Gask & Hawley continues reequip with new Speedmaster CX 102

Simon Nias
Monday, April 28, 2014

Gask & Hawley (G&H Printing) has installed a new Speedmaster CX 102-5+LX as part of an ongoing reequip that has already seen it order a hybrid Goss 16pp M600 web with Kodak Prosper S20 printheads.

G&H's new sheetfed press will be joined by the hybrid Goss web in September while the firm is planning to buy a second sheetfed press early next year, taking its total investment to around £5m.

G&H production director Rob Shaw said: "We've all gone through a torrid time over the past six years, but at this moment it seem to be the right time to move on and invest.

"We're having to work very hard but as long as you do that - with the new kit coming in - the market seems more buoyant and customers have got more work, so the timing is right."

G&H's new CX 102 is a five-colour B1 press with coater, ImageControl colour measurement, Preset Plus feeder and extended delivery. It joins the firm's three other Heidelberg B1s, a CD 102 five-colour plus coat, a CD 102 eight-colour with cutstar and an SM 74 six-colour.

Shaw said: "The feeder allows us to drive sheets forward at very high speeds consistently - it means we can run an emulsion coat on a 90gsm stock and still supply it to the delivery at full speed."

That speed is 16,500sph compared to a rated speed of around 15,000sph on G&H's older presses, which - due to their age - the firm tends to run closer to 10,000sph.

While a final decision has yet to be made on the Manchester-based printer's second new sheetfed press, Shaw said that the specification would likely be similar to the CX 102, in terms of having a five-colour B1 plus coat and extended delivery.

"We looked at the XL but it's only 1,500sph faster and the larger format means we've not got the plate compatibility with our other machines, so then you've got problems in repro plus it's going to cost 25% more," said Shaw.

"Run lengths are getting shorter and shorter so it doesn't warrant going out and spending £2.5m on an eight-colour perfector."

Dave Hatton, managing director at G&H, added: "Some of our customers prefer to have each side printed in turn rather than perfected so this press is right for our market. The fifth colour will be used for specials but it is interesting to see a swing to CMYK logos during the recession. Specials are not a standard anymore."

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