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The Magazine for Muller Martini Customers

Preventive Maintenance Increases Efficiency and Reduces Costs

Spring 2013



Sustainable Investments Pay for Themselves Imprint

Volume 28 Muller Martini “Panorama” Editor Dr. Markus Angst

E  Barely any other industry has undergone such strong change in recent years as the graphic arts industry, which in turn has made a substantial impact on the level of investments. Investment security has become considerably more important due to more rapid change in market requirements, longer investment cycles and the influence of new technologies. This is why, in an environment that is changing much faster than it used to, many of our customers are not only looking for solutions for today, but also new business models for tomorrow and beyond. For that reason we need to design our innovative production systems to meet the needs of our customers in an even more targeted way. As a machine manufacturer, we can move towards being a value-adding partner (experts call it “value proposition”), making us an important part of our customers’ market focus and business models. The intrinsic value of our systems increases when we diversify the combination of innovation, investment, product and service. Customers who choose systems from Muller Martini can count on a number of advantages. E Thanks to our global and local presence, you benefit from professional consultation, prompt installation and the extensive MMServices program for the optimal use of your systems over their entire lifetime – a form of protection for your investment. E With our extensive process know-how, we work together with you to find costeffective solutions even to complex tasks. E Our systems are “digital ready”, which means they can be used for offset printing today and expanded for production downstream of a digital printing press in the future.


Publisher Muller Martini Marketing AG Untere Brühlstrasse 13 CH-4800 Zofingen, Switzerland Telephone +41 62 745 45 75 Fax +41 62 751 55 50

Michael Thüler, Member of the corporate management of Muller Martini



The Book Verification System from Muller Martini Is the Best Insurance You Can Have.

The New Orbit Three-Knife Trimmer Reduces Setup Times by an Hour per Shift at Thomson Reuters.

38 Belgium Has Become a Primera Country: 13 New Saddle Stitchers from Muller Martini Found a Home within a Short Time.

Publication frequency Appears three times a year in English, French, German, Italian, Spanish and Chinese editions. Reproduction with reference to source is permitted.

E Our innovations provide permanent increases in efficiency and improvements in quality. E Our machines continue to produce precisely and reliably years after installation thanks to their robust design – providing you with the best possible resale value as well. E In short, Muller Martini has proven to be a reliable and strong partner, which is a value that really counts in a time of uncertainty. Constant product innovations are an important part of our market performance that customers particularly appreciate. In the tough environment of the graphic arts industry, improvements in quality and production are of vital importance. A good example of Muller Martini’s power of innovation is its book verification system. The comprehensive checking of product structure including content and covers represents a quantum leap in the quality assurance of perfect bound and saddle stitched products. On pages 4–7 in this issue of “Panorama”, we report extensively on the great advantages of the book verification system at two of over 100 users worldwide. Implementing this system requires adjustments to prepress, printing and finishing, which makes it somewhat elaborate to set up. This is why the consultation and support from our specialists on site are par-

ticularly important. Without this local know-how, our customers all over the world would not be able to benefit from the advantages of this quality assurance. This leads us once again to the many reasons for choosing Muller Martini as your partner, or, in this case, a combination of two reasons: An excellent product is only successful if you have a strong partner on site to give you expert support in implementing it. With Muller Martini, you not only get the best solution, but also have sustainable value created at your company.

Printed in Switzerland.


neutral Printed Matter No. 01-13-763636 –

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013


Softcover Production Flaminia, Foligno – The Bolero Satisfies the Increasing Demand for Softcover Products Artisan, Leicester – Just Commissioned Their Fourth Corona Line from Muller Martini Samson, St. Margarethen – The Short Setup Times Tipped the Scales in Favor of the Alegro YesPrint, Cologne – from the Internet to the Pantera via Digital Printing

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Technology Orbit Three-Knife Trimmer – Faster Setup Times and Longer Knife Lives


Digital Solutions King Printing, Lowell – Two SigmaLines and a SigmaTrimming Center




Hunkeler Innovationdays Presto II Digital – Industrial Saddle Stitching Solution for Digitally Printed Products


Hardcover Production Aliki, Buenos Aires – A Diamant MC 35 for Long and Short Runs


Printing Presses Hammer, Rochester – The New VSOP Plays to Its Strengths in Offset Printing


Newspaper Mailroom Systems Amedia, Stokke – With the MPC, Everything Runs Smoothly in the Mailroom


© myclimate – The Climate Protection Partnership

Best regards,

Michael Thüler, Member of the corporate management of Muller Martini

Forum Book Verification System – Error Rate Converging to Zero

Sales and Service Muller Martini Ltd. Ridgeway Industrial Estate Iver, Buckinghamshire SLO 9JQ Phone Iver 0845 345 3588 Telefax 65 56 58 (Std Code 01753) Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Services Inspect – Wachter in Bönnigheim Had Its BravoPlus Inspected



Saddle Stitching Systems Cavalli, Tenero – the Presto II Ensures a Higher Level of Flexibility Belgium – Searching for the Secret of the Primera’s Success at Customers

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In Memoriam Hans Müller – The Pioneer of Machine Construction Has Passed Away




“The Best Insurance You Can Have” Incorrect sequence of signatures, incomplete content or the wrong cover – these are problems that no printing house or bookbindery can afford given the increasingly high expectations of customers. Muller Martini’s book ­verification system, a highlight of which is the patented AsirCode, ensures that products are of perfect quality when they leave the perfect binding line. E  The consistent book verification system from Muller Martini which, like signature matching for saddle stitching as presented in the last edition of “Panorama”, ensures complete content, a correct sequence of signatures and the right cover to match the content, consists of four individual control systems: Asac signature thickness measurement, Asir 3 signature type control in the gathering machine, cover control with Asir 3 in the perfect binder, and Quako book dimensions control in the perfect binder delivery. These can be selected and supplemented in modular form to suit the needs of individual book producers. Correcting Human Error “Our customers have such high quality requirements today that automatic control systems have become indispensable,” says Eugen Mayer, Bookbindery Division Manager at Kösel GmbH & Co. KG, which is situated in the German village of Altusried-Krugzell and is one of the leading book producers on the European market. Or as Roland Kleiner, Operations Manager at Druckhaus Main-Echo GmbH & Co. KG in the town of Aschaffenburg (Germany), puts it: “People make mistakes. That’s entirely natural. During the production of 4

flexibility in feeder assignment. And the control system prevents production if the gathering machine is incorrectly set up.”

print products such errors are most common when feeding products with a large number of signatures. That’s why we need control systems to compensate for human error.” “I’m a Big Barcode Fan” Rudolf Graf, Product Manager at Muller Martin Bookbinding Systems in the Swiss town of Felben, explains that having Asac and Asir in the gathering machine picks up a large proportion of the possible errors during gathering. However, in order to eliminate the remaining risk, both Kösel (see company portrait on page 5) and MainEcho (see page 6) have the complete book verification system from Muller Martini on their Bolero lines, which were installed in 2006 and 2007 respectively. “I wouldn’t rank the control systems in order of importance because I consider them all to be important,” says Mayer. Nevertheless, there is one feature he highlights: “I’m a big barcode fan because of the enormous advantages for a full-service company, which we can also use as a selling point,” says the trained print technician. “AsirCode as the key to high-quality perfect binding is the best insurance you can have,” adds Kleiner. “While I regard the

Eugen Mayer (left), Bookbindery Division Manager at Kösel: “I’m a big barcode fan.” Right: Erik Kurtz, Managing Director of Kösel. Center: Thomas Schmidt, Sales Representative at Muller Martini Germany.

other control systems as nice to have, in my view AsirCode is a must have.” High Degree of Reliability with AsirCode Muller Martini has indeed scored a breakthrough with AsirCode, which is used by over 100 printing houses and bookbinderies around the world, in terms of control systems in gathering machines. Using the patented control system, in addition to traditional Asir 3 image comparison, the correct sequence of the signatures is also checked and missing signatures are identified. If AsirCode is not used, the gathering machine may, for example, be set up with signatures in the wrong sequence. “To prevent that, information from the sensors is taken directly and without special programming from the code for the sequence checks,” says Graf. “That means that the signatures do not need to be fed into strictly assigned feeders. In other words, AsirCode enables a great deal of Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Errors Cost Money Products that are incorrectly stitched or bound can quickly increase costs. “How much do you calculate for complaints?” is the tongue-in-cheek question that Franz Dengler, Production Manager at Reclam in Ditzingen (Germany), the company known for its little yellow books which are published in countless languages and are therefore cover-sensitive, likes to ask bookbinders who do not work with barcode recognition using AsirCode. The AsirCode system really comes into its own for large and text-heavy products. For example, Kösel GmbH & Co. KG, which has two perfect binding lines from different manufacturers, prints and binds a collection of German laws, which is up to 80 mm thick and has around 4000 pages with over 100 signatures, exclusively using the ­Bolero. “Practically a Zero-Error Rate” It is vital for such reference works in particular that the content is complete and all signatures are bound in the right sequence, says Mayer. “We practically have a zero-error rate using the Bolero, even if we employ temporary personnel,” Mayer explains. In addition, the Bolero only ejects if there really is an error. There are no unnecessary ejections. Not to mention the fact that the

Bolero ensures good layflat behavior and high durability of text-heavy books thanks to PUR production using a VPN nozzle. AsirCode is similarly indispensable for various language versions of the same product, for example for the automobile and pharmaceutical industry or for the manufacturers of mobile phones with their multilingual handbooks in an identical format. Roland Kleiner from Main-Echo, where many products are printed in various languages with only the minutest differences, not only sleeps better at night now, but also regards having a reliable control system as a good marketing tool that helps the company’s external sales representatives to acquire (new) print orders. “Some agencies now even ask us directly what we can offer in this respect.” Increasing Appreciation of the Need for Barcodes Kösel and Main-Echo use the AsirCode for all products printed in-house as a form of high-level quality assurance, especially as the generation of barcodes today is very simple. “Practically all big-name producers of pre-press software have integrated it into their imposition software,” says Graf. Things are slightly different, however, when it comes to the finishing of signatures that have been printed by external partners. That accounts for between 15 and 20 percent of the volume at Kösel and around 10 percent at Main-Echo. “Of course we try to persuade all our partners

Four Control Systems for Optimal Quality E




The book verification system from Muller ­Martini contains four control components. Asac signature thickness measurement in the gathering machine: is located in the grippers of the feeders and identifies double and empty signatures. Asir 3 signature control in the gathering machine: sensors in the feeders identify sections that have been positioned incorrectly or positioned upside down. With AsirCode: also checks the completeness of the print product and the correct sequence of signatures. Cover control with Asir 3 in the perfect binder: sensor in the cover transport identifies covers that have been positioned incorrectly or upside down. With AsirCode: checks that the cover matches the content. Quako book dimensions control in perfect binder delivery: identifies length and width deviations of print products.

to always print a barcode,” says Mayer. “However, some are more willing to do so than others. Essentially, however, appreciation of the need for barcodes is increasing, because our partners also need to satisfy the high quality requirements of their customers.” Kleiner has had the same experience at Main-Echo: “We’ve observed an increasing understanding of the need to print barcodes, especially in the case of our long-standing partners.” Main-Echo does not use AsirCode regularly for covers and never uses it for enclosed cards. “The risk of a signature

Druckhaus Main-Echo GmbH & Co. KG, Aschaffenburg (Germany) The range of print products produced by the roughly 100 employees of Druckhaus Main-Echo is extremely extensive, comprising catalogs (from A6 to 27 x 34 cm, spine thickness from 2 mm to 65 mm, hotmelt and PUR), brochures, magazines, pamphlets, inserts, art prints, and flyers. The print run sizes of the wide product range also fluctuate greatly, from 3000 to several hundred thousand copies. In the field of perfect binding there are typically 3000 to 50,000 copies per job. Druckhaus Main-Echo prints using web printing presses as well as sheet-fed offset and digital processes. The company, which is located in the center of the Frankfurt/Rhine-Main Metropolitan Region, publishes a small number of titles itself. However, it produces the vast majority of products for external partners from Germany, including many spe-

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

cialist publishers. “As a full-service company we have the great advantage that we can assist customers quickly and flexibly through the whole production process and can achieve extremely short production times. That’s particularly important for ensuring the high quality of end products.” Main-Echo is a long-standing partner of Muller Martini both in perfect binding (a Bolero was installed in 2007) and in saddle stitching in the field of commercial printing. In addition to a Prima (2001) and a BravoPlus (2007), the printing house also uses an Onyx inserting system (2007).

Main-Echo (the gathering machine of the Bolero with the Asir 3 control screen is shown in the ­picture), like Kösel, uses AsirCode for all products printed in-house.



AsirCode Ensures Perfect Product Quality If the relevant AsirCode (barcode) is printed on the trim of the signatures and the cover, the whole product structure (sequence of signatures and whether the

­ over matches the content) can be checked. c AsirCode thereby prevents production with incorrectly set up products.

