Flexpress has completed its transformation to become a full service trade printer following investment in a Horizon StitchLiner 5500 with two VAC-1000 tower collators supplied by IFS.
The latest addition will support production from the Leicester operation’s recently commissioned HP Indigo 12000 digital colour press. It also runs Ryobi 920 UV LED and Ryobi 520 UV LED litho presses.
Flexpress managing director Steve Wenlock explained: ‘We made a conscious decision to become a trade printer 12 months ago and since then everything we have done has been geared towards providing the most effective and reliable service. We had an existing bookletmaker but could not risk there being any downtime and we needed additional capacity to support the HP Indigo.’
Steve reviewed what was on the market before making the investment. He said, ‘We have a number of Horizon systems including a BQ-270 single clamp perfect binder and an AFC-566a automatic folder. They have always been reliable. The StitchLiner was also robust and easy to set up. It was the perfect complement.
‘We also complete a lot of separate collating and the two towers will help us manage that work faster which ensures booklet production can continue uninterrupted.’
Flexpress’s StitchLiner features a high definition icon-based colour touchscreen for set ups in less than two minutes. It can work from flat four page sections, eliminating the need for separate bindery stages to be undertaken such as signature folding and creasing. Its integral ACF-30 Accumulator with scoring, plow folding and heavy duty HTS-30S Three-Knife Trimmer means there is no need to pre-fold into signatures or pre-cut sections top and tail – resulting in significant time, waste and energy savings.
Steve added, ‘If things go to plan we are looking to grow significantly over the next 18 months and the StitchLiner will help us do that. It is already justifying itself. It gives us the confidence to manage our workflow in a responsive way. We no longer worry about any unplanned downtime.’
Operator Scott Timson with the Horizon StitchLiner 5500.