Don Piontek

Don Piontek

Don has worked in technical support, sales, engineering, and management during a career in both the commercial offset and digital finishing sectors. He is the North American representative for IBIS Bindery Systems, Ltd. of The United Kingdom.

What’s in the Box?

We see tons of packaging in retail every day, but luxury packaging is a different breed.

A Guide to Buying Digital Finishing Systems (Part Two)

In the second part of "A Guide to Buying Digital Finishing Systems," Don Piontek continues to share his experience to help you make the best finishing decision for your operation. In part two, he focuses on two key questions: when should you choose in-line versus off-line? And, how much automation do you need?

A Guide to Buying Digital Finishing Systems (Part One)

Not too long ago, a majority of digital print volume was printed on cut-sheet toner printers. Finishing options were (and still are) many, with a host of built-in bookletmakers and perfect binders that could output a finished product. These were built for the speeds and volumes of the cut-sheet production model. But we’re now in the era of digital big iron.

Finishing's Finest Hour?

Well, I've put another "drupa notch" on my belt, and it was quite an experience. The weather in Düsseldorf was good, and the crowds were there. For those who have never been, the sheer size of the show, and the enormous investment by the hundreds of firms exhibiting are truly mind-boggling. Deals were done, and many were for multiple high-priced systems, putting lots of smiles on vendor salespeople and management.

Trade Binderies Hit the Wall

It's no secret that we're dealing with a greatly compressed printing industry as opposed to the "roaring '90s." For trade binderies, the news has been even worse. In the last few years, some of the largest trade shops in the Chicago-land, the East Coast, and more have closed their doors. But, amidst the bad news, there are trade binderies that are not only surviving, but doing well, thank you. What are their secrets?

Hey, The Barcodes Are Doing The Driving!

Barcodes are simple and adaptable. They can be easily printed via imposition subroutines, and they can contain lots of information, depending on the symbology used. Barcode readers are both capable and affordable. A barcode printed on a sheet, signature, or cover can trigger actions on a finishing system and record important data such as job number and collation order at the same time.

The Long-Run Bindery

Many finishing operations wonder which machines to invest in. Given the shifting sands of the market, this is not an easy decision.

The Next Generation Book-of-One

There's been tremendous progress in developing the inventory-less "book-of-one" technology over the past few years. Despite the gloom-and-doom forecasts of the demise of the printed book, sales have proved otherwise. E-books sales have "plateaued" and even declined over the past few years, and study after study confirms the benefits of the printed page over the glow of the screen.

Digital Print and Newspapers

More than the general print sector, newspapers in general have been heavily impacted by the internet and mobile devices.

A Bookbinding Legend Leaves the Stage...

The other day, I received an email from a true "legend" in the bookbinding industry. The email informed me, that after 65 years of service, he was finally going to concentrate on more important matters like taking care of his family. The man is the RIT Professor (Emeritus) Werner Rebsamen. And what a storied career the Professor has had.