Printing Impressions

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Chief Folding Fanatic

Trish Talks Finishing

By Trish Witkowski

About Trish

Trish Witkowski is Chief Folding Fanatic at the online community foldfactory.com. She holds a bachelor of fine arts degree in graphic design and a master of science degree in Graphic Arts Publishing from Rochester Institute of Technology's School of Printing Management and Sciences (now the School of Print Media).

An award-winning designer, Trish held the position of creative director for a Baltimore-based agency for six years, and has taught design and desktop publishing at the college level. She has a specialized expertise in the area of folding and is the creator of the FOLDRite™ system, a 2004 GATF InterTech™ Technology Award winner.
 
Trish frequently publishes articles for graphic arts industry publications, and has written three books on the topic of folding: A Field Guide to Folding, Folding for the Graphic Arts: A Teacher's Handbook, and FOLD: The Professional's Guide to Folding.

 

Muller Martini’s Stitch Monitoring Technology Looks Simple, Works Wonders

 
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There’s a green plastic sensor that sits on the ridge of the gathering chain on all Muller Martini stitching machines these days. To someone like me who doesn’t know the anatomy of a stitching machine, it looks like it’s maybe a guard of some sort, but it’s actually a pretty sophisticated piece of technology that is improving quality control during the stitching process.

The green sensor is Muller Martini’s patented Stitch Monitor—and embedded in its non-abrasive plastic mold is a series of sensors that detect stitching wire. At running speeds of up to 30,000 pieces/hour, the system detects and rejects any product that does not have the right number of stitches. For those using older stitchers that do not have low wiring indicators, the machine will even be stopped if the unit counts a preselected number of consecutive products with insufficient staples.

The monitor does a tremendous job of improving quality control in the stitching process, preventing bad product from getting through and into the hands of the client.

An added bonus is that the product is rejected before it goes through the trimming process, which means there is a possibility (depending upon the individual product and paper choice) that the rejected piece can be taken apart and sent through again, minimizing waste.

“When we first developed this technology a few years back, it was optional,” says Doug Stryker, division manager for Print Finishing Systems at Muller Martini, “but we had such great response to the Stitch Monitor in the field that it is now a standard feature on all of our stitching machines—from entry level to our highest output machines.”

For those who don’t have a current Muller Martini stitcher, this feature can be retrofitted for about $2,500.

To learn more about the Stitch Monitor, or to inquire about retrofitting the technology, please contact your regional Muller Martini sales manager by calling 1-888-2MULLER.

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