As much as the St. Louis Arch was recognized as the “Gateway to the West” when it opened in October 1965, the digital frontier figures to be prominent in the future success of Gateway Digital Press. The St. Louis printer’s business is skewing more digital these days, requiring management to find the right equipment to handle greater demands. That’s one reason for the installation of a new Colter & Peterson 32-inch PRISM® paper cutter with Microcut® in August.
The user-friendly and small footprint PRISM PC blends state-of-the-art technology and electronics with Gateway’s (www.gatewaydigitalpress.com) old school approach to servicing and delivering outstanding value to its customers. It’s a philosophy that has worked well for 35 years since opening for business in 1982, says owner Craig Fallon. The company is so ingrained locally, the Arch is part of the company logo.
“Ninety five percent of our customers are local. We do a lot of digital work for the non-profit sector and for print brokers in the reseller market. Our other major segment is the healthcare industry,” said Fallon, whose 12 employees work from a 12,000 square-foot facility on St. Louis County’s south side. “We do some regional work for large organizations, and with us doing wider format work on the digital side, the split between offset and digital is now about 50-50.”
Gateway is a first-time customer of Colter & Peterson (www.papercutters.com). Fallon purchased the PRISM PC sight unseen, based solely on the recommendation of his longtime equipment servicer, Jamie Osborne.
“I knew of C&P through Jamie, who took care of an old Challenge paper cutter that we needed to replace,” recalled Fallon. “The PRISM is a very good machine. We love it and understand the Microcut system will save us a great deal of time. Our operators like it because it is more efficient and is easy to retrieve information and store for future use.”
Known as a reliable machine that cuts more material faster and with greater accuracy than comparative models, the PRISM PC is easy to set-up for jobs with Microcut. The automated program memorizes cut sequences for instant recall, which Fallon finds to be extremely helpful given the type of work they do for customers.
“Our bread and butter is quarter size, 14-inch by 20-inch parent sheets. The largest parent sheet we use is 26-inches by 40-inches and the smallest is 3-1/2 inches by 2-inches for business cards. We’re using the PRISM to cut them down to size,” remarked Fallon, a proud Cardinals baseball and Blues hockey fan.
Gateway uses a Ryobi 524 press to handle the 14 by 20 sheets, and 12-inch by 18-inch sheets run on a smaller Ryobi 3302. Fallon likes how quickly the PRISM gets the job done.
“Digital is our middle name and we have a good reputation as a quarter size shop in the community. Some of the 40-inch guys were getting less work and dropping down to our market, so we decided we really needed to be good and that’s helped our reputation,” explained Fallon.
“Doing more digital work, customers expect quicker turnaround. We needed a paper cutter with more flexibility to handle the shorter runs so we could be faster and move jobs in and out the same day. Pre-storing job information has made a real difference. We can name jobs for future use, compared to the old Challenge machine where we did everything by hand. With PRISM and the Microcut program, we are now 33 percent faster in and out of the cutting department.”