1 1  Kösel produces this collection of laws, which is up to 80 mm thick and has around 4000 ­pages with over 100 signatures, exclusively ­using the Bolero. 2  AsirCode ensures the completeness of the print product and the correct sequence of the signatures. 3  Roland Kleiner (right), Operations Manager at Druckhaus Main-Echo: “We need control ­systems to correct human error.” Center: Harald Brandl, Print Finishing Division Manager at Druckhaus Main-Echo. Left: Frank Skorna, Sales Representative at Muller Martini Germany.


missing ­signature

incorrect ­sequence

incorrect ­signature

incorrect ­direction

4  The Bolero, which was commissioned by ­Kösel in 2006, ensures a practically zero-error rate.

3 getting mixed up is significantly greater in the feeder than in the cover feeder,” says Harald Brandl, Print Finishing Division Manager at Druckhaus Main-Echo. “I also think that the risk of cards getting mixed up is very small. In addition, promotional materials like cards are often printed centrally in large quantities and then delivered to the

various bookbinderies to be inserted. In such cases, the printing of barcodes would be difficult to organize.” Important for Thread Sewing Too On the other hand, Mayer explains that AsirCode, which contains information including the job number and the signature

4 number, plays a key role when it comes to thread sewing, one of the services provided by Kösel. “Muller Martini’s solution has the major advantage that it also checks that the opening process is correct. That’s extremely important in thread sewing, where the barcodes are printed in the center of the signature on the tail trim and on the Does the cover match the book block?

Kösel GmbH & Co. KG, Altusried-Krugzell (Germany) With an annual production of 13 million books (half softcover books and half hardcover books), Kösel GmbH & Co. KG in the village of Altusried-Krugzell near Kempten in the German region of Allgäu is one of the most important book producers in Europe. The company, which employs roughly 200 people and has its origins in Typographia Ducalis Campidonensis, which was founded in 1593(!), consistently comes up with surprising new developments and special products. “The harmonic interplay of content, materials, printing quality and bookbinding processing is what makes books a perfect blend of functionality and aesthetics,” says Managing Director Erik Kurtz. The company’s latest innovation is Kösel edge coloring. A digital edge coloring machine, developed in-house, makes it possible for the first time to print four-color motifs on the trimmed edges of books. “We offer our customers the opportunity to make full use of the advantages of digital print-


ing in their designs,” says Kurtz. Products with individualized and personalized motifs can be produced industrially in large quantities using this process.” Since Kösel has always produced mainly in the lower and medium print-run range – typically 1000 to 5000 copies – the full-service company providing pre-press, printing and print finishing services has only experienced a slight decrease in print runs. On the other hand, as Kurtz explains, Kösel has noticed an increased tendency for high-value books or book-like products in the publishing and industrial sectors. “Our production range is relatively unaffected by electronic media. Key words are emotions and the feel of the products.” Kösel has relied for years on print finishing systems from Muller Martini. For softcover products it uses a Bolero perfect binder (installed in 2006) with a Frontero front trimmer. Hardcover books are produced using two Diamant booklines (2004 and

Kösel prints four-color motifs onto the trimmed edges of books using its edge coloring machine.

2007), and two Ventura machines (2005 and 2008) are used for thread sewing. Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

saw edge in the case of two-up production, rather than on the spine.” Asir 3 together with AsirCode can be retrofitted on existing gathering machines for perfect binding lines from Muller Martini. For Graf there is no doubt that, in addition to minimizing the number of complaints, set-up times have also become quicker with the use of Asir 3 in the gathering machine and perfect binder. “Since all information can be scanned from the AsirCode, no additional system programming is necessary. That increases reliability and reduces set-up times.” According to Mayer, that Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

is particularly true for relatively small lot sizes: “Kösel has been producing fairly small print runs for many years, but the control systems certainly speed up the production process somewhat.” However, printing the barcode on the spine requires a high degree of fold accuracy. “1 millimeter of visible barcode height on the front and back of the signature is the absolute minimum,” stresses Mayer. “However, we tend to aim for a width of 1.5 to 2 millimeters so that potential fold deviations don’t lead to unwanted machine stops or ejections in the last stage.”  7

Softcover Production

New Bolero Installed, Trendbinder and Diamant Relocated and Inspected Owing to the increasing demand for softcover products, Grafiche Flaminia has invested in a second perfect binder from Muller Martini for its new factory in Trevi (located approximately 150 kilometers north of Rome), namely the 9000-cycle Bolero B9. At the same time as the move from the old to the new production site took place, the existing Trendbinder and the Diamant bookline underwent thorough inspection. E  Grafiche Flaminia moved to its entirely new production site in Trevi last August. The various machines that were relocated to the new site with the help of Muller Martini Italy under the MMServices label (see box) included a Trendbinder. According to Giuseppe Casali (Delegate of the Board of Directors) and Antonio Maffeis (Managing Director), the company, which belongs to

the Pigini Group and employs a staff of 70, had three main reasons for commissioning a second perfect binder from Muller Martini, namely the first 9000-cycle Bolero B9 installed in Italy, in tandem with the opening of the new plant. “First, greater market demand for softcover products meant we needed to increase our production capacity. Second, we wanted to equip the new


For Grafiche Flaminia, short setup times have even greater significance than high production speed. “However, what’s even more important is the quality of the bound products,” says Maffeis. “My 25 years of experience in the graphic arts industry has shown me that repeatedly.”

1  From right: Claudio Scotto (Muller Martini Italy), Antonio Maffeis (Managing Director of Grafiche Flaminia), Chiara Boccardini ­(Director of Technical Office), Francesca ­Tomassini (Director of Purchasing), Vincenzo Palomba (Production Director) and Nicola Ramella (Muller Martini Italy) in front of the new Bolero B9 perfect binder in Trevi.

5 2  The Trendbinder was not only relocated from the old factory to the new one, but also extensively inspected as part of the MMServices program. 3  Grafiche Flaminia produces softcover books using a Diamant bookline from Muller Martini. 4  Grafiche Flaminia connects two Ventura book sewing machines to the VenturaConnect integrated book sewing system for the ­production of thread-sewn brochures and book blocks. 5  Giuseppe Casali (Delegate of the Board   of Directors): “We have gained considerable flexibility by having two softcover lines.”

hall with state-of-the-art technology. And third, we have gained considerable flexibility by having two softcover lines.” Firmly Positioned on the Market Casali and Maffeis made their decision to purchase the new perfect binder from Muller Martini without extensive evaluation. “We prefer to have long-standing partnerships with our systems suppliers both in printing and print finishing and have made good experiences with Muller Martini over the years. In addition, the Bolero is an ideal combination of speed and quality and is firmly positioned on the market.”

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Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013


Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

No Storage, More Split Run Editions The new Bolero B9 with a nine-station gathering machine, book block feeder, Merit S three-knife trimmer, CB 18 book stacker and Easy Fly front trimmer is particularly strong in terms of short changeover times, thanks to its consistent full automation, as well as its large size range. For Grafiche Flaminia, short changeover times are an important factor because print runs have decreased considerably recently. “Our customers want to avoid keeping titles in stock, so we print considerably more split run editions of the same title,” explain Casali and Maffeis. The average print run size is 5000 to 6000 copies for softcover products, which make up between 60 and 70 percent of the production volume at the full-service company which has a pre-press division and two five-color printing presses. School textbooks, exhibition catalogs, comics and guide books are bound in all possible sizes. Some 60 percent of Flaminia’s customers come from Italy, while the remainder are from France, Germany, Sweden and the USA.  


“A Good Idea” In addition to the Trendbinder, the Diamant bookline and the VenturaConnect book sewing system from Muller Martini also made the move from the old to the new factory of Grafiche Flaminia in Trevi. The company entrusted Muller Martini Italy not only with the relocation as part of the MMServices program, but also with the extensive inspection of the systems. As part of the inspection, lists of updates were drawn up to improve quality and increase productivity of the Trendbinder and Diamant, all of which were approved by Grafiche Flaminia. “It was undoubtedly a good idea to combine the purchase of the Bolero with a services package for the existing systems and to entrust Muller Martini with the relocation of the machines,” says Casali. “The whole process took just a month and, since we had previously installed the new Bolero, there was no interruption in softcover production.” In addition to the factory in Trevi specializing in softcover and hardcover production, where the energy generated by a photovoltaic system nearly covers the company’s daily energy consumption, the Pigini Group also includes Tecnostampa in Loreto, which focuses on saddle stitching and Roto Press, also in Loreto, which focuses on web offset. Together, the three production sites form the largest graphic arts group in Central Italy. 9

Softcover Production

“Because Muller Martini Is Innovative, So Are We” The Artisan Press Ltd., one of the UK’s largest independent web offset printing and adhesive binding companies situated in Leicester, recently began production on a new Muller Martini Corona C18, their fourth Corona adhesive binding line from Muller Martini.

Production Director Gavin Hall (right) and Commercial Director Jonathan Sankey in front of the new Corona line at Artisan.

E  This latest investment not only reinforces the status of The Artisan Press Ltd. as a manufacturer of high-volume adhesive products for some of the UK’s best-known blue-chip companies, it also underlines a longstanding partnership with Muller Martini. “Ever since we entered the perfect binding market in the late 1960s, we have found Muller’s systems to be consistently ahead of the game,” says Production Director Gavin Hall. “Absolute Cutting-Edge Technology” This long-term approach mirrors Artisan’s own philosophy. “Long term customer relationships are at the core of our business philosophy,” says Hall. “We demand the same kind of ongoing commitment to quality and service from our system suppliers, all of which are leaders in their respective fields. Muller Martini has always been responsive to our requirements, and because they are innovative, so are we.” According to Hall, there are several exciting developments on the new Corona line (which he calls “a machine with absolute cutting-edge technology”). “It shows that change is a continuous process at Muller Martini.” The new line at Artisan features a 24-station gathering machine (equipped with stream feeders), a two-shot hotmelt gluing system and two Orbit three-knife trimmers with a CB 18 stacker and Pluton palletizers.

Production Director Gavin Hall: “Ever since we entered the perfect binding market in the late 1960s, we have found Muller’s systems to be consistently ahead of the game.”


Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

The Book Data Center Is the Highlight “The three-knife trimmer, stacker and palletizers have all received significant updates,” says Hall. “The new design of the pressing and trimming system on the Orbit three-knife trimmer make a great difference. What’s more, the signatures can now be electrostatically blocked in the gathering machine, which ensures additional stability.” However, according to Hall, the most obvious innovation on the line is probably the Book Data Center. “For us, this unique book data center is a great addition to the control system. We use it to measure the book, and it then populates the entire line with the dimensions and automates the setup for each production stage.” Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Constant Production and Variety of Product The Artisan Press Ltd. has high demands when it comes to perfect binding. “We require constant production to meet our demanding schedules’’ says Hall ‘whilst also producing a variety of product formats literally puts the technical ability of the Corona to a daily test.” Gavin Hall has seen many changes within the printing industry from the pre-digital era through to today’s modern control technology. “The Corona binding system is a good example of a product which has evolved incorporating leading edge technology at all stages of its development” he says. More Complex Processes Constant demand from the customer for product variety and economy drives advancements in technology and production methods, says Commercial Director Jonathan Sankey. “Everything we produce is a specialized marketing tool for our customers which in the past were their sole or primary means of promotion. Now catalogues are just one tool among many, this means we’re often printing multiple variety prod-

ucts with complex binding variations therefore the need for precision is absolute. We are particularly impressed with the effectiveness of the Asir 3 and Asac page recognition systems. The Corona adhesive binding lines have to be robust enough to cope with the requirements of large volume and continuous production,” emphasizes Sankey. “They also have to be highly automated to facilitate economic and efficient setup times.”  11

Softcover Production

“And the Moral of the Story Is: Diverse Binding Is the Way to Go” In order to have high quality also in perfect binding under its control at all times, Samson Druck Ges.m.b.H. in St. Margarethen in the Austrian state of Salzburg has invested for the first time in a perfect binder. Samson opted for the Alegro first unveiled by Muller Martini at the last drupa because its short setup times optimize production processes.

E  Gerhard Aichhorn, owner and Managing Director of Samson Druck, which was founded by his father Erich Aichhorn in 1978 and today employs some 100 people, explains in a nutshell why the company, after many years of experience in saddle stitching, decided in fall to extend its range of print finishing services and to enter perfect binding for the first time: “First, our number of jobs has increased. Second, we

want to keep added value in-house. Third, this step enables us to ensure optimal quality. And fourth, this gives us more control over logistics.” More Control Over Final Quality The fact that Samson Druck can now dispense with some 220 truck journeys with a total distance of 60,000 kilometers annually thanks to having softcover production

in-house, is just one benefit of the Alegro (not least from an environmental point of view). Far more importantly, by bringing perfect binding in-house, the leading Austrian printing house for high-quality sheetfed printing now has complete control over the entire production process of perfect bound print products, and in particular end quality. To ensure quality, Samson finishes sig-

nex, it is possible to optimally automate all Muller Martini systems, from a standalone machine to complex production lines. Thanks to this standardization, all machines can communicate with one other and, using Connex, can also be connected to a management information system (MIS). “For us that’s a very important point because we already have an MIS,” underlined Aichhorn.

