May 2010
SWUG is a hit
in Tamworth
N Richmond does the double
The Northern Daily Leader hosted SWUG delegates at
Tamworth this year with a country music theme and a
performance by singing star, Katrina Burgoyne.
Country music capital of Australia
puts on a great show for SWUG
conference delegates.
DESPITE the tough economic times, more than
220 delegates from 35 print sites converged on
Tamworth in NSW for this year’s 24th SWUG
conference, underlining the popularity of this
annual event.
SWUG President, Bob Lockley, said the turn-out
was an excellent result given the downturn in the
economy and the location in country NSW.
Delegates came from the US, Belgium, Germany,
France and New Zealand as well as Fiji and Papua
New Guinea.
The host site this year, the Northern Daily Leader,
hosted the traditional Saturday night site visit
which, not surprisingly, had a country music flavour
to it with a performance by singing star, Katrina
Delegates also had a opportunity to inspect the
re-built six tower Goss Community pressline plus
Kodak CTP and Müller Martini inserting.
At the annual awards dinner, Ricky Lillywhite
from APN Rockhampton in Queensland was
awarded the SWUG Apprentice of the Year award
while Sean Tait of North Richmond won the biannual SWUG Leadership Scholarship.
North Richmond was also the big winner in the
newspaper categories, picking up two of the major
prizes on offer – see story this page.
Over the course of the two-day program,
delegates heard presentations on a range of topics
including profiles of print centres in Belgium, New
Zealand and Hobart. Information about Australia’s
first UV ink single width site at Bairnsdale was also
presented for the first time.
The environment was a major focus of the
conference with several presentations on the topic
of sustainability in newspaper printing, highlighting
the ways in which print sites can improve their
environmental performance.
Next stop... Tasmania 2011
Davies Brothers in Hobart is
the next port of call for the
SWUG conference.
THE SWUG conference in 2011 is
moving to Tasmania for the first time
in over a decade and going to Hobart
for the first time ever.
The host site will be the Davies
Brothers new print centre, home of
The Mercury newspaper and several
other News Limited titles including
The Australian and Herald-Sun.
The new print centre, which opened
in May 2009, features a six-tower
single width KBA Comet pressline
with KBA reelstands at 90 degrees to
the press, two folders with single
delivery, inline stitching and quarterfold capability.
The site also runs two Agfa Polaris
CTP lines and a Ferag mailroom with
The winning North Richmond team which picked up two major awards
in this year’s annual SWUG awards (l-r at back) Sean Tait and Michael
Gee, (front) Troy McGuiness and Chris Jackson.
THE annual SWUG awards for
excellence in single width newspaper
production are always hotly contested
and this year was no exception.
So it was with a great deal of pride
that the Fairfax Media North Richmond site collected two of the major
prizes on offer.
The print site won the Art Roller
Shield for Best Overall Print Quality,
presented by Terry Brissett of Brissett
Rollers, for its production of the
Hawkesbury Gazette, and followed this
up by taking out the Coates Australia
Shield for Best Four Colour
Newspaper, presented by Meredith
Darke of DIC Australia, which it won
for its production of the Illawarra
Mercury newspaper.
The site was also runner-up in this
category with its production of the
Blue Mountains Gazette.
The new Davies Brothers print centre in Hobart will be the host site
for the SWUG 2011 conference.
See all the winning papers of 2010 - page 11
two Ferag RollSert drums, RollStream
insert lines, JetFeeder hoppers and
trimming drum with stackers, film
wrappers and cross strappers.
Ancillary systems on the press
include QuadTech auto-registration,
Baldwin spray dampening and Impact
blanket washing, Planatol gluing
system, and Technotrans ink supply.
The main local publications printed
on-site are the six-day a week Mercury
and the Sunday Tasmanian titles as
well as Tasmanian Country, a weekly
rural paper with a run of 17,000, and
The Gazette, a weekly title with 3,000
copies distributed in the Derwent
Valley around Hobart.
At the Tamworth conference this
year, Wayne Bailey, production
manager at Davies Brothers, gave a
presentation on the history of the
company and the commissioning of
the new press – see p22 for details.
This is sure to be an exciting site
visit, a great venue for SWUG and a
chance to experience one of the most
up-to-date single width newspaper
press installations in the country.
Information about the conference
dates and booking details will be
available later in the year.
© Kodak, 2010. Kodak is a trademark.
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Newspaper | Magazine | Book | Directory
SWUG May 2010
A great conference - and now for Hobart
commercial print section of the awards
- well done to Horton Media.
A special welcome was given to Bill
Kemp, our long-term SWUG
committee member, who celebrated
his 80th birthday with us at the
Tamworth conference.
It has become a tradition with
SWUG on the Saturday night to visit
the local host site, and this year was no
exception. Being in Tamworth, the
Country Music Capital of Australia,
the country singer and BBQ set the
theme for the night.
We try to support local services and
this year, utilising the Rotary Club to
provide the meal, ensured the money
goes into the community. We are all
grateful of the effort put in by the
Rotary Club of Tamworth Sunrise.
HE 24th Annual SWUG
Conference held in Tamworth
was, I believe, one of our best
ever. The attendances again exceeded
our expectations considering the
global financial crisis, the destination,
Tamworth, and the efforts required to
get there for some.
However, we topped 220 delegates,
a significant effort, with delegates
coming from all over Australia, a good
contingent from New Zealand, and
both Fiji and Papua New Guinea being
Our guest speakers and delegates
from the US, Belgium, Germany, New
Zealand and France all added value to
the conference. The interaction again
was excellent with the opening night
welcome function breaking the ice, as
it is meant to do, before our two full
days of conference sessions, which was
half a day shorter than usual.
Our Apprentice of the Year winner
was Ricky Lillywhite from APN
Rockhampton in Queensland.
This young apprentice interviewed
excellently, does a great job and was
well-deserving of his win. He will
certainly add value to the industry as
we go forward.
Ricky will enjoy a tour similar to the
apprentices in previous years with a
trip around most of the eastern states
of Australia looking at various print
sites. The print sites visited by last
year’s winners were The Age Print
Centre at Tullamarine, News Limited
at Murarrie, Rural Press Printing at
Ormiston, Gold Coast Bulletin,
Marrickville Print & Design in Sydney,
Hannanprint at Alexandria, Offset
Alpine at Silverwater and Rural Press
Printing at North Richmond.
The SWUG Leadership Scholarship
of $20,000 was won by Sean Tait, a
worthy winner. He will be travelling to
IFRA this year in Hamburg, Germany,
as well as visiting manufacturers’ plants
around the world and looking at
various print and publishing solutions
including the latest innovations in
processless plate-making etc. A
wonderful opportunity for our second
Scholarship winner.
With delegates like Ricky and Sean
and the apprentices who presented
from last year, it is gratifying to see
such a strong young group coming
through in our industry.
Managers should ensure that next
year’s apprentice nominations are
thought out early as it is a great reward
for these young people and a good
incentive scheme to encourage
Aims achieved
apprentices to work within the
industry for the benefit of the industry.
Thanks for your support
We all know and appreciate the
support we receive from our sponsors
like the Collie Trust which sponsored
Wim Maes from Belgium, and
GAMAA which sponsored several
sessions over the weekend.
It is also important to recognise
Goss International as our longest term
sponsor of SWUG and the annual
presentation night; their continuing
support is much appreciated. So too
with Kodak for the SWUG welcome
function and manroland for the
motivational speaker sponsorships.
To our other sponsors - KBA,
Oceanic Trading, Baldwin, Agfa, DS
Chemport, Fujifilm Australia, DIC,
Brissett Rollers, Müller Martini, Flint
Ink, GSB Chemicals, Böttcher, Ferag,
Ace Rollers, Day International - thank
you again for your support. This
support enables SWUG to be
affordable and hopefully provide the
industry with the information
exchange that it sets out to achieve.
This year we again focused on our
SWUG newspaper competition with
the aim of improving quality
throughout the newspaper industry.
To our judges, Wayne Johnstone and
Gordon Cole, a special thanks. The
standard was high this year and the
winners were thrilled. The difference
between the top three was very little,
indicating quality is high across the
board. Well done to all those who
It was great to see winners from
New Zealand this year in the
Our aims to learn, teach, exchange
ideas, make new contacts and problem
solve, I believe, were again achieved,
with many subjects covered in our
The conference this year also
recognised women in the industry with
Erin Mercieca from manroland
speaking about her role in the printing
industry and about coping in a maledominated area, something she
certainly does well.
The program also had a considerable focus on environmental
issues and the impacts we have to look
for in the future. There was some very
useful information on this topic from
Phil Lawrence.
A great presentation by Dan
Blackbourn from APN New Zealand
too, an example of a printing executive
who has grown from an apprentice to
his current role.
Health and Safety issues were
presented by Bruce Treharne and
Steven Molino, a very prudent topic
and a ‘must do’ as safety is everybody’s
ongoing responsibility.
Museum donation
A first for SWUG this year was to
donate money to assist in preserving
our history and, in this case, the Penrith
Museum of Printing was the recipient,
represented at the conference by
Stephen Brique and Neville James.
Stephen gave a brief outline at the
conference about the museum, and
SWUG will donate $2,000 annually to
this worthwhile cause.
It would be great to see as many
delegates as possible visit the museum,
as it is a live and working museum with
handset type, Ludlow, Linotypes and
letterpress printing machines, all on
display and working. The museum is
staffed by volunteers who also teach
typography to the younger generation
and help keep our history alive.
Thank you once again to The
Leader Print Centre at Tamworth for
their hospitality in 2010, the fantastic
effort put in by Anthony Payne, Craig
Jenner, Terry Skewes and all the print
centre staff, and also Angie Pearson
from the Northern Daily Leader for
organising the Rotary Club of
To all the SWUG committee who
help and support during the whole
conference, especially Anita White for
her organising and Jacob Muscat for
his technical assistance, I thank you all!
SWUG in 2011
Next year, SWUG has been invited to
visit the Hobart Mercury in Tasmania,
the host site being their two-year-old
print centre with Agfa CTP, KBA
single width press and Ferag
publishing room equipment.
This will be a great site visit and will
also be SWUG’s first visit to Hobart.
You will recall Wayne Bailey’s
presentation at this year’s conference
and, based on that, we can certainly
expect the unexpected!
I look forward to seeing you all next
Bob Lockley
Single width sites
build for the future
DESPITE the slowdown in economic
activity that has affected newspaper
production, the local single-width
sector has continued to see plenty of
activity over the past year or so.
Sites that have seen equipment
upgrades or additions recently include:
• Shepparton – new four-high towers
and Müller Martini ProLiner
• Yorke Peninsula – two refurbished
four-high towers and Agfa CTP
• East Gippsland Newspapers – first
UV ink tower in Australia
• Murray Bridge – four four-high
towers installed, two towers moved
to Yorke Peninsula
• Streamline Press – new four-high
tower plus additional Agfa CTP
• Sunraysia Daily – new four-high
tower and Agfa violet processless
• The Leader, Angaston – third fourhigh tower due to be added
• Fiji Times – upgrade
• Townsville, News Limited – manroland Geoman press and Ferag
mailroom to go live later in 2010
• Davies Brothers, Hobart – Agfa
CTP, KBA Comet press and Ferag
• Adelaide, News Limited – 8 couple
towers and Ferag polybagging line
• Perth and Darwin, News Limited –
new Agfa CTP
• Burnie – new sheetfed press
• Newcastle – second folder installed
Support our sponsors
at right angles to the press
• Ormiston – Goss Uniliner press
• Christchurch – Goss Uniliner press –
“probably one of the best
installations I’ve ever seen,” – Bob
• Nelson – two refurbished four-high
• Greymouth – Agfa violet processless
• Beaudesert Times – Agfa CTP
Companies and sites that have
ceased operating include Apex in
Sydney, Whyalla and Port Macquarie.
Opportunity to grow
“There’s a lot of investment in every
part of the business – prepress, press
and post-press - which is really good to
see,” commented SWUG President,
Bob Lockley.
“Yes, we’ve got a battle on our hands,
yes, we’ve got to work together but
we’re certainly not dead in any way,
shape or form.
“Overall, we’ve got a good solid
industry for the future and a great
opportunity to continue to grow.”
Peter Kirwan of Goss added that,
even through the doom and gloom of
last year, Goss still managed to ship
1,000 Goss Community and Magnum
printing units.
“That’s a pretty good indicator that
our industry is alive and well,” he
The SWUG committee would like to thank all our
generous sponsors and patrons for making the
2010 SWUG conference possible.
Major sponsors
SWUG patrons
Conference sponsors
Ace Rollers, Agfa, Baldwin, Böttcher, Brissett Rollers,
Day International, DIC, DS Chemport, Ferag, Flint Ink, Fujifilm,
GSB Chemicals, KBA, Müller Martini and Oceanic Trading.
SWUG May 2010
Low countries going green without water
ATERLESS printing has
been around for some time
without ever really catching
on in the newspaper sector, but now a
series of new press installations from
KBA is bringing it to the forefront.
International guest speaker at the
SWUG conference, Wim Maes,
represents one of those new sites and
he spoke to delegates about the
advantages and challenges of moving
to a waterless web environment.
Wim is the technical director of de
Persgroep Publishing, a Belgian media
group which has interests in
newspapers, magazines, television,
radio and online.
The group has a turnover of 1 billion
Euro a year and employs about 3,000
staff split across the company’s
operations on Belgium and neighbouring Netherlands.
The history of the company is
founded on newspaper publishing,
primarily through its titles Het Laatste
Nieuws and De Morgen.
In the 90s it expanded into magazine
publishing, online media, radio and
television, and then in 2009 moved into
the Netherlands with the acquisition of
the biggest newspaper group there.
The addition of these titles added
about another 800,000 copies to the
groups’s newspaper circulation and
boosted its paper consumption to
100,000 tonnes.
Today, newspapers account for 72%
of the group’s turnover, followed by
15% for television, 8% for magazines,
4% for radio and just 2% for the
internet although growing rapidly.
“Our company really strongly
believes in the future of newspapers,”
said Wim.
New eco print site
To better cater for its rapidly-growing
circulations, in 2006 de Persgroep
Publishing opened a brand new print
centre at Lokeren, about 40km north
of Brussels, featuring a new waterless
KBA Cortina pressline.
Called the Eco Print Center (EPC),
the new facility has gradually been
brought online since starting
commercial production in March 2006
Waterless wizard: Wim Maes (above) and the
KBA pressline at Lokeren, Belgium (right).
(the SWUG conference was actually
the third anniversary of start-up) with
four sections commencing operation
between March 2006 and November
2007 including heatset production.
The actual pressline comprises 12
towers and four folders capable of
printing 192 pages broadsheet or 384
tabloid. There is one heatset dryer
installed (with another three planned)
for the printing of magazines.
