Stampfli Kommunikation (Stamplfi AG) provides a broad variety of print, digital, and cross media communication services to the Swiss market. This family business was founded in 1799 and now employs 300 employees. Stampfli Kommunikation maintains a digital printing factory in Wallisellen, 100 kilometers away on the other side of Zurich, in addition to its headquarters in Bern, where all sheet-fed and web offset printing activities take place.
Printing - A Important Element of the Broad Communications Portfolio
The major load of production is carried by a 16 page web offset press with four double printing units and a ten color sheetfed offset press in B1 format with an aqueous coater, which runs around the clock on both presses. Stampfli Kommunikation requires roughly 6,500 sheet-fed offset and 4,500 web offset printing plates per month. Since February 2022, the company has been imaging KODAK SONORA XTRA Process Free Plates with two thermal plate setters.
"We were informed last year that the plate we had previously used would be discontinued by the manufacturer." "This prompted us to consider whether we should continue in the same manner by switching to another low-chem plate brand or take the next step toward process free," explains Michael Kojan, Manager Purchasing and Printing at Stampfli Kommunikation. "Whatever we chose, the new plate had to be simple to implement, have no impact on our pressroom processes, and provide the same quality and print run stability as our previous plate."
Fischer Papier AG, a Kodak Channel Partner with whom Stampfli Kommunikation has worked effectively for many years, contacted them with the notion of testing the SONORA XTRA Process Free Plate as a potential substitute, according to Kojan. Following preliminary evaluations with test plate sets, a trial phase using 1,500 SONORA Plates in sheet-fed and web offset began. The Bern printers also benefited from firsthand details of a German SONORA user's experience with sheet-fed offset printing.
Convinced by the Benefits of Process Free
The in house testing, which were overseen by Kodak plate experts as well as Fischer Papier professionals, verified that Kodak's process free plate has highly stable on press behavior and meets Stampfli Kommunikation's standards in every way. "What impressed us the most was the that we didn't have to change anything on the presses or change any of the parameters. Our press operators simply had to change their plate handling habits," Kojan says.
"The SONORA XTRA Process Free Plate is an ideal solution for Stampfli Kommunikation because it can be used for sheetfed offset as well as long run web offset applications and eliminates plate processing," explains Philip Graf, Manager Print Supplies at Fischer Papier AG. "Kodak's process free plate saves Stampfli Kommunikation a significant amount of money that would otherwise have been spent on electricity, water, and chemicals, as well as on maintaining and cleaning the clean out equipment or disposing of used clean out solution." Furthermore, less energy is required to image the SONORA XTRA compared with the previous plate, thus the CTP laser lasts longer and energy usage is reduced."
"We're Glad We Took This Step"
By switching to the SONORA XTRA Plate, the two clean out equipment in the CTP room that were required for processing the previously utilised wet processed plates may be dismantled and removed. Overall, the transition to process free resulted in considerably simplified plate producing operations, which are now confined to imaging and then automated bending and sorting of plates for sheet fed and web offset presses.
"The SONORA XTRA Plate meets our performance requirements in every respect - in both sheet fed and web offset printing," Michael Kojan concludes. We've also had less issues in the CTP area since we got rid of the processing equipment. Another component that is quickly becoming a focus is the environmental benefits, such as the possibility to eliminate plate processors and conserve vital resources such as water and energy. We're delighted we went ahead with it."
For more information on KODAK SONORA XTRA Plate, please contact our local Dynagraph representative.