2 natures solely printed in-house using two eight-color printing presses with lacquer and a ten-color printing press. Trend Towards Perfect Binding Samson Druck, which processes more than 4000 tons of paper yearly, has specialized for decades in high-quality (image) brochures, (customer) magazines and pamphlets, often with surface finishing, for various major international automobile, fashion and jewelry brands. “That enables us to stand out from the competition,” says Aichhorn. According to Aichhorn, there is a clear trend toward perfect binding for such high-quality products. Print runs range from 500 to 150,000 copies, although the number of copies is below 10,000 for most perfect binding jobs. Samson Druck, which offers consulting, prepress, address administration, mail service and distribution as a lettershop certified by the post office in addition to printing and print finishing, has also observed a second trend among its many regular customers. The number of copies per title is falling, while the variety of languages and often the frequency of publication due to electronic (advertising) competition are increasing. In addition, and this is more an economic necessity than a trend, production processes need to be optimized due to increasingly short deadlines.

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Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Customer Event in New Hall Samson has built a new hall specifically for the new perfect binder, increasing its production space by 25 percent. The new hall and the new Alegro were officially inaugurated with a customer event attended by numerous representatives from the political and business spheres. Samson even produced a softcover book designed for

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Three Alegro Highlights According to Aichhorn, there were three technical features satisfying all market needs that convinced Samson Druck, following intensive evaluation, to invest at the drupa 2012 in the new Alegro perfect binding line, which features a 15-station gathering machine, a VPN nozzle for PUR gluing processes, a Solit three-knife trimmer and a CB 18 book stacker. E First, AsirCode, which guarantees the correct sequence of signatures in the gathering machine (“vital for us because of the variety of languages, which is why we print a barcode on all signatures”/ see also the article on page 4 of this edition). E Second, the Book Data Center, which records all book measurement data for the entire perfect binding line (“without which I wouldn’t have bought the machine”). E Third, Motion Control Technology, which drives directly and controls individually all stations of the Alegro (“for me this is the highlight of the entire control system, because short setup times are crucial given our job structure”). Connex Optimizes Processes A further advantage is that Samson integrates the Alegro with the Connex data and process management system. With Con-

1  Gerhard Aichhorn (second from left), owner and Managing Director of Samson Druck: “Short setup times are crucial given our job structure.” Right, next to Gerhard Aichhorn: the two machine operators ­Wolfgang Gfrerer and Johannes Knar,   ­and Claudia Zitz, management assistant. Left:­ ­Peter Cerer, Sales Manager   at Muller Martini Austria. 2  For years, Samson outsourced perfect binding jobs. The new Alegro enables the company’s numerous high-quality jobs to   be performed in-house. 3  The Primera C140 saddle stitcher,   which was commissioned in summer 2011, is operated by the same machine operators as the new Alegro perfect binder.

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Softcover Production


The Orbit Reduces Setup Times by as Much as an Hour per Shift at Thomson Reuters The three-knife trimmer is often the (time-consuming) sticking point during changeovers to a softcover line. That is why Thomson Reuters in Eagan, Minnesota, has installed two new Orbit three-knife trimmers from Muller Martini behind its existing perfect binders. The results have been realized immediately: faster setup times, shorter production processes, and longer knife life.

the opening live in front of the prominent guests. The complex brochure titled “Samson’s Fabulous World of New Perfect Binding” (“And the moral of the story is: diverse binding is the way to go”), which the company is also using as advertising material, highlights the wide-ranging options in printing and print finishing. Same Machine Operators for Perfect Binding and Saddle Stitching A Primera C140 saddle stitcher featuring six feeders, two cover feeders, a Perfetto compensating stacker and an ATS stacker, which earlier was located elsewhere, now runs in the new hall just a few meters away from the Alegro. Since the early ’90s Samson has relied on saddle stitching systems from Muller Martini and was the first to install a Bravo in Austria. The fact that the perfect binder and saddle stitcher are placed side by side has a practical advantage for Samson: the machine operators can operate both lines.

“Both machines are laserblue and have Muller Martini’s name on them,” says Aichhorn with typically dry Austrian humor when asked about his personnel operating both machines. At the same time, his remark points to the convenient operation of both machines. “Our young machine operators are open to new technologies and got the hang of both systems quickly following intensive training here on site. The first book was ready for sale with the very first production run using the Alegro.” Like the Alegro, the Primera commissioned in summer 2011 is also integrated with Connex. In addition, Samson has the service program MMRemote for both the new lines. This way, Muller Martini can provide quick support from the factory in the event of a malfunction. 

Samson’s new hall and the new Alegro were officially inaugurated in fall last   year with a customer event, attended   by ­numerous representatives from   the ­political and business spheres.

Alegro: Motion Control Technology Ensures Quicker Setup Times The new Alegro perfect binder from Muller Martini meets high expectations in the fields of offset and digital printing with innovative Motion Control Technology. It boasts stations with separate drives, a highly flexible machine concept, as well as precise settings owing to its robust design, and ensures shorter setup and production times and higher product quality.


Motion Control facilitates extremely short processing times, resulting in maximum profitability. The Alegro, which stands out due to special sizes and production methods, also provides the basis for a large range of uses. At the heart of the intelligent machine concept is the fact that all stations of the Alegro are driven directly and controlled in-

dividually thanks to Motion Control. That means the settings have a direct effect on the product, leading to maximum quality. Motion Control optimizes the individual process steps, reduces changeover times and allows for maximum production performance in the shortest time. With Motion Control, the readjustment of settings is reduced to a minimum.

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

E  Thomson Reuters produces millions of softcover and hardcover books annually spread over 15,000 different publications. Three-quarters of all books produced by Thomson Reuters are perfect bound, for which the third-largest book producer in the United States uses four softcover lines. Those include two perfect binders from Muller Martini, a Normbinder and a Pony binder. As the print runs have seen decreases in recent years, the company has Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

to carry out a large number of job changeovers in Eagan. “We have to change each line 10 to 12 times per shift,” says Rocky Aune, Technical Supervisor at Thomson Reuters.

Dan Duffy, three-knife trimmer trainer at Thomson Reuters: “The knives on the Orbit last a lot longer, and either the complete   set or individual blades can be quickly   replaced.”

Beyond Even Wildest Expectations The sticking point of the Make Ready system tends to be the three-knife trimmer. Or rather, was the three-knife trimmer until recently. Since last year, Thomson Reuters 15


1  From right: Steve Zweber (Director of Bindery and Subscription Services), Rocky Aune (technical supervisor), Dan Duffy (three-knife trimmer trainer), LJ Warkel ­(machine operator), Chris Troje (machine   operator) and Eric Olsen (Regional Sales Manager at Muller Martini USA) in front   of one of the two new Orbit three-knife   trimmers at Thomson Reuters in Eagan,   Minnesota. 2  Thomson Reuters produces a lot of thick books that the Orbit now processes more   efficiently than previous three-knife trimmers (pictured: Technical Supervisor Rocky Aune). 3  Machine operator Chris Troje: “Operating the Orbit felt good from the start and was great after just two weeks.”


has been running two Orbit three-knife trimmers from Muller Martini behind two of its perfect binding lines (the Normbinder and a model from another manufacturer), with results that surprise even the experienced machine operators at Thomson Reuters. Now with the Orbit they can complete job changeovers five minutes faster than

About Thomson Reuters Thomson Reuters is the world’s leading source of intelligent information for businesses and professionals. They combine industry expertise with innovative technology to deliver critical information to leading decision makers in the financial and risk, legal, tax and accounting, intellectual property and science and media markets, powered by the world’s most trusted news organization. Thomson Reuters employs approximately 60,000 people and operates in over 100 countries. Thomson Reuters Book Manufacturing & Distribution is one of the largest printing facilities in the United States. The facility excels in printing high-quality books and materials, both web offset and short-run digital. Centrally located in Eagan, Minnesota, this facility services customers from across the country and overseas, producing and shipping more than 54 million products annually.



before. “I knew that the three-knife trimmer could be changed over quickly,” says Chris Troje, machine operator at Thomson Reuters. “But that it’s this quick exceeds even our wildest expectations. We now save up to an hour per shift.” Hardly Any Fine Adjustments Necessary The fact that the 18 machine operators, who operate all three-knife trimmers, are so fast is closely related to the convenience of operating the Orbit, according to Dan Duffy, three-knife trimmer trainer and, having worked for 31 years at the company, the most experienced trimmer operator in the bookbindery at Thomson Reuters. “As we are able to make fine adjustments on the fly and no longer have to set up each machine component individually thanks to the servo technology, we have been able to speed up the entire perfect binding process, while the quality of the end products has improved.” After the book dimensions are fed into the two Orbits at Thomson Reuters, 99 percent of the time there is no need for any more fine adjustments. With the previous three-knife trimmer, this rate was as low as 5 percent (i.e. 95 percent of the jobs needed to be corrected manually). Short Learning Curve As the Orbit can be set up easily, there was a very short learning curve for the machine operators – quite unlike the learning curve with the older three-knife trimmer models. “Operating the Orbit felt good from the

start and was great after just two weeks of use, while it took six months or more to get that comfortable with other three-knife trimmers,” says Troje. For some time now, Thomson Reuters also has run two Merit S three-knife trimmers from Muller Martini behind another perfect binder and on a Diamant 60 bookline. “Before installing the two Orbits, we were able to train optimally using those models,” says Duffy. By leveraging the similar operating system and Commander control screen with the Merit trimmers, the training on the Orbits was significantly reduced.

reduction in our outside grinding costs” says Zweber.

Longer Knife Life Production of thick books is faster in particular, as the Orbit processes book thicknesses of up to 80 mm and Thomson Reuters frequently pre-gathers signatures. The knives used to have to be removed for the passage of the pre-gathered signatures through the three-knife trimmer. Now, with the servo control on the Orbit, the knives can simply be deactivated. According to Steve Zweber, Director of Bindery and Subscription Services, the ­Orbit not only trims better, but the knives also last a lot longer and can be set up much faster than before. The knives on a previous three-knife trimmer from another manufacturer had to be replaced five to ten times per week; these knives last ten times longer. “We can trim up to 180,000 books with one set of knives. And after two months of running the Orbits, our supply chain group took notice of the drastic

In addition to flawless gathering, perfect binding and gentle delivery, the final trimming process is crucial for a perfect softcover product. With its innovative technology and fully automated design, the Orbit three-knife trimmer is perfect for operation in the upper performance range – with extremely high net output. Thanks to firstclass productivity and the consistently high quality of the end products, demanding jobs can be completed on schedule using the Orbit three-knife trimmer. The Orbit enables efficient production with extremely high net output, a consistently high level of production quality over the entire performance range, uniquely quick changeovers thanks to a high level of automation and extremely simple operation. For three-sided trims, consistent trimming conditions are necessary to maintain

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

“Good for My Stress Level” According to Duffy, there have been significant improvements in terms of changing and sharpening of the knives: “Either the complete set or individual knives can be replaced more conveniently and much faster than before.”


The cost savings for the company due to the reduction in time and materials is just one aspect. Equally important is the increased level of safety, according to Warkel: “The less I have to deal with the changing of knives, the better. It also helps keep my stress level down.” 

Orbit: SmartPress Technology Provides the Perfect Trim

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

consistently high product quality. That is why Muller Martini developed SmartPress Technology. It ensures a gentle and controlled pressing procedure enabling the air between the sheets of paper to escape completely from the product. This compact book press is the optimal way to ensure a perfect trim. Adaptive SmartPress Technology provides several advantages: air can be removed optimally during the pressing procedure, pressing is strong and gentle, and quality is consistent thanks to individual adjustments to the pressing for each book. The optimal trimming speed is crucial for a high-quality, perfect bound end product. That is why transport, pressing and trimming have independent drives on the Orbit. The independent knife drive guarantees more time for SmartPress to do its work and the ideal trimming speed regardless of the cycle count on the machine.

Thomson Reuters has installed two new Orbit three-knife trimmers from Muller Martini   behind its existing perfect binders in Eagan.


Softcover Production

print finishing, continuously expanded its machine line-up in the years that followed and in 2012 commissioned a modern 3B eight-color sheet-fed offset printing press. “It was clear from the outset that we also needed to invest in print finishing to match our increasing printing capacity, in order to keep the entire value-added chain and quality control in-house,” says professional printer Shazad Khan. “Ideal for Our Job Structure” With the manual perfect binder from another manufacturer that the company used until a few months ago, YesPrint could no longer cope with the output of the new printing press and had to outsource large jobs. Furthermore, the new online presence designed by a partner company exclusively for YesPrint will soon go live, marking a significant expansion in the product range of YesPrint. Zishan Khan was convinced on the last day of the drupa that his brother had hit the bull’s eye at the Muller Martini stand, and indeed, the first months of operation have proven the Pantera to be the ideal solution

for the company, which employs over 20 people. “This is just the right machine for our job structure.” Two Instead of Three Shifts YesPrint’s runs for softcover products – 90 % of which are in the A4 portrait and landscape formats – range between 250 and 200,000 copies. However, for most jobs, the figure is close to 5000. “That means we have to make frequent changeovers and are therefore reliant on a userfriendly system in print finishing,” says Zishan Khan. The fact the YesPrint machine operators can prepare the Pantera so quickly from one job to the next thanks to intensive training on site at the company has had a welcome impact on YesPrint’s productivity. It is now possible to work in two shifts rather than three for perfect binding. “That has significantly improved our competitiveness,” says Zishan Khan with satisfaction. “And these days it’s not uncommon for us to get the data in the morning and to deliver the finished products the next afternoon.”

