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Muller Martini connects with new binding, stitching, printing & on-demand solutions at drupa

Press release from the issuing company

Düsseldorf, Germany — Muller Martini showed printers and finishing professionals how to make the most of computer integrated manufacturing in their binderies and pressrooms, introducing a host of new interoperable binding, stitching, printing and on-demand solutions at drupa 2004. The star of the Muller Martini exhibit, which occupied the largest share of Hall 14, was the new SigmaLine — the first fully integrated, industrial-strength book on-demand system. “Muller Martini has been a major innovator in providing finishing modules for on-demand production systems for years,” said Werner Naegeli, President and CEO of Muller Martini Corp. “At drupa, we advanced to the next plateau to deliver a total solution that integrates prepress, press and finishing components with an industrial design to meet the multi-shift requirements and quality standards of commercial printers.” A roll-fed digital press, capable of applying one color to both sides of the paper simultaneously, handles the printing. Its output is folded in-line, then sent to either SigmaLine’s integrated perfect binder or its in-line saddle stitcher, depending on each project’s requirements. An in-line trimmer, capable of one-off variable book trimming, completes the job. “This is a true on-demand system,” Naegeli explained. “SigmaLine is able to cost-effectively produce ten or twenty copies of a title, a few thousands of copies, or any number in between, depending upon the requirements of each individual job.” The SigmaLine section of Muller Martini’s drupa exhibit was the scene of many in-depth discussions between American printers, including representatives from major U.S. facilities, and Muller Martini experts. In fact, the SigmaLine being demonstrated was purchased by a printer in the U.S — an indication of how showgoers embraced the new technology at drupa. The purchasing facility wishes to remain anonymous. Supra brings saddle stitching to a new plateau At the high-volume end of the equation, Muller Martini’s new Supra saddle stitcher demonstrated production runs at the rate of 25,000 cycles per hour. For even faster throughput, a new pocket wheel feeder was introduced for Supra, which pushes the productivity benchmark to 30,000 cycles per hour. Supra’s industry-leading speed, accomplished with versatile feeders to handle the typically difficult signatures of U.S. publications, is achieved through significant advancements in feeder, stitcher, trimmer and control technology. Fully JDF and CIP4 compatible, Supra takes its commands from the new Muller Martini Automation Platform (MMAP). It can be equipped for selective binding, ink jet addressing, cover and card feeding, CD-ROM tipping and a variety of other added-value processes. Bolero benefits perfect binding, teams with Frontero Muller Martini also raised the bar on perfect binding performance with the introduction of an all-new mid-range perfect binder called Bolero. The binder takes finishing automation to a new level, while offering unprecedented product versatility. Able to process the widest range of book sizes, Bolero can handle book blocks with milled spines as well as thread sewn products. All commonly used gluing processes are integrated into the machine, including one-shot and two-shot hotmelt and PUR (polyurethane). Cold emulsion and primer two-shot binding are also on the new perfect binder’s option list. Makeready time and operator involvement are kept to a minimum, thanks to the system’s Commander digital control system. It accepts product parameters and production data via a built-in touch screen or measuring table. Or in a CIM workflow, job specifications can be input directly via a CIP4 interface that is JDF compatible. After makeready, the entire production process is monitored and controlled from the Commander console. Joining Bolero in a workflow configuration was the new Frontero face-cut trimmer. It produces books and brochures with gatefold covers in single in-line operation. That provides an added-value option that printers and binderies can offer to print buyers and publishers. Alprinta adds speed & versatility to the pressroom Muller Martini extended its lead in variable-size web presses at drupa, with the debut of Alprinta. Available in two widths — 20 1/2” and 29 1/8” — Alprinta can be equipped with new size-variable insert modules for special applications such as package printing. They enable a quick format change in repeat lengths ranging from 20" to 34". A new option for the inserts is the availability of repeat lengths in millimeter increments. This allows for inline production of product specific formats without gap cutting. Each Alprinta printing unit is equipped with an independent, high-performance servo drive, producing speeds of up to 1,500 feet/minute. New commercial inking units feature four form rollers that promote more consistent ink flow, while a new dampening system optimizes the ink/water balance for every job. A new generation control system has been developed for the Alprinta. Its menu-guided touch screen allows the operator to communicate with the machine directly, while an integrated automatic makeready system eliminates the need for repeat entry of order data. The Alprinta conforms to CIP3 and CIP4 industry standards, featuring open architecture for data exchange with third-party systems. Automating hardcover production In a separate section of its exhibit, Muller Martini fully applied the advantages of computer integrated manufacturing (CIM) to book production in another industry milestone — the first fully automated hardcover line. The system consisted of a Ventura sewing machine and an integrated Collibri back gluer with a Book Block Feeder, an RPM roller pressing module, a Merit three-knife trimmer and a Diamant Bookline with the newly released Vesta Jacket Wrapping machine to form a complete single-pass solution. Meanwhile, Muller Martini’s new Ribbon 60 ran off-line as a means to insert up to two bookmark ribbons simultaneously at the rate of 60 books per minute. “This drupa configuration showed how manufacturers can combine our modules to create a finishing workflow that will best meet their needs,” noted Werner Naegeli. “But more importantly, it demonstrated how innovations in hard cover production can open the door to profitable niches for printers and bindery specialists and how short-run hardcover production can be profitable when you run the right equipment.” Streamlined press delivery In another workflow demonstration, Muller Martini showcased with its latest press delivery innovations. The production path began with the new Vivo log bundler, which provides a small-footprint buffering solution for facilities that run web presses in formats ranging from 8 to 32 pages. The Compacto rotary trimmer demonstrated how it cuts more precisely by handling its shingle stream with greater care for greater throughput and higher quality. It was joined by the AvantiPlus bundle stacker, which features an advanced job management and control system that connects it to any JDF-compatible workflow. For a productive finale, Muller Martini’s BC 11 pre-pile unit connected with the new Fontana palletizer. The advancement can interlock bundles of different heights into a stable pallet load to reduce heavy manual labor when palletizing zip sort bundles. Other Innovations Among the other advancements Muller Martini demonstrated at drupa were: • A PrimaPlus saddle stitcher represented Muller Martini in the PrintCity pavilion, working at the output end of MAN Roland’s plate-free DICOweb. • New NewsStitch and NewsTrim modules showed how they produced saddle stitched booklets in-line, extending the versatility of Muller Martini’s NewsLiner-A inserter. More information about the innovations Muller Martini introduced at drupa can be obtained at www.mullermartiniusa.com.