Variables are removed
The most noticeable aspect of this
press is that it is completely waterless,
ie it does not rely on the conventional
lithographic principle of ink and water
not mixing but instead uses the
properties of the plate to keep the ink
off the non-image areas.
According to Wim, the use of
waterless printing, which is perhaps
best-known in the sheetfed sector,
offers a number of advantages.
Firstly, there is no need to maintain
the correct ink/water balance, a
challenging task which requires constant
monitoring and years of experience.
As a result, one of the main variables
in offset printing is removed, making it
more consistent and predictable.
Instead of ink and water, waterless
printing simply involves maintaining a
controlled temperature curve (according to the speed of the press) in order
to transfer the ink.
By eliminating water from the
process, waterless printing is able to
deliver a much sharper dot on the
page, improving print quality.
“In our old plant facility, we have a
dot gain of between 25-28%. In the
waterless, we see 8-12%,” said Wim.
Heatset quality is also improved
with waterless production due to the
pages printing flat without any
rippling, a result which Wim said is
better than conventional heatset.
Other aspects of the KBA Cortina
include a much shorter web lead (the
height of the tower is only 3.2m) and a
shorter ink feed with only six rollers
needed to transfer the ink from a
temperature-controlled ceramic roller
to the plate cylinder.
Fully-automatic plate changing on
all the towers means that all plates can
be changed in about three minutes
after stopping the press.
In prepress, the site runs five Creo
CTP units producing between 2,5003,000 plates every night.
The standard newsprint is 45gsm
although Wim said that trials have also
been run on 28gsm for the printing of
No waste with waterless
One notable feature of the new press is
the reduction in waste that can been
achieved with much faster start-ups.
The Lokeren press can produce
saleable copies within 100 copies and
the goal is to reduce that to 80 copies.
The compact design of the press
means a much shorter web path so
there are no fan-out issues, while the
removal of dampening results in fewer
web breaks.
“When we started up, after three
Australia takes lead in recycling
AUSTRALIA is a world-leader in
newspaper recycling but more can be
done by printers to promote the
environmental record of the industry.
That was the message from Lillias
Bovell of the Publishers National
Environment Bureau (PNEB) who
returned to the SWUG conference this
year with an update on the
organisation’s activities.
Since the PNEB was first formed in
1991 by major publishing groups with
the goal of helping to reduce the
environmental impact of newspaper
printing, recycling rates for used
newspaper have risen considerably.
In 2008, 76.9% of newspapers
printed in Australia were recovered via
the waste stream to be used for a
variety of purposes - the highest rate of
old newspaper recovery in the world.
About 7% of newspapers printed are
never recovered because they are used
for other purposes such as lighting
fires or put in the compost, but less
than 0.65% of newspapers go straight
to landfill.
On the subject of landfill, Lillias
highlighted the interesting discovery
of newspapers which she found that
had been underground at a landfill site
for 16 years without decomposing.
This raises the possibility of old
newspapers being used as a ‘carbon
store’ if they can be sequestered in a
secure landfill without decomposing.
Currently, apart from being used in
the production of newsprint, recycled
papers are also used for a variety of
other products such as egg cartons,
kitty litter and the paper used in
gyprock as well as being exported to
countries such as China where there is
a shortage of recycled paper.
No eucalypts
The key message for local printers, and
one which the PNEB spreads through
school education programs and
nationwide advertising campaigns, is
that newspapers are a sustainable
In particular, printers should make
sure their customers know that:
• No eucalypts or other native species
are cut down in order to be made
into newspapers.
• Newsprint manufactured in Australia
is renewable. It is made from either
plantation softwood, in the form of
forest waste (thinnings) and forest
industry by-products, or thinnings
and forest industry by-products with
added recycled fibre from old
newspapers and magazines.
“There is no eucalypt used in
Yesterday’s news: Copies of the
The Australian and The Age
newspapers from 1993 dug out of
landfill last year by the PNEB.
Australia to make newsprint,” said
Lillias. “There’s 27% of people out
there who think we are chopping
down great, big, lovely, old eucalypt
trees to make paper, but there are
“If there’s one thing to remember,
it’s that there are no native species, no
eucalypts used in Australia to make
For more information on what you
can do to promote recycling of your
newspaper titles in the community, go
weeks, my printers came to me to ask
‘Where are the web breaks?’” said
A breakdown of paper waste in 2008
revealed that 95.9% of copies were sold
with just 1.7% of copies being lost on
press and 1.1% in the mailroom – a
saving of about $4.5 million compared
to the year before.
Waterless inks and plates are the two
main issues in making the switch from
conventional offset and Wim admitted
that the ability to source a reliable,
consistent source of ink had been a
problem in the early days.
For instance, the slow drying of the
ink had meant that copies coming off
the press went into the mailroom but
then stuck to the grippers and returned
to the press hall.
Now, having worked closely with
ink manufacturers, including visiting
Japan to find out how it was done
there, the situation has improved and
Wim now believes that an optimum
ink is close to being realised.
The solution has been to separate the
production of conventional and waterless inks to prevent contamination
because a cross-contamination of just
1% can cause problems. Today, Wim
also takes about 20% of his ink from
Japan in order to compare it with the
European suppliers.
Likewise, there is only one plate
supplier in the world – Toray – capable
of delivering on an industrial scale,
although the market is continuing to
grow with an estimated 2 million
square metres being used next year.
In Europe, the case for waterless
web printing has been strengthened by
a number of prominent installations in
recent years in Germany, France,
Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark and
A total of 15 Cortina presslines (74
towers) have been sold with 10 presses
(41 towers) in operation to date.
The latest installation is due to come
online in Dubai, a site which is being
managed by Paul Condon, formerly of
RPP Ballarat.
Apart from the reduction in start-up
waste, other benefits that have been
gained by the EPC include a saving of
about 400,000 litres of water and
45,000 litres of additives, 50% fewer
cleaning cloths and cleaning agents,
and no ink mist resulting in a cleaner
working environment and more
reliable automation.
“I invite you to come and see that I
have printing towers that have been
running for four years and they look
like new,” said Wim.
As a result, the EPC has picked up a
number of new orders from the Green
Party and other customers looking for
a more environmentally-friendly print
“Now they are coming to us automatically,” added Wim.
Life is simpler
In conclusion, Wim said the
installation of the Cortina had brought
about a different culture and mindset
at the company.
Compared to heatset printers, where
quality is the priority, newspaper
printers have different concerns,
primarily the time schedule, and quality
is often a secondary concern.
“So our organisation had to turn,
from 2006 onwards, towards a more
quality-related organisation. This was
not so easy with conventional printing
but with the Cortina, we achieved it
quite easily.
“Waterless printing is the ideal
solution to standardise and industrialise the printing process in an ecological way for newspapers and semicommercials,” he said.
“It makes the life of a printer much
simpler, more reproducible and
economical than in the past.”
Goss presses born again
EVERYTHING that’s old is new again
with Goss International’s Lifetime
Support program that is designed to
give older presses a new lease of life.
Matt Hancock described the
program which is available for a range
of services including relocation and reconfiguration of presses as well as press
audits and rebuilds.
Such refurbishments can cover a
range of options from a minor folder
tune-up to a complete tower rebuild,
including reboring frames and fitting
over-sized eccentric cylinder bearing
housings, as well as replacement of
worn oscillators and ink fountain
In Australia, press relocations and
reconfigurations include Tamworth,
the host site for the SWUG conference,
and the Yorke Peninsula Country Times
which now has a couple of towers that
were relocated from Murray Bridge.
Press and folder audits/rebuilds
have been carried out at Shepparton,
Tamworth, Latrobe Valley and The
Border Watch at Mt Gambier.
Other upgrades and enhancements
highlighted by Matt included a remote
inking option, the Triliner compact
cut-off and the N-40 folder, first
introduced last year, of which 40 have
now been sold.
The N-40 is now available locally for
use with existing Goss Community
presses and has the same footprint as
an SSC folder.
It has a 12 web capacity and runs up
to 45,000iph with broadsheet and
tabloid production as well as double
parallel and quarterfold options.
Goss has sold 40 of the new
45,000iph N-40 folders since its
introduction last year.
SWUG May 2010
Above left, Steve Marshall (left) and Graeme Ryan (right) from Agfa with Danny Fogarty from North East
Newspapers, Wangaratta.
Above right, left to right: Troy Mansell, Fairfax Media Printing, Melbourne, Rob Donaldson, Sunraysia
Daily, Ian Johns, DIC Australia, Graham Wallace and Martin Sanders, Fairfax Media Printing, Melbourne.
SWUG Awards Dinner 2010
Left to right: Andy Stephens, Webco, Sanaila Bou, Fiji Times, Brendon
Whitley and Bruce Nilson, Webco, David Zagami, East Gippsland
Newspapers, and Adam Jardis, Jardis Industries.
The paparazzi were hard at work at the annual
SWUG Awards night held at the historic
Tamworth Town Hall.
Above, left to right: Jason
Kennedy, Flint Group, Will Carr,
News Limited PNG, Mark
Gooding, Flint Group, and Allan
Cox, CPI Paper.
Left: Alan Bauer (left) and Terry
Brissett (right) of Brissett Rollers
with Helen Woods of Fairfax
Clean your folders now!
RECENT incidents of fires breaking
out in folders prompted a call from
OH&S expert, Bruce Treharne, for
print sites to make sure their folders
are being kept clean.
“Please keep your paper dust down,
make sure there is no build up on the
bearings and motors, and vacuum the
folders,” he said.
“We’ve become aware of three
folder fires in the last 12 months.”
The combination of paper dust and
heat generated by the folder is a
potentially lethal combination and one
that could cause a huge fire at any time,
said Bruce.
“Don’t take the risk. Make sure that
you have adequate fire prevention
such as CO2 cylinders in case a fire
starts, because if a fire does start in the
folder, it goes very quickly.”
WorkCover visits
Visits by WorkCover inspectors are a
fact of life in the industry and can
happen at any time, but there are
various things to watch out for in the
event they do come calling.
Usually, said Bruce, the inspectors
will sit outside the premises across the
road for while, watching the trucks and
forklift movements in the loading
docks to assess the standard of driving,
the drivers’ training and methods of
loading and unloading.
“They can generally tell what the
standard of safety is like inside the
building by watching what is
happening outside the building,”
said Bruce.
After that they will probably enter
via the front door although it has been
known for them to come in the back
door at a site.
“If they do come in , offer them a cup
of tea and treat them with the respect
that they demand because there can be
only one winner,” said Bruce.
Particular areas of inspection that
have been focused on in recent times
• Forklifts. There have been 55 deaths
over the past 20 years in Victoria
with forklifts so this is a major area of
attention – clean up your forklifts
and make them look presentable,
check the counterweights.
• MDS sheets. Two sites have recently
had visits from inspectors checking
Material Data Safety sheets to make
sure that the sheets matched the
chemicals on site. Make sure they are
up-to-date and placed at locations
where chemicals are stored and
being handled. They need to be
reviewed every five years and you
must have documentation to support
that process.
• Pallet racking. How safe it is? It has
to be undamaged so if it has been hit
by a forklift, get it replaced because
the inspectors do not like repairs.
Make sure it is stable and bolted
down with signage for the correct
safe weight limits that have been
certified by an authorised person.
Finally, Bruce urged all sites to do
their risk assessments to identify
hazards, assess the risks and come up
with a control plan to reduce the risks.
All risk assessments should be
documented and it should be an ongoing process with a focus on quality
of assessment rather than quantity.
If a site does end up in court due to
an OH&S breach then providing
documentation of due diligence may
help to mitigate any penalties.
“If you’re not doing risk assessments
then I really encourage you to start
doing it,” said Bruce.
for blankets and presses
Environmental course
Bruce also outlined details of an
environmental management course he
attended to learn about current
legislation and standards regarding
environmental management.
“It will allow us to audit the business
from an environmental perspective,”
he explained. “The course contained
instruction on the current legislation,
the regulations that underpin the Acts
along with interpreting and understanding the Australian environmental
standard, ISO 14001.
“What that will do is help us to
develop an environmental management system,” he added. “I found the
course very interesting and I’m sure it
will be of benefit to our company in the
end and possibly to the printing
industry at large.”
Bruce urged all companies that are
unsure of their environmental
responsibilities to seek professional
advice because, as with OH&S, the
legal requirements for businesses are
only going to increase and nobody can
afford to ignore it.
cleaning in production
Cost Efficiency-
to productivity and waste
aldwiin Graphic
p c EEquipment
q ip
Level 1, 27 Cr
e s cen t S
treet, R
ozelle, N
SW 2039.
O Box
Box 1234, Rozelle,
Rozelle, NSW
NSW 2039
39 Australia.
h: +61 (02) 9555-9975
Fx: +61 (02) 9555-8246
E: p
SWUG May 2010
East Gippsland shines a light on UV print
ICTORIAN publishers, James
Yeates & Sons, has become the
first newspaper site in Australia
to add UV printing to its regular print
The East Gippsland-based company
installed a Prime UV system from the
USA in August 2009, becoming the
first local site to trial web UV print.
At this year’s SWUG conference,
David Zagami outlined the company’s
journey to UV production which
included an extensive investigation of
print sites in the USA currently
running UV output.
UV printing has gained a lot of
attention in recent years as newspapers
seek improve quality and add value for
customers. It also sparked the interest
of managing director, Bob Yeates, who
thought it might be worth investigating.
And so he sent David on a road trip
with Andy Stephens to see how it
operates at sites in the US.
The tour took in a variety of sites
running UV on Goss Community
towers at plants in Vista, California,
San Francisco, Salt Lake City, New
Orleans, Tulsa, Chicago, as well as the
Prime UV plant in Chicago.
The main message from the US was
that UV is an economical, cost-effective
way to do gloss work and much
cheaper than installing heatset ovens
(although some of the sites ran both).
In some cases, the UV was used
because it was quick drying and enabled
more jobs to be done; elsewhere it was
promoted as a premium product,
targeted at wealthier suburbs that were
prepared to pay for it.
In the pressroom, the UV units were
generally very compact and took up
Far left, the
Bairnsdale crew
and suppliers show
the results of their
UV installation,
and (left) the
Prime UV unit in
place on the press.
little space; the only footprint on the
ground is taken up by the electrical
At sites where conventional and UV
inks were being used on the same
tower, inks were generally easy to swap
in and out and there was no need to
change blankets, rollers or fountain
In some cases though, set-off issues
on uncoated stocks forced the
operators to swap the yellow and black
inks in the top units.
The lamps and reflectors were
another issue, requiring regular
cleaning and high maintenance; an air
optimiser can also be used to eliminate
performance problems.
