November 2007 Issue


Agfa Opens Demo Center

Agfa Graphics cut the ribbon on a new ink-jet demo center in Branchburg, N.J., last month. The Agfa Competence Center will feature two of the company’s new ink-jet printing systems: The :Anapurna M and :Anapurna XL. The :Anapurna XL provides a print resolution of 727x363 dpi and can print up to 98.5˝ wide with borderless printing and dual board printing capabilities. The :Anapurna M has a maximum media width of 63˝ and is capable of both roll-to-roll and rigid substrate printing. The Compentence Center is part of Agfa’s C3 strategy for ink-jet and represents Agfa’s commitment to provide customers with end-to-end services and industrial ink-jet

Contemporary Renaissance Woman

CINDY HOHMAN is not one to back down from a challenge. The Marion, Ind., native, and future Office Services supervisor for American Electric Power (AEP), was the lone female graduate when she earned her Associate Architectural Engineering degree in 1985 from ITT Tech, in Fort Wayne. She ranked fourth in her class. When Hohman began her career in the construction industry, she was the only woman at her first two jobs—working for an architect that designed churches and for a builder specializing in new home construction. Given her drive, it’s not surprising that Hohman went on to head up an in-plant for one of

Delaware Legislative Print Shop Adds Digital Color

When the State of Delaware’s Legislative Print Shop, located in Dover, finally ditched its outdated offset duplicators a year ago and added two black-and-white Xerox DocuTech 6115 printers with Freeflow workflow, it made a world of difference for the shop. Now, having just finished its first full legislative session using the DocuTechs, the three-employee in-plant has taken the next step by moving into digital color. The shop just installed a new Xerox DocuColor 260. In the process it replaced two older color copiers and a black-and-white Xerox 275. The in-plant is using the 260 to print legislative wrap-up letters with color photos. It has also

EMC Insurance Takes On Giant Projects With New Wide-format Printer

In early May, EMC Insurance Companies’ in-plant added a Canon iPF8000 with an Onyx RIP to its poster printing operation, making this the first wide-format printer utilized by the staff of nine. The company’s in-plant prints posters for several departments, including human resources, corporate communications, risk improvements and branch offices. “This was a huge step forward,” says Margaret Kling, graphic and production supervisor. “In the past, Graphic Services would design, print and piece together everyday-type posters. Top-of-the-line posters would be sent to an outside vendor by the requesting department.” But now, EMC’s in-plant is able to produce a variety of projects in-house with the iPF8000, including

End Your Isolation

I’VE BEEN feeling oddly disconnected lately. I guess having a newborn in the house can do that to you. Suddenly your comfortable routine is gone and you’re plunged into an alternate world, where business issues barely register. Naturally I skipped all the usual fall shows this year to spend time at home with the baby. Now that I’m back, though, and hearing stories about the NGPA and SUPDMC conferences, a sense of detachment is setting in. The events don’t seem quite real to me. I feel like an outsider peering in. This, I suspect, is how many of you must also feel if

Graph Expo: A Strong Finish

THERE ARE two sets of attendees walking the show floor at Graph Expo. The first type has done his/her homework, knows all the primary players for a given product, has whittled down the equipment choices to a short list, and is at the show to see the machines in action. This person is on a mission. The second type has been to all the booths offering freebies, has three or four posters, two flash drives, one guitar and assorted other trinkets. For him, this show is a two-day reprieve from work. This tire kicker doesn’t really have an agenda. An educated shopper is the

Graph Expo: Postal Equipment a Big Draw

THE LATEST USPS regulations may have inspired visitors to Graph Expo to be more aggressive in their purchasing habits. Across the show floor, mailing equipment vendors reported a lot of interest in their wares. Here’s a look at what was available. BCC Software demonstrated its Mail Manager 2010 mail preparation solution. It is USPS-certified to deliver top encoding and presorting performance, and is fully compliant with all recent Postal Service rate and regulation changes. A new 2010 premium option, the deluxe automation product Job Manager, was demonstrated at the show. It uses watchfolder technology to provide unattended mail processing operations. Böwe Bell + Howell highlighted its

Illinois State University Adds HP-Indigo

In 2000, Illinois State University Printing Services purchased a Heidelberg QM DI 46 direct imaging offset press. Since then, digital printing has taken off. In response, the in-plant recently invested in this growing technology too. “The growth of full-color printing was exponential,” says David Nelson, director of Printing Services. “Now, run lengths are getting shorter, turnaround times more demanding, and customers have expressed interest in variable data printing. A digital press is more efficient because it does not require negatives, plates, makeready and lots of time. Time is money...It was time to decide.” After much re-search, the in-plant purchased an HP Indigo 5000 to aid the

In With the New at University of Maryland

IT’S NOT every day an in-plant installs both a Kodak NexPress and a Presstek DI offset press. But the University of Maryland did just that and more a few months ago as part of a major equipment infusion that has revamped and fortified its 58-employee in-plant. The installation—which also included CTP, proofing and MIS systems—was part of a larger strategy, initiated three years ago, to build a modern, efficient Document Services division that combined five separate units into a cohesive team. Matt Raeder, assistant director of the Department of Business Services, was the man behind the merger. Manager of Copy Services at the time,

Is Zero Rework Possible?

