For the past 40 years, family-owned and operated Bookmasters has provided publishers and authors with a highly inclusive yet customizable menu of integrated services. In addition to offset and digital manufacturing, their unique suite of capabilities includes design, editorial, composition, order fulfillment and distribution. They are headquartered in Ashland, Ohio, with offices in New York City and London.
Bookmasters produces all varieties—and quantities—of books, from black and white to full color, offset and digital, and all bind styles. Recently, they installed Muller Martini’s Scalable SigmaLine digital book production system. This technology’s ultra short-run manufacturing capabilities allows Bookmasters to seamlessly produce variable-sized perfect bound books in-line with their new Océ JetStream 1000 inkjet press.
The fully automatic setup of the entire system begins with the laser measuring station that determines the incoming untrimmed book block dimensions for setting up the SigmaBinder. When installed in-line, this infeed station makes it possible to also hand-feed book blocks into the machine if, for example, the upstream printer is not functioning. This enables the Scalable SigmaLine technology to have both the flexibility of a near-line configuration and the efficiency of an in-line workflow in the same system.
Bookmasters’ Scalable SigmaLine system is controlled via a barcode intelligence technology that guarantees book block to cover match in the SigmaBinder and automatically relays the final trim sizes to the SigmaTrimmer for book-to-book changeover on the fly. The SigmaTrimmer has three independently driven knife elements that automatically trim books of varying sizes and thickness without any make-ready, i.e., there is no changing of pressing pads or cassettes.
Scalable SigmaLine has virtually eliminated inefficiencies once inherent to digital book production. It significantly streamlines the production of one-off and short-run books, creating much greater productivity in the line and allowing the production of 1,000 fully variable length, width, and thickness books per hour.
Ray Sevin, Bookmasters’ President of Manufacturing Services, noted, “With our in-line Scalable SigmaLine system, we are able to proficiently produce short-run digital books without the inefficiencies typically found when handling product in an off-line workflow. And, with the book integrity checks included in the system, our new touchless workflow is virtually worry-free.”
When explaining why they’ve selected Muller Martini’s products, Mr. Sevin added, “We have always had good experience with previous Muller equipment and its advanced innovation, like the Diamant casing-in line which was installed over five years ago. Moreover, the quality of the service and support after the sale has been outstanding.”