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Folders--The Possibilities Are Endless

May 2000
Folding machines are advancing by leaps and bounds, as many companies will prove this month at DRUPA 2000, in Dusseldorf, Germany.


BY CHERYL A. ADAMS


"A new breed of folder . . . " dreams the printer who dozes off on his flight to DRUPA. "Smaller . . . Cheaper . . . Faster . . . Easy to set up . . . Easy to operate . . . Rugged enough to handle whatever jobs I throw at it . . ."

In his dream, the printer is en route across the DRUPA fairgrounds complex, pushing past crowds, catching quick glimpses of other (lots of other!) postpress equipment. His feet hurt. He'll visit those booths later. Right now, he's rushing to see the new MBO Model T 800/4 Perfection buckle folder demonstrated with the new BA 900 banding and bundling system.

The printer in the seat beside him is dozing off, as well. His dreams are full of on-demand possibilities with Stahlfolder's new TD 52, which can handle the higher volumes of digital printing, while still being used for "binding on-demand."

And the printer behind him is dreaming of still another new system. The fully automated Multimaster CAS folder: a cutting-edge technology that features such advancements as automated fold plate setup and automatic fold roller gap and alignment rail settings—which is making its DRUPA 2000 debut.

To fuel these dreams, Printing Impressions has gathered information on some of the folding technologies to be showcased at DRUPA, as well as a few other noteworthy members of this hardware category.

Folders for Targeted Mail
Recent changes in the communications and printing industries have given rise to a new breed of folder, contends Ben Polk, marketing director at Profold. In order to accommodate their clients, commercial printers—as well as direct mailers, ad agencies, etc.—are moving to targeted mailings, which require shorter print runs to specialized audiences.

"The traditional folder employed by binderies and printers was big, complicated to set up between jobs and expensive," Polk explains. "For many of the smaller, targeted print runs, these folders were inefficient and slowed down production."

Which is why Profold developed the Model 4040, he says, to serve the short-run, targeted mailing market niche. With its patented "No-Set-Gap-Set," he notes, just about anyone can set up the machine and fold jobs—without extensive training or knowledge of the "art" of folding.

"Our patented Fast Track grooved fold rollers, made from Prothane, provide long life and are almost maintenance-free. The grooved roller material has no affinity for ink or toner and allows air to escape under the paper, providing the tightest fold possible," Polk says. "The Model 4040 is rated at 40,000 sph and has a three-shift duty cycle. It is fast, efficient, and easy to set up and operate. Just what binderies and printers need."

 

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