September 2006 Issue


A Guide to Better Stitching

WHEN IT’S time to shop for a saddle stitcher, automation, quick setup and ease of makeready are neccesities. But what other new features are available that might help your in-plant? And how should you go about comparing equipment? We talked with saddle stitching experts at several companies to get their tips and ideas to help you get the best machine for your in-plant. Buying Tips When comparing equipment, examine a range of format sizes and provide job samples (floating cards, envelopes) to equipment manufacturers, ensuring the best possible fit for your shop’s individual needs. —Steven Calov, Heidelberg USA Look for a line that will

A Passion for Print

MIKE SCHRADER, his wife, Deb, and their two sons—Rob, 13, and Pete, 11—reside in a small town halfway between the Green Bay Packers and the Milwaukee Brewers. Schrader was born and raised here, in Berlin, Wis., just northwest of the Fond du Lac headquarters of Mercury Marine, where he is manager of Printing & Mailing Solutions. As far back as he can recall Schrader had an interest in graphics and drawing. While in high school, he painted signs and vehicles for local businesses. He went on to receive an Associate Degree in Commercial Art in 1984 from Western Wisconsin Technical College, in LaCrosse, Wis.,

Become a Management Plus Winner

Though in-plants are sometimes overlooked when honors are doled out to printers, NAPL (“the trade association for excellence in graphic communications management”) has a category specifically for in-plants in its prestigious Management Plus program. Self-evaluation forms and awards applications have just become available for this year’s program, and in-plants are encouraged to participate. Past Gold Award winners include Allstate’s Print Communications Center, University of California-Berkeley Printing Services, CIGNA Printing and Distribution and the Nevada State Printing Division. Now in its 27th year, NAPL’s performance-assessment program helps graphic communications operations gain insights into their strengths and weaknesses and develop plans for improvement. The program consists of

Canadian Managers Enjoy Newfoundland Experience

THE COLLEGE and University Print Management Association of Canada (CUPMAC) scored something of a coup this year. It succeeded in convincing popular industry speaker Frank Romano, professor emeritus at Rochester Institute of Technology, to address the group’s 39th annual conference, way up in St. John’s, Newfoundland, the most eastern point in North America (unless you count Greenland). Actually, Romano did more than just “address” the 39 managers in attendance. He captivated and amused them as well, while leading four sessions over the conference’s three-day span. And when he wasn’t at the front of the room, he watched the other presenters (among them a

CTP Changes Life at Med Center

WHEN THE Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center’s in-plant moved into the computer-to-plate world in 2000 by installing an ITEK 2430 polyester platemaker, everything changed at the eight-employee shop. “Moving to CTP was a dramatic change for us and improved our productivity significantly,” says Dale Travitz, group leader. The platesetter produced plates for the shop’s four presses: a two-color Heidelberg, an A.B.Dick T51, a Multigraphics 1250 with a T-head, and a Davidson perfector. Those presses printed the majority of the Hershey Medical Center’s materials—everything from brochures and flyers to newsletters and forms. “But as demand for four-color printing continued to climb,

CTP Speeds Turnaround Times in Texas

“We had to reduce turn times,” declares Richard Beto, director of document services at the University of Texas at Austin. “It’s all ‘now, now, now.’ They want their jobs now.” This is what drove the 68-employee in-plant to install a new semi-automatic Fuji Saber Luxel Vx 9600 violet computer-to-plate device with a Rampage front end in July. The platesetter is making metal plates for the shop’s 40˝ and 29˝ presses. “The manual process was just taking too long,” adds Beto. By cutting out some of those extra steps, the in-plant was able to downsize its prepress staff, reducing costs. Print quality has also improved

Devis Chosen as Wash. State Printer

The state of Washington has selected a new state printer: Jean-Luc Devis, director of Printing & Mailing Services at Oregon State University and a member of IPG’s editorial advisory board. He replaces Larry Weber who recently retired from the position. A well-known face at ACUP and IPMA conferences, where he has led several presentations over the years on customer service issues, Devis has been at OSU since the fall of 2002. While there he successfully turned a five-year deficit trend into a profit mode, increased sales by more than $1 million and introduced a multi-function copier program to the campus, with 400+ installations. Under

Digital Print Industry Leaders Agree to AFP Open Standards Initiative

Industry Consortium to Join in Unparalleled Collaboration Effort for Printing of Customer Communications BOULDER, CO—August 30, 2006—IBM announced that a key open standards initiative for the digital print industry has reached a major milestone. A majority of the AFP Color Consortium, a 28-company standards body, has approved IBM’s proposal to fully open the development of the Advanced Function Presentation (AFP) architecture. With this agreement, the members of the consortium will collaboratively develop all extensions to the AFP architecture, which is used by clients worldwide for the high speed printing of bills, statements and other customer communications. The consortium has already jointly published key