Ready for Digital Printing The company owner also points to another advantage of the latest expansion of the company’s machine line-up. YesPrint still prints exclusively using offset. “Even with the traditional printing method, it’s not uncommon for us to be less expensive than digital printers right down to 100 copies. However, digital is increasingly gaining ground and for us it’s only a matter of time until we enter that market. From that perspective, we regard our new Pantera, which is digital ready, also as an investment in the future.” 

1 1  Zishan Kahn (right), Co-owner of YesPrint: “The Pantera has significantly ­increased our competitiveness.” Center: ­machine operator Bali Ukiqi. Left: Thomas ­Irsigler, Sales Representative at Muller ­Martini Germany.

From the Internet to the Pantera Previously, the online printing house YesPrint in Cologne, Germany, had to outsource larger ­perfect binding jobs because it only had a manual perfect binder. The new Pantera from Muller Martini now enables the company to produce all softcover jobs in-house. That benefits both the workflow within YesPrint and the company’s bottom line.

3  . . . and processed to diagonally positioned stacks using the Uno. 4  Since commissioning the new Pantera, YesPrint can also produce large softcover jobs in-house.

2  The products are neatly cut using the ­Esprit …

2 E  Some may say that little of importance happens on the last day of a trade fair. Yet the spontaneous decision of YesPrint to buy a Pantera perfect binder at the most recent drupa proves that it is not always that case. On 16 May 2012, the 14th and last day of the trade fair in Dusseldorf, Zishan Khan received a call from his brother Shazad: “I’m at the Muller Martini stand and I’m looking at the ideal machine for our job structure!” Ready for Use in No Time Shazad and Zishan Khan, who founded the start-up company in 2005 under the then 18

name of Druckerei Khan and today are joint owners of YesPrint together with the third brother Sajjad, who joined the firm in 2010, signed the purchase contract for the Pantera not long afterwards. Less than four months later, the perfect binder together with an 18-station gathering machine, an Esprit Amrys three-knife trimmer and a Uno book stacker was ready to start producing in Cologne. The speed with which the Pantera was commissioned was prompted in large part by YesPrint’s dynamically growing production volumes. That fast growth is in turn closely related to the World Wide Web and

serves as a prime example of meaningful and valuable synergies between new and traditional media. YesPrint is a typical online printing house with print products than can be ordered online and that are standardized and, therefore, inexpensive, including flyers, folders, letter-headed paper, business cards and posters, as well as, increasingly, perfect bound brochure, magazines and customer magazines. Ongoing Investments For that reason, the family business, which started out with just a four-color printing press, a trimmer and a folding machine for Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

3 Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

4 19

Digital Solutions

As King Printing has had its own IT department since the beginning of the computer age in the 1980s and today offers electronic forms for online publications as well as via mobile apps, individual customers often end up publishing a printed version of what started out as an e-book.

cause it was offered by two such renowned companies, this solution earned our trust.” Trust that has paid off, according to the boss of 120 employees working in three shifts: “Finishing keeps up to speed with printing. That was not the case before commissioning this complete digital solution.”

2010 The First SigmaLine … The more digital printing jobs the company received, the more urgently King Printing needed to look for an ideal solution for print finishing. That is why the family business invested in its first SigmaLine with a SigmaFolder and a SigmaCollator in 2010 – alongside an HP T-350 digital printing press. Adi Chinai’s decision to buy the first fully integrated, industrial strength solution for digital book production was mainly due to the partnership between Muller Martini and HP in the area of digital printing. “Be-

2013 The Second SigmaLine and a SigmaTrimming Center King Printing expanded its Muller Martini system by adding a second SigmaLine with a SigmaFolder and a SigmaCollator, as well as the first SigmaTrimming Center in the United States at the beginning of the year. “The SigmaTrimming Center helps us to optimize the nearline workflow of our various softcover and hardcover lines that can now be controlled by one single machine operator,” says Adi Chinai, pointing out the greatest advantage of this new technology.

According to the head of the company, the easy setup of the SigmaTrimmer (see box) contributes to optimizing the production processes: “This of course increases the flexibility and efficiency of our many short runs.”  

1 1  In 2010, King Printing invested in the   first SigmaLine with a SigmaFolder and   SigmaCollator, followed by a SigmaTrimming Center in 2013. 2  Adi Chinai (right), Managing Director of King Printing: “The easy setup of the SigmaTrimmer increases the flexibility and efficiency of our ­many short runs.” Left: Frank Donnelly,   Regional Sales Manager at Muller Martini   USA.

Lower Print Runs Require New Print Finishing Technology King Printing Company, Inc. in Lowell, Massachusetts, has exclusively used digital printing processes for nearly a year. In order to seamlessly finish its increasing print volume, the family business now operates the first SigmaTrimming Center in the United States in addition to two SigmaLines.


E  Three years ago, the average print run for digitally printed books at King Printing was 1000 copies. Today, it is between 100 and 150. “Soon it will perhaps only be 50,” says Managing Director Adi Chinai. “Digital printing is the future, and the trend towards lower print runs cannot be stopped.” A Lot of Experience with Short Runs As if Adi Chinai’s Father, Sid, who founded the company in 1978, had predicted the change in the graphic arts industry, King Printing entered the digital printing business 24 years ago. “We are well-prepared for the current development in the industry, as we have a lot of experience with short runs,” notes Adi Chinai. For example, King Printing – apart from offset processing for covers – has exclusively used digital printing processes for nearly a year. Their customers for softcover products (60 percent of the printing vol-

ume at King Printing) and hardcover books (40 percent) from the United States and increasingly from other countries specialize in the fields of economics, education, art and science, but jobs also include children’s books and novels. Avoiding Print Runs That Are Too High In addition to publishing companies, King Printing also has individual customers that produce books in self-publishing. “The number of self-published books is growing,” says Adi Chinai, who has the corresponding slogan on his business card: “There is a Book in You!” “We have built a reputation in that segment and been able to increase our customer base by following our customers through every step of the book production process, offering good service in addition to high quality and saving our clients from commissioning print runs that are too long.” Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013


SigmaTrimmer as a Solo Version – Three-Sided Trimming with Zero Make Ready Trimming a wide range of formats and book thicknesses down to one-off production with 1000 cycles per hour with no changeovers and therefore no interruptions is enabled by the SigmaTrimmer from Muller Martini, which can also be operated as a solo machine. Muller Martini makes use of the unique digital solutions technology of the SigmaLine as the first fully integrated, industrial strength solution for digital book production, and with the new offline solution of the SigmaTrimmer threeknife trimmer it gives graphics arts companies even more flexible application options. The end format for each book is read individually by a scanner in the infeed, allowing all settings to be entered automatical-

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

ly. As the knives on the SigmaTrimmer are fixed and the products are transported to the knives on a turntable, books with various formats, sizes and print runs can be trimmed at up to 1000 cycles per hour without interruption (Zero Make Ready). This Solution Is of Particular Interest to Printers E with a diverse job mix, as they lose considerable time finishing their softcover products on a conventional three-knife trimmer due to the time-consuming changeovers; E with ultra-short print runs (down to oneoff production) as their end formats are often trimmed down from a few stan-

dardized gross book formats, therefore allowing them to expand their maximum foot trimming from 30 mm to 75 mm, which allows for even more efficiency and flexibility in their printed products; E who want to enter the digital printing business with smaller machines; E who produce books using both digital and offset printing processes.


News from Muller Martini Druckforum (Printing Forum) in Filderstadt: “Digital Printing Is Supplementing, Not Replacing Offset Printing”

Speakers at the Muller Martini evening at the Druckforum (Printing ­Forum) in Filderstadt, Germany (from left): Volker Leonhardt (Managing Director at Muller Martini Germany), Uwe Schulz (Production/Technology Manager at GGP Media GmbH), Kurt Schläpfer (Sales/Product ­Manager at Muller Martini Bookbinding Systems).

In his interesting presentation during the Muller Martini evening at the traditional Druckforum (Printing Forum) in Filderstadt, Germany, Uwe Schulz, Production/Technology Manager at GGP Media GmbH (Pössneck, Germa-

ny) discussed the digital printing solutions that book producers can turn to in response to falling print runs. As GGP, a part of the Arvato/ Bertelsmann Group, produces many books and brochures in

Presto II Speeds Up the Numerous Job Changeovers at Bodan AG in Kreuzlingen Bodan AG Druckerei in Kreuzlingen became the first graphic arts business in the German-speaking regions of Switzerland to put the new Presto II saddle stitcher from Muller Martini, which was un-

The new Presto II at Bodan AG is the most compact saddle stitcher in its performance class.


veiled at drupa 2012, into operation. The company had previously relied on a 1509 saddle stitcher for over two decades. The prospect of rather costly reconditioning prompted the company to make a new investment. According to the owner Urban Ruckstuhl, there were three main reasons behind the company’s decision for the Presto II that features a cover folder feeder and three twin feeders. “First, we’ve had good experiences with Muller Martini over the years. Second, as a Swiss company, we strive to support Swiss machine manufacturers. Third, we expect the Presto II to speed up setup times significantly.” Shorter setup times are par­ ticularly important for Bodan AG since its numerous magazines, journals and brochures often have short print runs and feature a wide range of formats.

large print runs, the current market trends present particular challenges for the large printing plant, which employs over 1000 people. According to Schulz, 30 percent of the books printed for publishing companies, industry and local authorities now have small print runs of 3000 copies or fewer. That prompted GGP to enter digital printing with an HP T400 and, following thorough evaluation, to opt for a Nearline solution from Muller Martini for print finishing. For softcover books the Nearline solution consists of a SigmaFolder, a SigmaCollator, an Alegro perfect binder and a Solit three-knife trimmer. After the book blocks have been glued off on the Alegro, hardcover books are produced using an existing BL 500 bookline from Muller Martini. GGP decided on a Nearline ­solution because, according to Schulz, “the output of the digital

Package Printing Seminar in Maulburg: ­ Exciting Solutions for Package Printing printing press from three shifts can be finished using the perfect binder in one shift.” One of the key reasons why GGP, which now operates seven perfect binders from Muller Martini including the Alegro, chose a solution from the Swiss machine manufacturer is the Connex data and process management system. “I don’t know of any other supplier that offers such a workflow system,” says Schulz. Despite the digital printing euphoria, the printing and finishing expert is sure that “digital printing is supplementing, not replacing offset printing.” The same point was made by Volker ­Leonhardt, Managing Director of Muller Martini Germany: “We firmly believe in the coexistence of digital and offset printing.”

The seminar participants listen ­attentively to the live presentation of the VSOP web offset printing press in Maulburg.

Muller Martini showed how the numerous advantages of web offset printing can be used for the packaging market during its twoday seminar at the Training Center Druck in Maulburg, Germany. The expert speakers presented

various competitive advantages to over 100 participants, from data preparation and radiation curing ink technologies to the VSOP and Alprinta web offset printing presses. Talks given by specialists from partner companies during the seminar dealt with topics such as data handling and printing plate manufacturing with CTP, ­integrating tested ink systems in the food industry, using a wide range of materials as well as the various areas of use for infinite variable web offset printing press technology. Many seminar participants made the trip to Maulburg not least for the live presentations of the VSOP and Alprinta V web offset printing presses. The demonstrations featured challenging package printing jobs on substrates such as PE, OPP and PET as well as the rapid changeover from one print job to the next.

Muller Martini Booth at the Graph Expo in Chicago: “Bind Your Own Book” Over four busy days, Muller ­Martini inspired the enthusiasm of the many visitors to the Graph ­Expo in Chicago under its motto “new or renewed developments”. Visitors to Muller Martini’s booth showed particular interest in the live demonstrations of the SigmaTrimmer and personal ­consulting in the MMServices ­program. The visitors were also greatly interested in innovations in the MM Uptodate segment. While it is often difficult to make new investments in this difficult economic environment, MMUptodate can help bring existing machinery in line with state-of-the-art technology easily and without significant costs. At the company’s trade fair booth, no fewer than 15 MMInspect agreements were signed. One of the highlights was the “bind your own book” live demonstration. The unique Sigma­

Visitors to the Graph Expo were able to produce their own books at Muller Martini’s booth.

Trimmer can process 1000 different books hourly. The three-knife trimmer featuring barcode technology enables customers to process data in real time and without errors. At Muller Martini’s booth, visitors were able to operate the SigmaTrimmer themselves and produce a book of their choice.

