Lithocraft’s laminating kicks into high gear
Melbourne printer Lithocraft has brought its laminating back in-house thanks to the second fastest Autobond laminator ever to enter Australia.
Paul Paten, operations manager at Lithocraft, said the decision to buy the Autobond Mini 105 THS came when the company’s old laminator was unable to keep up with high demand. “It chugged away at about 1500 sheets per hour, and it was extremely inefficient. We knew about the Autobond, and in conjunction with Graph-Pak we had a look at their 105 TS Mini laminator. They showed that they could laminate at speeds of up to 11,000 A1 sheets per hour, and that impressed us immensely,” he said.
Supplier Graph-Pak installed the new machine – the 110th Autobond it has sold in Australia – at Lithocraft’s Truganina plant on Australia Day, and Paten couldn’t be happier with the performance, saying the Autobond enabled them to bring much of their laminating work back in-house. Lithoprint has done its own laminating for nine years, due to its clients’ unique and varied point-of-sale requirements. “We’ve been able to utilise our staff more efficiently. There were long run jobs that Lithocraft could not produce because of the machine speed we were limited to – we had to subcontract because we couldn’t achieve the required turnaround times. These jobs will now stay in-house.
“The machine was installed seamlessly – it was in and training done within four days. The installation went to plan, and with minimal interruption,” Paten said.
To help ease the transition and get Lithocraft’s operators up to speed, Graph-Pak flew in an Autobond demonstrator from the UK – who helped the installation run like clockwork, according to Tom Ralph, managing director at Graph-Pak. “The speed that this machine will perform, and the investment from Lithocraft, warranted bringing a global guru from England to tune it and get it running at 120 metres per minute.
“The guys at Lithocraft are fantastic customers, they’ve been very loyal and we’ve worked with them closely over the last 10 years. We look at them as a partner and a friend, so it’s mutually beneficial that this machine performs to its highest ability,” Ralph said.
Graph-Pak has sold almost $2 million worth of Autobond laminators since drupa last year, with three more currently on the water and heading to Australia. The company will show off Autobond’s latest A1 Mini 76-series TPH laminator at PacPrint in May.