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From Web Offset to Roll-fed Digital

May 1, 2014
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As one of the world’s largest in-plants, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ 350-employee Printing Division has some impressive equipment in its Salt Lake City facility. The sound of its Timson and manroland web presses fills the air on a typical day as they crank out long-run jobs for distribution around the world.

One of the main items coming off those presses are scriptures, such as the Holy Bible and the Book of Mormon. These are printed on very lightweight paper and in numerous different languages. Some of those language groups, though, have fewer church members than others, and inking up a web press for a run of 500 to 1,000 has not been very cost effective for the in-plant.

“It took more time to do makeready and more paper to do makeready than what it was worth,” notes Kevan Clegg, group manager of special services printing. “We were spending hundreds of dollars per book.”

Makeready time for one of these jobs can take between one and two hours, notes Manuel Gonzalez, production supervisor of print on demand. 

“Plus we had to go through the process of collating,” he adds. “Getting all the signatures together” for binding.

So the two, along with Auxiliary Operations Manager Craig Petersen, were tasked with finding a less costly solution. The need to use lightweight paper for printing scriptures hampered their search for a roll-fed digital solution, though.

In February, after several years of searching and testing, the LDS Printing Division installed a Canon Océ ColorStream 10000 Flex continuous-feed monochrome production printer with color capability. It can successfully print on 39-gsm paper, which equates to 26.5-lb. text, Clegg says. 

Able to print 195 feet per minute in black and white, the ColorStream 10000 Flex is equipped with Lasermax Roll Systems in-line sheeting, folding, cutting, slitting and stacking equipment. It can provide output either as sheets, to be sewn by a Meccanotecnica sewing machine and bound with a Kolbus Compact 60 case binder; or as Z-folded stacks, to be perfect bound on a Standard Horizon perfect binder. The entire time-consuming collating step has been eliminated.

“Everything will be done in-line,” remarks Gonzalez. And makeready time, he adds, is down to 15 to 30 minutes. 



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