Friday, July 24, 2015

from 1990 show

The back of these photo hasve date stamp saying Dec 1991 and are probably from the US show (Graphexpo?)   I must have made extra copies of these photos later on.       See all the young Polychromers.

Paul Reily, Victor Lopez and Gary Dolgins at the show.

New Product from Opti-copy

Cliff Coppinger admiring scale model of Fuji's US plant

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Polychrome is 50 yeas old

In 1986 we celebrated our 50th year since the founding of Polychrome and started to use special company logo.      Here is Joe Piot:'s letter to announce the kick off.    (Another contribution from Al W.)

Friday, July 3, 2015

Choke and Spread

Offset printing system depends on transfer of ink from plate to offset blanket and then from blanket to paper.    Depending on how hard the pressure is set between each contact, ink spots are easily squeezed to fatten to produce darker than desired image.       In order to compensate such "gain", halftone dots are reduced in size matching the printing machine's characteristics.      It is easy nowadays to do this by simply adjusting  tone reproduction curve on film/plate scanner but in 1980's there were no such digital equipment so that printers had to struggle to adjust (reduce) the dot size by adjusting exposure during the contact duplicating process.       Depending on what the final plates is used, either choking (thinning the edge of dots of positive film for positive plates) or spreading  (fattening dots to squeeze openings for negative plates) were used.      And in 1980 duPont promoted the use of daylight film saying it reduces waste due to the bright lighting condition rather than the darkroom condition when regular high sensitivity film was also used for contact purpose.        Seeing this to be a new trend Clark R&D focused on the development of daylight film, DLD and DLP around the time when I arrived Clark.        When Al Wietling kindly sent me a bunch of samples, they brought vivid memory of how Gene Wilkerson with his aids worked day and night to develop these film.      As I recall the duplicating film technology was a challenge but we came out with a superb product.        After 35 years we now know these were short lived but was a profitable technology for us.     I am sure most of the current members of graphic arts community would not recognize the word "choke and spread".     But those who experienced the challenge and battle of film world would chuckle and say we were there to meet the market challenge successfully



Monday, June 22, 2015

Photos from 1989 Clark

These photos are from 1989 Clark plant.

Dr. Burt Waxman who ran R&D

Marv. Lieberman then plant manager later tapped to head Columbus construction and running of the plant in early days.

Mr. Shash Saraya of Polymer lab then co-housed in Clark facility

Mike Adelman who ran film marketing

Sal Lombardo who later moved to Columbus to run plate tech service

Nick Profeta visiting Clark from HQ

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Luth trip 1991

Al Wierling sent in the pictures from trip in 1991 for contest winners.

Every year Luth, our film processor supplier and Polychrome had a contest for gross profit on film processor sales.    As bests as I recall there were four contests, the winners and their spouses were given  a free trip to a lovely locale.    The first was to Copenhagen, the second to Paris, the third to St Thomas V.I, and the last to Vail Colorado.   The winners included 4 TSR from each of the 4 regions, 1 branch manager, a regional mgr, film tech support people, our hosts from Luth and a person form corporate.    Since I had a very good staff in Miami,  I was able to go to the last three trips, mission only the Copenhagen trip, a city still on my bucket list.

Our hosts from Luth were very generous and to this day I ama very grateful to Peter Bandholm and wife (Greta?) and Bruce Goodwin and wife.

The attached pics are from the 1991 trip to St Thomas and we all had avery good time.

Hopefully the names on the back of the photos are correct.  

Thanks Al for sharing these pictures from good old days!

Al and Pat Wireline

 John and Fran Sturgis

Jeff Silva and his wife

Victor and Anne Lopez

Ron and Mary Ann Mangis

Albert Garcia and his wife

Peter and Greta(?) Brandhlm , Luth

Szulc, Mangis and Pat Wireline

Bruce Goodwin and his wife, Luth

Tom Szulc and his wife

Our hosts from Luth

Friday, April 24, 2015

Bob Hallman our eighth and the last president of Polychrome Corporation

When he arrived at Polychrome, Bob was warned by Joe Piot to watch out for a trouble maker (me).    It did not occur to me until recently that the unceremonious dismissal of his predecessor Dr. K may have been the result of my action.          Dr. K apparently had a good credential but was totally new to graphic arts field and his form over substance approach was uniformly disliked by all R&D personnel.         We accepted him as a new-commer-to-be-trained-to-become-a-great-leader.      Unfortunately he continued to alienate his staff and when he confided with me that he was contemplating letting Gene Golda (who as the longest serving R&D chemist making significant contribution) go, I became furious and told then the head of DIC America  Mr. Iwata, a close confidant of Mr. Kawamura, president of DIC, that what was going on.         I completely forgot the incident but soon after that at the following DRUPA, when Mr. Kawamura came to visit Polychrome he must have told Joe Piot about the unrest in R&D.         Since Joe always followed Mr. Kawamura's wish, his action was very quick and decisive.      Right after a big party at the DRUPA on a boat-hotel, Dr. K packed and returned US never to be seen.        I remember all the R&D personnel present including Gene was delighted to witness this development.

Thus when Bob came as the new head of R&D, he as well as all of the R&D members must have had a trepidation but there was no worry.      He immediately charmed us all, especially me, with his intimate knowledge of industry from his long involvement in graphic arts business through providing a plastic letterpress plate , his contribution in the new imaging technologies as a member of the famous ECD lab, his approach to industry through his involvement in a consulting firm and especially with his friendly and open management style.  

He is the longest serving and most effective R&D Director in Polychrome history.      Mr. I. Mellan, Dr. Delos Bown, Dr. H. Linford, Dr. L. Katz and Dr. K all served a few years and although they made a significant contributions to the progress of Polychrome (except Dr. K!), none equal impact made by Bob. 
He had an interesting management style then new to Polychrome; instead of directing details of technology on daily basis he focused his attention onto the industry development and future of technology.          He sought out and was asked to meet heads of big customers to deliver his view for the future technology.       This was his way of sensing what direction the customers are interested in and on many occasions he promised that Polychrome would fulfill their needs.         We at the lab leaned his promise and made great effort not to disappoint him or the customers.        This was how we leaned that the marketing was very important to the R&D activity.       He often encouraged us saying that "the marketing is too important to be left to the marketing department alone, we at R&D must become an advanced marketing department."

Above all, he was a great leader the skill of which he must have learned from his experience as the owner of a small company he created some years ago always showing Mr. Halpern like charm without frightening people he met and always impressing listeners with his in-depth knowledge and sound reasoning for his conclusion.
His popularity went further than R&D; he was well liked and respected at the same time among the industry leaders and the leaders of our parent companies.         It was natural Bob was selected as our eighth and the last (unknown to everyone at that time) president of Polychrome when Thomas Bittner left for Paris.         But his tenure was short lived only because the joint venture he negotiated with Kodak to create a 50/50 joint venture.       Kodak Polychrome Graphics started in 1998 as the biggest plate-film company in the world ending 63 years of Polychrome history.          After retiring from  Kodak Polychrome Graphics and Presstek where he served as the president trying to save an ailing company, he moved to Las Vegas and then now to Florida enjoying his daily basketball practice.                 

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

On the Upbeat February 1988

This is the last of the series of "On the Upbeat" contributed by Al Wierling.      See  articles in this special 6 page long issue such as "February sales/marketing anniversaries of ten or more years" (Chuck Kreiner with 30 years of service)","Larrea wins company's highest honor as 1987 manager of the year", "Dixon adds Salesperson of  Year Award to other 1987 honors", " Jordan first at $2 million mark"."Phoenix sales meeting highlights.... with pictures", etc.

Read all HERE.