Open House at Kodansha: Japan’s Authors Prefer the SigmaLine

New Print Finishing Center from Muller Martini in Zofingen to Act as Center for Extensive Know-how Transfer

At its open house in Saitama, the leading Japanese publishing house, Kodansha Fujimino Digital Press & Finishing Factory, presented the first SigmaLine, the fully integrated digital book production solution, to be installed in Japan. At Kodansha, the SigmaLine, connected inline with the T300 inkjet printing press from HP, processes print products in a single operation from data to the completed book. “The SigmaLine allows us to publish books in small print runs with high efficiency in a very short time,” ­Kenjiro Umezaki, General Manager of the Kodansha Manufacturing Division told over 180 guests. “Thanks to this investment, we are also able to cost-effectively process smaller print runs and produce customized books in a short period of time. This new possibility has already enabled us to gain the confidence of

After major renovations in the ­historic factory building at Muller Martini’s headquarters in Zofingen, Switzerland, the new Print Finishing Center for machine demonstrations, training sessions and know-how transfer, in ­particular for end products as well as data and process management, was opened in February. Using modern machinery and supported by ideal infrastructure in the 2000 m2 facility, machine and product demonstrations are organized and presented for ­potential customers. Process and product tests, for example with special paper or extraordinary ­finishing, provide customers with important information and also support the continued development of Muller Martini systems. Experienced instructors and ­process specialists teach course participants in both the theore­ tical and practical use of Muller

180 visitors came to the open house hosted by Kodansha ­Fujimino Digital Press & Finishing Factory and Muller Martini.

authors.” Bruno Müller, CEO von Muller Martini, briefly elaborated on the development of the SigmaLine, pointing out its importance for digital book production: “By combining the SigmaLine with a Pantera for digital perfect binding, you can prepare yourselves for the challenges of today and tomorrow.”

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Martini systems. In addition to training sessions and demonstrations, visitors can visit the Product Innovation Lounge to find out more about special printed products and their manufacture as well as find inspiration from innovative product ideas. In a relaxed setting, they can discuss new markets, ideas and the opportunities these can present. At the Print Finishing Center, specialists can also find extensive information on the advantages of the software solutions from Muller Martini. For example, ­customers have access to ­Connex, the data and process management system that offers a complete solution for digital printing that includes prepress, printing, and finishing. Connex organizes and controls pro­ duction of a wide range of both saddle stitching and digital printing systems.

One key focus of the Print Finishing Center is the MMServices portfolio from Muller Martini.

One key focus of the Print ­ inishing Center is the MMServices F portfolio from Muller Martini. ­Using a hands-on approach and featuring clear examples, elements of the program are presented – such as MMInspect, the preventive inspection service

from Muller Martini. With ­ Uptodate, potential upgrades and updates are suggested that prolong the life span of the ­machines and ensure that they maintain their high performance for many years.



Hunkeler Innovationdays in Lucerne

Hardcover Production

“Such Inline Systems Are What the Market Needs” At the Hunkeler Innovationdays trade fair in Lucerne, Muller Martini produced three different print products live and without interruption using a Presto II Digital saddle stitcher. E  With high-performance inkjet digital printing establishing itself in the field of high-quality color printing too and sizes of print runs for magazines, journals and brochures continuing to fall, Muller Martini presented the Presto II Digital to trade visitors in Lucerne as a new industrial finishing solution for digitally printed products. Three different products were produced live and without interruption at Muller Martini’s trade fair stand. If necessary, covers could be fed to match a specific copy. Muller Martini presented a Presto II Digital line, consisting of a high-performance processing folder, two signature feeders, a

cover folder feeder, a stitching machine and a three-knife trimmer, in combination with an unwinding system, a fold/merge module and a cross cutting machine from Hunkeler. “A Highly Innovative Solution” Paul M. Wasanga considers the system “a highly innovative solution that saves on a lot of space”. According to the CEO of the Kenya National Examination Council in Nairobi, the market is in need of precisely such inline systems. “Digital printing alone is not efficient enough – it requires the right finishing for the seamless completion of print products. When I see solutions like the Presto II Digital, I am convinced that there is still potential for digitally printed, saddlestitched products.” Growing Market A lot of expertise was concentrated in a small space, that is why Petr Romanov, Chief Technologist at JSC First Model Printing House in Moscow, spent four days at the trade fair in Lucerne: Technicians took their time to explain their systems in detail

at the Hunkeler Innovationdays.” JSC First Model Printing House already produces digitally printed hardcover and softcover books on a SigmaLine, consisting of a SigmaFolder and SigmaCollator. The products are finished on a Diamant MC 60 bookline and a Ventura MC book sewing machine from Muller Martini as well as on an older perfect binder. “In Lucerne, I wanted to find out about the options offered by saddle stitching for digital printing, since I’m confident that this market will continue to gain in importance.”  From right: Jorge Tsiaculias (Company ­Owner and President), Javier Malvezzi ­(Director of the Hardcover Division), Alejandro Estevez (Sales Director) und Claudio Carballo (Bookbindery Director) in front of the new Diamant MC 35 bookline at Aliki S. A. in Buenos Aires.

While in Lucerne, visitors to the trade fair from all over the world were introduced to the secrets of the Presto II Digital by Muller Martini specialists.

Diamant MC 35 Comes into Its Own When It Comes to Short Runs Thanks to the high degree of automation of its new ­Diamant MC 35 bookline from Muller Martini, Aliki S. A., located in the Argentinian capital of Buenos Aires, can now produce its hardcover books more cost-effectively, while also delivering con­ siderably higher quality.

E  Since there are few graphic arts businesses in Argentina that produce hardcover books industrially, Jorge Tsiaculias spotted a market gap, prompting the owner and president of Aliki to invest recently in a Diamant MC 35. Tsiaculias opted for the bookline from Muller Martini for three main reasons: “First, I see Muller Martini as the clear market leader in this segment. Second, I was convinced by the book quality of the Diamant. Third, in the past years we have been very pleased with the after-sales service of Muller Martini Argentina. For us, it’s a major advantage that Muller Martini has its own branch in our country, which means that it provides quick and reliable customer service.” Long-Standing Partnership The family business, which is known all over Argentina for its tailor-made customer solutions including consulting from prepress to delivery, has relied on solutions from Muller Martini since it was established in 2000. Two perfect binders (an Acoro and a Tigra) are used in the 3000 m2


Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

production hall in addition to three saddle stitchers (a JGV, a 235 and a Presto). Aliki is also set to invest in a new Ventura MC book sewing machine from Muller Martini in the foreseeable future. In addition to high quality (“we can sell even the very first book from a production run”), Tsiaculias is impressed in particular by the short setup times of the new Diamant MC 35. “The runs of the books printed by us vary from 500 to 20,000. We produce both long and short runs. The high degree of automation of the new bookline is naturally a great advantage to us in terms of cost-effective production.” Training Is also a Matter for the Boss Tsiaculias took the time to attend the training course for the new Diamant MC 35 ­during the Hardcover Forum in Bad Mergentheim, Germany, in person. “I was impressed by how Muller Martini organized the customer training. We had an intensive training program and are now benefiting from the numerous tips and tricks that the instructors taught us.”   25

Printing Presses

“Offset Offers Considerable Advantages Over Rotogravure Printing” With the shrink sleeve market recording annual growth of between 6 and 8 percent, Hammer Packaging, located in the city of Rochester in New York State, USA, invested in a brand-new VSOP web printing press from Muller Martini with nine printing units and an additional flexo unit. E 1972: USD 3 million E 1992: USD 19 million E 2012: USD 105 million – A look at the turnover figures of Hammer Packaging shows how dynamically the family business, which was founded in 1912, has grown in the past decades. Sales figures grew by 20 percent in 2012, the year of the company’s 100th anniversary, and President and CEO James E. Hammer is anticipating similar growth in 2013. “The entire packaging market is experiencing a healthy growth”, says the grandson of the company founder. “Globally, growth in the shrink sleeve label segment is expected to be 6 % to 8 % annually.” Convinced by Offset Printing Hammer Packaging entered the shrink sleeve business segment for the food and drink industry, including big-name companies such as Dr Pepper, Coca-Cola, PepsiCola and Minute Maid, six years ago. It did so with a VSOP, followed two years later by a second web printing press of the same type. Since these were nearing their limits in terms of capacity and Hammer Packaging had positive experiences with offset printing, the traditional company invested last year in a third web printing press. “As far as our business is concerned, we’re convinced by offset printing and its triedand-tested technology,” says Jim Hammer. “Offset offers considerable advantages over rotogravure printing, not least in terms of pre-press costs.”

1 1  James E. Hammer (right), President and CEO of Hammer Packaging: “The VSOP enables highly efficient changeovers between long and short runs.” Left: Shaun Hinchey, Web Press Technology Division Manager at Muller Martini USA.


2  Thanks to the combination of offset and flexo, Hammer Packaging prints products   that competitors cannot produce in a single ­operation using the new VSOP.

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

The Ideal Machine . . . Before opting for the new VSOP from Muller Martini, experts from Hammer Packaging performed extensive tests on the machine at Muller Martini’s Training Center Presses in Maulburg, Germany. They brought with them a special list of requirements featuring 20 items for the new printing press. “Muller Martini fulfilled virtually all our requirements Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

to our satisfaction and proved that the VSOP is the ideal machine for our business segments,” says Hammer. Moreover, as Hammer explains, “Muller Martini has made some important technological upgrades to the VSOP.” One particular innovation is modern control technology. Thanks to the application of Muller Martini control topology in the VSOP, the reliability of the machine has been increased and considerably fewer components are in use. That simplifies both operation and maintenance. The sleeve positioning improvement in the printing units reduces wear and tear on the air shaft in the case of frequent size changes. . . . for Long and Short Runs The packaging printing specialists from Rochester were particularly struck during the demos in Maulburg by the versatility of the new printing press. “The VSOP can be set up quickly for new jobs, reaches a high production speed fast and enables highly efficient changeovers between long runs and short runs,” says Hammer. The days when shrink sleeves and packaging labels were printed for a whole year in runs of millions of copies are long gone.

Today, there is demand for smaller, more varied print runs, enabling in particular drinks producers to compete for the attention of consumers at the point of sale with 360-degree packaging or tempt them to take part in competitions. “For us, that trend has three implications,” says Hammer. “First, we need to print at high speed. Second, we need quick changeovers. And, third, we need to react flexibly to the wishes of our customers.” Unique Products For that reason, as the President and CEO explains, it is ideal for Hammer Packaging, which produces for customers in North America and Mexico, that the new VSOP has a flexo unit and nine printing units, as well as hot-air and EB drying. “Thanks to the combination of offset and flexo in the same printing press, we can print unique products that our competitors cannot produce in a single operation. That’s extremely important to us because there’s fierce competition on the shrink sleeve market in the USA.” In order to keep increasing its productivity and be on the lookout for new production forms, Hammer Packaging, with a staff

2 27

Printing Presses

Newspaper Mailroom Systems

MPC Control System Ensures Everything Runs Smoothly in the Mailroom Amedia Trykk og Distribusjon, located in Stokke, Norway has updated its aging mailroom by adding a ProLiner machine in addition to other modernization steps. The company’s choice once again of Muller Martini for its newspaper inserting system, bundling station and ramp system is closely related to the Mailroom Production Control (MPC) system.

E  Amedia Trykk og Distribusjon, founded last August as a joint venture of several different companies, has nine printing plants, the largest of which is located in Stokke and has 92 employees, where nine daily newspapers and 24 other papers with varying publication frequencies are printed in

of 425, who work in three shifts in production, five days a week or, at peak times, seven days a week, has its own R&D team. “That means we not only provide technical support to our customers,” says Hammer. “We also research new substrates, printing inks, coatings, printing techniques and methods of application because we are constantly on the lookout for new opportunities. In order to grow further, we need to be an innovation leader with regard to new products, new technologies and new machines, true to our company motto: ‘Listen. Learn. Lead’.”

Popular In-mold Products In addition to numerous other Hammer specialties, in-mold products at Hammer Packaging, produced using an injection mold procedure, have gained considerably in importance. The printed drink cups that fans purchase in American baseball stadiums and take home as souvenirs are a typical example. New Hall for New Machine In order to take advantage of synergies by installing the new printing press next to the two existing VSOP machines, Hammer

Innovative Electronic Control Technology Thanks to the application of Muller Martini control topology in the VSOP, the reliability of the web printing press has been increased and considerably fewer components are in use. That simplifies both operation and maintenance. The sleeve positioning improvement in the printing units reduces wear and tear on the air shaft in the case of frequent size changes. In addition, the friction roller between the application rollers 2 and 3 has been redesigned, resulting in improved adjustability and higher printing quality. The fact that the machine has a central lubrication system also simplifies main-

tenance. Modern and robust servo drive technology for swing arm adjustment reduces damage to the belts and sleeves during day-to-day production. The VSOP was developed for the production of labels, flexible packaging and cardboard packaging. The Muller Martini ink fountain was integrated into the VSOP to meet the highest requirements in this field, ensuring first-class printing quality. The integrated flap mechanism enables the greatest possible degree of reproducibility.

tabloid format using two printing presses, each with two folder deliveries, and finished in its mailroom on-site. Approximately 180,000 inserts, consisting of advertising material, semi-advertising material and editorial preprinted sections, are inserted every week. “In Norway,

Svein B. Sæbøe (left), Project & Strategy Manager at Amedia in Stokke: “The ProLiner ensures stable production even at high ­production speeds.” Right: John Jansen, Sales Manager at Muller Martini Nordic.

Annual growth on the shrink sleeve ­market (same samples of Hammer ­Packaging are shown in the picture)   is 6 to 8 percent.

