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UPDATED: Transcontinental's Triplewide from MAN Roland Will Print 'SF Chron'

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

UPDATED: Transcontinental's Triplewide from MAN Roland Will Print 'SF Chron'

Article excerpt

Montreal-based Transcontinental Printing announced on the Nexpo show floor Saturday afternoon that it is selecting MAN Roland to build the presses for its first U.S. outsourcing job -- printing the San Francisco Chronicle, beginning in 2009 under a 15-year contract.

"We were looking for a total and complete package, someone who would help us in bringing in other suppliers with them," Pierre Manseau, Transcontinental's director of infrastructure and production technology for North American development and US operations, said in a news briefing at MAN Roland's booth.

Transcontinental, which prints 75 of its own and others' dailies and weeklies at its Canadian plants, including The Globe and Mail and, in Montreal, La Presse (as well as The New York Times for distribution in Canada and upstate New York), is buying three Colorman XXL presses for its first newspaper facility in the United States - the location of which it will not yet disclose.

In addition to being Transcontinental's first supplier decision for its first U.S. job, the presses will be only the second 6 X 2 blanket-to-blanket newspaper presses in North America. The Free Lance-Star, Fredericksburg, Va., will install a 6 X 2 version of Goss International's new FPS press next year, with production to begin in 2009.

Each shaftless press will be configured with three eight-couple towers fed by four MAN Roland CD-15 XXL reelstands and operated from two Pecom control consoles. Each press will be capable of producing 36 broadsheet pages in full process color, or 48 broadsheet pages with 24 in full color.

In addition to Pecom controls, the couple-shaftless automated presses will feature Autoload 2.1reel loading, Websys automatic web lead-in system, Tecosys web-tension control, cut-off control, color-register and ink-density controls.

Plate changing will be accelerated thanks to PPL -- MAN Roland's power plate-loading system.

The printnet solution for production planning and tracking will be "an integral part of the project," said Newspaper Sales Vice President Ron Sams.

Supplied by MAN Roland's ppi Media US Inc., printnet was "one of the factors that helped seal the deal," ppi CEO Markus Feldenkirchen remarked. Through cross-site and cross-department integration, among other features, printnet "networks and automates the newspaper manufacturing process from end to end," Feldenkirchen added.

The system encompasses workflow integration, print services (including process analysis, training, financing, and maintenance), a printcom component for various consumables and measurement devices, and printconsult, which covers investment planning, plant design, process optimization and other aids.

The presses will also be ready for heatset production in the future, MAN Roland Inc. CEO Vince Lapinski, said.

Transcontinental's Manseau said he chose the triple-wide Colorman, which prints six pages across, to "give the customer more color capacity" and color-placement flexibility while using the smallest pressroom footprint.

"We like the flexibility," Manseau said. "We want the advertiser to tell us where they want color, rather than telling them, 'This is where you can only have color.'"

Manseau said the company wanted MAN on board to help "guide" its picks for suppliers of other production equipment, such as packaging machines. He added he expects the other equipment to be announced soon.

"But we will make the deadline, everything is set for 2009," Manseau said. …

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