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Paragraphics wins with KBA Rapida 105

Aug 16, 2010 12:00 AM


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Dallas-based KBA North America announces Paragraphics Inc., a high-quality commercial printer in San Rafael, CA, recently won the “Best of Show” award from Visual Media Alliance (formerly Printing Industries of Northern California) for its California Academy of Sciences book titled “Evolution at the Academy.”

The small-format, 48-page book, printed for the San Francisco science center, showcases stories on nature’s most innovative survival strategies, photographs of both research specimens and live aquarium animals, case studies by Academy scientists, and essays by the Academy’s executive director and dean of science and research collections. It was printed on Paragraphics’ KBA Rapida 105 41-inch 6-color hybrid UV sheetfed press with inline aqueous and UV coater.

“This was an incredibly difficult print job,” says Jeff Towner, a principle and sales rep for Paragraphics. “The most difficult part was printing on uncoated stock with the many spreads with dense black backgrounds. The combined black densities are in excess of 240%. You’d be hard pressed to get that saturation even with black paper. Any printer who looks at the book will realize the high degree of difficulty but we’re able to achieve these beautiful effects due to our UV capability of our press.”

The Evolution book is the second in a series of books printed by Paragraphics. While the design team for the academy took a solid year to prepare the book, Paragraphics required about three weeks to print and to handle other parts of the production, such as color enhancement and correction. Paragraphics produced 5,000 copies of the book, which are sold in the Academy’s giftshop and online. The uncoated paper used for the book was Mohawk Synergy White 100% PCW (post-consumer waste), which Towner reports ran beautifully.

The KBA Rapida 105 at Paragraphics is equipped with KBA’s Densitronic S, a combined density and color measuring system for quality control during printing. Densitronic S permits direct measurements within the image. Deviations from defined target densities, color values and other quality parameters (dot gain, trapping, etc.) are recognized and displayed reliably and immediately. With integration for online control, the density and spectral deviations are converted into corrective adjustments for the individual ink keys. The Densitronic S controls the density and spectral parameters of each sheet by measuring along control strips or directly on the image. The Rapida 105 41-inch sheetfed press also features the fast speed of 18,000 sph, a stock range of 48-lb. to 48-pt. with no gripper adjustments, and the mark-free vacuum side guide. By having the press equipped with hybrid UV capabilities, Paragraphics is able to print on a wide variety of substrates and be able to use different effective coating techniques on such work as annual reports and greeting cards.

The award-winning book displays the firm’s environmentally-conscious stance. For many years, Paragraphics has been recycling chemicals, inks, and waste paper at its own expense before there was a market for these proceedures. Today the firm is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council and a Bay Area Green Business, recognized for its earth-friendly business practices. Evolution at the Academy maintains the environmentally-friendly focus using “green” paper and printing. The book is printed on Mohawk Synergy White 100% PCW, which features FSC certification, wind-power manufacturing and 100% postconsumer recycled fiber. Paragraphics ran the job with UV inks, which are VOC-free, CMYK plus spot black, with a “special coating” throughout.

Towner says, “With the elimination of VOCs from the inks (UV inks having less than 1% VOCs are considered by the EPA as zero emissions) and the ability to print incredibly detailed and color intense work onto 100% PCW (post consumer waste) papers, our ability to produce on these recycled stocks with UV process helps to differentiate us from our competitors.  Not only are we producing a better looking and more colorful piece but we are also doing this in an incredibly environmentally-friendly process which is becoming more and more important in the marketplace and for our customers. This was especially important to the California Academy of Sciences, which mandates the greenest solution possible. This book is a super green job and looks great too. We’ve proven the pundits wrong who think that a green job is a step down in quality. This book proves the complete opposite.”