Trade printer Route One Print has converted its eight-colour B1 Speedmaster SX 102 to LE-UV, in a bid to reduce turnaround times and further boost turnover.
According to Route One brand manager Jack Wilmott, the Rotherham-based company’s turnover rose by 37% in the last quarter, and annual growth over the past four years has averaged 62%. Its projected turnover for the end of the financial year is £32m.
Wilmott said there were two main factors behind the conversion, although he was unable to reveal the cost of implementation. He said: “About six months ago we decided to start offering more items on a 24-hour production turnaround as a result of market demand. With that in mind, we need to make sure we get our work off the presses and onto guillotines or binding machines as quickly as possible without any ‘bruising’ occurring.
“The other factor would be that we are increasingly printing on uncoated stocks on booklets. The cured inks limits the paper absorbing the ink, keeping colours more vibrant.”
The conversion took place on the weekend of 18 and 19 June and was implemented by UK-company IST, which launched its UV retrofit service last January. IST was recommended to Route One by Heidelberg.
Wilmott said that the added cost of the cured inks was a factor in the company taking its time over the decision to convert, but that after it had weighed up the costs and benefits it decided it was a “no brainer”.
He also stressed that he was pleased with the added environmental benefits gained by the conversion, and was pleased with Route One’s further investment in GMG colour management software.
“Obviously it uses less energy and produces zero Ozone. We are ISO certified for our environmental management and this is something we are very conscious of,” added Wilmott.
In a major pre-press upgrade, Route One switched to using Fuji low chemical plate processors approximately six months ago, which has allowed it to reduce chemical waste.
Alongside the Speedmaster 102, on the litho side, Route One runs a B2 Komori Lithrone S29, a B2 Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 75 and a B1 Heidelberg Speedmaster SX 102.
On the digital side, it runs two HP Scitex 11000 flatbeds and three Xerox iGen4s.