Ripon Community Printers -- A Heat Wave
Darnick: The print quality is definitely there. We've received good support from MAN Roland, as well as the auxiliary vendors and we're pleased at this point.
PI: Any major challenges thus far?
Darnick: Nothing that we can't overcome. Probably the biggest challenge was designing and installing the mezzanine because it was something that was brand new. We had a team of individuals working internally with an outside source to pull this off. They did a magnificent job of putting this together. It's an impressive structure.
PI: Was there a learning curve involved?
Darnick: Certainly, the whole heatset experience. It's an entirely new process for us. It's still ink on paper, but totally different from what we have been producing for the past 40 years. Russ Welch (first shift web press supervisor and press installation supervisor) and press manager Tom Konecny set up an in-depth training program. Our web press supervisors and press personnel invested many weeks of training on the Rotoman along with the various auxiliary and consumable vendors, learning the equipment and heatset process to give us the best opportunity to succeed. We have an enthusiastic group of people now working on this pressline.
PI: Why did you choose MAN Roland?
Lyke: We felt that, coming from coldset, we didn't want to be seen as just a newspaper printer trying to be a 'me, too'-type printer. We've been known for quality on the coldset side, and have won many awards. We wanted to attain the same level of excellence, so we didn't want to enter the market with a used machine. And we wanted state-of-the-art automation. We think that's the way we need to be in the future to compete.
Darnick: The shaftless press design was very attractive to us. MAN Roland's reputation in the industry is very good and our reference checks bear that out. A group of press and maintenance personnel visited various sites to inspect the equipment and were in agreement MAN Roland was the press for Ripon based on the technology and design we were looking for.