therefore the way we use technology evolves too."
The entire value chain is managed within the company, from pre-press to printing and digital cutting all the way to a design and finishing studio, including sewing. An in-house speciality projects workshop works with materials such as acrylics, wood and aluminium.
In the early days, much of this work was carried out manually, but PlotFactory quickly embraced digital with two Zünd high-performance cutters and twelve digital printing systems.
"It became very clear that we needed to optimise our production processes, increase output quality, and lower costs," says Rinaldo Fochetti. "Being able to permanently increase efficiency is game-changing in this market. With pricing structures the way they are, you don't stand a chance otherwise."
In October 2017, the new Zünd, a 3.2m-wide Zünd G3 3XL-3200, was installed – and has worked non-stop since. Fitted with the newly released RM-L routing system which delivers up to 3.6kW of power as well as the ARC automatic tool/bit changer, it makes processing rigid substrates such as acrylics and wood a breeze.
"We are able to cut just about any material we can think of with our Zünds," comments Stefan Herber, who is in charge of sewing and finishing operations at PlotFactory. "It always amazes me to see just how versatile these cutters are.
"It's a great feeling to be able to live up to our motto, 'No-go is a no-no'."
The new Zünd has increased PlotFactory's versatility and production speeds, as operators can load one end of the table while cutting continues uninterrupted on the other, as well as job turnaround – the Zünd Cut Center ZCC workflow software allows super-quick changeovers for priority work.
"Being able to produce everything in-house offers tremendous advantages and exciting possibilities. While it makes our production workflows more complex, it also increases their efficiency since we are not depending on outside service providers," comments Fochetti.
"Zünd cutters are also extremely user-friendly and reliable. Simply put, they are quality products – and that also applies to the installation, service and support Zünd provides. It's quite a remarkable performance."
For more information about the Zünd G3 or the rest of the range, please email [email protected] or call 01727 833003.
PlotFactory has been running its new Zünd non-stop since October.