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“This is exactly the machine we needed for our applications,” confirm Zhengguo Lai and Yuanbao Lai, co-founders of Yuhua Playing Cards Co. Ltd. in Guangzhou, China. In May of this year both went to China Print in Peking, where Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) presented the new Speedmaster CX 75 for the first time. Even though Yuhua Playing Cards had not had a single printing press up to that point, Zhengguo Lai and Yuanbao Lai immediately recognized the potential of this all-rounder and placed an order for one while at the trade fair, like quite a few other customers also. What impressed them was the machine’s high print quality, broad range of applications, and good price-performance ratio.
Yuhua Playing Cards and its 50-strong staff specializes in the production of all kinds of playing and casino cards, which are shipped to customers all over the the world. The print jobs were previously produced by an external company. “This company also uses machines from Heidelberg, and our customers were more than happy with the quality and the delivery times,” confirm Zhengguo Lai and Yuanbao Lai. With the Speedmaster CX 75 four-color press, the company is now adding its own value with a view to benefiting both financially and guaranteeing even higher quality control and faster delivery. For card production, the machine offers a quick-reacting and stable inking unit and dampening system, even with minimal ink consumption, and in this way ensures minimal waste. The optional larger printing and sheet size enables a complete set of cards to be fitted on one sheet.
The best of both worlds with many enhancements
The Speedmaster CX 75 combines the innovative Peak Performance platform of the Speedmaster XL 75 and components of the Speedmaster SX 74 to produce a compact, flexible, and economical straight-printing press for print shops on a growth course (see press release dated 11 April 2017). Sales got off to a good start around the world, and the production in Wiesloch-Walldorf was ramped up even before deliveries started. The first presses will be going to customers at home and abroad on schedule at the beginning of November this year.
The first customers include Druckerei Bairle GmbH in Dischingen in Germany’s Swabian Alps. Owner Tobias Bairle and his printer visited the field tester Werbedruck Petzold in Gernsheim, where the Speedmaster CX 75 had been installed just two weeks previously. “The test program went perfectly, and we were impressed by the much shorter makeready time when changing jobs,” says Bairle in summing up his impressions. Druckerei Bairle and its team of more than 45 offer a full service for commercial offset and digital printing. The press room already boasts three Speedmaster presses in 35 x 50, 50 x 70, and 70 x 100 cm format. Postpress is performed on three Stahlfolder machines, Polar cutting machines, and one saddlestitcher. The printing plates used are from the Saphira series.
“We had a very tempting offer from another German manufacturer, but the live demonstration on the Speedmaster CX 75 won us over,” explains Tobias Bairle. “That’s why we continue to rely on our proven sales and service partners at Heidelberg with a well-developed network of technicians, including optimum service for the 50 x 70 format.” The company has ordered a Speedmaster CX 75 five-color press with coating unit for its plans to implement flexible production. “The press is based on the successful Speedmaster XL 75 platform, and its high installation rate worldwide. With its double-diameter cylinder and the presettings, it can print a large number of materials at high production speeds, making it perfect for our company,” says Bairle, already looking forward to the installation at the end of the year.
First Speedmaster CX 75 with LE UV technology for direct postpress heading to England
The English printing company Vale Press in Willersey, Gloucestershire, is set to take delivery of the first Speedmaster CX 75 with energy-saving LE UV dryers. It is a perfect fit with the philosophy of the company, which places great importance on sustainability. “We’ll be using the new press for the ever-growing numbers of advertising materials and jobs in the area of web-to-print. With the LE UV dryers, the sheet is dry when it comes out of the machine and can go directly into postpress, which will greatly reduce delivery times,” explains Managing Director Tom Stowe. “We have a long-standing partnership with Heidelberg, and are always investing in the appropriate technology to allow us to supply our customers with the optimal printed products. Doing so enables us to offer even higher quality to brand owners in particular, and help them to better market their products.” Vale Press is a full-service company that uses solutions from Heidelberg for prepress, press, and postpress, and that has integrated its printing processes using the Prinect workflow. “The new Speedmaster CX 75 four-color press with LE UV is the perfect fit for our business model and its small footprint, smaller than that of the Speedmaster SX 74 it is set to replace, is a big plus,” says Stowe. Vale Press will continue to use a five-color Speedmaster XL 75 and a five-color Speedmaster SX 52 in its press room for conventional applications.
Customers interested in the Speedmaster CX 75 will have two opportunities to experience the machine live during autumn of this year: at the Commercial Days in Wiesloch-Walldorf for the European premiere and at the Smart Print Shop Days in the Print Media Center in Qingpu, near Shanghai. There they will also see the complete portfolio for the 50 x 70 format, which offers the right machine for every application – from the internationally established Speedmaster SX 74 and the innovative Speedmaster XL 75 to the new Speedmaster CX 75.
Featured Photo: Tom Stowe from Vale Press is planning to mainly use his new Speedmaster CX 75 to produce the ever-growing numbers of advertising materials and jobs in the area of web-to-print.
The Speedmaster CX 75 will be the first printing press for Zhengguo Lai (left) and Yuanbao Lai, co-founders of Yuhua Playing Cards Co. Ltd. in Guangzhou, China. They were impressed by the high print quality and stable production.
Tobias Bairle is already looking forward to shortening makeready times and offering his customers faster delivery with the new Speedmaster CX 75.