On the press, the advice was to start
running gloss stocks with no water and
then gradually build up; the ink/water
balance proved to be critical.
Having an air former in the folder
was also recommended to prevent
build-up of static that might affect web
tension adversely.
Mildura makes CTP leap
MOVING from a film-based prepress
system to the latest processless
computer-to-plate (CTP) technology,
the Sunraysia Daily has taken a huge
leap forward in its plate production.
manager at the Elliott Newspaper
Group in Mildura, outlined the
transformation that has taken place in
the shift to the latest in processless,
violet plate output.
The results for the Victorian
newspaper group include a reduction
in chemical waste and water usage in
prepress, a simpler, more efficient plate
production line, and an improvement
in print quality on the press.
According to Rob, the newspaper
had been looking to make the shift to
CTP for a couple of years but the
systems on offer were too big and
cumbersome for the Mildura site.
One of the advantages of going to
processless output though is that the
plate processor is replaced by a more
compact wash-out unit which uses 20%
less floor space.
This proved to be a major attraction
for Mildura even though it meant
becoming one of the first newspapers
in the country to take on the new
“It’s lucky we did wait as long as we
did to go to CTP and went processless
at the same time,” said Rob.
Other reasons for going processless
included the proven use of the
technology overseas, and the benefits
both environmental and financial.
The system chosen by Mildura
comprises an Agfa Advantage N-SL
violet-laser CTP unit combined with a
VCF 85 compact wash-out unit.
The plates used are Agfa’s latest
N92-VCF chemical-free plates and the
workflow is managed by an automated
Arkitex Essentials software system.
The Advantage N-SL is a completely
automated system with auto load and
unload, automatic slip sheet removal,
and a cassette system that can hold up
to 100 plates for non-stop production.
At the same time, it also allows for
manual loading of plates so that plates
of different sizes can be used without
being locked into using a single plate
The unit is designed to output 50
panorama plates per hour and the stack
loader can hold up to 100 plates.
After being exposed, the plates are
transferred to the wash-out unit which
uses no developer but rather a pH
neutral gum and brush to remove the
non-image areas of the plate.
No water is used during processing
and the gum used is recycled during
According to Rob, the only water
used in the process now is for cleaning
the wash-out unit which simply
requires rinsing out every so often.
“Every three weeks we clean out the
gumming unit and wash rollers after
1,200 plates have been through,” he
The software used to drive the
system was installed four months
before the CTP unit and used with the
previous imagesetter to ensure that the
workflow was bedded in before making
the switch to CTP.
Benefits of the new system,
according to Rob, include quick
throughput, a reduction in waste, less
cleaning required, and reduction in
water usage.
The system is simple to use with the
automated plate loading and
unloading, resulting in time and staff
On press, the printers have noticed
an improved start-up and print quality,
especially with photographs.
Back in Bairnsdale
Several months later at East Gippsland
Newspapers, the Prime UV system was
installed on one tower of the four
tower pressline.
The complete set-up uses UV inks
supplied by Flint, washes and fountain
solution from DS Chemport, Vulcan
hybrid blankets and Brissett rollers,
and Fujifilm plates imaged on an
ECRM CTP system.
One critical issue that affected the
installation at Bairnsdale was the need
for extra power supply.
“UV definitely does use more power
so you need to check that out at your
site,” said David. “Where we are
situated, not being in commercial
zone, we didn’t have a lot of power.”
As a result, the installation was
delayed for several months while the
company went through the process of
applying for an upgraded power supply.
Despite some delay, Prime UV
noted that the start-up was one of the
best turn-key installations and
commissionings they have been
involved with anywhere.
“One of the smoothest start-ups I’ve
experienced in over 120 installs
worldwide, ” said Ken Adomaitis,
Prime UV field engineer.
One area where Bairnsdale differs
from the US sites is in prepress.
Whereas over there, it was given
little attention, David highlighted the
importance of improving the quality of
the artwork, particularly with regard to
photographs, because the UV is much
less forgiving with poor quality
It’s still early days with UV at the
East Gippsland site but already it is
being seen as complementary to the
company’s existing newspaper and
commercial sheetfed work - like having
another press but without the expense,
commented David.
UV printing Q&A
David Zagami and Ryan White from Bairnsdale answered questions about the East Gippsland
Newspapers UV installation at the engineers’ session.
Geoff Austin: We looked very seriously at UV at the Gold
Coast but were put off it because it would have meant
converting one complete tower to solely UV and it had to
be spotlessly clean all the time – you couldn’t change
backwards and forwards. How did you blokes go – is
cleanliness that important?
DZ: You’ve got to be very clean but we probably don’t
have the pressure of you blokes, we’ve just got a few
mastheads, a couple of days when we don’t print, so
time’s not an issue like it is with you guys. It takes Ryan
and his crew about an hour to swap inks.
GA: Same blankets, same rollers?
DZ: Yes, blankets and rollers are hybrid so we keep them
in, it’s really just the wash-up.
RW: Contamination has never been a problem. We do
clean the ducts pretty well and we were washing rollers
as well. Now if we don’t have the time, we can get away
with just sheeting the ink off the rollers and off we go
again. The contamination is not as bad as we thought it
was going to be.
Q: What’s the longest run?
RW: 25,000 is the longest we’ve done so far.
DZ: We put a book in yesterday if you saw it, a little 64
pager done on the one tower, the first time we’ve done a
100,000 run over the four runs and that gave us a better
reading on our ink mileage.
Q: What about make-ready – is spoilage higher?
RW: It is initially on the first start-up when you go from
newsprint to the gloss but once you go from UV to UV it’s
very much the same.
Q: Is that due to the contamination?
RW: I’ve found that on a lot of our UV jobs the ink
coverage is less so it’s just a matter of getting the ducts
set right before you go.
Q: Same fountain solution?
RW: Same solution runs through the same system as the
rest of the press, circulates through so there’s no trouble
with contamination in the water either.
Q: What sort of dampening?
RW: Conventional cloth dampening.
Q: You said yesterday you ran 100gsm through it. That
would have been something – did it go alright?
DZ: Yes, 110gsm. We had a night with the Press Gang in
Victoria and that night was 100 and 110gsm. At the
moment, we’re mainly on 80gsm.
Q: How do the blankets stand up to the 80 and 110 – do
you have to change them afterwards?
RW: We haven’t done a great deal of work on it or longer
run lengths.
Q: On wide format digital UV you generally find there is a
fire risk – have you experienced that?
RW: No, not at all. When you have a web break or the
press stops, shutters will shut the light so you don’t get
any web breaks or anything through the light.
Q: Who supplies the UV lamp component?
RW: Prime UV.
Q: Do they run at half power or full power, can they be
RW: There are three power phases as the press speeds up.
Q: How much dearer is the ink?
DZ: We’re paying a little over double for ink per kilo but,
on the actual run length, Ryan has got up to almost
double the run length so when you cost that out to per
copy it works out to 25% more on what we’re paying….
Cost per copy, it’s not so scary.
Q: Have you worked out a running cost per hour?
DZ: No, we haven’t yet but we do have to do that
because it definitely does use a lot more power.
Q: Do you find there is set-off in the quarterfold?
RW: Absolutely no set-off… no worries, trolley wheels
can run right over the print, not an issue at all.
Q: Can you integrate it with the coldset?
DZ: Not yet no, we’ve only done half a dozen live jobs
maybe so we haven’t got to that yet.
Q: If you up-sell to one of your external clients and they
only want front and back without the centrespread will
405 go through without any problem?
RW: No worries, we’ve done 405s before.
Q: Have you been able to on-sell it to your external
clients? What’s the ROI going to take?
DZ: The ROI time-wise we don’t know – we have our
newspaper and our commercial, our sheetfed division,
and it really sits in the middle. We add it on to our
commercial division for the cost of things and we’re
value-adding to our good clients in the newspapers. It
really sits in the middle… for our business anyway. We
can pitch a lot of our sheetfed products on time and cost,
put it on the web and go that way. At the end of the day
it’s cheaper for the actual advertiser, they get this midrange product and what we’ve put out into the market so
far our clients are very happy with.
Q: Have you fiddled around with screen sizes and what
DZ: Still doing that, now 133lpi, had a go at 150 and been
back down to 120 – fiddled around with that and
definitely still got to get the prepress right… We’ve really
noticed that a good photo looks good on gloss but when
we get into average photos or less, while you can get
away with it a bit on newsprint, on gloss you really notice
that an average photo looks poor. We’ve got to pick that
up and work on that, we’re still learning and we’ll get
Q: Just from the printer’s point of view, how do you find
working with the UV inks compared with the coldset inks?
RW: Not a great deal of difference between the two, the
UV ink is a little stiffer, lays back in the ducts, every once
in a while just stir it up a bit more than you usually would
– but can’t notice the difference.
SWUG May 2010
Digital Kodak looks to the future
New plates, new workflow and new
digital print options are just some of
the products Kodak is preparing to
release for the newspaper and
graphic arts markets.
OB Mollee from Kodak previewed some
of the new solutions that were released at
the Ipex show in May.
Trillian SP thermal plates are a new digital
plate, due to be commercialised in June, which is
aimed at reducing chemistry, water, energy and
waste during processing, following the trend in
recent years towards more user-friendly plate
“From our perspective, Trillian SP is going to
be the new plate that takes over the bulk of our
portfolio,” said Rob. “In doing so, it’s going to be
a simplified processing system but still utilising all
the current feature sets of the plates today
including UV applications, long run lengths, high
speed and productivity.”
In platesetters too, Kodak is offering the latest
Trendsetter News thermal CTP unit with a 30%
smaller footprint, making it easier to move, install
and service.
“We’ve taken out the two monkeys either side
that drive the drum and replaced them with
chipmunks,” joked Rob.
which is producing short runs of European
newspapers for visiting tourists.
New products such as the ones outlined by Rob
are just part of the transformation of Kodak in
recent years from a film-based company to a
digital company.
Approximately 70% of its revenues now come
from digital products and whereas in the past the
consumer market was the most significant, today
60% of revenues come from business-to-business
sales, such as in the newspaper industry.
“Forty percent of all printed matter is touched
somewhere along the line by Kodak technology
that has driven some aspect of its production,”
said Rob.
In Australia, the recent announcement that
Heidelberg has taken on distribution of Kodak
products in the sheetfed market means the
company will be better placed in future to focus
on the web market where it has retained direct
Looking to Prosper
It is in digital print though that Kodak has some of
the biggest releases, not least with its Prosper
press (above right) which offers high speed,
offset-like quality production using digital inkjet
Aimed initially at commercial and book
printers, there’s no doubt that newspapers are
also on the radar for the Prosper technology,
complementing existing offset production.
The power of digital print lies in its ability to
produce flexible versions of newspapers with
personalisation, targeted advertising, zoning and
short-run applications.
“These units allow you the flexibility to print as
few as 50 copies of any given title and transition
across to the next title on the fly, during the press
run,” said Rob.
Kodak already has some experience in this field
having already installed a Versamark VL4200 on
the island of Malta at a newspaper company
Because performance is profit
New courses from GAMAA
LONG-TIME supporter of SWUG, the Graphic
Arts Merchants Association of Australia
(GAMAA), announced new course dates for its
leadership program at this year’s conference.
GAMAA is made up of leading suppliers to the
graphic arts and printing industry, and in addition
to promoting the interests of its members, is
involved in industry activities such as trade shows
(Pacprint and PrintEx), sponsorships and
educational programs with a focus on developing
new industry leaders.
Its leadership program, which includes
scholarships for students currently undertaking
vocational study, is aimed at middle to senior
managers working in the industry.
Since 2003, GAMAA has awarded 34 scholarships and more than 200 industry professionals
have attended its workshops.
Scholarship holders, which include SWUG
delegates such as Mark George from Böttcher,
Erin Mercieca from manroland, Adam Newman
from Ferag and Helen Woods from Fairfax Media,
attend two leadership workshops each year.
The 2010 program consists of two full-day
sessions including ‘Building High Performing
Teams’ run by Colin Beattie that was recently
held in Melbourne, and ‘Coaching for Success’
with Dr Anthony Grant from Sydney University
due to be held in Sydney in August.
‘Coaching for Success’ will focus on listening
skills, use of rapport, understanding the elements
of a coaching conversation, the GROW model
(Goal, Reality, Options and Wrap up) as well as
practice in small groups on real-life scenarios.
Applications for GAMAA scholarships open in
October annually. More information is available
You'll find us
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SWUG May 2010
Apprentices agree
it’s good to be 3
“Steve from DIC called it a ‘lazy cow’
because it’s laying down,” said Sarah.
The press runs at up to 90,000cph
and has QuadTech registration as well
as a built-in spectrophotometer.
The ‘pie-warmer’ oven reaches
temperatures of 130 degrees Celsius.
There is an inline stitcher and the
folder uses no grippers or pins, only
belts to minimise marking and
“Given that we come from a coldset
background, it was interesting to see
these presses with ovens and the high
quality products that they produce,”
said Sarah.
This year saw a major change to the SWUG Apprentice
of the Year award with three apprentices going on tour
to printing sites around the country.
HEN Hesm Noureddine
from Murray Bridge was
named as Apprentice of the
Year in 2009, the SWUG committee
decided that the two runners-up,
James Johnstone from Canberra and
Sarah Weldon from Border Mail
Printing, Albury, should also be given
the opportunity to share in the main
prize of a tour of newspaper print sites
around Australia.
To start off their tour, all three flew
to Melbourne to begin at The Age print
centre at Tullamarine, guided by
Angus Scott of Ace Rollers, where they
met up with Graham Wallace, the
pressroom manager.
First stop at the press centre was the
paper store which receives eight
truckloads of paper every day and
consumes between 800-900 tonnes of
newsprint per week. The store room
holds up to two weeks-worth of paper.
Trucks entering the store are
unloaded automatically onto skates, 16
reels at a time, which are then
automatically stripped, prepared and
transported to the 18 reel stands for
webbing up.
In prepress, the site uses three Agfa
CTP units that can process 200 plates
an hour, and between 8,000 and
10,000 plates per week. To help the
environment, water from the plateroom is recycled for use on the press.
There are three manroland presses
that can run at up 75,000cph or 21
newspapers per second. There are nine
press consoles and three folders, one
with quarter fold, with all folders
capable of stitching online. The site
uses DIC ink and consumes up to
14,000kg of ink per week.
As part of its maintenance program,
one tower is taken out of operation
every two weeks to check rollers and
blankets. The presses normally get up
to 30 million impressions out of each
The publishing room uses Ferag
equipment linked by three kilometres
of gripper track. There are 14,000
grippers in use, each one of which costs
about $150. The system uses 700 discs
that can each hold up to 4,000 papers
depending on thickness.
“Most of the publishing area is
automated so there were minimal
workers needed for such a huge area,”
said Hesm.
