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Heidelberg GTO pros'n'cons

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  • Heidelberg GTO pros'n'cons

    Now we all know the glossy preachy product brochures and trade displays.
    But its time to go deeper than that and really rip into the problems and pet hates of printers.

    Heidelberg GTO, first introduced in 1972 at Drupa and the press many printshops were built with,
    A very simple, good training press. number, perf,imprint, slit in one pass. Small footprint, Basic feeder for fast changeover.

    Weak inking system, moleton dampners, when feeder stops the press stops.

    add your own opions....

    Edited by: me on Sep 3, 2007 8:55 AM

  • #2
    Re: Heidelberg GTO pros'n'cons

    have to agree with most of this. but alcolor was added to later versions. then came dds dampening. a complete mess if you ask me. then we found the sm52. upgrade and forget the gto.


    • #3
      Re: Heidelberg GTO pros'n'cons

      I too, agree with rob.

      We have a 5 color GTO year 2000 with a Royse recirculation dampeners--or whatever their called.; we purchased it four years ago and I knew it was old technology even then. The reason we purchased is because I am not the owner, my father is, and he had always wanted a GTO.

      I advised against it and highly recommended the SM52, but as already stipulated, I am not the owner. Enough said.

      Now having said that, the GTO is still a great press and if your budget only allows for a GTO or one of the portrait presses (ie the Ryobi 3304) get the GTO hands down.



      • #4
        Re: Heidelberg GTO pros'n'cons

        IMO the GTO is a well built, friend of the operator. It's a tough and reliable offset press.


        • #5
          Re: Heidelberg GTO pros'n'cons

          my dad owns the place as well. he started with a used davidson. then a couple abdicks.
          then he bought a 1 color gto 46. he did not make a dime until he bought the gto. he would run 4 color covers for a web shop accross town. then moved up to a 2 color perfector. the went to a 2 color straight with dds damps. we struggled with the dds machine. we then bought a qmdi. sweet press, cheap and decent. the we traded the gtoz for a sm52-2. wow. then ctp. wow. the traded the qmdi and sm52-2 for a sm52-4h. wow.
          of course we are now upto our neck in debt, but we can really kick out the work.


          • #6
            Re: Heidelberg GTO pros'n'cons

            I've been a one trick pony forever. 99% of my print shop experience is as a stripper. Now I'm working in a small 10 man outfit and I got thrown onto a Heidelberg GTO. It's a 13 X 18 size. Is that what you guys are talking about here? I like it so far. I think it drys out too much over night. My very limited press experience was running an AB Dick 360 with a T-51 head 27 years ago. The GTO has all the real press features I remember wishing I had back then and so far I like it. What are the main things that could trip me up that I should watch out for. Hey guys , any feedback you have will be greatly appreciated. By the way, I still have my PP&AU of NA journeyman pressman certificate personally signed by Sol Fishko himself. How's that for old stuff ? Also , what about that cloth dampener? Here's a rookie apprentice question. What's the best way to clean it and take proper care of it? All the other guys don't know much about it. There's one new guy on a SORD 36" , one old guy on duplicators and the guy that really knows his biz is so into his SM74 (?) two color that he don't have the patience to explain things I really should know.

            Edited by: medric j magann on Oct 14, 2007 1:51 PM


            • #7
              Re: Heidelberg GTO pros'n'cons

              It's good to see you survived the analog to digital prepress days. I know a few old school strippers that didn't. We were slow to change over to digital. My first experience in the (art department) was struggling through paste up boards. Maybe it was best to have somebody teach you that. Computers come with lots and lots of documentation.

              If your still using sock dampeners then that's gonna trip you up. My experience doesn't include sock dampening but my old boss would tell me about it. He loved our Quad Flow dampening on our little web and even that takes a lot of mainentance. Especially during the summer months with no climate control in the shop.

              The DDS on our 96 14 x 20 GTO dampening is really nice. Little or no maintenance. There is one problem that I have with number 4 unit but there's always something wrong with a press that you just have to work around for awhile.

              My old boss would've liked the DDS dampeners. Best I can tell you is keep those socks clean. Good Luck!


              • #8
                Re: Heidelberg GTO pros'n'cons

                Thanks Vince. That's just what it was too. Survival. The digital computer stripping technology wasn't that great in the beginning. Many times we had to start over and do it the "old" way just to get plates out to the press room. It was frustrating and lots of us were at each others throats until some years later it finally became what they told us it would be. I think digital pre-press is plenty damn good today. I still have to strip jobs but it sure doesn't take any time. I'm glad to be on the press again after so many years. It satisfies me to actually produce something that someone wants to pay money for. I'm seeing that my little single color, sock dampened GTO is old stuff but it does print good. I want to be really proficient and fast on it so I can stay on it. At my age (52) I don't want to get into the frenzy of a bigger multi-color press. Let the young bucks with something to prove have at it. And as I read in an earlier post here, the press shutting off if it misses a sheet is a drag. That gets old. But I think getting into it to clean the back cylinder and pull out sheets that detour the delivery is easy and washing it up is quick. In the end analysis it's a Heidelberg and they are the best.


                • #9
                  Re: Heidelberg GTO pros'n'cons

                  I was a stripper also. I've been running a single color GTO 52 for the last 7 or 8 years now. I switched to a bareback roller system several years ago. It was a major improvement over using the socks. The rollers are little bit more expensive, but color changes and production go up to make up for the cost. My 4/c work looks like it came off a big press! Hope this helps.


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