REWORK. Man, that’s one word I really hate. Now, I love working in the printing business just as you do; if you didn’t, you’d be reading Car and Driver or O, The Oprah Magazine instead of In-Plant Graphics. But we both know that printing can be a tough way to make a living. Fussy customers picking you to death about their project and your prices; files that won’t RIP correctly to your devices; folds that crack even after they’ve been scored…you know what I’m talking about. It can be like hanging off the edge of a cliff by your fingertips. And, then, when you

Managers Flock To Baton Rouge For SUPDMC

MORE THAN 100 in-plant managers from all parts of the United States gathered in Baton Rouge for the 32nd annual Southeastern University Printers and Digital Managers Conference (SUPDMC) in early October. Hosted by Mike Loyd and his team from Louisiana State University (LSU), the conference offered a mixture of Cajun hospitality and professional development. Tim Vellek, vice president of Ricoh’s new Production Printing Business Group (PPBG) delivered Monday’s keynote. He argued that in-plants need to keep up with market demands in the form of new services while managing their internal images. It is vital, he said, for in-plants to be perceived as

MSU Printing Services Does What it Takes

IT IS a tale told over and over. An in-plant expands its technology, adapts to the times and survives. For Carmen Crist, however, the expansion of Printing Services at Michigan State University has not been a matter of survival. Rather, it has been entirely about serving the university in the best way possible. For Crist, director of both Printing Services and Administration and Planning at MSU, the role of his 17-employee in-plant has evolved from printing words on paper to any form of communication that benefits the university—even if it means less profit for his department. “Measuring success only by a bottom

Penn State Brings iGen3 To Happy Valley

The demand for short-run digital color printing has jumped so much at Pennsylvania State University’s Multimedia & Print Center (MPC) that the 75-employee in-plant’s Xerox 6060 just couldn’t cut it any more. “We were maxed out on the 6060,” remarks Director Abbas Badani. So in August the University Park, Pa.-based in-plant installed a new Xerox iGen3. In September, its first full month of operation, the digital press pumped out 200,000 impressions, about 25 percent of which had previously been printed on the shop’s offset presses. The goal, Badani says, is a quarter million impressions a month. Just back from the Southeastern University Printing and Digital Managers

Prove Your Value: Charge Back

How can you profess savings if you don’t know what all of your costs are? A full chargeback system is a necessary part of running a successful in-plant. This article from the IPG archives lays all the cards on the table.

Texas Roundup for NGPA

THE NATIONAL Government Publishing Association (NGPA) rounded up government in-plant managers from all parts of the country last month for the group’s 31st annual conference. The three-day event, held in Austin, Texas, was organized by NGPA Vice President Richard Beto, director of document services at the University of Texas-Austin; Robert Gomez, director of publishing for the Texas State Senate; and NGPA President Audrey Marrocco, print administrator for the Pennsylvania Department of General Services. Several dozen state and federal printing managers, along with a few of their state university counterparts, attended professional development sessions and toured the in-plants at the University of Texas and

The Evolution of the Proof

TWENTY YEARS ago, professional proofing systems and materials represented a major capital investment that only large printing establishments could afford. Skilled employees were needed to operate these “high-end” systems. FedEx or couriers carried hard copy proofs between printers and customers to get approvals on jobs that required fast turnaround. Supplies used by those high-end systems were expensive. Over time, a number of important market developments, most notably the introduction of high-quality, low-cost printing systems, have revolutionized the proofing process. These “low-end” printers are easier to use and cost just a few thousand dollars, providing low entry points and acceptable print quality for the

UV Printing — Horse of a Different Color

THINK OF a sheetfed offset UV press as a chemistry set for grownups, complete with an ever-shifting set of variables and a hands-on learning curve. The upside of that curve is the license to print an endless range of special effects impossible to achieve with conventional inks and coatings. And the downside? There isn’t one, according to a growing number of practitioners that may have assayed the market with a vague notion of value-added, then stayed once it became apparent what a mastery of UV techniques could mean to their competitive position and their bottom line. UV printing is not for the faint