Safety is taken very seriously at The
Age and on the back of everyone’s
uniform there is a slogan: “No job is so
important that it cannot be done
Blanket coverage
The second stop in Melbourne was to
pressroom chemical supplier, DS
Chemport, at its new chemical and
blanket facility in Campbellfield.
Blankets are made from rolls of
rubber that are 30 metres long and up
to 2.5 metres wide. The blankets are
between 1.17mm thick for three-ply
and up to 1.96mm thick for four-ply
and have a tolerance of +/- 0.02mm.
After being cut, metal bars are
attached to the blankets using a special
adhesive tape and an iron press that is
heated to 200 degrees Celsius and then
applies 15 tonnes of pressure to secure
the bar to the rubber. A pull test is then
carried out at 45 degrees to ensure the
blankets will withstand press running
Next door is the chemical mixing
facility with large tanks used to make a
range of chemicals to required
specifications. Due to the presence of
flammable vapours in the air, careful
precautions are made to minimise
sparks including numerous earthing
points around the site.
There are no electric motors and
only pneumatic pumps are used on
site; even the forklifts use speciallydesigned engines to prevent sparks.
An interesting feature of this site is
the large underground water tanks that
can hold up to 100,000 litres of
recycled water that has been through a
filtering system for use in bathrooms
and cleaning.
Other environmental initiatives
include batch scheduling to avoid
unnecessary cleaning of tanks, use of
raw materials that come from
renewable sources, and trying to make
products in a way that emits fewer
Next stop Queensland
From there it was a plane trip to
Brisbane where the trio met up with
Geoff Austin and where, on the
following day, they first visited the
Queensland Newspapers site at
Murarrie to be met by operations
manager, Grant Galvin.
This site produces 7 million papers
per week and works closely with its
sister site at the Gold Coast Bulletin. It
employs about 250 full time staff and
up to 100 casuals in the publishing
Saving spoilage is a major priority
with counters used in the pressroom
and publishing room to track copies
and fix any problems where papers are
being lost.
In prepress, there are four Agfa plate
lines, one capable of producing
panorama plates, while the paper store
holds 6,000 reels, enough for up to five
weeks production. Around 200-300
reels are delivered daily.
A large crane can move up to five
reels at a time using a vacuum suction
to avoid damage to the reels, taking
them to automatic stripping stations to
remove the cardboard and then to
holding bays that acclimatise the reels
to pressroom conditions. Automatic
guided vehicles transport the reels to
any of the 28 reelstands.
The reelstands have been fitted with
cameras to monitor web breaks,
resulting in the number of breaks being
reduced from 76 per week to 8-10 a
week and helping to reduce spoilage
from 5.6% to 3%.
There are four double-width
manroland Newsman 40 presses in the
press hall which feed four Ferag
conveyor lines into the mailroom with
eight stackers per line and 16 truck
conveyors outside where up to 256
trucks leave every night to distribute
the papers.
There is a strong emphasis on
maintenance at the site with two
workshops on-site as well as weekly
clean-up meetings where staff and
management work together to
improve the print environment.
Next stop was the Fairfax Media
Ormiston plant, home to a new Goss
And digital too
Top, SWUG apprentices (l-r) Sarah Weldon, James Johnstone and
Hesm Noureddine report to the conference; (above left) with SWUG
President Bob Lockley, and (right) flying high with the hosties.
“We had a great time and
are very grateful of the
opportunity to experience
so many aspects of the
industry that we work in.”
Uniliner press capable of printing up to
128 pages of back-to-back colour at
speeds of up to 80,000cph.
At this site, they were met by
manager, Mark Dibble, as well as Bryce
Franklin, a previous winner of SWUG
Apprentice of the Year, who came in
on his day off to show them around.
Titles printed at Ormiston include
Queensland’s largest rural paper,
Country Life, local editions of the
Financial Review and Sun Herald as
well as commercial products.
“The layout of the press was
amazing to me,” said Hesm. “Having
reelstands in front of the press is
something I’ve never seen before.”
There are two folders enabling two
separate products to be run at once
with inline stitching and one
quarterfold. There are three drive
consoles, Baldwin spray bar
dampening and QI auto-registration.
In the publishing area downstairs,
there are two Ferag lines going into a
rotary trimmer and StreamStitch
stitching component, as well as an
older Müller Martini stitch-and-trim
machine that is used for overflow or
smaller jobs.
On track to Gold Coast
From Brisbane, tour guide Geoff
Austin took the apprentices to the
Gold Coast via the Indy 500 track to
visit the Gold Coast Bulletin site. There
they were met by Eugene Betzel and
shown around the site that employs
about 85 staff.
The prepress runs two lines of Agfa
Polaris CTP producing 3,500 plates
per week. There are 10 reelstands
using approximately 300-400 tonnes
of paper per week.
The KBA press was commissioned
in 2004 and is currently operating six
days a week. It has nine towers and two
folders, and uses QuadTech autoregistration. It is capable of
quarterfold, stitch and trimming and
can glue up to 64 pages of quarterfold.
The mailroom uses Ferag
equipment with winding/unwinding
capability, inserting and three-way
Accommodation that night was at
Jupiters casino although the
excitement of staying there was
tempered by the realisation that the
three of them had to get up at 5am the
following morning.
After flying to Sydney next day, first
stop was Marrickville Print and Design
where Luch Lopez showed them one
of the titles produced there, the local
version of the Financial Times printed
on pink stock.
In the press hall, the site runs a mix
of Goss Community mono units, tricolours and Tensor towers with QI
registration system. The two presslines
run up to 30,000cph with run lengths
from 500 copies to 1.4 million copies.
“These presses use nearly all second
hand parts made up from old presses
or purchased from another supplier,
and are repaired in the workshop they
have within the facility,” said Hesm.
Small reel butts are also re-used on
the mono units by rewinding them on
an old reel rewinder to make a full reel.
High heatset quality
Next stop was the Hannanprint
commercial web site where they were
met by Paul Nubley, human resources
The site employs 500 people,
including 100 in prepress. The 16-page
plates are produced on a Creo Magnus
VLF and are then baked for extra
durability to give run lengths of up to 1
million impressions.
There are several presses running
throughout the site including manroland Lithoman and Goss Sunday
presses. A lot of effort has gone into
finger-printing the presses to achieve
consistency, a fact reflected in the
number of awards gained by the site.
The site uses 75,000 tonnes of paper
per year and has three large storage
rooms with up to 160 different types of
paper. Computers at the reelstands
track how much paper has been used
and how much is needed.
From there, the apprentices
travelled to Offset Alpine where they
met with Peter Rimmer, prepress
supervisor, and Rick Bower, print
Along with Hannanprint, Offset
Alpine also comes under the IPMG
banner and specialises in quality gloss
products such as magazines,
catalogues and brochures.
In prepress, the company runs
Kodak CTP capable of producing nine
different plate sizes, the largest being
1450 x 1250mm. There are seven web
presses and two six-colour sheetfed
presses on-site.
Print circulations range from 7,000
copies to 1 million copies and the
waste target is 8% overall.
Just prior to their visit, a new Goss
Sunday 4000 heatset press was
installed into the site, comprising four
units configured side-by-side rather
than in a tower.
First stop the following day was Lanier
which supplies the Ricoh range of
digital presses, introduced by Denise
Thompson and Damien Robbins.
Although much slower than a web
press, the Ricoh Pro C900 offers an
interesting alternative, running at up to
90 pages per minute on stocks up to
300gsm with the ability to use seven
different papers in a single job.
It offers inline finishing options such
as folding, stitching and gluing
enabling complete items to be
produced in a single pass.
The machine holds up to 11,000
sheets of paper and can be loaded on
the run for continuous production. It is
rated at 400,000 copies per month and
the drive belt can handle 4 million
impressions before being replaced.
“It was impressive, the fact that we
got to see the benefits and become
aware of the possibilities of what digital
printing is,” said James.
After viewing the future of printing,
it was on to the next stop at the DIC
plant in Auburn where they were met
by Steve Packham and Mark Shales.
“Steve showed us his enthusiasm for
his job – as most of you know, Steve
loves his ink,” said Hesm.
DIC is the largest ink manufacturer
in Australia for heatset and coldset inks
with about 356 printing towers being
supplied with ink from the Auburn site
alone. The company also exports ink
from this site to Hong Kong,
Singapore and Taiwan.
DIC has developed a tanker delivery
system that takes ink out to the various
sites and pumps it into tanks which
have sensors fitted to them to
automatically inform DIC when a
delivery is required. Apparently the
tankers hold enough ink to cover a four
lane highway from Sydney to
“I have no idea how they worked
that one out,” said Hesm.
On the last leg
Next morning, the final stop on the
journey was the Fairfax Media site at
North Richmond where they met up
with Chris Jackson, the press manager.
This site runs a manroland Uniset
installed in 2000 capable of 128 pages
coldset with three folders, two of
which can do quarterfold, and a
stitcher that can be moved to each
folder. There are also two heatset
presses that can print 32 pages each.
There are 12 reelstands which put
through 450-500 tonnes of paper per
week with reels being delivered 4-5
times a day. Prepress runs two Kodak
CTP lines capable of producing 200
plates an hour while the mailroom has
a trimming drum, Ferag and Müller
Martini stackers as well as a stitch, trim
and bag machine.
That marked the end of the trip for
the apprentices, one which they all agree
was extremely educational for them.
“We had a great time and are very
grateful of the opportunity to
experience so many aspects of the
industry that we work in,” said Sarah.
A big thanks to all the sites and
companies that took part and made
time to host the apprentices, as well as
to Angus Scott and Geoff Austin for
acting as tour guides.
SWUG May 2010
Filter your
and save
Here’s news - print is good for us
DESPITE the bad press that paperbased media gets, printing is in fact
one of the few good news stories in
terms of the environment.
Well-known industry identity and
consultant, Phil Lawrence returned to
the SWUG conference after an
absence of several years to present the
latest findings of his research into the
environmental impact of printing –
and, for once, the news is good.
Phil acknowledged that SWUG was
one of the first industry organisations
to recognise the importance of the
environment and that, when he last
presented to the conference on the
topic, it was still a relatively new
Much has happened in the
environmental debate over the past
few years, mainly revolving around the
impact of climate change.
Tied in with this, said Phil, is the
growth of globalisation and, in
particular, the emergence of the Asian
region as an economic powerhouse
which will only add to the problem of
global pollution.
So how does printing fare in this
environmental debate?
As an industry, printing is often
governments when challenged ‘to do
something’ about the environment,
and historically, it is true that the
industry has had a poor record.
However, as Phil outlined, the
theory of ecological modernisation as
proposed by Joseph Huber suggests
that, as an industry matures, it will
tend to become less environmentally
damaging through the application of
new technology - and this certainly
seems to be the case with printing.
Newer technologies such as CTP
(computer-to-plate) replacing film
and, more recently, chemistry-free
plate processing, reduced and lowVOC solvent usage and more
vegetable oil-based inks have all
contributed towards making printing
much less harmful to the environment.
Paper, too, is often targeted by
environmentalists but, as Phil pointed
out, in fact only 4% of the world’s
forestry resources are used for paper
production. In Australia, 13 million
hectares of land has been cleared to
grow wheat compared to only 1.23
million hectares of plantation forests
for paper and construction.
Paper-making has also become less
damaging with 90% less water being
used in its manufacture today, a switch
to chlorine-free bleaching of paper and
the growing use of bio-fuels to power
paper mills.
The end result is that printers have
become what Phil termed ‘accidental
environmentalists’, becoming greener
by default through the adoption of
new technology.
Indeed, if 1990, the Kyoto
Agreement base year for CO2
emissions, is taken as a starting point,
then, according to Phil, the printing
industry in 2007 is 97% less damaging
to the environment compared to then.
Moreover, this compares very well
with competing media such as
televisions which have actually
become more energy inefficient with
newer technology such as plasma
screens compared to CRT technology.
For instance, today, a television
commercial played on 106cm plasma
display is equal in CO2 emissions to
one copy of a 16-page paper catalogue.
How does printing compare?
Then... in 1990
• Graphic arts film
• Energy wasteful UV plate exposure
• Mineral oil-based inks
• 1 hour make-ready
• Chlorine bleaching (Dioxin)
• Manual press wash-ups
• Petroleum-based solvents
• Chemical-proofing systems
Now... in 2007
• Silver-less imaging
• CTP, chemistry-free, very low water consumption
• Vegetable oil-based inks
• 15 minute make-ready
• TFC or EFC (no Dioxin)
• Auto wash systems – more efficient
• Water-based ‘solvent’ systems
• Remote digital proofing
A NEW fountain solution filtration
system introduced by LithoTech
International can save printers more
than $30,000 a year in a typical
scenario, according to the company.
The LT IQ UV filtration system
(above), which has undergone trials at
the North Richmond print site, was
introduced at SWUG by Tim Roberts
and Steve Terry from LithoTech
LithoTech International has a
background in consumables, primarily
for the sheetfed market, and over the
years has developed its own filtration
systems, firstly for sheetfed presses and
more recently for the web market.
“We’ve come up with what we
consider to be a good system that
works and is cost-effective. It’s
something you can do about the
environment now,” said Tim.
The Australian-made LT IQ system
uses both a membrane filtration of
variable micron size and UV
sterilisation to treat contaminated
fountain solution so that it can be reused on press.
Instead of dumping the fountain
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solution every few days, printers who
use filtration can re-use the same
solution continuously for a period of
several months.
At North Richmond, for instance,
the dampening system was not flushed
for three months while using the
filtration system and the only
consumable used was a replacement
filter every month costing about $65.
Other benefits of filtration include
less downtime and loss of production
due to dumping of fount and flushing
of the dampening system, reduced cost
of waste disposal of used solution,
better performance on press and
reduced press maintenance due to less
contamination, and a reduced
environmental impact due to less
chemical waste and lower water usage.
According to Steve, the LT IQ
system is easy to install and use,
requires only a few inexpensive
consumables, and controls both
particle and biological contamination
without affecting the temperature of
the fountain solution.
Based on a typical scenario of a press
using 160 litres of fountain solution
which takes two hours a week to
replace, LithoTech calculates that
using the LT IQ system will save the
print site $30,485 per year including
the amortisation of the filtration unit
over 18 months.
A typical price for the LT IQ unit is
$10,500. For more information see
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SWUG May 2010
The best single width newspapers of 2010
IFTEEN sites across Australia and New
Zealand took part in the 2010 SWUG
newspaper competition with the total
number of entries comparable to last year’s event.
As in previous years, the overall standard was high
and it took a solid day and a half’s work to analyse
the entries, score them and distil the winners.
