BCQ secures Duplo UK first


Commercial printer BCQ Group has become the first UK company to buy a Duplo DC-746 multi-finisher complete with Integrated Folding System, in a bid to reduce bottlenecks in its digital department.

BCQ managing director Chris Knowles first saw the DC-746 IFS, which will be officially launched on 17 July, at the Duplo Summer Festival last month, where it was shown for the first time at Duplo’s Addlestone, Surrey headquarters. He signed for the slitter-cutter-creaser plus folding system soon after and it will be installed at 120-staff BCQ’s 3,900sqm Buckingham premises in the next two weeks.

Knowles said the value of the investment was less than £100,000. 

BCQ manufacturing director Andy Hill said: “When I joined the company I identified that the digital department is growing at a fast rate and the bottlenecks we were finding by putting small amounts of digital work through our normal bindery. So I put a wishlist to Chris [Knowles] to say ‘This is what I think we need to be more efficient’, we looked at a few other suppliers, but Chris came back to me after the festival and said ‘I think I’ve found you the perfect piece of kit’.

“We did look around the market to see what kind of digital finishing equipment there is but we found that the Duplo machine just gave us the versatility.

Configured in-line with the multi-finisher, the IFS automatically folds sheets that have been cut, creased and perforated in a single pass, eliminating the need for a separate folding machine. The solution uses two knife blades to perform up to five different folds and can be adapted to perform custom folds. 

The DC-746 can process up to 10 slits, 25 cuts and 20 creases in a single pass and has a high-capacity feeder and CCD scanner. It utilises Duplo’s Job Creator Software, which allows the operator to create PDF templates, including barcode and image recognition. 

"It saves me putting 250 copies of a perforated leaflet through a cylinder, then a folder, whereas obviously this can do it all in one go,” added Hill.

“It will make speed of turnaround quicker and then we will be able to get more through a normal bindery due to not having to flit in and out of large runs to do short-run digital work.” 

Last year, BCQ invested in LE-UV technology for the first time, a five-colour Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 75 LE-UV, and upgraded its bindery. The new press will come in in September.

Hill said embracing the technology would “open up new markets” for BCQ.

The £10.5m-turnover group also runs four conventional Speedmasters as well as HP Indigo digital printers and EFI, Fujifilm, Mimaki and HP wide-format equipment. 

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