Packaging made a swift decision to expand its existing production capacity. A 13,000 square feet new hall was completed within just two months. “We’re used to making quick decisions here,” says Hammer with a grin. The new printing press was ready to begin operation even quicker, within less than a month. Installation began on 26 November 2012 and before the end of the year, the first jobs for customers were produced using the new VSOP, which Muller Martini can support from the factory at any time in the event of malfunctions using the MM Service module MMRemote.   28

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013


Newspaper Mailroom Systems

has made great progress compared to the predecessor control systems.”



Inkjet System in Chain The simple, clear and flexible control system that enables processes in the mailroom to be fully controlled and monitored and presents a target/actual analysis of the production process as both a table and a graph, is especially important for Amedia for one particular reason: MPC also controls the inkjet system as part of the production chain that Muller Martini has in-


1  At Amedia in Stokke, Muller Martini   has installed an inkjet system as part of the production chain for the first time ever. 2  Due to its complex job structure,   Amedia depends on seamless production processes in its mailroom.

3  A wind-up station is used for advertising ­inserts delivered on pallets that are rolled up   on FlexiRoll buffers and later inserted into the newspapers along with the preprinted sections. 4  Amedia prints 33 different newspapers   in Stokke.

stalled in Stokke for the first time ever. This customized solution not only speeds up the production process but also brings great advantages with regard to maintenance of the centralized inkjet heads. That is not the only special solution. As is the case for many newspaper publishers in the large, yet sparsely populated Scandinavian countries, Amedia produces a large number of small key bundles down to one copy. It therefore uses a BS 21 small bundling station that was specially designed by Muller Martini for such ultra-small jobs.

This solution also removes traffic from the ramp, as the postal routes are saved in MPC and the bundles are placed in the delivery trucks according to each route via the NewsSorter bundle conveyor (see box). ProLiner Featuring Promo Feeder In addition to two NewsLiner machines that have been in operation for several years, a new ProLiner inserting machine from Muller Martini ensures that each newspaper leaves the plant with the correct inserts. In addition to four feeders for traditional inserts such as pre-printed sections and commercial work, the ProLiner, which has replaced the company’s oldest NewsLiner, features a promo feeder that can also process CDs, DVDs and coupon booklets in A6 format. Amedia invested in a new ProLiner due to an increase in its number of inserts. That decision has paid off for two reasons, according to Sæbøe: “First, the ProLiner ensures stable production even at high production speeds. Second, we can now insert even heavier inserts with ease.”  

many households have a ‘No Advertising’ sticker on their mailboxes,” says Svein B. Sæbøe, Project & Strategy Manager at Amedia in Stokke. “That’s why newspaper inserts have become more popular in recent years.” Production in Stokke of both the company’s own titles and newspapers for other publishers runs six days a week (only Saturdays are off due to a lack of Sunday papers), 20 hours a day. During the day, the non-daily newspapers with print runs ranging between 2200 and 42,000 copies are printed, while 20 percent of production is dedicated to inserts. These are rolled up on FlexiRoll buffers just like the advertising inserts delivered on pallets. The time slot from 6.30 p.m. to 3 a.m. is dedicated to daily newspaper production for various publishers with print runs ranging between 5000 and 40,000 copies; these papers are dispatched from Stokke to readers in the southern and eastern parts of Norway.


MPC Tipped the Scales “Due to our complex job structure – each day is different from the next – we depend on seamless production processes for printing and inserting,” emphasizes Sæbøe. “That’s why we chose a solution from Muller Martini when we opened our mailroom in 1998. Having the buffer system to separate printing from finishing provides us with a high degree of flexibility and reliability for production at night. It enables us to deliver 99.6 % of all newspapers in the designated time slot before 7 a.m.” As the company’s machinery had started to age, Amedia decided to renew its systems step by step. “We’ve maintained good relations with Muller Martini over the years, always finding the right solution,” says Sæbøe. “However, we still performed

Tried and Tested Ramp System

an extensive evaluation and examined three different manufacturers.” According to the Project & Strategy Manager, there was one main reason for the company opting for a Muller Martini solution again this time: “During a presentation at Muller Martini’s headquarters in Zofingen, Switzerland, we were particularly impressed by the Mailroom Production Control (MPC) system, as Muller Martini

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

4 Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

In addition to the ProLiner, three NewsStack compensating stackers, three TABA F top sheet feeders and the MPC control system, the updates in machinery in Amedia’s mailroom in Stokke in the last two years have also included a ramp system with a NewsSorter bi-­level high-performance bundle conveyor. This system was installed over Easter in 2011 by 20 Muller Martini technicians working nonstop in two shifts to ensure that Amedia did not have to interrupt production (see “Panorama” 2/11). “That was an exemplary installation,” recalls Project & Strategy Manager Svein B. Sæbøe. In the same breath he notes: “The NewsSorter is a very good system and has proven its worth in our demanding production processes.”




Increase Efficiency with Preventative ­Maintenance and Reduce Costs Awareness of the importance of servicing has increased considerably in the graphic arts ­industry. In order to show customers problem areas and (improvement) potential, experts from Muller Martini analyze existing production systems using the standardized MMInspect service tool. “Panorama” was on site while an eight-year-old BravoPlus saddle stitcher was thoroughly inspected at Wachter GmbH & Co. KG in the southern German town of Bönnigheim.


E  Achim Beckbissinger is one of the most experienced service technicians at Muller Martini Germany. He has installed dozens of saddle stitchers over the years and inspected and reconditioned several others. The assembly and service expert knows all the Muller Martini models like the back of his hand, from the oldtimer 321 saddle stitcher through the Bravo from the ’90s to the current Primera generation. Alfonso Caruana can also look back on 30 years of experience with print finishing systems from Muller Martini. The Italian by birth is one of two machine operators at the BravoPlus saddle stitcher at Wachter GmbH & Co. KG – Printing/Software/Logistics in the southern German town of Bönnigheim (see box on page 33). “I’ve worked with saddle stitchers from Muller Martini throughout my career,” he tells “Panorama” proudly. Small Problems Add Up The two saddle stitcher experts crossed paths at Wachter a few weeks ago. The 32


family business founded by Eugen Wachter in 1952 asked Muller Martini Germany to put the BravoPlus, which was manufactured in 2004, through its paces. Caruana explains that Wachter performs periodic maintenance itself, for example to the stitching heads, feeders and belts. How­ ever, with the years, the need arose for a more thorough inspection of the saddle stitcher, says Thomas Juros, Technical Manager at Wachter. “With 20 to 25 million stitching processes per year, we work the BravoPlus, which often runs in three shifts and at the upper limit of the maximum cycle speed, extremely hard. With time small problems add up, which is why we wanted to know exactly, using MMInspect, what condition the machine is currently in because maintaining production reliability is our numberone objective. Three to five times a year, we produce a high-volume run totaling 15 million copies. Since these products are placed as inserts in newspapers, they are very time-sensi-

tive. We simply can’t afford a failure of our machines.” Increased Service Awareness “I also take my car to be serviced every 20,000 km, rather than waiting for it to break down on the open road,” says Wolfgang Kurz, Project Manager at Muller Martini Germany. He has observed that in the graphic arts industry, awareness of the importance of servicing has increased considerably in the past few years, both among customers and at Muller Martini. Leading companies – and not only those in the automobile industry – are showing the way by increasing their efficiency in a targeted way, while decreasing costs. “Therefore we’ve significantly strengthened this area of our business and have trained our service technicians intensively. For us this field has become an important element of our business, with all our distribution channels from sales personnel to service technicians, who are particularly important in this respect because they ofMuller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013





Using the standardized MMInspect program tool all components of the saddle stitcher, i.e. the stitching machine (1), feeder (2), ­cover feeder (3), three-knife trimmer (4), and compensating stacker (5), are assessed and problems and the need for spare parts are entered electronically on site (6).

ten go out to customers, playing an active role.” Jump Start at Drupa The great interest at last year’s drupa showed that Muller Martini has got its timing right. A six-year-old Prima Plus was used to demonstrate live how the saddle stitcher is analyzed and its improvement

potential identified by means of various service modules. “We really struck home with this professional service presentation,” says Kurz. “Many of our customers have been pleasantly surprised that, as a long-standing partner, we also take care of their older production systems. Recently we reconditioned a roughly 30-year-old 227 inserting

Wachter GmbH & Co. KG, Bönnigheim (Germany) “If we only provide printing services, then we are replaceable,” says Thomas Juros, Technical Manager at Wachter GmbH & Co. KG in Bönnigheim. For that reason the cross-media company, which was founded 61 years ago and today employs around 90 people, has its own IT department, enabling it to offer its customers a full service for wide-ranging print jobs – from brochures and pamphlets to hardcover books (which are produced by external partners)

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

and personalized mailshots, which are printed using two digital systems. “Our coordinated service portfolio and integrated software development in the printing house are the basis for efficient production processes, which make us a strategically valuable full-service partner,” says Juros. The job structure in saddle stitching for customers across Germany is very varied. It ranges from 1000 to over a million copies per print run. Frequent changeovers are

therefore just as important to customers as a high degree of production stability. Wachter earlier used a 335 saddle stitcher, but in 2009 commissioned a BravoPlus, manufactured in 2004, with seven feeders and a Rapido compensating stacker. Since this often operates to capacity around the clock, Wachter also has some jobs stitched externally.




Product Quality

1  Following an inspection, the compiled information is evaluated – like in this example – in an overview diagram according to pre-defined categories.

1.00 0.80 0.60

Setup Times


Personal ­Safety


4  Wolfgang Kurz (Project Manager at Muller Martini Germany): “Many of our customers have been pleasantly surprised that, as a ­long-standing partner, we also take care of their older production systems.”


Machine Peformance Your Machine

2+3  Open communication between the Muller Martini service technicians and the machine ­operators is important at every inspection ­(Photos: Achim Beckbissinger from Muller ­Martini Germany talks with Alfonso Caruana and Ali Özkan from Wachter).

Reliability and Machine Safety Benchmark

5  Thomas Juros (right), Technical Manager at Wachter GmbH & Co. KG: “With 20 to 25 million stitching processes per year, we work the BravoPlus, which often runs in three shifts and at the upper limit of the maximum cycle speed, extremely hard. With time small problems add up.” Right: Peter Stein, Sales Manager at Muller Martini Germany.


100 percent in this category), product quality, job changeover times, performancelimiting factors and the reliability of the machine.


machine. That puts customer relations on an entirely new level.” Last May at the Muller Martini stand in Dusseldorf, more than 20 customers from Germany opted for the MMInspect package. “For me that was a clear indication that the service expertise of the machine manufacturer is in demand and appreciated,” says Kurz. Standardized Service Product That is especially true when customers benefit from a professional solution for monitoring of their machinery. While inspections until recently were carried out individually by all sales organizations, Muller Martini now offers a standardized service product with a uniform checklist under the MM Inspect label (see box on page 35), which 34


belongs to the MMServices range. According to Beckbissinger that benefits not only customers, but also the service technicians: “Earlier I had to write a detailed report in the office after each inspection. These days I take my laptop with me and have a special program tool for stitching machines, feeders, cover feeders, threeknife trimmers and compensating stackers, and can assess the actual condition of all components of the saddle stitcher there and then on site and can identify problems and the need for spare parts.” The information about the machine is analyzed in an overview diagram according to pre-defined categories without any time delay. The “spider’s web” diagram provides information about operator safety (Kurz notes that the value should always be

Point-by-Point Checks Muller Martini Germany typically allows eight hours for a full saddle stitcher inspection and two days for perfect binding lines, which are rather more complex. The idea is to keep the downtime as short as possible for customers. Beckbissinger runs through each point at Wachter. Good communication between the Muller Martini service technicians and the machine operators is also important. Beckbissinger, who played an important part in developing the standardized service tool, asks Caruana about problems he has noticed before the start of the inspection. As a result, he knows that he needs to pay particular attention to transfer in the sewing station and to the trimmer transfer in the three-knife trimmer. The infeed belts in the three-knife trimmer are a prime example, according to Kurz, of how an update can reduce set-up times and increase productivity. Personal Consulting Following ­Inspection Open and honest communication between the customer and the machine manufacturer without taboos is important for sucMuller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

cessful continued operation of the machinery before and during the inspection, and especially after it. “We always present our customers with the results of the inspection at a personal meeting and advise them as to what repairs are urgently needed, which machine components need work in the medium term and which updates would increase productivity.” Juros does not yet know what conclusions the Wachter printing house will draw from Muller Martini’s inspection report. “Whether to bring existing machinery up to date or make a new investment naturally depends to a great extent on the cost of reconditioning and updating the older machinery.” Gain in Importance However, there is no doubt in the mind of the Technical Manager of the family business in southern Germany that, partly owing to the increasing proportion of electronic parts in production systems, maintenance



and servicing has grown in importance because of ever tighter deadlines. “In addition to the pressure of deadlines, the quality requirements of our customers are also increasing, which is why our production systems need to be in good condition.” 

Services from Muller Martini: Wide Range of Support Services MM

MM Services, the global service portfolio from Muller Martini comprising seven modules, optimizes operational and investments costs, ensures productivity, quality and added value, provides reliable investment protection for production machinery, and maintains and increases the profitability of machines.

MM Startup Experienced specialists plan and direct new investments such as the restructuring or expansion of a plant. Service professionals ensure that commissioning is executed rapidly and that the equipment has a high level of processing reliability.