Having said that, the winning scores (mid 70s)
in the newspaper categories, 1 and 2, were lower
than last year’s record peak (mid 80s). At the same
time, scores in the commercial category, 3, were
again very high as per 2009. This probably reflects
the higher quality papers used in this category
permitting high quality reproduction.
There was not one particular reason why entries
did not score as well as last year but rather an
accumulation of little things like marking of
covers, imperfect folds, creases, pin tears, quality
of photographic reproduction and even noticeable
tears in some pages. These flaws result in loss of
points, the expectation being that we won’t see
entries with obvious imperfections.
Print quality is generally of a high standard with
few instances of background scum or catch up,
very little set off in spite of plenty of colour being
carried (although where it did occur it certainly
stuck out like the proverbial) and few general print
flaws. There were still a few hickies in solids but
not as prominent as last year. The only print
properties to achieve a perfect 10 score related to
set off and scumming/tinting. Hasn’t control of
ink/water balance in lithography come a long
way! A testament to efforts of all concerned:
printers, press manufacturers and the ink and
fountain solution suppliers.
Another aspect in the newspaper categories that
we felt needs diligence is photographic
reproduction. We felt the quality was mixed in this
aspect - some very crisp and sharp, others
somewhat ‘muddy’ and unbalanced - and this
applies to both stochastic and conventional
screened entries. The difference between the
reproductions of high clarity and the rest appears
Best four colour newspaper
Highly Commended
Shepparton News
Newsprinters (Goss Community)
Blue Mountains Gazette
RPP North Richmond (Uniset 70)
Winner – Coates Australia Shield
Illawarra Mercury
RPP North Richmond (Uniset 70)
Best coldset commercial publication
Highly Commended
Kambos Ultimate Kitchen
RPP Mandurah (Uniset 75)
Kate Sylvester
Horton Media NZ (Goss Community)
Winner – Flint Ink Shield
NZ Aviation
Horton Media NZ (Goss Community)
to be principally to do with the amount of colour
carried, a little too much in some cases. At the
other end of the ink film weight range, solids are
very good overall, generally with even density and
consistency from page to page and again with few
printed flaws, indicating that printing blankets are
being kept in good nick.
With regard to category 3, commercial quality
of reproduction is generally at a very high level
(mainly stochastic).
More positive than negative
In the main, the positive attributes of this year’s
entries far outweigh any negatives. Well done to all
participants. There are a few comments in relation
to presentation of the publications that we
thought worth mentioning:
1. Colour of newsprint: we commented in the
2009 judges’ report on publications that used a
mix of newsprints of different colour (grey-ish to
traditional creamy look) in the one book, which is
not a good look. There is far less of this in evidence
this year.
2. Print through: this is more noticeable
generally with this year’s entries. Again, this does
not enhance the appearance of the book and
indeed makes the judges’ job harder and more
time-consuming, trying to discern what the
unsightly marks are. However, no one was
penalised for this aspect.
3. Plate edge marks on cover pages: perhaps a
fact of life still but can be unsightly. Entries in the
commercial category have got round this by
trimming, also removing pin marks and uneven
We put these up for consideration as they do
not occur in alternative media competing with
print for advertising revenue.
Thanks for your attention and participation in
2010. Congratulations to the winners.
Keep up the good work and keep the entries
coming in.
Gordon Cole and Wayne Johnstone
Best overall print quality
Highly Commended
The Chronicle
APN Toowoomba (Manugraph)
Independent Express
RPP Mandurah (Uniset 75)
Winner – Art Roller Shield
Hawkesbury Gazette
RPP North Richmond (Uniset 70)
SWUG May 2010
Have your say...
The engineers’ session gives delegates the opportunity to raise any issues about their
newspaper production and receive feedback from other users and suppliers.
AS USUAL, the Q&A forum for
delegates was split into two groups for
single and double circumference users.
Single width, single circumference
The moderator was Geoff Austin and
the expert panel comprised Stuart
Chapple, Mal Morris, Bob Bradford,
Ian Jaques and Peter Tomazic. After a
discussion about the issues raised in
2009 and their resolution or not, there
was a short Q&A session with David
Zagami and Ryan White from East
Gippsland Newspapers regarding their
UV printing installation (see p6).
Issues raised from the floor this year
Q: Tamworth has been experiencing
tearing at the top of the page when it
attempts to run more than 32 pages. Is
this normal?
A: No. It’s likely to be a tuck timing
issue. Either the blade is closing a little
too early or the tucker blade is set too
far back. Look at the tuck timing and
also how well the blade is sitting
against the backing piece - sometimes
the blade can get pushed out of
Q: Bundaberg has problems with the
splicer tape on two reelstands out of
Faster and
More CostEfficien
five, can’t seem to get it to stick.
They’re flying pasters on a Manugraph
coming off on one side only.
A: It could be a tape problem as they
do change but if it’s only occurring on
two pasters then it’s more likely to be
something to do with differences in
reelstand tension.
Q: Murray Bridge has intermittent
creasing on two towers. Have installed
a spreader roller but no good - any
suggestions of different rollers to use?
A: Try using a normal roller with a
spiral groove ground into it - it’s been
used before and is a better design than
a banana roller. A spreader roller is
only a band aid solution though, good
for managing variability in stock but if
the creasing has been happening on
and off for a while it’s more likely to be
something in the way the press is being
controlled. It could be a roller underneath the nip that’s not been cleaned
up properly - a bit of ink residue will
cause intermittent creasing. Other
suggestions include checking the air
pressure on the turner bar of the infeed
and adjusting the speed of the RTF.
Q: Tamworth is losing registration for
about 50 copies after a splice.
A: Look at your tension. Somewhere
within the tension control at the reel
stand, it’s not being adequately
controlled. Expect to lose one or two
copies over a splice, but if you’re losing
50 copies, the festoon is not taking up
the slack quickly enough or the speed
up of the splice reel is over-feeding.
Check the magnetic brakes too, get the
disc cleaned up, also the accelerator
roller which might be old and glazed.
Use a rubber rejuvenator on the roller
to give it more grip. Get the manufacturer to check out the reelstands
and see what they can find - the
reelstands have been moved from
Wagga Wagga and may not have been
looked at in the process.
Q: Bundaberg is experiencing a loss of
tension on tower 2: as the web comes
off the blanket it sags and the only way
to get it tight is to slow down and take
the impression off.
A: There’s something wrong in the
folder not pulling the webs out. It’s
possible to adjust the tension on the
slack web to tighten it up but also need
to look at the folder because that’s
where you pull from. Need to look at
the tension balance of the whole press.
Q: Mackay has slight slurring in the
cyan, have checked everything and
can’t seem to work it out.
A: Check the timing belts from one
unit to another as well as the motor on
the registration. Press has already been
checked out including running single
The swdc expert panel: (l-r) James Johnstone, Kersten Froetscher,
Jason Ryder, Peter de Rijke, N L Chin, Jean Claude Nedelec and
Anthony Payne (standing).
colours so very hard to pinpoint. It had
a missing roller on the bottom nip and
adding that has made a difference but
it’s still there – only very minor slurring
but irritating.
Q: Has anybody fitted a segmented
duct blade to a Goss Community and,
if so, how successful have they been?
A: Fantastic. They’re really good –
they give a bit more control, no doubt
about it.
Single width, double circumference
In the chair for this Q&A session was
Anthony Payne, Fairfax Media, while
the panel comprised Peter de Rijke,
Froetscher, manroland Plamag, Jean
Claude Nedelec, Goss, N L Chin,
KBA, Jason Ryder from Ormiston and
James Johnstone from Canberra.
Issues from 2009 were discussed,
the only major outstanding one being
the problem of web breaks on
fractionals which seems to be specific
to The Age and may be related to
tension settings.
Discussion then related to the
following topics.
Metal backed blankets
There was much discussion about the
problem of metal-backed blankets,
currently being used at Ormiston,
Yandina and The Border Mail.
Mark Dibble from Ormiston noted
that as soon as they run anything under
a full web, it is a disaster. They have
three brands on at present and they are
all performing poorly.
Frank O’Grady agreed that while the
blankets have been around for years,
they’ve not got any better.
Problems appear to be related to
issues of heat build-up and the poor
run length. Speed is also an issue with
plate ‘bounce’ over the gap.
Suppliers agreed that there are
problems and that the technology is
still in development. Chuck Ramsay
pointed out that run lengths have
increased in the US and are now up to
50 million.
Frank O’Grady said it was possible
to get up to 30 million running full
webs but on half webs it can be as low
as two million before getting fan-in.
The problem seems to be caused by
blanket-to-blanket friction when running half webs and there seems to be
no way to avoid heat build-up when
running at speed. Lubrication doesn’t
help either. Heat build-up on halfwebs can also occur with conventional
blankets but seems to be more of a
problem with metal-backed.
Converting back to conventional
blankets is possible but very expensive
so the only solution for the moment is
to wait for blanket manufacturers to
come up with an answer.
Plate wear
Several sites complained of excessive
plate wear especially when running 52
or 55gsm stock. The maximum run
lengths vary from 30,000 to 160,000
copies. (This issue was also raised in
the swsc engineers’ forum regarding
52gsm Norstar).
The issue seems to be the filler used
on the paper to give extra opacity. Clay
is abrasive and will cause wear. Norske
Skog is currently working to reduce the
abrasiveness of the paper.
It is possible to change the filler but
there are cost considerations too - to
achieve the same brightness would
cost more.
Peter Hook from Kodak suggested
collecting data from sites currently
experiencing the problem to start
working on a solution.
Graham Wallace from The Age said
they have been getting some corrosion
around the turbos. They have been
using Eurofount N since day one but
the corrosion is pretty poor. Using tap
water, not RO water.
Jason Ryder said the bottom rollers
in every tower have either corrosion or
a build-up where the chrome is no
longer chromed. They cannot get it off.
Up through the tower is not so bad, but
is found at the bottom of every one.
Anthony Payne said Newcastle also
had cylinder corrosion. The issue is
under discussion with manroland at
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The expert panel at the single width, single circumference engineers’ session: (l-r) Stuart Chapple, Mal
Morris, Bob Bradford, Ian Jaques and Peter Tomazic, with moderator Geoff Austin (standing).
SWUG May 2010
Plate lines what can
be done?
THE issue of plate line marking is a recurring one
at SWUG and one which, over several years, has
failed to deliver a satisfactory solution.
Rob Mollee from Kodak reported back on the
latest research being carried out by plate
manufacturers into the problem and what can be
done to fix it.
According to Rob, the problem is caused by the
width of the trimmed page being wider than the
plates so that as ink builds up along the edge of the
plate it is then transferred to the printed page
causing a line down the edge.
It is always likely to happen, said Rob, and it can
happen at any time, on and off.
Similarly, this is not a problem that is exclusive
to SWUG members but has been encountered at
sites throughout the world and with plates and
presses from all manufacturers.
It is also not true, said Rob, that this is a
problem that has come about with the spread of
digital plates and which didn’t occur with the old
analogue plates.
“It has always been around while you’ve had
that plate and paper configuration,” he said.
In fact, current plate manufacturing tolerances
with CTP plates are probably tighter now than
they have ever been, said Rob.
Likewise, while the problem was always there
even with predominantly mono work, the issue
has gained a lot more attention in recent years due
to the growing use of colour resulting in the effect
becoming more noticeable.
THE “Perfect Press” concept, a self-auditing
program that has been well-received in the US,
was outlined by Chuck Ramsay from Chicago.
The idea is to improve quality and reduce
waste while making your preventative maintenance cycles more efficient and effective. There
are two methods that can be used.
Creating the
perfect press
Method #1
This method involves pulling papers until sellable
copies and recording what was wrong with the
pre-sale copies in order to audit the overall
performance of the press.
1. Pull two samples every 100 copies on press
until sellable copy is achieved.
2. Follow this format for three or four consecutive
runs to build a library of start-ups.
3. Review these papers and arrange them into a
site-specific layout form to track the errors (eg
spray bars, roller settings, registration issues,
compensation etc).
4. Record the errors with documentation,
working backwards from the first sold copy.
5. Distribute the report to the maintenance crew
to focus on these areas along with their normal
scheduled preventative maintenance cycles.
6. Don’t feel you have to record or correct all
errors in one pass - this is an ongoing process.
Work to resolve as many of these errors as you
can while keeping up with your regular
production schedules.
Method #2
This method will set up the “Perfect Press” in a
shorter timeframe. This procedure involves
dedicating a press to a tower-by-tower audit with
a test form. This method is best used by crews
setting up new pressrooms or for recommissioning presses.
1. Take two towers or press leads at a time and
work on all aspects of the equipment (rollers,
blankets, spray bars etc) and bring each element
back into specification. Make only mechanical
adjustments with a set standard for presets.
2. Pull copies at 150 to 200, then shut down and
make necessary adjustments from the errors
3. Restart to check the adjustment outcome.
Repeat this process of 150 to 200 copies until the
“Perfect” towers have been achieved.
4. Move on to the next set of towers and so on
until the entire press has been audited and
5. This type of audit would be especially
beneficial on a press dedicated to the IFRA
contest or for establishing benchmark standards
for the room.
So can the problem be eradicated?
Unlikely, taking into account all the
variables that require absolute control
and perfection.
Printers too have been striving to improve the
quality of their output and advertisers have started
scrutinising the print quality more closely.
Suggestions that the problem is caused by
variations in plate manufacture and quality are
incorrect due to the tight tolerances and
standardised production methods of all plate
Plate production lines use basically the same
processes for all manufacturers and plate types, and
there is little that can be done in the manufacturing
process to alleviate the problem, said Rob.
European studies
Studies carried out in Europe have confirmed that
the problem is found with tabloid plates where the
trimmed sheet is wider than the plate.
The problem has been seen with a range of
plate types and suppliers, press types, inks,
blankets, and different press conditions such as
the stock and the amount of colour being printed.
Moreover, there appears to be no noticeable
difference between the edges of the plate where it
has been trimmed and the milled coil edges – both
produce line edging to various degrees said Rob.
Every print run will feature a mix of factorytrimmed and milled plates edges but the
appearance of plates lines does not correlate to the
type of edge, he said.
This suggests there is not one specific cause of
the problem other than the plate size in relation to
the printed page.
Changing the size of the plate to suit individual
users is not feasible because plates are made from
standard master coil widths to maximise productivity, and minimise waste/cost.
So can the problem be eradicated? Unlikely,
taking into account all the variables that require
absolute control and perfection, but definitely if
the page trim is smaller than the plate width.
Bill Shortland from Canberra pointed out that
using a deletion pen on the edge of the plate will
solve the problem and it was suggested that
perhaps the plate manufacturers should supply a
box of deletion pens to their customers. Using
panorama plates will also solve the problem.