Dominion Adds Third Ryobi

Dominion, one of the nation’s largest producers and distributors of energy, has installed an eight-color, 23x29” Ryobi 758 press in its Richmond, Va.-based in-plant. The press, equipped with an interdeck UV dryer/curing unit, is the first eight-color Ryobi press installed in the United States. It was purchased from xpedx Printing Technologies, the U.S. distributor and marketer of Ryobi presses. “This Ryobi mid-size press delivers extremely strong print quality with unusual ease of operation,” lauds Joe Gilliland, coordinator for the Dominion in-plant, which produces 15 million impressions each year. The shop also has a four-up, 20x27” Ryobi 684 and a two-up Ryobi 3302 press. Gilliland says makereadies with

Eleven Picked for InterTech Awards

The Printing Industries of America/Graphic Arts Technical Foundation has selected 11 technologies to receive 2006 PIA/GATF InterTech Technology awards. Each company will receive a Lucite Inter­Tech star during the competition’s November luncheon in Milwaukee. The winning technologies are: • Adobe PDF print engine, Adobe Systems • Microsystems Microcip software module, C&P Microsystems • Dalim Mistral, Dalim Software • WebCenter, Esko-Graphics • Magnum ink formulation dispenser, GFI Innovations • Zero-slip nip enhancement, Goss International Americas • KBA Genius 52 UV sheetfed offset press, KBA North America • InlineFoiler, MAN Roland • DeskDirect, PrintSoft • Liberty sheetfed inks, Sun Chemical • uImage, XMPie Inc.

Free In-plant Workshops

Your competition over the next five to 10 years will only get stronger. Without a solid financial foundation, your in-plant will be unable to fund the new investments necessary to compete. To help you survive and grow, xpedx has once again contracted with Prime Digital Printing to conduct free in-plant workshops in several cities. Called “MBA of Finance,” these are brand new workshops that go much deeper than the previous seminars. They will provide in-plants with strategies to help them get senior management to make the investments necessary to successfully take on the competition. The first three workshops in Chicago, Philadelphia and Charlotte went well. The

Graph Expo Seminars Cover Wide-format, Mail

Visitors to Graph Expo and Converting Expo in October can attend free seminars to learn about opportunities in wide-format printing and mailing/fulfillment. The Wide Format Pavilion will gather wide-format ink-jet technology and supplies into one area. The Wide Format Theater will offer in-depth seminars discussing what it takes to get started producing profitable wide-format imaging, how to configure a system, how to manage the production process, how to offer value-added services to increase income and how to find customers. The Mailing & Fulfillment Center will show in-plants the latest equipment and software in action. Managers can learn how to use mail and fulfillment to add print

IN-PLANTS: Tomorrow’s Knowledge Managers?

DESPITE HAVING made the change to digital printing technologies, in-plants may continue to be at risk of being outsourced. As organizations seeking to remain competitive in the new economy of the 21st century become increasingly knowledge based, in-plants must develop competencies that support Knowledge Management. Given the in-plant’s exposure to organizational knowledge via the documents it reproduces, it is uniquely placed to play a vital role and better support the strategic objectives and goals of the organization. Print-on-demand capabilities have revolutionized the in-plant, reducing the need to print for inventory and improving production turnaround times. The ability to produce collated, completed documents from

IPMA Seeking Presenters

The In-Plant Printing and Mailing Association (IPMA) is selecting speakers for its annual conference to be held June 6-9, 2007 in Oklahoma City. If you would like to be considered as a presenter or if you would like to see a specific program topic offered, contact Mike Loyd at or call IPMA headquarters at (816) 902-4762.

Loyd to Lead IPMA

The In-plant Printing and Mailing Association has a new president. Michael K. Loyd, director of Procurement Auxiliary Services for Louisiana State University, recently stepped into the role, replacing John Hurt, who is now IPMA’s director of Development. Loyd, an IPG editorial advisory board member, joined IPMA in 1995 and has served as president-elect, secretary-treasurer and in several capacities for the Louisiana Bayou Chapter. IPMA is a professional organization dedicated exclusively to the needs of corporate publishing, printing, mailing and distribution professionals. Established in 1964, it is now headquartered in Kearney, MO.

