Digital finishing requires automated processes to help offset labor costs, streamline operations and allow print service providers to handle multiple finishing tasks simultaneously. It often enables efficient ways to produce high quality finished documents with variable and personalized...
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“Many have tried to wrap their head around digital bindery, but the term can be misleading,” asserts David Spiel, co-owner, Spiel Associates. “While ‘digital’ is incorporated into many pieces of finishing equipment under the prefix, Digi, bookbinding is forever a mechanical process. Yes, digital setup can aid the on demand shop, but the bindery process is hardly a digital one. This is why most pieces of bindery equipment can last you for decades, long after your prepress software has gone the way of the Dodo (bird).”
If you are binding over 20,000 books per year, you may want to automate your process by utilizing a more innovative machine, says Spiel. Today’s automatic plastic coil binding machines are capable of binding up to 700 books per hour up to 50mm (2”) in diameter. The Sterling Coilmaster III plastic coil binding system can even form the coil prior to insertion.
Punching for mechanical binding has become more and more necessary in-house, notes Spiel. With the popularity of plastic coil and wire binding, almost every printer now has some sort of punching machine.
Many printers, however, opt for an in-line punch with their digital copier. There are some pros and cons to this choice. “If you only have one digital engine, it may pay to use an in-line punch,” explains Spiel. “ If you have multiple machines, a good off line punch should be able to handle the work from all of them. Furthermore, if you are depending on an in-line system and your printer goes down, you cannot punch. And if your punch goes down, you cannot print. An offline machine like The Sterling Digipunch, with automatic touchscreen set up, gives you some juggling room, which will avoid that domino effect.
Duplo sees PC-based programming and unique applications as top trends in digital finishing, both of which have been incorporated into it latest solutions, notes Anthony Gandara, Product Manager, Graphic Arts Division, Duplo USA.
The company’s recently released DBMi Saddle System, the DSF-2200 Sheet Feeder, and the high production DC-745 Slitter/Cutter/Creaser can all be operated from a PC via its own PC Controller software, enabling operators to program and manage the settings of the entire system.
“The software allows operators to save a larger number of jobs using the hard drive memory for quick and easy changeovers to drastically reduce set up times and increase turnaround times,” says Gandara. “Additionally, our PC Controller can be accessed directly from a tablet or smartphone, such as an iPad or iPhone, using any of the remote desktop apps already available. “
To meet the need for creative and unique applications, Duplo’s DBMi Saddle System and the DSF-2200 Sheet Feeder deliver letter landscape booklets, which is becoming increasingly popular. “With our digital color finishers, extra modules can be installed to increase versatility,” says Gandara.
The DC-745 Slitter/Cutter/Creaser is one that can be extended through optional scoring and perforating modules enabling operators to produce a wider range of applications such as slit-score greeting cards, direct mail pieces with “T” or “L” perforated reply cards, and micro-perforated coupons—all in a single pass.
Answering the call to greater efficiency, Spiral / James Burn recently became the master distributor in North America for the Foliant line of automated laminators, specifically for the on-demand digital print arena, says Matt Roth, VP, Spiral/James Burn.
“Until now single-side lamination systems have been prohibitively expensive for small commercial print shops and book printers,” says Roth. “The new affordable Foliant Series laminators provide the perfect solution for high quality single side lamination of book covers, brochures, magazine covers, and postcards.”
Foliant laminators work with a variety of thin gauge films; the laminated finish ensured by a chrome-coated working rollers regulated by exact thermal control, while decurling devices ensures flat lamination.