Larger Sheet Size Boosts Productivity in Ohio
Being able to run a 26˝ sheet has made a world of difference at Ohio University Printing Services. The Athens, Ohio-based in-plant just replaced its Xerox iGen4—on which it ran a maximum sheet size of 14.33x20.5˝—with a new 150-page-per-minute iGen 150, which runs a 14.33x26˝ sheet. Director Blaine Gabriel is ecstatic about the productivity gains that have resulted.
“We do a lot of postcards,” he says. “Instead of running them nine up on a 13x19˝ [sheet], we can run them now 15 up.”
Likewise, an 8.5x11˝ brochure can be run three-up instead of two up. This ability to fit more on a sheet, coupled with the 20 percent faster speed of the new iGen 150 has resulted in some noticeable productivity gains.
“We’re running 26˝ sheets now faster than what we used to run 12x18˝s,” Gabriel says. “There’s a cost savings there, and we’re able to pass that onto the customer.”
Having retired the in-plant’s Komori press a year ago, Gabriel says that 85 percent of the shop’s work is now being printed on the iGen 150. This includes football programs, postcards and brochures. For envelopes, letterhead and flyers, the 14-employee in-plant uses its new IntoPrint DP100GA, which can print 55 full-color envelopes per minute. Envelopes used to be printed on the shop’s small AB Dick and Ryobi presses, but with shrinking run lengths, it’s more economical (and environmentally friendly) to print them digitally, Gabriel says. He hopes the DP100GA will open up some business opportunities with local nonprofits as well.
The in-plant has also been doing a brisk business in T-shirt printing. To enhance that, it just replaced its Brother GT-541 garment printer with a new Brother GT-381 with CMYK and four white print heads. It prints white ink and four colors simultaneously, allowing the shop to print on dark material. Previously, the in-plant had to purchase transfer sheets from a local screen printer and use a heat press to seal the ink into shirts.
“It’s enabled us to reduce costs,” Gabriel says of the new garment printer. “We can turn jobs very quickly.”
Bob has served as editor of In-plant Impressions since October of 1994. Prior to that he served for three years as managing editor of Printing Impressions, a commercial printing publication. Mr. Neubauer is very active in the U.S. in-plant industry. He attends all the major in-plant conferences and has visited nearly 170 in-plant operations around the world. He has given presentations to numerous in-plant groups in the U.S., Canada and Australia, including the Association of College and University Printers and the In-plant Printing and Mailing Association. He also coordinates the annual In-Print contest, co-sponsored by IPMA and In-plant Impressions.