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Micropress returns to Heidelberg for press and finishing spend


One year on from investing in a Stahlfolder TH 56 folder which gave a 30-40% productivity lift, Micropress has returned for a Stahlfolder KH 82. It is also adding its first Polar Autotrim cutting line and a new press, a Speedmaster XL 75-5. This £1.2m investment comes after a visit to Heidelberg and two customer site visits. The equipment will be installed next month.

“The press is a like for like swap but this latest generation press will give us a greater output, not least with its Intellistart software. We looked at Komori but we are an all Heidelberg house and the Speedmasters have performed really well for us,” says Rob Cross, commercial director. “We normally replace our presses every seven years. The one going out is in fact eight years old but the two Speedmaster XL 106s (a five-colour and an eight-colour perfector) we installed 18 months ago increased our productivity so much it made sense to wait.”

Micropress evaluated LED-UV and LE-UV extensively but for its business the figures did not stack up. It has stayed with the five-unit configuration which is mostly four process colours plus seal which is another way to move work through to the finishing area very quickly and without fear of marking.

In fact the company says that with its four Speedmasters its B1-B2 ratio is 80-20% respectively. The new press will handle some shorter run commercial work but its main focus will be on covers. Micropress is finding good growth of about 10% per annum in litho production although it does have a digital service, too.

The company has a mixed folder portfolio but has returned to Heidelberg for the second time in a year, this time for a combination model. The KH 82 was very carefully evaluated, including the two site visits, and part of the decision was based on that and the “very, very good” performance of the TH56.

“We already had the buckle capacity and the combination folder fitted better and will be used as a dedicated folder for section work,” says Rob Cross.

“The Polar Autotrim is a real step forward and will give us a 15-20% increase in output and stop the cutting area being a bottleneck. We like to get the best technology available and this is it!”

The cutting table opens to allow waste to drop away during production and the machine is bordered by a stacklift and Transomat downloader, a line that maximises efficiency and output and minimises operator strain.

The company’s comprehensive finishing operations also include PUR binding and mailing systems.

Micropress is a £16m turnover business (including a publishing arm) which handles a broad range of work including brochures, catalogues, books, magazines and high run leaflets. It operates out of a 50,000 sq ft factory on a ten acre site and operates 24 hours on weekdays and 12 hours at the weekend. It runs to ISO12647 colour standards and it is also very sustainability minded a roof covered in solar panels and a biomass boiler.

For further information please contact:
Diana Thompson, Plus Point PR Ltd, on 01494-817178
Ian Trengrouse, Heidelberg UK, on 07825-781483
Rob Cross, Micropress, on 01502-725800.

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