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SWUG May 2010
HE host site for this year’s
SWUG conference highlighted
a clever mix of the old and the
new in its construction - and is a
textbook case in how to rebuild an
existing press.
Anthony Payne, general manager at
Fairfax Media for printing and
distribution in Northern NSW and
Queensland, outlined how the newlybuilt site at Tamworth had been
constructed over the past couple of
years, including rescuing an old press
that had fallen on hard times.
Prior to its move to a new greenfield
location, the Tamworth print site was
home to one of the more unusual
single width presses in the country, a
Solna RP36 comprising 10 mono units
and a folder.
This press was installed in 1997
having been bought second-hand from
New Zealand and was approximately
25-30 years old. It had a top speed of
19,000cph and could produce only 16
pages of full colour.
Rather than replace the old with
something new, it was decided to build
a six tower Goss Community press by
relocating towers from several other
sites around the country.
Five print towers were relocated
from Wagga Wagga and another from
Warrnambool while one folder came
from Wagga Wagga and the other
came from Nowra. The reelstands also
came from Wagga Wagga.
The print tower motorisation was
taken off presses at Ormiston and
Warrnambool and the entire pressline
was given a new drive system from
Safety was a major consideration
with the re-built pressline so it was also
fitted with a new guarding package
from Goss Shanghai.
Prior to installation, a safety team
carried out a full risk assessment of the
1985 - 2010
The roll call of sites for the
SWUG conference since 1985.
The Gold Coast Bulletin,
The Gold Coast Bulletin,
Messenger Press, South Australia
Manly Daily, New South Wales
The Goss Community press in action at Tamworth and (inset) its condition before being cleaned.
Tamworth as good as new
Leader Newspapers, Victoria
Rural Press North Richmond,
New South Wales
press and, as a result, a range of safety
features and guards were fitted to the
press to bring it up to standard.
“It’s probably the only older style
Goss Community presses that is rated
to Cat 3 safety standard,” said
Anthony. “We think it’s very safe but
we’re still doing audits on it and are
starting to put additional guarding on
the reelstands.”
As Anthony showed, the original
towers from Wagga Wagga were in
very poor condition indeed prior to
being refurbished and it took a team of
cleaners a week to scrape it clean,
removing more than 400 kilos of ink
off the side frames and cylinders.
Once it had been cleaned up, the
press was relocated to the new
greenfield site on the outskirts of
Tamworth where it began operating
again in May 2009.
One very distinctive feature of the
new press is that all the guards and
safety interlocks have been painted
yellow which makes it very easy to see
what has been added.
As part of the move, the site has also
installed two Kodak CTP lines,
replacing the old system that involved
outputting film at the Northern Daily
Leader offices and then transporting
the plates across town by taxi.
In the mailroom, a second-hand
Müller Martini Alphaliner from
Ormiston was also installed.
Canweb, ACT
Mackay Mercury, Queensland
Launceston Examiner, Tasmania
Rural Press North Richmond,
New South Wales
Queensland Times, Ipswich,
Torch Newspapers, Bankstown,
New South Wales
The Gold Coast Bulletin,
Bendigo Advertiser, Victoria
Launceston Examiner, Tasmania
Fairfax Regional Printers, Newcastle,
New South Wales
Sunshine Coast Daily,
Maroochydore, Queensland
The new Tamworth
press centre with
reelstands from Wagga
Wagga (1), a re-built
tower showing yellow
safety guards (2), one
of the old Solna units
(3), the Kodak CTP
lines (4), and new press
consoles (5).
Daily Advertiser, Wagga Wagga,
New South Wales
The Gold Coast Bulletin,
The Ballarat Courier, Victoria
Murray Valley Standard,
South Australia
Sunshine Coast Daily, Yandina,
Norske Skog mill/Border Mail, Albury,
New South Wales
Northern Daily Leader, Tamworth,
New South Wales
SWUG May 2010
Getting all the
facts on paper
The current push to be seen
to be ‘green’ has generated
a number of negative myths
and fallacies surrounding
paper usage, as Greg
Barrett, account director
with Norske Skog, outlined.
GREG’S presentation to the SWUG
conference sought to dispel some of
the misconceptions about the
production and consumption of paper
and redress the balance between
printed and electronic media.
For instance, did you know that 20%
less CO2 is used by a person reading a
daily printed newspaper compared to a
person reading web-based news for 30
minutes a day?
Rather than being an industry that
wastes water, chops down trees and
produces tonnes of CO2 emissions,
paper manufacturing – and the
newsprint sector in particular - is one
of the most sustainable and environmentally responsible manufacturing
industries currently operating.
Backing up the presentation by
Lillias Bovell of PNEB, Greg reiterated
what many consumers don’t realise,
that newsprint is not made from
chopping down virgin forests but
rather from ‘rubbish’.
“A few of the printers in the room
might agree with that but we would
argue that it is good quality rubbish,
but rubbish nonetheless,” joked Greg.
“Waste is another word for it,
The point is that Norske Skog does
not clear-fell native forests in order to
make newsprint; all the new wood
fibre used in the manufacture of
newsprint (about 85% of the total fibre
used) comes from forest waste and offcuts from the timber industry.
Examples of forest waste include the
thinnings from managed plantations,
storm-damaged trees and logs salvaged
from bush fire areas.
Norske also takes logs that are not
suitable for the timber industry due to
damage or not being straight, and also
retrieves by-products from saw milling
such as off-cuts and flitches.
None of this wood comes from the
felling of native forests, all of it comes
from sustainably-managed plantation
forests, 60% of which are certified and
“We’ve been driving that certification,” said Greg. “Forests are
indeed a crop, albeit a long-term one.
They’re grown, they’re harvested and
re-grown again.”
All three of Norske Skog’s
Australian mills now have Chain of
Custody which means that each piece
Only waste wood from managed forest plantations is used by
Norske Skog to make newsprint.
of timber used by the mills can be
tracked back to its source, ensuring
that all the wood used comes from
sustainably-managed forests.
Last year, Norske completed a $50
million project at the Boyer mill in
Tasmania to end the use of eucalypt
fibre in its pulp and now uses only
plantation grown softwood timber.
This upgrade to the mill has had
other environmental benefits as well
including a 50% reduction in the use of
chemicals, a 50% reduction in organic
load, 55% less waste going to landfill
and a 22% reduction in effluent flow.
In another environmental initiative,
the Albury mill has also received
approval for a feasibility study into
establishing a gas-fired biomass boiler
which will use the burning of wood
waste to generate electricity for the
The burnt wood waste will produce
heat to generate steam that will drive a
turbine to generate electricity while
the steam will also be used in the
paper-making process.
The generator has the potential to
generate up to half the mill’s electricity
requirements and reduce its carbon
footprint by a third.
Recycling part of the way
Recycled paper also plays an important
role in newsprint production and, in
this respect, Australia leads the world.
Norske Skog itself is a major user of
recovered paper globally although it
continues to use fresh wood fibre as
well because a completely ‘closed loop’
recycling system is not sustainable.
Where recovered paper is not used
to make fresh newsprint, it can be used
in the manufacture of other paper
products or exported to countries
where there is a shortage of recycled
Armed with this knowledge, paper
users such as printers can redress the
balance with electronic media and
counter some of the myths perpetuated about paper through
ignorance and misinformation.
For example, electronic equipment
itself requires a lot of energy to make,
many components cannot be recycled
and the recycling rates are very low,
resulting in vast quantities of
equipment ending up as toxic waste.
“There are up to 30 to 40 million
PCs that have to be disposed of each
year,” said Greg.
Even sending and opening a
document on screen consumes energy,
particularly if it is read numerous
times, whereas no energy is used to
read a printed page, only to produce it.
As a result, Greg suggested that
instead of the usual note at the end of
emails with the message ‘Please
consider the environment before
printing this email’, paper advocates
should adopt a different form of words,
Think before you email! Printing and
sharing this newsletter uses less energy
and the paper can be recycled. Help the
environment and only forward this email
if you really have to.
Print vs electronic – get the facts
• Printing a 700 page book on paper creates around 80 grams of CO2
emissions; for each hour the same document is read online produces at least
220 grams of CO2.
• A person reading a daily printed newspaper uses 20% less CO2 compared to
a person reading a web-based newspaper for 30 minutes a day.
• On average it takes 500 kilowatt-hours of electricity to produce 200kg of
paper, the typical amount of paper each person consumes annually. That’s
the equivalent to powering one computer continuously for five months.
• Computers left idle overnight in the US produce the same amount of CO2 as
four million cars on the road.
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SWUG May 2010
Indian experience
helps ACP to grow
ITH six print sites spread
over the North and South
Islands of New Zealand,
APN Print is one of the biggest web
printers in the country, producing the
largest circulation daily newspaper,
The New Zealand Herald.
Dan Blackbourn, APN Print general
manager, gave the SWUG conference
an overview of the company’s
operations including initiatives to
increase productivity and modernise
the culture of the workplace.
Dan’s own background in newspapers includes two years of hot metal
typography as an apprentice with the
former INL group in Wellington
which published The Dominion and
The Evening Post.
That was followed by a stint in
Australia working for the Leader group
in Melbourne at Blackburn (“I thought
since my name’s Blackbourn it can’t be
a bad place to work.”) before returning
to Wellington where he became
prepress manager and then operations
manager overseeing the merger of the
two titles to create The Dominion Post.
When APN decided to split its print
and publishing operations, Dan took
on the role of general manager of
operations for regional sites with a
brief to come up with a new brand for
APN Print. In 2007, he was given the
task of looking after the main Ellerslie
site in Auckland as well.
Today, APN Print has a total of 350
staff spread over six sites including one
sheetfed site. The web presses are a
mix of Goss machines including the
double width HT70 press at Ellerslie.
Total paper tonnage for the sites
was nearly 36,000 in 2009 (a mix of
Norske Skog and Oceanic split
50/50), down from 45,766 in 2008 but
expected to increase this year.
Other consumables include Agfa
N91V plates (soon to be trialling the
chemistry-free N92-VCF), Day International blankets and DIC inks.
In prepress, the company runs a mix
of Fujifilm (Luxel) and Agfa (Polaris/
Advantage) CTP units while the
mailrooms comprise equipment from
Ferag, Müller Martini and Thorstead.
New work practices
The past couple of years have seen
various changes being implemented
throughout the company, particularly
at Ellerslie where new work practices
Kiwi cousins: Raja Chakrabarti and Dan Blackbourn at SWUG.
APN builds new
brand in NZ
have seen a number of employees
taking redundancy.
When Dan first took on
responsibility for Ellerslie, the
collective agreement stipulated that no
publications could be printed after
running The New Zealand Herald.
That’s now changed and the press is
used full-time for running the Herald,
pre-prints or commercial work.
APN Print in New Zealand
• Goss HT70 double width, double circumference, commissioned in
December 1994, 12 towers, 3 mono units, 21 splicers.
• 96 broadsheet pages, all four colour (collect) at 55,000cph or 112 pages
(inc mono) in one pass.
• 2-3 press capacity, four folders (3 sovereign, 1 jaw).
• Goss Community (coldset), 4 towers, 1 UOP, 3 mono units.
• 5 splicers (1 Jardis, 2 Enkel, 2 Ebway).
• 32 pages, 18 colour broadsheet.
• 1 SSC folder with quarter fold.
• Goss Community C150 (heatset), 2 towers - run as a separate press.
• 2 splicers (1 Martin, 1 Ebway).
• 8 pages broadsheet.
• 1 SSC folder with quarter fold.
• Goss Community, 3 towers (includes 1 DGM), 1 UOP, 2 mono units.
• 3 Enkel splicers and 2 manual reel stands.
• 24 pages, 14 colour broadsheet
• 1 SSC folder with quarter fold
• Goss Community, 5 towers including 2 DGM, 1 mono unit.
• 5 Jardis splicers.
• 24 pages, 20 colour broadsheet.
• 1 SSC folder with quarter fold.
• Goss Urbanite MK2, single width, double circumference, four two-high
• 16 pages, 16 colour.
• 1 Urbanite and 1 SSC folder with quarter fold.
“We’re getting a lot more productivity out of the site,” said Dan.
The site is currently upgrading its
Rockwell drives as part of a $6.5
million project to extend the life of the
press another 10-15 years.
Programs currently being run across
the group are targeting areas such as
waste, training, OH&S and colour.
The Ellerslie plant is currently
attempting to join the IFRA International Quality colour club, a global
award scheme for newspapers that
produce consistent quality colour.
“It’s more of a learning curve for us
than anything else but we’re actually
not doing too bad,” said Dan.
The sites are also looking to reduce
waste and are running a ‘make every
copy count’ program. Percentage
waste is currently sitting at 5.37% for
all sites against an internal target of
The company is working on its
environmental performance as well in
conjunction the EnviroSmart program
which has seen two of the sites win
Level 3 Gold certification with another
three gain silver.
Apprentices are a key area for APN
Print with one of its apprentices
winning the National Apprentice of
the Year award in 2008 and another
apprentice in the running for 2010.
The company aims to have new
apprentices on site every two years and
currently has six print, one fitter, and
four post-press apprentices.
A printers exchange program is
another important initiative which
sees the regional printers travel to
Ellerslie while the Auckland printers
spend time in the regions.
“The guys from the regions who
come up to Ellerslie have a great time
while the guys from Ellerslie who go to
the Communities have to work hard
because there are no bells and whistles
at the regionals,” said Dan.
At the same time, the program is
important in building relationships
between the various sites and ensuring
that expertise can be easily transferred
between sites to provide back-up.
Training is also crucial and the
company runs its own in-house
training programs offering leadership/
management training as well as
training in Word/Excel software for
print, maintenance and post-press
Dan is on the SWUG committee for
New Zealand which is holding its next
conference in October at Taupo.
“Anyone from Australia who wants
to come over is more than welcome,”
he added. “It’s good for the industry to
get together, there are no secrets, we’re
all doing the same thing.”
OVING from Mumbai to
Auckland, Raja Chakrabarti
has brought with him the
experience of working on one of the
biggest newspaper titles in the world.
Raja moved to Auckland from India
in 2002 and, having worked his way up
through the ranks, is now plant
manager of Auckland Community
Print (ACP), part of the Fairfax Media
Raja began his career in India
working for the Times of India, the
newspaper in the world with a print run
of 2.4 million copies from 14 print
centres every night.
There he spent two years working on
Coroset single width machines
(formerly made by Plamag, now part of
manroland) followed by four years on
Goss Metroliners, also finding time to
complete a Masters in Business
Management in 1994.
In 1997, he spent time in Germany
being trained on new Geoman towers
of which three were eventually
installed. Two of the towers ran full
colour pages while the other carried
four webs.
“The demand for colour wasn’t big
then but there was definitely a demand
for volume,” explained Raja.
