The five-colour LED-UV machine, which was supplied by Apex Digital Graphics, has replaced a 10-colour Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 75 perfecting press. The Heidelberg machine was removed just before Christmas and the RMGT Ryobi press was installed in the period between Christmas and the new year.
While the 50-staff company praised the productivity of the Speedmaster, sales and marketing director Martin Lett Jnr said the RMGT machine enables the firm to cater for larger items, such as A1 posters and 8pp A4 roll-fold leaflets, and offers cost savings in areas including finance and upkeep.
“Going up to SRA1 has also generated a whole bunch of other savings. For example, we’re getting the SRA1 plate cheaper than the B2 plate price,” said Lett Jnr.
“We’ve got a 60-plate-per-hour Agfa system coming in that was previously homed at the Anton Group site. It’s a fast machine that’s double the speed of our old ones and it will save us a colossal amount per plate.
“We were doing 5,000 plates a month – by going up a sheet size we will need half the number of plates on quite a lot of jobs.”
With instant drying capabilities, the new press will also enable faster turnarounds and allow the business to print on uncoated stocks.
“We’ll also be able to print on plastics, vinyls and window cling up to 600 microns, so that’s a market we’re going to actively pursue,” said Lett Jnr.
“Originally the LED option did get ruled out because of the ink cost, which is much higher than conventional ink, but when we did a further in-depth analysis we found that the benefits outweighed the negatives. And as more people put UV presses in, and retrofit UV, the ink prices will continue to come down.”
The RMGT Ryobi machine joins Xerox and Konica Minolta digital equipment and a fleet of finishing kit at Marstan’s 1,115sqm site.
The company has also invested heavily in foiling equipment of late, installing three machines in 2016 and following up three months ago with the purchase of an SRA1 Heidelberg Cylinder, which is converted for foiling.
Lett Jnr said the £5.1m-turnover firm’s overall investment in new kit over the past few months totals around £700,000.