Graphco and GEW Join Forces in Midwest
In November, 2018 GEW (EC) Limited and Graphco signed a distribution agreement covering the Midwestern U.S. and customers throughout the region can now access best-in-class LED-UV Technology to upgrade the capabilities, run-ability and productivity of their existing sheet-fed offset presses. “We feel strongly that working with the Midwest’s market leader in printing equipment will provide GEW with the best chance to help printers upgrade to the most effective LED UV curing technology,” states Malcolm Rae, Managing Director and owner of GEW.
While UK based, GEW has a market leading global presence in the narrow web flexo industry and many installations in other print and industrial applications like wide format, label and mailing inkjet, digital and even metal decorating. These successes have strengthened their sheet-fed capabilities. “As we evaluated the various after-market LED-UV systems, we focused on the strength of both the technology and the company that stands behind that technology. GEW stood out in both ways and having a fully staffed US sales and technical support facility right here in Ohio was a key advantage for Graphco and our customers,” comments Chris Manley, President of Graphco.
One of the prime examples of technology leadership is GEW’s heavy use of IoT (Internet of Things) technology which allows seamless real time technical support from GEW‘s technical headquarters. Using this technology, GEW engineers can monitor, diagnose and even predict if a customer’s lamp needs attention and then a very quick resolution can be provided over the IoT. Lamp cooling is another key strength for GEW, and although LED-UV is a cool running technology, even lamp head cooling means longer life for LED-UV diodes and more consistent curing on press. Using patented technology, GEW LED-UV lamps maintain consistent cooling across even the longest VLF (40"-81") lamps so customers can run at full press speeds with consistent results and total reliability.
An early Graphco/GEW installation in the US has become a terrific success story for everybody involved. J&J Printing in Lenexa, KS added a GEW LED-UV lamp to their 2015 RMGT 790 Packaging Edition press which also has an OEM Panasonic lamp that came with their press. “Being one of the first LED-UV printers in our region brought us access to many high specification projects that have become much more efficient with the second curing positions available in our press today,” states Wayne Welkner, Co-owner of J&J Printing. “We’re very proud to have won several regional and national best-of-class awards, and the combination of our plastics and packaging capability gives our customer-base the flexibility to take their projects anywhere they want to go.”
Push Solutions, who recently joined the PI 400, chose RMGT and GEW for their second 8-up Press investment since 2016. “With the outstanding growth and success we’ve experienced from our first LED-UV equipped RMGT 9 Series, adding our second press was always our goal. We knew the next press had to have LED-UV,” states Brad Flagge, President of Push Solutions. "We’ve seen excellent results with the GEW system and their technical support has been outstanding. Adding the second RMGT platform has allowed us to better serve our specialty substrate and folding carton customers where the combo of LED-UV cured print and fast turn times is key.”
Ranked number 223 on the PI 400, Graphic Village in Blue Ash, Ohio recently joined Martin One Source in Champaign, Illinois and PolPress from Chicago by installing RMGT 940ST-5+CC+LED-UV presses powered by GEW in the last 2 quarters of 2018. Another PI 400 company, Hagg Press in Elgin, Illinois also installed a 40" RMGT 1020ST-5+CC+LED-UV powered by GEW LED-UV in late fall of 2018. All four of these RMGT presses are now providing the ultimate in print quality, productivity and consistency to these fine companies and having GEW LED-UV curing on press is opening doors for projects and production timelines that would not be possible without instant ink drying.
"Having made so many installations in our early days has given Graphco and our customers great confidence in GEW quality. And I have to say that this quality goes well beyond the product itself and extends to the great technical and sales support we received from GEW USA and the headquarters in the UK,” comments Chris Manley. “We look forward to bringing LED-UV curing advantages to customers with existing presses throughout the Midwest in the months and years to come.”
One good example of a customer adding GEW LED-UV to their existing press is The National Group in Lafayette, Indiana who installed their RMGT 920ST-5+CC in 2017 and in February their press will be upgraded with GEW's LED-UV. “When we purchased our RMGT, the LED-UV technology was intriguing but we weren’t 100% ready to make the move. Now with GEW we can bring all the LED-UV advantages to our pressroom and we know how well our RMGT prints, so the transition will be easy,” says Leo Farrell, President of The National Group. “We frankly couldn’t be more pleased with our appointment of Graphco and their early results,” states Gary Doman, International Sales Manager for GEW. “We are committed to working hard to bring GEW LED-UV instant curing to more and more printing companies in the future.”