Each night, the press produced close
to a million copies, printing two-up and
straight with an average hourly output
of nearly 110,000cph.
In 2002, Raja moved with his family
to Auckland where he started work at
ACP as a contract engineer, cleaning
maintaining folders. He became
assistant production manager in 2003,
then production manager in 2005.
In 2006 while printing the Sunday
Times, a massive wrap-up took out a
cylinder on one of the Y units of the
Uniman pressline. Told that he would
have to drop colour, Raja decided
instead to adopt a novel solution.
“I tried something that most people
would not even have heard of – we did
something that is called Dilitho where
you print directly from the plate with a
reverse-reading image.”
Re-routing the web so that it would
print one colour directly from the plate
using a reverse-imaged plate, Raja was
able to maintain full colour output for
the rest of the run.
“We went late to market but we
didn’t drop colour,” he said. “We were
running four full page ads, close to
$170,000 in advertising revenue that
we would have lost.”
In 2007 he became plant manager
and restructured the site’s operations
to create a flat management structure
comprising just four departments and
heads – print, publishing, engineering,
and administration including procurement and OH&S.
CTP was also introduced in 2007
with the installation of two Krause
platesetters that today average 3,500
plates per week.
Today, the plant produces nearly
two million copies per week for 50
different publications, many of which
are quite small in size, including
Chinese and Samoan newspapers.
“I’m yet to find my first Indian
customer but I’m working on it,”
said Raja.
More recently too, the company has
ventured into commercial printing and
has now grown its external commercial
revenue to 13.5% of total revenue.
“I’ve been quite lucky throughout
my career to have extremely supportive bosses which has enabled me to
achieve everything that I have,”
concluded Raja.
The Uniman press at Auckland
Community Print.
Auckland Community Print
• Six days a week operation, printing 1.9 million copies per week.
• Staff of 29 full-time employees across two shifts.
• 50 separate publications per week, printing for three internal
customer/publishers and 11 commercial publications (9 weekly, 1
fortnightly, 1 monthly) including Chinese and Samoan customers.
• 160 tonnes of paper per week on three types of stock – 42gsm, 52gsm
and 60gsm.
• Double width, double circumference press, comprising Uniman 4/2S
press installed in 1989 (4 Y units, 1 mono unit), 2:3:2 jaw folder, four MEG
reelstands, and Uniman 8 couple tower added in 1997 – manroland’s
first completely shaftless installation.
• Capacity: 32 broadsheet pages, 16 pages colour.
• Rated speed: 50,000cph running straight.
• Two Müller Martini Bi-Liner inserters, rated speed of 20,000cph,
capacity to insert four commercial products or pre-prints.
• Inserting 1.8 million preprints into 1.1 million copies per week.
• QUIPP twin track belt conveyer system and stackers.
• Müller Martini 2005 Bravo Plus stitcher-trimmer, rated speed of
12,000cph, 4 feeders, 1 cover feeder, three knife trimmer and stacker,
currently running 200,000 copies per week.
• Krause LS Jet platesetters (2 identical lines), Heights plate processors,
NELA optical punch benders, average of 3,500 single page width plates
per week.
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17/05/2010 10:40:09 AM
SWUG May 2010
Breaking down
gender barriers
Two of the working machines on show at Penrith - a 1925 Model 8 Linotype and Wharfedale flatbed press.
Preserving the craft of print
A dedicated band of
volunteers is helping to
preserve the history of
printing and keep alive
many of the traditions and
craft skills of the past.
STEPHEN Brique from the Penrith
Museum of Printing gave the SWUG
conference an insight into newspaper
production from days gone by and, in
particular, the letterpress process.
The museum was established largely
thanks to the efforts of Alan Connell, a
retired Linotype operator who worked
on many newspapers including the
Nepean Times and who, on his
retirement, decided to set up a
museum to preserve letterpress
equipment for future generations.
It took Alan 14 years to realise his
dream of having a working museum
for old machinery and, thanks to
grants from the Commonwealth
Government, it was finally opened in
2001 in a large shed at the showground
in Penrith, NSW.
Comprising equipment from the
Nepean Times that was donated to
Alan when it closed, as well as other
pieces from printers around Sydney
and NSW, the museum is set up to
resemble a working print shop from
the 1930s and 40s.
The purpose of the museum is to
“collect, operate, conserve and
machinery and equipment so as to
keep alive the history, knowledge and
skills of letterpress printing for present
and future generations.”
It features 23 fully-operational
letterpress machines including
Linotype typesetters, a Wharfedale
flatbed press from the 1880s, a
Vandercook test press, Ludlow type
caster, platens made by Heidelberg
and Chandler & Price, plus 85 fonts
in handset type and five fonts of
wooden type.
Open to visitors each Saturday, the
museum also hosts group tours from
local community organisations, giving
people the opportunity to learn about
how print has evolved.
As Stephen noted, many visitors are
surprised to see how complex the
process of letterpress printing is and
have little idea as to what is involved.
“They are truly amazed at the
antiquity of the machinery but also the
process of printing – it just doesn’t
enter their heads how these things that
we see and read and have used for
decades are actually organised and
how it happens.”
One of the more unusual groups to
visit the museum was a group of deaf
and blind people who, although
unable to see or hear the machinery
operate, were interested to learn about
the processes involved.
“They have very good tactile senses
and were given bits of type to touch
and feel, and had a brilliant time. It was
certainly unique for us.”
Another initiative of the museum
has been to set up typography classes
where people can come to learn about
the techniques of compositing and
metal typesetting.
According to Stephen, these classes
are proving to be very popular with
graphic designers and artists keen to
discover the art of hand typesetting
and how it relates to modern design
and typography.
“There’s a lot of interest in
letterpress and it is an expanding area,”
said Stephen. “The graphic arts
students all want to get into it, they
want to buy new presses. Prices for
presses on eBay are going sky-high.”
In the future, the museum is looking
to increase the number of volunteers
involved in running the museum as
well as expand its typography courses
and introduce a hand press and platen
course to teach basic press operation.
It also intends to introduce a
printing history program so that new
apprentices to the industry can learn
something about their heritage and
come to appreciate the history of the
industry of which they are a part.
For further information about the
activities of the Penrith Printing
Museum and how to get involved, go
...and SWUG helps out too
To assist the Penrith Museum of Printing in its work of keeping alive
the old craft traditions of newspaper printing, the SWUG committee
presented a cheque for $2,000 to Stephen Brique (left).
N her role as spare parts manager
for manroland Australasia, Erin
Mercieca has shown that gender is
no barrier to success in the maledominated printing industry - and she
would like to see more women follow
her lead.
Speaking at the SWUG conference
for the first time, Erin outlined the
journey that has brought her to her
current role at manroland and some of
the challenges faced along the way.
Her early working background was
in customer service for an electrical
wholesaler, a role which gave her
experience in dealing with predominantly male customers, often with
complex technical requirements – and
where the supply of an incorrect part
could have potentially serious
“I had to learn my product range,”
she recalled. “It took time to learn the
information that I needed to know but
I did learn it, and in time I built strong
relationships with my customers and
still keep in touch with some of them
From there, Erin moved to the
former industry supplier, Intergrafica
Print & Pack (IPP), working in the
spare parts department. At the time,
IPP was the agent for manroland
presses in the region.
In 2007, Erin took over as manager
of the spare parts department, a role
she kept when, last year, manroland
announced that it was setting up direct
representation in the region.
Since joining manroland in June
2009, Erin has been given greater
responsibility for budgets, managing
costs and building relationships with
suppliers and customers.
One of the biggest challenges though
has been to build her own internal team
and motivate them to give as much to
the job as she does.
“I’ve found that building a strong
team is not as easy as it first seems,” she
Last year, Erin attended her first
GAMAA workshop and this year was
awarded a full scholarship to undertake
further study. Already, the training has
proved valuable in learning how to
interact with other members of staff
and to see challenges from their point
of view.
“I’ve been lucky enough to have two
very knowledgeable mentors in the
industry to guide me and help me grow
in my role today,” she commented.
“Between the two of them, Graham
Wickham and Graham Trickey, I find a
nice medium where they tend to
balance each other out.”
In her own role, Erin said she enjoys
being challenged and owes her success
to always being prepared to see herself
as equal to everybody else, no matter
what job title they may hold. She would
also like to see more women taking up
similar roles in the industry.
“Personally I would like to see more
strong, dedicated and career-minded
women in the printing world, something to keep men on their toes.”
Hands-free photo fixing
SOFTWARE that enhances digital
photographs and corrects colour
automatically is faster and more costeffective than manual correction, said
Glen St Leon (pictured) of Fairfax
Media who reported on that company’s
roll-out of Colour Factory and QEnhancer software.
The flood of images from digital
cameras, both professional and
amateur, as well as the availability of
image libraries has placed great
pressure on newspapers in recent years
to find more effective ways to manage
their picture workflow.
Over the years, Fairfax has
conducted its own trials into the
manual correction of digital photographs and has found that, given the
same files to fix up, even experienced
photo re-touchers will produce varying
results to the degree that no two
printed results are the same.
In comparison, automated systems
are quicker, more consistent in their
results and far more productive.
Having evaluated various systems
over a two-year period, Fairfax began to
roll-out Colour Factory server software
in 2004 and complemented it with QEnhancer RGB enhancement software
in 2007. In 2009, the workflow was
integrated with existing Pongrass and
Cyber editorial production systems for
direct processing via the page using
XML tags.
The Colour Factory and Q-Enhancer
system is now the main image enhancement engine in the company’s
production system, handling all tasks
such as image cropping, sizing, image
enhancement, quality control and
preparation for archiving.
Fairfax Media has two server clusters
each in Sydney and Melbourne and
two for agricultural and regional
publications. These are identical
servers offering built-in redundancy in
case of failure although, to date, none
of the servers has gone down.
When comparing the automated
system with manual correction, Fairfax
found that it took 10-15 mins for an
operator to find an image, retrieve,
open, read the order details, edit, save,
export and import into a page. The
automated system does it in 80 seconds.
Currently the system manages about
42,000 images per week, 58% of which
are editorial pictures or 24,360 images.
Based on a time saving of eight minutes
per picture, that’s 3,654 hours saved per
week in image processing time.
Apart from the savings in time and
cost, the system enables just-in-time
publishing for key images such as front
page and sport photos, as well as better
quality results, more consistency on the
press and less IT support required for
local desktops.
The examples shown by Glen in
tackling problem areas such as
brightness and contrast, shadow
enhancement as well as local sharpness
enhancement and noise reduction
clearly demonstrated the power of the
system in improving the quality of
digital images.
SWUG May 2010
SWUG debut for direct manroland
HIS year’s SWUG conference marked the
debut of the new manroland company
since it set up direct representation in the
region during 2009.
SWUG regular, John Ostler, was on-hand to
outline what the new arrangements mean for the
local newspaper industry.
In addition to Australia and New Zealand,
manroland has set up four new market
organisations in the southern hemisphere
(South-east Asia, Latin America North and
South, and South Africa) during 2009 with 12
new operational centres employing more than
170 staff in sales and service.
In Australia, the headquarters for the new
company are based in Sydney with regional
offices in Melbourne and Auckland. The
company currently employs 38 staff including 27
engaged in service activities.
and involves a lot more than simply bolting on a
UV lamp.
The system needs to be integrated into the
press’s control systems and requires a separate
power supply, fresh air and exhaust air ducting,
water cooling systems, a separate dampening
water supply and separate ink supply as well as
UV-compatible rollers, blankets and plates.
implemented include robotic plate handling and
automatic plate loading (APL) for three minute
plate change-overs on the entire pressline, APL
logistics for managing the supply of plates from
the plateroom to the towers, and workflow
control via printnet for managing production data
between the plateroom, pressroom and MIS.
Other modules currently being piloted include
closed-loop inline control systems for register,
tension, cut-off, density and temperature.
“Currently, they all operate as separate units,
the next thing is to close the loop so that each one
talks to each other, closing the loop for
automation,” said John.
Presently there are beta sites in Germany and
India using APL and robotic plate handling, and
the goal is to have the complete One Touch
automatic press operating by 2012.
One touch on the way
Two years after the concept was first introduced,
manroland is making progress in the
implementation of its One Touch fullyautomated newspaper production system.
The idea is to create a completely automated
pressline for managing start-ups, print runs and
Elements of the system that have been
UV on the rise
Looking at press technology, John gave an update
on UV printing at manroland web sites.
The first large-scale industrial site for UV web
printing is at the Herold newspaper in Vienna,
Austria, where a tower dedicated to UV output
has been running at a top speed of 45,000iph or
11.25 metres per second, a record speed for UV
web printing.
A second manroland installation is now at
Transmag in Canada where Eltex UV lamps have
been installed on two towers and where the goal is
likewise to achieve a running speed of 36,000 revs
per hour or a web speed of 11.25 metres per
According to John, there are currently three
main manufacturers of UV systems – Eltex and
IST Metz from Europe which concentrate more
on double width presses, and Prime UV from the
US which focuses on single width presses.
Each system uses a slightly different curing
method to dry the ink at high speed. The Eltex
Innocure system, for instance (pictured), uses
nitrogen gas in the same way as an air knife to
remove oxygen from the paper surface and
increase the efficiency of the lamps, making them
cooler and faster to operate.
In contrast, the IST system uses a shiny curved
metal surface to reflect the UV beams at varying
angles onto the substrate in order to spread the
curing area of the UV ink.
“Whether one is better than the other, I don’t
know, I think it’s too early to tell,” said John.
Installing a UV system on a tower requires a
number of different elements, explained John,
news in Chile
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to reduce ink usage, all part of the :Arkitex family.
John Ostler highlighted how the recent
earthquake in Chile had a dramatic effect on
two manroland web press sites at La Nation
and Quilicura.
The two sites include a Uniset 70
combination coldset/heatset pressline at
Quilicura as well as Cromoman and Rotoman
The earthquake struck in the early morning
while the presses were running and lasted
about four minutes, measuring 8.5 on the
Richter scale.
At Quilicura, the force of the earthquake was
sufficient to lift the press off its footings and
shift it sideways, as shown in this picture
where the 20 tonne dryer has been moved
about a metre out of alignment with the print
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SWUG May 2010
Turning environmental laggards into leaders
RE you a “rejecting” company
when it comes to environmental matters or are you on
the way to becoming a “sustaining
These are just two of the stages – at
opposite ends – on the continuum that
spans business responses to engaging
with ‘green’ issues, as outlined at the
SWUG conference by environmental
consultant Stephen Molino (pictured).
On the one hand, the “rejecting”
company, as the name suggests, rejects
all responsibility for managing its
environmental impacts, preferring to
simply focus on maximising its profits
at whatever cost.
