Allied Bindery: Quality Creates Confidence
"Some customers were initially concerned that PUR use would significantly increase the cost of the bookbinding process," says Ed Doyle, managing director of Allied Bindery. "But, while PURs are more expensive than EVAs, use of the PUR extrusion application solution allows a 50 percent reduction in the volume of adhesive needed for proper bonding. And, the low-maintenance system also helps to reduce some labor overhead costs. The net result of PUR use is less than pennies per piece for a longer-lasting, finished book."
Since Nordson's is a closed system, the adhesive is protected from premature curing that starts as soon as the moisture in air reaches the adhesive. This means optimum bonding properties are retained by the PUR adhesive and eliminates the adhesive waste of having to dispose of exposed, prematurely-cured adhesive daily. And as the EP48V applicator uses slot and sniffback technology to limit exposure to air, adhesive system shutdown and startup are reduced to a matter of minutes rather than up to an hour for each process.
A Leader of the Pack
Always striving to be a leader rather than a follower, Allied was the first trade bindery to introduce PUR in the Upper Midwest and the first bindery in North America to implement extrusion application technology.
Perhaps the biggest challenge for Allied has been educating its customers. PURs do not support the main critical in-process test of bookbinders—the page pull test. While PURs develop the initial strength to be trimmed and shipped immediately, the traditional page pull test can not accurately be performed for approximately 24 hours. So, Allied has in place numerous quality checks, both automated and manual, visual and mechanical, to confirm spine glue application consistency in real time.
"You need to partner with your customers and your customers' clients at the beginning of a project so that everybody understands the desired outcome and what is needed to achieve it," says Doyle. "Part of this is project-specific education, but we also proactively send bi-weekly technical tips to keep customers up-to-date on process and material trends."