Two-for-One Deal at UNC Wilmington
For the most part, when one upgrades a product or service, it comes with a substantial raise in price. Think of upgrading your cable package, cell phone service or even your home. An upgrade usually means more of something: more channels, more data, more space — and more cost.
That was not the case, however, when SeaPrint Graphic Solutions at the University of North Carolina Wilmington upgraded to a new Ricoh Pro C7100 color production printer.
Early in 2018, SeaPrint Graphic Solutions decided to elevate its print production capabilities by trading in its Ricoh Pro C901 for a Ricoh Pro C7100.
“Our lease was up on the C901,” explains Steven Barrett, production manager.
As with the C901, the in-plant got 30,000 free color clicks per month on the C7100, but the cost per click on color and black is now even lower. What’s more, Barrett negotiated a Xanté Impressia as part of the deal; the lease on both machines was cheaper than the lease on the C901.
SeaPrint plans to print anything and everything that can fit on a 12x18˝ sheet of paper on the new Ricoh, including brochures, booklets, small posters, handouts and postcards.
“I’m not really sure it’s going to produce anything more than what we have run in the past, but a much better looking printed piece in the end,” Barrett explains.
One- and two-color jobs will be printed on the shop’s offset equipment, but all other products will go on the C7100. He also says the new equipment will help provide customers a faster turnaround time.
The Xanté Impressia has come in handy already, Barrett says, for printing envelopes, forms and panel cards — items that used to printed offset.
“We do still run offset,” he notes. “It makes money-sense to keep long runs on the offset, such as #10 envelopes for a 10,000 run.”
Another reason for needing offset, he says, is because one of the school colors is 874 gold metallic, which can’t be produced on a digital press.
“So as long as we have 874 gold, we will have to run an offset press,” he says.
However, the main reason for moving offset jobs to the Xanté Impressia, Barrett says, is because Presstek, the maker of the in-plant’s Vector 52 platemaker, stopped making Freedom Pro printing plates for that system. There no other source for those plates.
“So, as of now, we have a limited amount of plates left before we need to come up with a solution for new plates, processor and RIP system,” Barrett says.
The Impressia has also helped with faster turnaround times on smaller time-consuming jobs that would otherwise be run on offset.
SeaPrint Graphic Solutions has been busy with vehicle wraps and various signage projects as well. The in-plant has been printing vinyl for all new golf carts and GEM cars as they come on campus. The school’s chancellor wants all campus vehicles to be uniformed to promote the campus. So, as new vehicles are bought, new graphics are installed by the in-plant.
Related story: In-plant Restores Old Trailer with Wide-Format Wrap