Until two years ago, ColourMagic was a Johannesburg-based sheetfed printer specialising in high-end commercial colour printing. Using all the latest and state-of-the-art technology to produce work for some of the top clients in the industry, ColourMagic had a recipe for success.

Standing with the Brausse 1050SE die-cutter are Karl Morgan of ColourMagic and Bradley Bate of Alliance Machinery.

ColourMagic saw the opportunity early on and opted to enter the packaging sector, to complement the existing commercial printing. The initial move was to use its traditional cylinder-type die-cutters. However, it soon became evident that the move into packaging would require more production capacity than the cylinders could offer.

The result was the beginning of a lengthy investigation into the best equipment available in order to improve quality, reduce makeready time, start-up waste and automate the waste stripping process. Both new and second-hand equipment was investigated. Said Karl Morgan of the packaging division, ‘We looked at most equipment available on the market, we realised that there was a place for us to enter the market but it had to be with the right equipment to meet the demands of our niche clientele. To start with, we needed a die-cutter to replace the multiple cylinders, it had to be capable of short makereadies and auto waste stripping. But, as our volumes were not big, it had to come at the right price and still have all the bells and whistles. A tall order to say the least.’

The initial belief was that new equipment would be cost-prohibitive but, that second-hand would not have the necessary levels of technological advancement. Said Karl, ‘This was when we saw the Brausse die-cutter from Alliance Machinery. It offered us the best of both worlds, top-end quality and all the bells and whistles without the very high prices you usually see on this type of equipment. It truly is a premium machine.’

The Brausse 1050SE die-cutter comes with all the necessary technical features and capabilities, which is why it is the market leader in its price range and the most technologically advanced machine in this market segment. It features a production speed of 7500sph with a maximum sheet size of 1040 x 720mm. It is capable of handling a range of substrates from 90gsm through to 600gsm and corrugated E and F ute board up to 4mm thick.

Register on the feed table is achieved through sidelays on the near and off-side of the machine. It also features an in-line prefeeding system for increased productivity. Die-cutting equipment is locked using pneumatic push-button technology. The machine also features a waste stripping unit for removing internal and external waste on-the- y.

Another important aspect of the Brausse range of equipment is its parentage. Brausse is not a well-known name in the local market, however, it is owned by the Bobst Group which is internationally recognised as the market leader. Located in China, Brausse manufactures its products according the strict criteria laid down by management ensuring that the machines meet the most stringent of international standards.

Said Morgan, ‘Having looked at all the alternatives, and considering the pedigree behind the Brausse die-cutter, we knew that we had bought the right solution for our needs. In fact, we have so much con dence in the Brausse brand that we automatically opted to stay with Brausse when we decided to install a folder-gluer. The combination of the solid construction, the high productivity and the excellent after-sales service from Alliance Machinery meant that it was a simple choice.

The TA900 folder-gluer

‘Both machines are blending well with our high quality philosophy and are allowing us to offer our service and quality levels to carton users nationwide. Due to our investments allowing us to be very ef cient, we can do also offer our customers competitive prices.’

The TA900 folder-gluer can handle solid board up to 800gsm and corrugated board up to E ute. The maximum speed of the machine is dependent on the size of the boxes being produced.

Both the die-cutter and the folder-gluer were installed and commissioned by the experienced and factory-trained team of technicians at Alliance Machinery. Morgan commented, ‘In both cases, the team of technicians was on-hand when the machines arrived and took responsibility for uncrating and positioning them. They did a superb job of getting the machines up-and-running in the shortest time possible and our operators received detailed training on the process and operation. These machines have both proven to be more productive than our expectations and have given us the ability to handle all of our current production and we have spare capacity.’

ColourMagic is using its new equipment to service a growing number of clients in the pharmaceutical, nutri-ceutical and cosmetics sectors of the
packaging industry.

Said Morgan, ‘We are determined to offer our clients the very best services and products we can and if that means that we have to invest in new technology, then so be it. Based on the success we have achieved with the die-cutter and the folder-gluer from Alliance Machinery, we have just ordered an of ine coating unit. This will allow us to give our clients value-added nishing for their products as it offers us an upgraded varnishing facility over our existing technology.’

The MC4030 of ine coater can handle both UV coating and Aqueous varnishing. Other advantages of the system include the ability to change between UV and Aqueous with short wash-ups and reduced start-ups. One of the most important features of the system is its ability to handle print from digital printers. Until now, only certain types of digitally printed work could be varnished because the toners used were not compatible with the type of varnish used. Now with the MC4030, all digitally printed material can be varnished.

ColourMagic may be relatively new to the packaging market but with its staff of 60 dedicated people and its philosophy of doing it right the rst time plus the investment in the latest technology, it is ideally positioned to carve itself a portion of the market.