Day4_28

GraphExpo_ShowDaily_September_28_2016

For Book and Catalog Production, Finishing Starts at the Beginning It is not uncommon today to hear companies—publishers as well as press, and fi nishing equipment manufacturers— talk about the “book of one.” Like virtually every other printing application, run lengths of books and catalogs are declining, with more emphasis being placed on customization and personalization. We’re not talking about the Stephen King or James Patterson bestsellers, but rather more specialized book production. Take the education market. One early application of variable-data printing to textbooks was to personalize each book for an individual student: most of the content was static, but a page of front matter had a personalized URL (pURL) and login info that let the student access their own site to access additional course materials and submit assignments. Even more complicated titles could vary content within the book itself. At the same time, there has been a string drive to add multimedia aspects to printed books, which these days specifi cally means QR codes and Augmented Reality (AR). The challenge with these kinds of projects is not necessarily printing them; short-run and on-demand books, as well as books of one, have been economical to print since the early 1990s. The trick increasingly is how to effectively bind and fi nish them. As with any digital printing, the only way to be profi table is to aggregate as many short-run jobs as possible and turn them over quickly. The problem with book printing is that each title may be a different trim size. Then there is matching covers to book blocks, as well as collating any other materials that may have been printed or produced separately such as a color section or signatures printed on different stock. Getting all of these pieces to the bindery and then processing them all—and in as automated a way as possible—is one of the big challenges of today’s book production workfl ows. Today, bindery automation increasingly begins in prepress. Ultimate Technographics’ (Booth 2179) Impostrip 10 and Ultimate Bindery include new automation features for book printing, with the former including new options for keeping all the elements of a multi-part book printing job together and organized, while the latter is supporting—and being supported by—more and more fi nishing equipment, such as the Standard Horizon HT1000V three-knife trimmer for on-demand book production. Speaking of Standard Finishing (Booth 1548), back at drupa, the company introduced the Horizon Smart Binding System, capable of delivering fi nished books in one pass, from continuous-feed, cut-sheet, or folded signatures. Books can vary in size, thickness, and page count. The system took printed rolls from a Screen Truepress Jet520HD inkjet press, unwound them on a Hunkeler UW6 into a Hunkeler CS6-HS Cutter, and sent the variable-length sheets to a Horizon AFV-566T6F dynamic folder. The folded signatures were then spot-glued, accumulated, and jogged in a Horizon BBS-40 to create book blocks, which were then automatically fed into a Horizon SB-09V for perfect binding. Three-knife trimming on the HT-1000V completed the process. Like books, catalog production increasingly involves pulling in and combining disparate materials in the bindery—which has actually been the case for a long time— but now requires as much hands-free automation as possible. At GRAPH EXPO 16, Muller Martini (Booth 1849) is demonstrating what it calls, in today’s decimalized version world, “Finishing 4.0.” In addition to automation and connectivity, Finishing 4.0 involves dynamically processing digital and offset, web- and sheetfed printed signatures in a single workfl ow whether it be for perfect-bound materials like books (Muller Martini’s Vareo) or for catalogs, publications, or other saddle-stitched materials (Presto II Digital). Books, catalogs, even magazines have today become highly specialized, customized, and personalized, are aggregates of materials produced in a variety of ways, and thus need to be assembled and fi nished as quickly and as error-free as possible. As a result, the fi nishing process needs to start at the beginning, with powerful software as well as versatile and automated equipment. Ricoh Pro C7110X A2Z Printing Doubles Business After Increasing Throughput, Decreasing Turnaround Times with Ricoh Devices A2Z Printing, a Mississippi based commercial printer, has upgraded its print operations with solutions from Ricoh (Booth 2035). As a result, A2Z Printing is now better equipped to bring in new and repeat business by leveraging capabilities now accessible with the affordable fi ve-color RICOH Pro C7110X and meet and exceed customers’ expectations with the speed, effi ciency, and quality provided by its RICOH Pro C901 and RICOH Pro 8110e devices. “Our customers want faster and faster turnarounds,” says Allen Taheri, Partner, A2Z Printing. “With Ricoh production printers, we can complete jobs with fewer delays and less downtime, which has helped us to experience dramatic revenue increases. And, best of all, these devices are like tanks; no matter what, they keep running. We could print any project, any time. And in an industry where nobody is ever fast enough, we’re turning jobs around the same day. We were ready to handle anything our customers could ask of us.” Established more than 20 years ago after its cofounders impulsively bought a printer in college, A2Z Printing is now an established, successful commercial printer that serves a wide range of clients, including politicians, news organizations, realtors, and more. Over the years, Taheri and his partner have put more thought into how they run their shop, and in 2011 they began introducing Ricoh devices, as their current fl eet struggled to meet growing volume demands. Today, A2Z Printing consistently meets customer demands and deadlines, enabling them to accept more types of jobs—and more profi table, high-volume jobs. Soon after implementation of the RICOH Pro C901, which brought in much-needed capacity, business doubled, according to Taheri. A2Z Printing experienced revenue increases of almost $800,000 in the fi rst year, utilizing the RICOH Pro C901 for more than 600,000pages each month. When Taheri saw the RICOH Pro C7110X in action at GRAPH EXPO 14, he knew its fi ve-color capabilities and price point would make it a game-changer. He immediately requested one be added to his shop as soon as the product achieved general availability. A2Z Printing’s client base is incredibly varied, but each one shares a single demand: They need the job completed as soon as possible. The RICOH Pro 8110e, which can produce up to one million black-and-white pages every month, allows them to meet and exceed existing, large service-level agreements for recurring projects—such as the weekly black-and-white newspaper they print— without sacrifi cing the ability to add new black-and-white business. “A2Z Printing is yet another great example of how Ricoh’s diverse production print portfolio can help printers meet their customers’ various needs,” says John Fulena, Vice President, Production Print Business Group, Ricoh Americas Corporation. “Whatever the key pain point—whether it’s needing faster turnaround time, increased volume, higher output quality, or added portfolio applications, such as those provided by fi ve-color printing—our experts can fi nd a way to help you. It’s great to see A2Z Printing doing well while drawing on capabilities from several corners of our portfolio.” HT-1000V 28 | September 28, 2016 | GRAPH EXPO 16 Offi cial Show Daily | PrintingNews.com


GraphExpo_ShowDaily_September_28_2016
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