MM Repair Since even the best equipment can fail occasionally, highly qualified service engineers are on hand quickly to provide expert assistance. Original spare parts ensure uninterrupted, high-quality production.

MM Remote Customers can choose between three flexibly expandable modules according to their needs: MMHelp (24/7 support), MMRemote Access (online analysis, 24/7 support), MM Remote Online (telephone conference, webcam, online analysis, 24/7 support).

MM Uptodate Regular upgrades and updates prolong the life span of the machines and ensure that they maintain their high performance for many years.

MM Inspect Experts analyze the production systems and report problem areas and (improvement) potential to the customer.

MM Improve Experienced Muller Martini experts provide operating personnel with a host of tips and tricks as well as in-depth know-how.

MM Select With a service contract customers benefit from a comprehensive and expert Muller Martini service program.

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013


Saddle Stitching Systems

“Don’t Expand, Optimize Instead” The data arrives in the morning, and the stitched products are out for delivery by afternoon – the new Presto II saddle stitcher from Muller Martini contributes greatly to the high level of flexibility provided by the traditional family business Tipografia Cavalli in Tenero, Switzerland, in the Italian-speaking canton of Tessin.

E  Tipografia Cavalli, with a mere 13 employees, is a perfect example how a small business can be successful in the graphic arts market even in difficult times thanks to its high level of flexibility. “This means, however, that we need to be able to quickly respond to our customers’ needs at all times,” says Fausto Cavalli, who still runs the company four decades its foundation in 1972. Three Generations It can happen regularly that a job comes in during the morning and the finished printed products are delivered in the afternoon on the same day. This of course requires a great amount of flexibility from employees. “Our success is based largely on our excellent working atmosphere,” says the company’s head with some pride. For example, practically every employee completed an apprenticeship at Tipografia Cavalli and then remained with the traditional family business. Moreover, no time clock is used

by the staff, which also includes Fausto Cavalli’s daughters Micaela and Tiziana as well as Tiziana’s son Simone, who as the first representative of the family’s third generation at the company is completing an apprenticeship to become a printer. “Our employees know exactly when there is a lot to be done, and they can therefore go home early when fewer jobs are run-

ning,” Fausto Cavalli explains the flextime model that is based on trust. Continuous Investments Tipografia Cavalli’s flextime model is not the only modern aspect of the company; its machinery is also state of the art. “In line with our company’s motto ‘don’t expand, optimize instead’, we continually invest in

1  In operation at Tipografia Cavalli since the founding of the company in 1972:   the B1 pad and booklet stitching machine from Muller Martini. 2  The simple and comfortable operation   of the Presto II is a great advantage for   Tipografia Cavalli when it comes to products with short print runs.



wizard offers simple and practical navigation. The operation is clearly structured and quickly leads to excellent production results – even when processing ultra-small sizes with an end size of 93 x 60 mm. Even relatively inexperienced machine operators can set up a job step by step using the intuitive user interface and gather, stitch, cut and stack the sections. Using pictograms, the setup wizard provides a standardized operating language – both on the centralized and comfortable ten-inch touchscreen as well as on the local control device (HMI).

3  Company founder Fausto Cavalli (second from left), next to his daughters Micaela ­Cavalli Scanzi and Tiziana Cavalli as well as Tiziana’s son Simone, who works as a printer apprentice, in front of the new Presto II ­saddle stitcher at Tipografia Cavalli in Tenero. Peter Egli (left), Sales Manager at Muller Martini Switzerland.


Presto II Now with Setup Wizard The Presto II saddle stitcher which debuted at the drupa ’12 now features the tried and tested setup wizard familiar from the Primera models. Along with the interface to the Connex data and process management system, this feature leads to increased operating comfort while greatly reducing changeover times. Since Muller Martini introduced the setup wizard at the launch of the Primera models at the drupa ’08, customers worldwide have appreciated the convenient operation of the new saddle stitcher generation (see also “Panorama” 2/12). The setup


Each twin feeder is equipped with such a decentralized operation. The Presto II saddle stitcher, which can produce up to a maximum of 9000 cycles per hour, can now be connected to the Connex data and process management system from Muller Martini. The setup wizard reads all information relevant to production from the JDF file sent by the Management Information System (MIS) via Connex. Orders can be sent to the saddle stitcher from the MIS as a JDF file, and production data is transferred to the MIS in real time as JMF messages.

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

new production systems,” emphasizes ­Cavalli. For example, the full-service company also has two digital printing presses in operation in addition to two four-color sheet-fed offset printing presses. As a replacement for a saddle stitcher from another manufacturer, since last September Tipografia Cavalli has been using one of the world’s first Presto II saddle stitchers, which Muller Martini presented for the first time to the public at the most recent drupa trade fair (see box). The Deciding Factor Is Fast Setup Times “A fast setup of the saddle stitcher is much more crucial for us than high production Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

speeds,” comments Cavalli on his decision in favor of the Presto II. Brochures, magazines, leaflets and numerous other commercial products are printed mostly in A4, A5 and A6 format predominantly for customers in the canton of Tessin, the German-speaking regions of Switzerland as well as neighboring Italy usually in print runs between 500 and 50,000 copies. “Whenever we are stitching orders with short print runs, the simple and comfortable operation of the Presto II becomes a great advantage for us,” says Cavalli. In addition, the new saddle stitcher with three twin feeders (one of which is tiltback), the Semko lateral thickness measurement, the three-knife trimmer and the

shingle delivery do not have an exclusive machine operator. An essential part of the level of flexibility provided by Tipografia ­Cavalli, which has also had a B1 pad stitching machine from Muller Martini in operation for the last forty years, is based in the fact that its employees are able to operate several different machines. Indeed, they learned to run the new Presto II on site after receiving just a few brief instructions. All Types of Signature Openings There is also an important technical advantage provided by the new saddle stitcher: The Presto II, which can also stitch digitally printed products, can handle all types of signature openings. For example, Tipografia Cavalli can now open signatures in low and high folio laps, and it is also possible to use the suction opening. Cavalli is in no doubt “that we have strengthened our market position with this new investment. Due to the higher level of production security, I can now take on jobs with greater volumes without worry. Every now and then we also process jobs with print runs of up to 250,000 copies.”   37

Saddle Stitching Systems

1  Given its changing range of products, the new Primera is the ideal solution for De Cuyper. 2  The new Primera at Moderna now produces the same amount of printed products that were previously stitched using two machines. 3  With the largest solar plant in Belgium’s ­Walloon Region, Delabie s.a. produces 46 ­percent of the energy its needs for its printing ­facilities itself.



4  In addition to the Primera saddle stitcher,   VD also uses an Acoro A5 perfect binder from Muller Martini. 5  Jan Stals (Machine Operator at Hendrix NV): “Setting up eyelet stitching on the Primera   is much faster – particularly when using four eyelets.” 6  Philippe Geers (Co-owner and Managing ­Director of Geers Offset): “By finishing everything in-house, we have optimized our workflow and increased our added value.”




tion times, as they are also a factor in labor costs.” This is one aspect that, according to Hans Delabie, owner and CEO of Delabie s.a., played the most important role in the decision to make an investment: “Thanks to the Primera, we improved the cost-efficiency of our production by scaling down from three to two shifts.” Or as Eric Bongaerts, Owner and CEO of Moderna in PaalBeringen, puts it: “We can now finish several jobs per shift.”


Belgium Is a Primera Country


particularly given the increasingly tighter deadlines that are demanded by their customers. Increased Added Value That is why the three companies – in addition to ten other graphic arts businesses in Belgium in recent years – have invested in

E Simple Operation: Thanks to the setup wizard, setting up jobs is extremely simple. “Even inexperienced machine operators can quickly learn to operate the saddle stitcher,” says Steven Mondy, Head of Print Finishing at Delabie s.a. Wim Hendrix wanted to experience the philosophy behind operating the Primera first hand, and attended a four-day course at the Muller Martini Training Center in Switzerland. “First, I wanted to see for myself what the machine can really do, and second, I also wanted to know just as much about the saddle stitcher as our machine operators.” According to Wim Hendrix, not only is it more convenient to operate the machine, but the short distances also make it more comfortable for the machine operators: “For me, ergonomics is more about legs than arms.”

E Fast Setup Times: On a Friday recently, Marco De Ridder, owner and CEO of VD in Temse was able to see just how fast the changeover times are on the Primera. “We had to complete twelve jobs in six hours before the weekend – each one with a different format. This can only be done using a Primera. We

“Solar Printing” The innovative capacity of Delabie s.a. in Mouscron is not limited to its new machinery and printed products, but also to the use of alternative sources of energy. The roof of the facilities and open parking lots are covered with solar panels, making it the largest solar plant in Belgium’s Walloon Region. The gigantic photovoltaic system produces 1600 megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity per year, of which 1100 MWh is used for the printing facilities. Overall, it needs 2400 MWh to run its systems, which means that Delabie produces 46 percent of its energy needs itself. This is quite an impressive proportion, considering the fact that the European Union has set the goal of 20 percent by 2020. On weekends and holidays, 500 MWh is fed into the power grid. With this, Delabie s.a. has definitively earned its “Green Printing” label.

“Domino Effect”

Within a very short period of time, 13 Primera saddle stitchers have been installed in Belgium, a country with a population of only 11 million. “Panorama” visited six Belgian customers in search of the secret to the success of this Muller Martini saddle stitcher known for its simple operation and fast changeover times. E  The three graphic arts businesses Delabie s.a. in Mouscron, Hendrix NV in Peer and Geers Offset in Gent-Oostakker all had the same problem. Due to capacity bottlenecks in print finishing, they were forced to outsource the stitching of a part of their increasing print job volume. Their production processes obviously suffered as a result –

Three Important Success Factors Producing existing jobs more cost-effectively is one thing; opening up new market opportunities is another. “Today, we are able to take on more jobs than we used to, allowing us to achieve greater added value,” says Wim Hendrix, Co-owner and Production Manager at Hendrix NV. As company owners, production managers and machine operators all point out, simple operation, short changeover times as well as the stable production at the high speeds on the Primera enable significantly higher production levels.

a Primera saddle stitcher from Muller Martini. According to Co-owner and Managing Director Philippe Geers, with this solution Geers Offset killed two birds with one stone: “By finishing everything in-house, we have optimized our workflow and increased our added value. Customers aren’t the only ones pleased by the fast producMuller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Three questions for Luc Sonck and Xavier Haegeman from Muller Martini Benelux on the success story of the Primera saddle stitcher in Belgium. “Panorama”: You have sold 13 Primera saddle stitchers in just a short time in your country, which has a population of only 11 million. How has Belgium become a “Primera Country”? Luc Sonck (Sales Manager at Muller Martini Benelux) and Xavier Haegeman (Product Manager at Muller Martini ­Benelux): It certainly was a domino effect. Here in Belgium, there are a lot of family businesses, and they observe one another

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

of course, always on the lookout for new trends. In this way, the Primera impressed one customer after another. In addition, many of our customers were able to conduct successful tests with their products at the Muller Martini Training Center in Switzerland, which of course helped to convince them to make a new investment. In addition to the convincing tests, are there any other success factors? Almost all the Primera machines were installed at graphic arts businesses that print and finish their products simultaneously. A few of these companies used to have to outsource their print products due to a lack

of capacity. The Primera eliminates this problem, and they have much more flexibility and can switch seamlessly from the printing press to the saddle stitcher. What kind of feedback have you received from your customers regarding the new Primera? Many of them simply say, “It is the best investment I ever made.” They continue to rave about the great advantages of the Primera, which include simple operation (which is particularly important if they have inexperienced machine operators), fast changeovers, stable production, and high net output.


Saddle Stitching Systems

now finish a lot of jobs just in time compared to before.” With the growing frequency of switches between different formats necessitated by increasing time pressure, short setup times are becoming more and more important, according to Philippe Van Hecke, Assistant Production Manager at De Cuyper in Zele. “The fast Make Ready system on the Primera is a great advantage for us.

Primera starts fast, quickly reaches the desired production speed and provides stable production.” A high level of reliability is of course very important for De Cuyper as well, “especially as we have only one saddle stitcher, and are required to have a higher net output given the falling prices in our industry” (Chris Reyniers, CEO at De Cuyper).

E Stable Production: According to Eric Bongaerts, just as important as fast changeover times is the fact “that the

Time and Quality Productivity is increased not only by the ability to change settings on the fly as well as two-up production, but also by being

able to save job settings in the Commander. “As we have a lot of repeat jobs, this tool is a great benefit to us,” comment Philippe Geers and Chris Reyniers. VD has fewer repeat jobs, “but a lot of similar jobs, so we often need to retrieve the saved job settings,” says Marco De Ridder. Fast production is one thing, but raising the bar for quality is a completely different matter. According to Eric Bongaerts, control systems such as the Asir 3 ensure the correct sequence of the signatures, and as a result, says Hans Delabie, at the end of the production chain, the three-knife trim-

Left: Hans Delabie (Owner and CEO),   right: Xavier Haegeman (Product Manager   at Muller Martini Benelux).

Left: Wim Hendrix (Co-owner   and Head of Production),   right: Jan Stals (Machine Operator).

