Austria’s Offsetdruckerei Schwarzach uses Bobst solutions to reduce set-up times

Bobst flatbed die-cutting machines and Flex Rack system in use

The company processes 25,000 tons of cardboard and paper every year
The company processes 25,000 tons of cardboard and paper every year

Austria based Offsetdruckerei Schwarzach is using Bobst flatbed die-cutting machines and the Flex Rack system to reduce set-up times. The company employs 350 people and is a specialist in the production and finishing of fine cardboard boxes and labels. It processes 25,000 tons of cardboard and paper every year. In 2018, the company achieved a consolidated turnover of Euro 90 million.

“We are faced with the challenge of producing more efficient short print runs and at the same time, conversely facing intense pressure from competitors running large print runs. We are therefore continuously looking to optimise our complete production process,” said the chief executive officer of Offsetdruckerei Schwarzach, Eduard Fischer. “This can ultimately only be achieved through consistent automation of all process steps and their use.”

Offsetdruckerei Schwarzach’s customers include companies in the consumer goods industry, premium manufacturers of confectionery, luxury and cosmetic products and other Non-Food areas, as well as international trading companies. The company exports 70% of its output.

“We are often running many different types of jobs and, four years ago, we began searching for a solution to reduce the set-up times of the non-stop delivery system,” stated Johannes Knapp, chief technical officer.

The Flex Rack system, which was tested at ODS on a die-cutter in 3B format with a blank separating station, demonstrated that the set-up time could be shortened by approximately ten minutes. Paul Landal who manages die cutting at the company said: “Adjustment of the non-stop system only took about two minutes and highlighted the simple handling of the solution.”

The existing system’s loose rods can be replaced by a Flex Rack system within a day and the number of Flex Rack swords can be adapted to cover the required maximum sheet width of the actual die-cutter. Flex Rack can be retrofitted on to virtually all Bobst die-cutters with a blanking station.

After successful testing, five Bobst die-cutters at Offsetdruckerei Schwarzach were retrofitted with the Flex Rack system. As the company is entering into the field of large-size printing, it was clear from the very beginning that the Expercut 145 PER should be fitted with a Flex Rack system. “When running large format jobs, the reduction in set-up times is even more noticeable,” said Knapp.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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