Geographics to Install First Heidelberg “Zero-Makeready” Web Press

DOVER, NH–July 14, 2004–Geographics will install the first web press in the United States with Automatic Transfer (AT), a new Heidelberg option that allows job changeovers to be completed without stopping the press.

The company reportedly will add the six-unit, 24-page Sunday 2000 in early 2005 as part of an ongoing expansion project at its Atlanta, GA facility. The web press will complement new sheetfed presses, including a Heidelberg Speedmaster 10-color perfector.

“The market for high-quality commercial printing is going in the direction of shorter runs with more versioning,” explains Geographics Owner and CEO Norvin Hagan. “The combination of gapless technology, Autoplate and Automatic Transfer creates an ideal platform for us to better serve our customers. In addition to cutting makeready time and waste to a minimum, we will also eliminate some makereadies altogether.”

Automatic Transfer allows operators to complete on-the-run print transfers by bringing one or more idle printing units on impression while simultaneously taking another unit, or group of units, off impression. According to Heidelberg, it maintains a straight web lead and does not require air bars or diverters that adversely effect print quality and limit the positioning of the AT units within the press line.

The Sunday 2000 at Geographics will include two AT printing units. “With AT and Autoplate, we expect to run the press with a reduced crew and to run it continuously through several edition changes,” Hagan notes. “We will also have the option of using all six units for six-color jobs.”

Hagan established Geographics in 1976 after investing $32,000 to purchase a bankrupt sheetfed printing operation. Today, 200 employees generate annual revenues of $37 million, providing comprehensive digital prepress, sheetfed and web offset printing, bindery, fulfillment and data management services. The company recently completed an $11 million expansion of its 400,000 square foot facility and added ten-color and six-color Heidelberg Speedmaster sheetfed presses.

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