High-Speed Inkjet Presses: Next Round of Investments
Investment in high-speed inkjet is also part of Sheridan Books' larger effort to use alliances to provide full distributed print capabilities in the United Kingdom and Asia.
Folder Express: Sheetfed Inkjet Press for Presentation Folders
Using high-speed inkjet in a completely different way is Folder Express in Omaha, NE. It purchased a 2,700 sph sheetfed inkjet press, a Fujifilm J Press 720, to produce presentation folders for the print distributor market. On the front end, Folder Express utilizes an EFI Radius workflow.
The choice of the J Press was primarily about format size. The press' 20.8x29.5˝ format allowed it to match up perfectly with Folder Express' existing offset back end. This enabled the company to offer short-run, full digital production, remain a 100 percent sheetfed shop, plus no postpress or other finishing investments were required.
"The beauty of the press is that whether the output is from offset or the J Press, it's recognized throughout the plant as just another job," says Doug Boysen, president of the company, which installed the press in September 2012. "Plus, we offer our customers about 150 stocks that they can choose from and, with the J Press, they can continue to use approximately 60 percent of them. They can still use the stocks that they are used to using."
Before purchasing the J Press, Folder Express was producing short runs of folders on its 28˝ Mitsubishi press. In a four-color environment, its threshold was 250 pieces. With the J Press, it has dropped that to 50 and is very cost-effective at 100. "In fact, we are looking at about 40 percent reduction in price at 250 pieces doing it digitally," notes Boysen.
Although toner-based machines offer similar formats, according to Boysen, the Sutherland Rub test on samples produced on the J Press were significantly better. "That was critical for us," he says. "Our customers need to be able to open the box with their order and know they're receiving the same level of quality that they are used to getting from us."