Owner and CEO Eric Bongaerts (right) talks   with Xavier Haegeman (Product Manager   at Muller Martini Benelux).

Left: Owner and CEO Marco De Ridder, right: Luc Sonck (Sales Manager at   Muller Martini Benelux).

From right: Philippe Geers (Co-owner and ­ anaging Director), Hans van Acker and Johan M Goosens (Machine Operators).

From left: Chris Reyniers (CEO), Philippe Van Hecke (Assistant Production Manager), Luc Sonck (Sales Manager at Muller Martini Benelux).

Delabie s.a.

Drukkerij Hendrix NV

Drukkerij Moderna

Drukkerij VD

Drukkerij Geers ­Offset

Drukkerij De Cuyper

Location: Mouscron Date of foundation: 1964 Number of employees: 100 Homepage: Focus of production: Catalogs, insert brochures (often very thin), folders, personalized direct mails (with perforations and adhesives) Muller Martini saddle stitchers (2): Primera C140, Prima S (plus a model from another manufacturer) Why we chose the new Primera C140: “Since our two existing saddle stitchers were running at full capacity and we were forced to outsource jobs, we wanted to expand our capacities. After commissioning a second MAN Rotoman in November 2013 (after the first new Rotoman in January 2010), we’ll be able to produce all of our print products in-house. Moreover, we improved the cost-efficiency of our production by scaling down from three to two shifts.”   (Hans Delabie, Owner and Managing Director) What we particularly like about the Primera C140: “It ensures stable production even at high speeds. This is particularly important for us, because certain jobs require us to produce at high speeds. The feeder shaker for loosening the signatures ensures that they are fed into the machine smoothly, preventing malfunctions.”  (Hans Delabie) Working with the Primera C140 day in and day out: “Thanks to the setup wizard, setting up jobs is extremely simple. Even for inexperienced machine operators, it is easy to learn how to operate the saddle stitcher.”   (Steven Mondy, Head of Print Finishing)

Location: Peer Date of foundation: 1937 Number of employees: 45 Homepage: Focus of production: Brochures, (glossy) magazines Muller Martini saddle stitchers (2): Primera C140, Prima Why we chose the new Primera C140: “As we previously had to outsource many jobs to other companies, we decided to invest in a second saddle stitcher. We chose the Primera based on our long-standing partnership with Muller Martini – in particular the technicians – and we have had very good experiences with the Prima saddle stitcher.”  (Wim Hendrix,   Co-owner and Head of Production) What we particularly like about the Primera C140: “There are three major advantages that come to my mind. First, we can now switch from one job to the next much faster. Second, the air intake in the feeders ensures seamless production flows. Third, the three-knife trimmer with its convenient start/stop function is significantly easier to operate.”  (Wim Hendrix) Working with the Primera C140 day in and day out: “Switching from one-up to two-up production is very fast. And the quality of the end products has increased considerably. For example, there are no markings on the Primera.”   (Jan Stals, Machine Operator)

Location: Paal-Beringen Date of foundation: 1947 Number of employees: 85 Homepage: Focus of production: Brochures/catalogs/magazines (80 %), leaflets (15 %), inserts (5 %) Muller Martini saddle stitchers (2): Primera C140, Tempo 22 Why we chose the new Primera C140: “To put it somewhat simply, for us it really was like ‘killing two birds with one stone’, in view of the increased productivity in the medium saddle stitcher output range. We replaced two older Muller Martini models, a Prima and a BravoPlus, with a fully automated Primera line. Just as with our Tempo 22 high performance saddle stitcher, it is completed by a stream feeder and a Cohiba palletizer.”   (Eric Bongaerts, Owner and CEO) What we particularly like about the Primera C140: “As far as I know, the Primera is the saddle stitcher that enables the fastest changeovers on the market, and we have reduced our changeover times as a result. Our new Primera now produces the same amount of printed products that were previously stitched using two machines.”   (Eric Bongaerts) Working with the Primera C140 day in and day out: “In terms of how user-friendly our new saddle stitcher is, one of the greatest advantages is the option to save the settings for each product. This allows us to save time compared to our two previous models, as we have numerous repeat jobs.”  (Eric Bongaerts)

Location: Temse Date of foundation: 1996 Number of employees: 40 Homepage: Focus of production: Extensive range of commercial products, brochures, and magazines Muller Martini saddle stitchers (1): Primera C140 Why we chose the new Primera C140: “As most of our jobs have print runs between 2000 and 5000 copies, we have to change over our saddle stitchers eight to ten times a day. That’s why the Primera stood out with its unique setup times. We were also very satisfied with the Bravo and have continued to have a good relationship with Muller Martini for many years now.”   (Marco De Ridder, Owner and CEO) What we particularly like about the Primera C140: “Most definitely the short changeover times of the whole system – including the threeknife trimmer. We need just five minutes to prepare for a new job. And then there is of course the high degree of reliability of the system. But this is nothing new; we already got used to it with the Bravo . . .”  (Marco De Ridder) Working with the Primera C140 day in and day out: “Since the setup steps are completed automatically on the machine, allowing our excellent machine operator, who has experience with three generations of Muller Martini saddle stitchers, to work even more effectively, we now produce in one shift what many others usually manage in two shifts.”  (Marco De Ridder)

Location: Gent-Oostakker Date of foundation: 1920 Number of employees: 190 Homepage: Focus of production: Everything from picture postcards to art books; saddle stitching: mostly magazines Muller Martini saddle stitchers (3): Primera C140, PrimaPlus, Prima Why we chose the new Primera C140: “First and foremost, it was a question of capacities. We previously had to outsource many jobs for stitching. Now we can finish everything inhouse. That is good for our internal workflow as well as the accounting department. The high level of automation on the Primera particularly becomes an advantage especially if the machine operators have little experience with the machine.”  (Philippe Geers,   Co-owner and Managing Director) What we particularly like about the Primera C140: “In addition to the fast setup times, the option to produce small formats, of which we now have a lot, in two-up production, which of course saves a lot of time. Another really practical feature is the ability to interrupt a larger job to complete a smaller one without losing a lot of time to set it up.”  (Johan Goosens, Machine Operator) Working with the Primera C140 day in and day out: “We have quite a lot of repeat jobs, and as we are able to save the settings for these jobs on the Commander, we don’t have to reenter the data each time. I also like the new stitching heads which allow us to use a thin stitching wire even for thicker products.”   (Hans van Acker, Machine Operator)

Location: Zele Date of foundation: 1905 Number of employees: 50 Homepage: Focus of production: Periodicals (50 %), folders/ direct mails (50 %) Muller Martini saddle stitchers (1): Primera C130 Why we chose the new Primera C130: “As we previously had jobs with large volumes, we used a Tempo high performance saddle stitcher for several years. That is a really good machine – but it was no longer ideal for the changing range of products with many different jobs with 20,000/30,000 copies. That is why we needed a new solution with faster changeover times.”  (Chris Reyniers, CEO) What we particularly like about the Primera C130: “Production deadlines for periodicals are getting tighter and tighter. As a result, we don’t have time to combine similar formats when printing. As we often have to change between A4 and A5 on the saddle stitcher, the Make Ready system on the Primera is a great advantage.”   (Philippe Van Hecke,   Assistant Production Manager) Working with the Primera C130 day in and day out: “Let me give you an example of one of our periodicals with 32 to 64 pages and a print run of 35,000 copies: The deadline for purchasing advertisements was 5:00 p.m., we received the data at 8:00 p.m., started printing at midnight, stitching began at 6 in the morning and we delivered by 10:00 a.m. There is no room for error on the ­Primera – especially as it is our only saddle ­stitcher.”  (Chris Reyniers)


Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

mer provides a perfect trim, leaving no page unturned. Simple Scoring The magic wheel is just as important as the cover feeder. “Scoring has become much easier as a result,” says Johan Goosens, Machine Operator at Geers Offset. In addition, the new cover feeder on the Primera can process larger formats than previous saddle stitcher models. The Primera also offers new possibilities with regard to stitching. “With the Primera, our service range now features eyelet

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

stitching, and we were able to promptly establish a customer base for this,” says Eric Bongaerts. Hendrix NV had previously offered eyelet stitching also with previous saddle stitchers. “However, the Primera can be set up much faster – particularly when using four eyelets,” says Machine Operator Jan Stals. 


In memoriam

Hans Müller (1916–2013) Hans Müller, founder of the Muller Martini Group and ­pioneer in machine ­construction for the graphic arts industry has died at the age of 96 in Zofingen (Switzerland).


3 E  What started out in 1946 with the first pad and booklet stitching machine developed by Hans Müller gave rise to a global corporate group that enjoys outstanding international renown. Today, innovative system solutions and services from Muller Martini on all continents enable printing houses and finishing companies to position themselves successfully in the graphic arts market. Pioneering Milestones Many Muller Martini machines still bear the hallmark of company founder Hans Müller, a trailblazer who set several milestones for



the industrial production of print products. Five years after the first pad stitching machine, he designed his first perfect binder, followed by the first saddle stitcher with automatic signature feeders, coupled with a three-knife trimmer in 1954. While the competition at that time could stitch at most 1000 copies per hour, the new fully automated machine quadrupled that rate and even offered improved quality thanks to Hans Müller’s technical expertise. In 1956, he astounded the graphic arts industry with “flying stitching heads”, which for the first time stitched without stop and go, enabling a further significant



Many Muller Martini machines still bear the hallmark of company founder Hans Müller, a trailblazer who set several crucial milestones for the industrial production of print products.

6 1  Hans Müller worked on the designs for his products around the clock, often sketching his designs on newspaper or packaging paper. 2  In 1952, Hans Müller caused quite a stir at the Mustermesse in Basel, Switzerland, with a BSA automatic brochure saddle stitcher.

increase in production speed. Then, in the 1960s he entered the newspaper delivery industry with a stacker program designed to meet the needs of newspaper publishers. Present at the First Drupa in 1951 Hans Müller recognized early the great importance of trade fairs. In 1951, he was one of the 527 exhibitors who took part in the very first drupa in Düsseldorf. A year later, he caused quite a stir at the Mustermesse in Basel, Switzerland with a BSA automatic brochure saddle stitcher. Since the first drupa, Muller Martini has surprised trade fair visitors with innumerable world premieres. With the founding of the Grapha printing press factory in Maulburg, Germany (1964), the integration of Martini AG in the Swiss village of Felben (1969) and of VBF

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

Buchtechnologie in the German town of Bad Mergentheim (1998), and the development of a worldwide sales and service network, the group consolidated its position as the leading system provider in the graphic arts industry. The Customer Is Most Important The company’s success was based on the constant focus Hans Müller placed on the needs of customers over the years. “I’m happy that I’ve managed to provide our discerning customers with innovative and market-driven solutions in the form of our machines. Some solutions were developed in response to suggestions by customers and in close cooperation with them,” he said in an interview in 2006 with the Muller Martini employee magazine “Intern” on the occasion of his company’s 60th anniversary. Another important factor for success

Muller Martini  Panorama Spring 2013

was the high esteem in which the company holds its employees. “I find it highly gratifying that I could provide many people with interesting tasks.” It is indicative of Hans Müller’s deep commitment to the company and its employees that he showed up almost daily at his office at the Muller Martini head office in Zofingen even at an advanced age and remained active behind the scenes. With Hans Müller’s passing, the world has lost a pioneer who shaped the graphic arts industry for decades. 

3  The legendary B1 pad and booklet ­stitching machine was the first chapter in Muller Martini’s corporate history. It is still used by graphic arts businesses such as ­Tipografia ­Cavalli in the Swiss canton of Tessin (see ­article on page 36). 4  In 1956, Hans Müller astounded the graphic arts industry with “flying stitching heads” (pictured here on the Junior saddle stitcher), which for the first time stitched without stop and go, enabling a further significant increase in production speed. 5  With the Rotorbinder, Hans Müller rode the increasing trend of moving away from saddle stitching toward perfect binding in the 1950s. 6  The Pony perfect binder, which was ­unveiled at the drupa 1962, was used for short print runs by numerous graphic arts businesses.


Fit for future markets. MMServices

– Muller Martini Services at a Glance MMStartup

 Project management – Comprehensive consultation for all needs  Installation and commissioning – For a high level of process reliability  Machine relocations – Help with organizing the complete machine relocation


 Repair service – Professionally carried out by service specialists  Spare parts – Instant availability of more than 30,000 items from stock


 Telephone support – 24/7 hotline for technical issues and spare parts ordering  Remote services – Fast online troubleshooting, leading to a reduction in downtime costs


 Increase the added value of your equipment with regular updates


 Inspection – Comprehensive analysis and extensive function testing  Maintenance – 12 months’ guarantee on all service work included in the maintenance contracts


 Training – Competent training at your site or at Muller Martini  Production support – Consultation on efficiency enhancing measures


 Service contract – Efficient life cycle management for a high level of reliability and availability of your machines, Phone: +41 (0)62 745 45 75

Muller Martini Panorama, 2013, Spring  
Muller Martini Panorama, 2013, Spring  

The Magazine for Muller Martini Customers. Spring 2013. Preventive Maintenance Increases Efficiency and Reduces Costs.