Vacuum pumps are integral to print shops and bindery operations. Since pump failure can bring down mighty presses or bustling bindery lines, it is vital to have pump models that are easy to service as well as fast access to repair parts and replacement units as well as responsive service and technical support.
In the intensely demanding printing industry, with presses and bindery equipment running at full tilt, the continuous strain for productivity is often an open invitation to unplanned downtime.
While advancements in major printing and bindery equipment are enabling more impressions and increased output, it is often the little workhorses, such as vacuum pumps, that are integral to the process. A vacuum pump that is down for maintenance can bring down multi-million-dollar printing or bindery iron without notice, sometimes for days.
Of course, a sizable portion of the price of such problems is in lost production time, which is gone forever. But the biggest cost of all may be a missed deadline that results in the loss of a customer and perhaps millions of dollars in future revenues – all over a fairly inexpensive piece of support equipment.
“A vacuum pump that requires service can mean hours or days of downtime,” says Marco Gazares, a maintenance supervisor at Graphic Press in Los Angeles. “That is always the major consideration, since it affects scheduling in not only printing but also bindery operations. So, naturally it can create delivery issues.”
A premium-quality house, and the largest U.S. minority-owned printer, Graphic Press produces first-class work such as print shops london annual reports, catalogs, brochures and direct mail pieces for the automotive, travel, telecommunications, entertainment and financial industries as well as major advertising agencies and graphic design studios.
“Many of the projects of these clients are time critical,” Gazares says. “So, there is a delivery tight window with no room for mechanical problems.”
Graphic Press has invested heavily in multiple presses to ensure fast turnaround while maintaining highest quality. Equipment includes two large Heidelberg sheet-fed presses and two Goss rotary (web) presses. A full-service, on-site bindery provides stitching with optical signature recognition; folding, scoring and slitting of printed forms.
The firm considers it mission critical that technical capabilities are cutting edge at every stage of the process, from pre-press to final binding. Those standards also apply to smaller equipment and subassemblies such as the assortment of vacuum pumps used in the printing and bindery operations.