Finishing equipment manufacturer Kolbus has launched the KM200 perfect binder, a near-zero makeready machine.
Kolbus has launched the machine to handle the growing short-run market, particularly where a number of different-sized titles are produced in the same format.
Kolbus UK managing director Robert Flather said: "This is a new platform for binding into the future. We are reaching the point of no make-ready – we are talking a second, a second and a half."
The machine, which runs at 5,000 copies per hour, around five times faster than traditional four-clamp binders, adjusts on the fly to handle different thicknesses of books, so the operator can put through a run of several hundred differently sized books, of the same format.
It automatically measures each product on the infeed and senses the difference in thickness between it and the previous book. Guides on the infeed and delivery are automatically adjusted and, depending on the difference in thickness, it calculates how many clamps to leave empty to allow sufficient time for the motors to automatically adjust all the rest of the machine settings.
Clamp length is 420mm and the machine can produce books from 2mm to 60mm in thickness.
Flather believes that the machine will be attractive to a wide variety of printers. He said: "With the onset of inkjet the largest book printers are facing decreasing run lengths, so this machine will appeal.
"But small users just into the market will also benefit – even companies looking to come into the market could benefit from the machine."
The KM200, which is available from around £300,000, uses standard Kolbus spine preparation stations as required, while spine glue is applied through a roller tank, which is applied through a nozzle system.
It also features a Kolbus HD130 three-knife trimmer.