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Metropolitan Museum of Art Adds Four-color Press

July 2009 By Bob Neubauer

Visitors trying to find their way around New York’s vast Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) usually end up consulting one of the floor plans available at the admission desks. Unfortunately for the MET’s in-plant, tucked away behind the gift shop, that job had long been out of reach.

“We just could not do the job economically on our two-color Komori,” says Richard Peterson, manager of Office Services for the 139-year-old museum. 

That all changed recently when the 11-employee Printing Services department added a new four-color Ryobi 784 EP perfecting press. Now able to print two-over-two on a larger sheet size, the in-plant has brought those floor plans in-house and is slowly adding other work that previously had to be outsourced. 

“We’re starting to pick up some of the four-color work that was being sent out,” reveals Peterson. 

What’s more, he says, the in-plant’s new capabilities are allowing the museum’s designers to create more four-color materials. 

“They love the new machine,” he says—particularly the quality of the press’s output. And since the designers at one of the world’s most renown art museums tend to be very strict about quality, Peterson adds, that says a lot.   

The in-plant, too, is quite pleased with the new press.

“It’s really been a blessing, getting this press,” remarks Paul Ortiz, pressroom supervisor. “The time that we’re saving is incredible.” 

With semiautomatic plate changing, automatic blanket cleaning and automatic ink roller cleaning, the press has cut makeready time considerably, he says. 

“Setup time on the new machine is a fraction of what it used to be,” says Peterson. 

And having perfecting capabilities has greatly increased throughput.

“It’s more than doubled our capacity,” he adds. 

Thanks to the larger sheet size (31.02x23.62?) some jobs can now be run six-up, he says.

Fortunately, the shop’s Presstek Dimension Excel computer-to-plate system can produce the larger plates needed by the new press. 

“That worked out real well,” says Peterson.

One thing that did change because of the press was the layout of the in-plant. Because of its size, the press could not be installed in the existing shop. So the museum’s mailroom was moved up into the in-plant and the Ryobi was installed in the mailroom’s old space. A cutter and folder were moved down there to accompany it. 


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