Ink wastage halved
And far less stress. "My team puts in much less overtime because Nyala is so reliable."
Pronate Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan. The introduction of a swissQprint large format printer has taken this digital printing company a big step forward. It has expanded the product portfolio and significantly increased both productivity and efficiency. And it is now targeting new markets.
Pronate is one of the longest-standing companies in the Japanese printing industry. Only a few survive in this highly competitive market. Some may be well established but fail to find a successor.
For over 47 years, Pronate has stood its ground by constantly adapting to new circumstances, pursuing new paths at the right time, and always focusing on demanding customer segments.
The installation of a swissQprint Nyala LED in September 2018 has set yet another milestone. The Swiss large format printer replaced a different digital printing system. “The combination of quality, productivity and user-friendliness is unique with swissQprint,” says Takashi Masuda, the production manager. He was involved in the evaluation process and says that the investment has already paid off: “The stress has eased noticeably because Nyala is so reliable.” And that is just one of the benefits he points out.
Increased productivity and efficiency
Nyala has quadrupled the output in digital printing. “What took me a month before, I now accomplish within six days,” explains Shinji Hasegawa, the operator. He can now handle several jobs at the same time, while Nyala, for instance, handles a roll to roll job independently.
Another improvement: With the previous printer, Mr Hasegawa had to manually cut flexible media and place it on the flatbed. As Nyala has a roll to roll option, he now actually processes this kind of job from roll to roll. “My team works far less overtime thanks to Nyala,” says Mr Masuda. The swissQprint register pins also contribute to efficiency. The pins can be set every 5 cm and thus form additional mechanical attachment points. They ensure that double-sided printing is accurate.
Furthermore, in combination with the swissQprint output software, they enable simple and reliable printing of repetitions of identical and different images – without any additional RIP process. “This is a great help for the operator,” says the production manager.
Low ink consumption
“With Nyala, ink waste has dropped in half,” reports Mr Hasegawa. First of all, the daily maintenance of the print heads scarcely wastes any ink. Besides, the task is done within a few minutes.
Not only has ink consumption been reduced, but operating costs in general, Mr Masuda points out. Thanks to LED technology, UV lamps do not need to be replaced and power consumption is low.
The Nyala at Pronate is equipped with CMYK as well as light cyan, light magenta and white, completed by effect varnish and primer. “This gives us countless possibilities,” Mr Hasegawa enthuses as he talks about conventional products such as posters, backlits, prints on foam boards and window films as well as unusual items such as wood and canvas productions or items made of thick PVC mats.
Pronate's focus is currently on POP/POS media and packaging prototypes. Thanks to the swissQprint varnish option, products can be refined to various degrees: with different gloss levels, over the entire surface or partially and, thanks to layering, also in a tactile way.
White ink enables printing on transparent media. With Pronate, this is typically acrylic glass. The adhesion of the ink is excellent, even if variations in the quality of this material occur, says the operator. If a special substrate is to be printed where adhesion is critical, the primer is used.
“Nyala gives us countless possibilities,” the operator, Mr. Hasegawa (left), and Mr Masuda, the production manager, explain.
“We are experimenting with novel applications to address new markets,” explains Mr Masuda. Architectural solutions could be one of the new fields. “Generally speaking, we intend to acquire more roll to roll orders,” he adds, “especially as Nyala offers us great potential here.” He has provided the sales team with sample kits to inspire customers with new ideas.
Expertise and customer proximity
The exchange with and the proximity to the customers is Pronate’s commitment. The “Open Factory” program allows the customers to visit Pronate at any time, to discuss an order on site and supervise production. “It gives both me and the customer a good feeling to clarify things directly,” says the operator.
Pronate enjoys an excellent reputation in the market. Not least thanks to many years of experience. It roots back to times when Pronate specialised in pre-press services for print ads in international high-gloss and in-flight magazines. The clientele has remained demanding, while Pronate has continued to evolve. The acquisition of the first large format UV inkjet printer in 2010 marked a turning point in the business model. It was neither the first nor will it be the last time that Pronate has made a change. On the contrary. Pronate’s mission is constant change in order to secure its future.