Newspaper installs new production equipment

Published 5:00 am Monday, May 16, 2005

The DAILY LEADER will soon change the way it produces thenewspaper.

Bill Jacobs, publisher of The DAILY LEADER, said the newspaperhas recently purchased the latest in laser technology, acomputer-to-plate imaging device manufactured by BaysPrint thatwill use ultraviolet light to burn the plates used on thepress.

This is the second phase in an upgrade of the newspaper’sproduction process, which began with installation of a new computersystem a few months ago.

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“It will change the production process at the newspaper,” Jacobssaid of the new piece of equipment.

The new imager will actually bypass a step of newspaperproduction in which negatives of the newspaper pages are made. Theprocess will eliminate the need for negatives altogether, as thepages will be burned by laser directly onto the newspaper pressplates. The plates will then be placed onto the press, which whenrolled in ink, make the print on the newspaper.

Jacobs said subscribers will actually see a cleaner finishedproduct in the newspaper and better-quality color photographs.

“It will make things faster,” he said. “Color registration willbe more accurate, which will reduce waste.”

All in all, the new technology will reduce costs over time, hesaid.

Many people may have noticed the new building addition on thenorth side of The DAILY LEADER plant. The room was builtspecifically to house the approximately 7,000-pound piece ofequipment.

The room must stay at a constant 75 degrees and remain almostcompletely dust free, said Jacobs.

“It’s high tech but fairly easy to use and maintain,” saidJacobs, citing minimal training required for existingemployees.

Jacobs said press production crews will go through 10 days oftraining. He said he hopes to be online with the new equipment bythe last week in May.

The new piece of equipment was ordered in October from a companyin Germany and arrived at the plant a couple of weeks ago, Jacobssaid.

“We did it as an investment in the community to build a betternewspaper,” he said.