Mayer & Söhne signs up for innovative compact web press

KBA books order for 20th Commander CT

Würzburg, (PresseBox) - German print and media group Mayer & Söhne in Aichach has become the latest in a long line of customers for KBA's compact Commander CT. It will be the seventh installation in the country within eight months. In Europe and North America KBA has now sold a total of twenty Commander CT presses or 99 double- and triple-wide towers, some with dryers for semi-commercials.

150th jubilee start-up

The 32pp KBA Commander CT is scheduled to go live in 2012, when Mayer & Söhne celebrates its 150th jubilee. It will replace an A 510 Journal newspaper press installed by KBA's Frankenthal factory in 1995. Alongside in-house titles, freesheets and inserts the new press will print contract work that includes a compact edition of the Bild-Zeitung for Munich. Managing partner Reiner Sixta says: "Entrepreneurial vision and an innovative spirit have long been the key to our success. For example, in 1979 we pioneered full-colour images in southern Germany with a KBA Express. We have followed the development of this compact KBA press with the keenest interest, because of the benefits its advanced technology delivers in terms of colour registration and fan-out. Alongside the outstanding print quality what most impressed us were the operating concept and the enhanced flexibility afforded by the high level of automation."

Biggest Berliner format contract printer in southern Germany

Established in 1862, the group is now in the fifth generation of the Mayer and Sixta families. In addition to the Aichach printing plant, which specialises in full-colour printing, and AS-Druck, a mono and two-colour offset operation in Lahr, the group owns the Aichacher Zeitung, the Stadtzeitung in Augsburg and a number of free titles distributed in Bamberg and Weissenburg (total circulation: 400,000-plus copies per week) plus diverse publishing, service and sales operations. Unlike other newspaper printers Mayer & Söhne traditionally produces more for external customers than for its own publishing houses, and here the Berliner format is ideal. Its litho division mainly prints upmarket brochures, business reports, bound-in inserts, journals, corporate magazines and catalogues. The press fleet also includes a KBA Compacta that is mostly used for brochures.

Productivity gains benefit contract work

The Commander CT will also be engineered for the Berliner format, with a maximum web width of 1,260mm (49.6in) and a 470mm (18.5in) cut-off. It will have a maximum output of 47,000 full-colour 32-page copies per hour. Thomas Sixta, principal shareholder of Mayer & Söhne and managing director of the publishing subsidiaries, says: "High output aside, the Commander CT's ultra-fast job changes with automatic plate changing will deliver production reserves we can draw on, and innovative options both for our own publishing operations and for our extensive contract work. In a business where deadlines are pared to the bone, it will safeguard our renowned timeliness well into the future."

The press package supports an extensive choice of products and ad specials. For example, the two Pastomat reelstands are also engineered to accept 7/8 and 3/8 ribbons. The folder superstructure with two formers has a skip slitter and half-cover guides, with provision for the later addition of a ribbon stitcher, Zip'n'Buy and a glued "pseudo" plough fold for creating four-page spreads. Extra towers can also be added at any time. The towers split down the middle for maintenance access, so changing the blankets and washcloths is both quick and easy. As well as automatic plate changers the press incorporates RollerTronic roller locks, NipTronic bearer units, and washing systems for the inking units and blankets. Copies are delivered via a KF 5 jaw folder. The two KBA ErgoTronic consoles feature job-scheduling and presetting software plus KBA EasyStart and EasyStop modules for automatic press run-up and run-down.

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