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Heatset Web Offset Presses -- Hot Rumors Cool Off

April 2004
by chris bauer

Managing Editor

Finally, the rumor mill can go silent concerning the status of industry giant Heidelberg Web Systems. Just days before closing this issue, Heidelberg and Goss International reached an agreement on major issues for the intended transfer of the Heidelberg Web Offset division to Goss International.

An outline deal has been agreed upon in principle, but some issues remain to be resolved before definitive documents are expected to be executed over the coming weeks.

Heidelberg will still display web presses at the upcoming Drupa trade show in Germany, reports Greg Norris, manager of marketing communications. Its newest offering, the Sunday 3000/32, is a single-circumference web press that offers the advantage of an eight-pages-across cylinder configuration. A web width of 72˝ allows the press to print 32 magazine-size pages per revolution at speeds of up to 100,000 iph.

The first new Sunday 3000/32 has been in operation at Thijsen in The Netherlands since early February. Three additional presses have been ordered for the United States by Arandell Corp. and Quad/Graphics.

"This is an important breakthrough in the Sunday technology development program that began more than a decade ago," explains Werner Albrecht, president of Heidelberg's Web Systems division.

Gapless blanket technology remains vital to the new 2x8 format. The tubular blankets eliminate vibrations that would otherwise compromise speed and print quality with the wider, eight-pages-across cylinders. Heidelberg first introduced gapless blankets in 1993 with the original 24-page Sunday 3000 press.

Albrecht says the new one-web Sunday 3000/32 is an attractive replacement option for the large installed base of two-web, 16-page presses common at North American catalog and publication printing operations. "The productivity is higher, the number of printing units is cut in half and the complexity of running two webs is eliminated," he explains.

Before the Heidelberg Web Systems news broke, Goss International announced that it will have a major presence at Drupa, and will present future concepts to drive web printing.

With a Drupa theme of 'Today…Tomorrow…The Future,' the Goss show presence promises products, services and developments that demonstrate innovation and execution.

Full Product Lineup

Press towers on display at Drupa will represent Goss' worldwide innovation, design and manufacturing capabilities, the company contends. Goss will have presentations and information on all press systems, including the Goss Colorliner, Goss Global Newsliner, Goss Uniliner, Goss Universal and Goss Community product ranges.

"Through the blending of our new creative thinking with our employees' years of experience in high-performance web press design and manufacture, our Drupa presence is designed to satisfy both current and future markets," asserts David Stamp, Goss International worldwide marketing director. "Our Drupa concept underlines the whole theme of Goss' continued commitment to customers for today, tomorrow and the future."


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