Lea Printers manages versatile mix with Horizon StitchLiner MKIII

Kent technology based print solutions provider Lea Printers has invested in a Horizon StitchLiner MKIII to manage increasingly varied run lengths and a broader work mix.

Founded in 1992, Lea Printers produces litho print on a Mitsubishi LS Diamond 1000 five colour and coater and two B3 Heidelberg two colour presses – a SpeedMaster and a GTO 5. Digital print is completed on a Xerox Versant and two black and white HPs. Clients include Sony, London Stock Exchange, Grey Goose, Bollinger, Bacardi, and UEFA.
With run lengths getting shorter and turnaround times getting tighter Tristan Gill, Managing Director, explains the operation wanted a solution that would enable greater production flexibility and agility.

“We had an older Hohner but demand has changed with runs getting smaller and smaller. We looked around and found the Horizon StitchLiner is the industry standard. We liked its ability to fold which removes the need for the separate process and saves time. It is also easy to set up so any operator is comfortable running it. We can complete a lot more short run jobs faster and that will enable us to expand capacity.

Lea Printers’ 6,000 sheets per hour system includes the new high capacity VAC-L600H collators and their 130mm deep trays. They are more than double the depth of the 55mm trays on 10 station collators. This equates to 2.3 times less down time for loading and greater uptime. The new collators can handle a wider range of substrates enabling greater flexibility and their intelligent operation allows them to feed digital work that has been printed `in page order’. It also has the option of Ultrasonic detection and a double length delivery stream.

The StitchLiner was installed as part of a five year plan and it is expected to play a key role in streamlining production as the business returns to pre-pandemic levels. Gill says: “It will help us be much more versatile and agile.”

Despite social distancing restrictions the installation was smooth: “It went in seamlessly,” adds Tristan. “We are very happy with it.”