Wood Richardson prints innovative new climbing height chart

Max Goldbart
Tuesday, May 10, 2016

York-based digital and offset printer Wood Richardson has printed a new height chart for climbers.

It worked in collaboration with local entrepreneur Angus McArthur and his Snowhome independent design company. McArthur came up with the original idea as an offshoot of his already successful "I'm as big as..." height chart, which has sold over 100,000 units.

The chart was created with McArthur’s son Hamish in mind, a member of the Great Britain youth climbing team. It is broken down into 10mm increments and marked with both mountains from around the world to scale and with the heights of world-famous climbers.

He said: "Because climbing is not currently a mainstream sport there is not a huge amount of funding so it is performance-related largely. The better you do in competitions the more you are rewarded. If we want Hamish to go to competitions we have to try and find ways of doing that. So the height chart idea came between the two of us really."

McArthur designed and began selling the first "I'm as big as..." charts in 2008, an incremental height chart for children with objects and famous figures highlighted at each centimetre increment. These include a drawing pin, Prince Charles and Princess Diana's wedding cake and the smallest boxing world champion.

The first print run was of 300, of which 180 have already been sold to climbing teams across the country. Wood Richardson used a Xeikon 5000 digital press to produce the chart, which is 2.1m long and 200mm wide.  

Wood Richardson sales manager Simon Pirie was excited by the prospect of using the Xeikon, which prints up to 6m in length. He said: “This was a big advantage. One of the other difficult things you have when producing something that long is getting it finished properly. We adapted a Morgana Autocreaser to get it to put horizontal creases along it. This allowed us to get it finished to a good standard.”

The Xeikon 5000 has a maximum image area of 480mm. It prints over 3,500 A4 duplex sheets an hour and takes weights between 80 and 350gsm.

Pirie already expects McArthur will be calling Wood Richardson back for a re-print and McArthur was full of praise for the 111-year old printer. 

He added: "Wood Richardson are good people. We have dealt with them for a number of years. They have always looked after me and have printed a number of my projects." 

Founded in 1905, Wood Richardson has 27 staff and a turnover of around £2m. Along with the Xeikon 5000D and the Morgana Autocreaser it has a Heidelberg Speedmaster CD 74, a Martini Muller finisher and two Polar guillotines. It does small- and large-format printing, including corporate brochures, literature, POS and small packaging items. It does all die-cutting and laminating in-house. 


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