Litho and digital printer Beacon Printers has invested in a Polar D56 Plus guillotine from Heidelberg to replace another Polar machine, which had served the firm for 30 years.
Costing just shy of £22,000, the cutter will be installed at Beacon's Penarth premises on 5 December and is expected to work mostly on short-run digital jobs coming off Beacon’s three Konica Minolta digital presses.
Managing director Dave Stafford, who has been with the company since joining as an apprentice in 1975, plans to use the machine for “fiddly” work, such as business cards, along with A3 work.
“We have had a tough time over the past few years, though things have started to get better now,” he said.
“A lot of print companies have gone now so perhaps we are picking up their customers, but I think it helps that we were an early digital adopter.
“Our first machines included the Xerox DC12, which we installed around 15 years ago. We have a lot of experience with digital equipment, which I think gives us an edge over those who got on board later.”
Beacon selected the Polar D56 Plus due to its 30-year experience with another Polar guillotine and by installing the new machine, Stafford is hoping to increase reliability and avoid breakdowns.
He said: “The new Polar is going to be a busy little machine, serving our three presses as well as some jobs from our litho machines. We were happy with our old Polar but it was getting to a point where the parts are not made anymore.”
The D56 Plus features an air bed and a 470mm colour screen. It has barcode programme recognition and 1,998 memory positions for repeat cut sequences, with more memory than the previous machine.
Beacon Printers is celebrating 70 years in business in 2018 and the 10-staff team currently turns over £600,000, serving customers ranging from local walk-ins to blue chips. It also runs two Heidelberg Quickmasters and a Heidelberg GTO.