New Plant, Fresh Start

WHEN BRIGGS & Stratton Graphic Services moved into its new 26,505-square-foot facility in June, life got a whole lot better for the shop’s 34 employees. Workflow improved, shipping and receiving became a snap and the shop’s image soared thanks to an inviting reception area. But perhaps most marvelous—the dream of in-plants everywhere—is this: the new shop has windows. “Some of the pressmen have even commented to me how nice it is to have the windows,” remarks Debbie Pavletich, manager of the Milwaukee-based in-plant. All of the offices and parts of the shop floor have them, and the natural sunlight has made a difference in

New Press Aids Missionaries

To support its 5,400 missionaries and 800 missions serving the poor all over the world, Franciscan Missions needs to produce very effective fundraising materials. For that reason, its six-employee in-plant in Burlington, Wis., recently replaced its four-color Heidelberg GTO with a four-color Heidelberg Printmaster PM 52. “The make-ready time is really quick,” reports Jeremy Hanna, production manager. “And the cleanup time too,” he adds, thanks to the press’s auto blanket wash feature. The in-plant uses the press to print fundraising brochures, newsletters, flyers and greeting cards. It sends out about 20,000 mailings each day. “We find that the brochures are more attractive in four-color,” Hanna says. “We

Riso A Hit at University of Memphis

After closing its offset operation and outsourcing letterhead and envelope printing, Tiger Copy & Graphics at the University of Memphis, saw its expenses climb. So Penni Istre, manager of Mail Services & Reprographics, started looking for an in-house solution. Toner technology wouldn’t work, she knew, because when departments put their letterhead through a desktop printer, the fuser would pull off the original toner. She needed something without a fuser, but small enough to fit in her eight-employee shop. A year and a half ago, Istre added a one-color Riso RN2235 duplicator and a two-color Riso V8000 duplicator, powered by Zykros technology, which allows the printing of

Say Good-bye to Chemicals

THE PAST decade of computer-to-plate development has brought an incredible revolution in printing. By streamlining workflows and eliminating unneeded and costly steps, CTP has allowed printing departments to save time and increase productivity, while improving the quality of the final printed piece. Despite these advantages, though, conventional CTP still relies on the extraneous and unnecessary steps and costs of processing the plate after imaging. Eliminating chemistry has a number of benefits. First and foremost is cost savings. Research by J Zarwan Partners ( shows that chemistry can cost up to 30 percent of the cost of the plate—and hidden costs can bring

The Canadian Perspective

FOR THE second year in a row I spent a few days with Canadian in-plant managers recently at the College and University Print Management Association of Canada (CUPMAC) conference. It took place this year in St. John’s, Newfoundland, which sits on an island so far east you can almost touch Europe. Even the local accents have a strong dose of Irish in them. The cliffs, the colorful wooden houses, the view of the harbor from atop Signal Hill, all left me with pleasant memories, as did the rare string of sunny days that accompanied the conference. Memorial University of Newfoundland hosted CUPMAC, which is similar

University of Virginia Mourns Director

The University of Virginia lost a dedicated employee and alumnus recently when Scott Keeney, director of University Printing and Copying Services, passed away in his home at the age of 58. A UV employee for 32 years, Mr. Keeney was appointed director in 1993 and worked hard to build his 47-employee in-plant’s capabilities and reputation. It was ranked among the top 50 in-plants in the country by IPG. Though the in-plant had a deficit when he started, he turned this around by bringing in several very large jobs and adding services like design, mail and print-for-pay. This year the in-plant reported more than $5 million in

Workflow Systems Boost Efficiency

IN-PLANTS DEPEND heavily upon the skills of a few key individuals to remain productive: production managers, bindery operators, prepress technicians, computer systems managers, or any number of other specialized personnel that are a part of the print production workflow. When one or more of these people are absent, the whole workflow may suffer. Many in-plants are turning to workflow systems to help mitigate this problem. Workflow systems help to standardize how we process jobs. When we rely on key individuals, we are depending on them to remember what they did last time to solve a problem, or how to most efficiently move a job

Working Vacation

When Art Payne took a week of vacation in February, he didn’t head to the beach. The director of Printing and Graphic Services at Connecticut’s Fairfield University flew down to Pascagoula, Miss., to work with a Habitat for Humanity team rebuilding houses damaged by Hurricane Katrina. “Mississippi really took the brunt of the storm,” he says. “The damage there was quite devastating.” Working 10-hour days, sleeping in a church and eating lots of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, Payne and his crew of 15 rebuilt two homes that Habitat had started before the storm, installing plumbing and wiring, and putting up walls, siding and roofs. They