Moving further along the scale,
there is the “non-responsive” company
which pays no attention to environmental matters out of ignorance or
lack of awareness rather than any
conscious decision to avoid its
In the past, the majority of
companies would have been in this
“non-responsive” grouping but, thanks
to the pressure of legislation and public
opinion, many have now shifted into
the next two groups, the “compliant”
and the “eco-efficient”.
The “compliant” are companies that
are aware of what they are required to
do by law and make an effort to avoid
any litigation or community backlash
by reacting to legislative requirements.
In contrast, the “eco-efficient”
companies, in addition to meeting
their legal requirements, recognise that
there is in fact a business benefit to
introducing more sustainable practices
in terms of reducing costs and
increasing efficiency. These companies
recognise that spending time and
money on environmental initiatives
may have a long-term pay-off for the
company in generating new sources of
income as well as cutting costs.
Moving to the far end of the scale are
“strategically proactive”; they make
sustainability an important part of
their company strategy because they
understand the benefits of appealing to
customers and staff with environmentally-friendly products and
business practices. In other words,
becoming more sustainable gives them
a competitive advantage.
“Twenty five years ago, when I first
started in this game, I would not have
heard anyone market their product by
saying ‘There will be less packaging
waste from this product that you’re
buying from us’,” said Stephen. “This is
part of the idea of strategic pro-activity.”
In this case, there is a strong
commitment to sustainability but it is
still motivated by corporate self-interest.
In contrast, the “sustaining corporation” is one which places environmental sustainability at the heart of
everything it does and which actively
strives to promote sustainable values,
not just to benefit the company but
because it really believes in those
Where are you?
Looking at an industry as whole, what
tends to happen, said Stephen, is that
there are a few companies that lead on
environmental issues and a few that lag
behind with the vast majority
somewhere in the middle, either
merely compliant or understanding
the need to become more eco-efficient.
Even that is a sign of how much
times have changed; 25 years ago, said
Stephen, the industry leaders were
those which simply recognised the
need to be compliant with the law.
“That was about as advanced as
organisations got with regards to
sustainability,” he said.
Today though, the leaders tend to
be strategically proactive while there
are a few sustaining corporations.
So where does your company fit
along this scale? Are you a laggard or a
Wherever they sit, there is a need
to push more companies towards
thinking strategically about the
environment, and this has been done
using a variety of ‘carrots and sticks’.
The ‘sticks’ are the legal requirements, both state and federal, which
force companies to be compliant and
act in a proper way.
These have now grown to more than
120 pieces of legislation that cover all
aspects of the environment, not just the
well-known ones targeting chemical
disposal or pollution but also laws
about noise, removal of vegetation and
protection of bio-diversity.
In NSW, the main piece of legislation covering air, noise, water and
waste pollution is the Protection of the
Environment Operations Act. This is
the most widely-used law to penalise
offenders for damage to the
There are three levels of offences
under this Act, the most serious of
which, Tier 1 offences, can attract
penalties of up to $5 million for
companies and $1 million and seven
years in jail for individuals.
“In NSW, we have had people jailed
under this legislation, also in WA
under similar legislation, so it does
happen,” said Stephen.
The ‘carrots’ come in the form of
cost-savings that can be made by
becoming more energy efficient and
using less hazardous materials.
Examples of this were given at the
conference, such as waterless printing
and processless plate production.
Carrots can also come in the form of
customers, such as organisations that
now specify that whatever they
purchase has to meet certain environmental criteria. Typically this might
involve having certain certifications
such as FSC and PEFC for paper,
meeting environmental management
standards such as ISO 14001, or
participating in printing industry
programs such as the Truly Green
certification run by GASAA.
While there are printing companies
which have shown that they are
strategically proactive in engaging with
these issues, none so far have shown
that they are a sustaining corporation,
said Stephen.
Who will be the first - and where are
you and your organisation?
Speed up your quarterfold
A MOBILE inline quarterfold system
was introduced by Andy Stephens as a
high speed alternative to a quarterfold
on the press.
The HQF-18 system from Lovaghy
Enterprises in Canada is designed to
handle copies coming off the press at
tabloid speed and add an quarterfold
on products up to 32 pages in size.
The system can also be integrated
with a separator that enables two or
three copy streams to be produced at
the same time while running at a top
speed of over 80,000 copies an hour. It
can also be used offline and with
integrated hopper feeders.
According to Andy, an in-line
stitcher will also shortly be added to
the system that will feed to an rotary
“It gives you the ability to turn a
30,000cph press into a 60,000 press or
90,000 press depending on type of
product that you have,” said Andy.
“It’s a nice, crisp quarterfold,” he
Smile, you’re at SWUG
Far left, Mike Horler and Laura Tither from Horton Media in New Zealand celebrated a big
night winning the Flint Ink shield for best coldset commercial publication; left, Sean Tait
was a worthy winner of the SWUG Scholarship Award, a $20,000 prize that will enable him
to travel overseas; below, the SWUG partners took time out to explore the Tamworth region
including a visit to the nearby Chaffey Dam; bottom right, Bill Kemp has had a long
association with SWUG and this year saw the family tradition continuing with Angie
Pearson, Bill’s daughter, organising the host site visit to the Northern Daily Leader.
Above left, Ricky Lillywhite from APN Print
Rockhampton was this year’s SWUG Apprentice of the
Year; above right, handwriting expert Malcolm McLeod
(left with Wim Maes) gave an entertaining and insightful
finale to the conference; right, SWUG President, Bob
Lockley demonstrates his umbrella handling skills while
making a presentation to Bill Kemp, left, to celebrate his
80th birthday.
SWUG May 2010
Family tradition keeps Mercury flying high
HE Bailey family name is
synonymous with Davies
Brothers and The Mercury, a
tradition that continues today with a
move to a new site and the installation
a new KBA pressline.
Wayne Bailey, production manager
at Davies Brothers, told the SWUG
conference about his family’s long
history with the company and its most
recent chapter which has seen several
News Ltd titles printed in Tasmania
for the first time.
Wayne himself began with Davies
Brothers as a compositor and spent the
first part of his career working as a
typesetter before making the shift to
digital systems, firstly as a systems
operator on mainframe computers and
then joining the desktop revolution.
In the process, Wayne became
prepress manager at Davies Brothers
and was instrumental in converting
many traditional compositors over to
desktop publishing.
“That was a wonderful time. I had
the opportunity to do some innovative
stuff with the advertising and prepress
departments,” he recalled. “We merged
the departments and eliminated all the
confusion that used to take place with
double handling. It worked really well,
and that was my baby.”
In 2002 Wayne became IT and
prepress manager and then, in 2006, he
took on his present role of production
Wayne’s father also worked for
Davies Brothers, having started out as
a proof-reader, as well as three of his
brothers, one of whom, Kev Bailey,
became the newspaper’s cartoonist.
His son is Tim Bailey who presents
the weather for Channel 10 in Sydney,
continuing the family’s involvement
with the media.
According to Wayne, the Bailey
Press technology has come a long way at Davies Brothers, from the old Hoe rotary press (left) to the new
KBA Comet pressline (right).
family has over 260 years of combined
service with Davies Brothers.
“It’s been a very good journey for
the whole family,” he commented.
Fantastic News
Davies Brothers itself was founded in
1854 by John Davies and The Mercury
appeared under its current title in 1860.
The newspaper remained familyowned until the 70s when News Ltd
became a major shareholder and
became solely owned by News in 1988.
Despite misgivings from some
employees about what the change of
ownership might mean, Wayne said
the outcome had been generally
“It’s been a fantastic company to
work for and it’s always been a
company that’s looked after its staff,”
he commented. “We thought we might
have lost that when News Ltd took
over but it’s still there, it’s still strong.”
The main publications produced
today are the six-day a week Mercury
and the Sunday Tasmanian as well as
Tasmanian Country, a weekly rural
paper with a run of about 17,000, and
The Gazette with 3,000 copies
distributed in the Derwent Valley
around Hobart.
In his time with the company,
Wayne has seen several press changes
having started work when a Hoe rotary
press was still running.
He was also unfortunate enough, as
he said himself, to inherit a Goss
Urbanite that was bought from Leader
newspapers back in 1993. Ironically,
Rex Gardner, the current managing
director, was at the Leader group at the
time and had been overjoyed to sell the
press to Hobart – only to be moved
there himself a few months later.
The press had eight mono units, two
tri-colour units and a folder – and was
prone to break down a lot, regularly
breaking its main shaft which would
then take six hours to change. Wayne
paid tribute to Shane Brooks at
Launceston for helping out in these
times of need.
“In Tasmania, Launceston and
Hobart don’t always get on but we’ve
shared that relationship, and we shared
it also with Harris Print who were
printing some of our products as well.”
Other products were also being outsourced such as the real estate guide
printed heatset by PMP in Victoria and
then shipped over each week.
New press at last
The need for a new press was glaring
and, in July 2007, approval was finally
given for a new print centre and
pressline. Construction began in
March 2008 and the new press was
commissioned in May 2009.
It comprises a KBA Comet single
width, double circumference press
with six 8-couple towers, KBA
reelstands at 90 degrees to the press,
two folders with single delivery, inline
stitching and quarterfold.
Ancillary systems include QuadTech
registration, Baldwin spray dampening
and Impact blanket washing, Planatol
gluing system, and Technotrans ink
In prepress, there are two Agfa
Polaris CTP lines while the mailroom has two Ferag RollSert drums,
RollStream insert lines, Jet Feeder
hoppers and trimming drum with
stackers, film wrappers and cross
The initial print run began with the
Mercury, running the usual 16 pages of
colour but, within days, it quickly went
to full colour on every page.
The Sunday Tasmanian was added
as well and then other products were
gradually pulled back from being
printed elsewhere.
Even the real estate guide was
printed coldset, stitched and trimmed,
and although there were some initial
reservations from clients, it has now
been widely accepted.
“It’s a fantastic product that we
produce,” said Wayne. “The whole
thing has enabled us to bring our own
products back in-house and take
control of our own printing.”
In August 2009, the press took on
work which had never before been
done in Tasmania, printing copies of
The Australian which had previously
been shipped in.
This was followed by production of
the Weekend Australian, including all
its supplements, and then the HeraldSun in September and the Sunday
Herald-Sun and supplements.
As Wayne pointed out, the new
print centre has resulted in some big
changes – and a massive growth in
capacity. Whereas previously only
eight jobs were printed on the Goss
press, the new site is now producing
41; the number of products has grown
from 380 to 950 a month.
Not surprisingly, the amount of
newsprint used has doubled, as has the
amount of black ink, while plate
throughput has risen from 400 to
2,500 a week.
At the same time, the number of
printers has been reduced from 14 to
10 although there are now two shifts
instead of one; more papers are being
produced with fewer staff.
“It’s been fantastic for the business,
it’s been a fantastic journey,” said
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SWUG May 2010
America’s incredible
shrinking newspapers
OES reducing the width
of the web make sense
for newspapers? Chuck
Ramsay (right) from chemical
suppliers Rycoline in Chicago
was a special guest speaker from
the USA where there has been a
trend over the past few years
towards reducing the standard
newspaper web width from 55
inches to 44 inches.
As Chuck explained, the rationale behind the
trend is to save costs without impacting
significantly on circulation. As far as the
appearance of the newspaper is concerned,
readers and advertisers seem to be happy with it
and, from a print perspective, the costs savings are
This was just one of recent trends highlighted
by Chuck in a detailed analysis of the US newspaper market that has been hit harder by the
global financial crisis than almost any other,
resulting in steep falls in circulation and many
titles closing down.
Currently, the US market has 1,422 newspapers
printed each day and 6,253 weeklies (2008/09
figures). About 48.8 million papers are printed
daily which is the same number as were printed
back in 1966. Back then though, the population
was 196 million whereas today it has risen to 305
million, highlighting the fall-off in readership.
In comparison, the largest newspaper producer,
China, prints 93.5 million daily papers while India
produces 78.8 million and Japan, which has the
largest circulation daily paper with 12 million
copies, produces a total of 70.4 million papers.
The largest circulation paper in the US is USA
Today with 2,528,437 copies sold, a figure which
puts it at 13th on the worldwide list of biggest
newspapers. The Wall Street Journal with
2,058,342 copies is second on the US list and
19th on a global scale.
By way of comparison, the 100th largest paper
in the US, the Spokesman Review, has a circulation
of 120,632 copies and the 200th largest has a
circulation of around 30,000.
Apart from the financial crisis, various factors
have influenced the falling circulations including
the growth of the internet and ‘right-sizing’ of the
industry as publishers removed vending machines
from the streets.
In the pressroom, the most common press type
is still Goss accounting for about 65% of the
market. The next largest single supplier is
manroland on 8% although, as Chuck pointed
out, over the past 10 years most new complete
press installations in the US have been from
European manufacturers.
Some of the large installations in recent years
have been from manroland including the Detroit
News with six Geoman presses and the big
Transcontinental plant in California with sixacross Colorman presses.
In terms of press chemistry, Chuck’s area of
interest, the US market runs primarily neutral
fountain solutions (71%) having evolved from
alkaline solutions, although mild acid solutions
have also grown with the introduction of new
press technology.
Looking back at the dominant trends over the
past 10 years, one of the biggest changes has been
the reduction in web widths. Back in the mid-90s,
the standard width was 55 inches (1400mm)
which then went down to 54 inches (1370mm).
“One inch was a big change,” said Chuck. “The
next step was about five years later to the 50 inch
(1270mm) reduction and that was the biggest
jump that we had made.”
The Cleveland Plain Dealer was the first to
launch it on the Monday after the Super Bowl,
perhaps hoping that nobody would notice it, said
Chuck. From then on, everybody else followed.
“Whatever the major players do in the US as far
as web width is concerned, that’s usually what
happens, the rest of the market changes to it as
well,” said Chuck.
Today, the web width is down to 44 inches
(1120mm), producing smaller, more readerfriendly newspapers with big cost savings in paper.
Other trends in the market today, apart from
the falling circulations and
smaller-size papers, include a
focus on lower cost consumables
to survive in the competitive
market, lower staffing ratios in
the pressroom, high demand for
more colour, widespread use of
CTP with violet plates in the
larger installations and thermal in
smaller ones, out-sourcing of
print to third party production
plants such as Transcontinental,
a shift from 48gsm to 43gsm stock, and an
expansion in mailroom technology and upgrades.
SWUG is published by Agricultural Publishers Pty Ltd
159 Bells Line of Road North Richmond NSW 2754
Publisher: Bob Lockley Advertising: Anita White Editor: Simon Enticknap
SWUG is published twice a year and distributed free to qualified
members of the printing industry.
Contributions can be sent to:
c/o The Editor, SWUG, PO Box 212, Newtown, NSW 2042
No portion in full or part of this publication may be reproduced without the
express permission of the publisher in writing.
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