Those who bind know that one type of adhesive does not suit all applications. EVA is a cost-effective, general use binding adhesive, and PUR is the best choice for digital color, especially color sheets that have been infused with fuser oil (which EVA tends to repel), and for coated stocks, which have surface treatments and clay content that resist EVA. In the past, printers have had to choose between a dedicated EVA binder or a dedicated PUR binder, all the while wishing for a flexible, cost-effective way to support different glue technologies in one binder platform.
Standard Horizon attacks this issue head-on with its four-clamp BQ-470 binder. The BQ-470 is the first binder in this production class equipped with quick-change EVA and PUR glue tanks that slide out on rails to a wheeled trolley, so the operator can easily changeover from one binding style to another in about 5 minutes. Amazing.
The machine is designed to straddle both the commercial offset and digital print worlds, and is very effective in book-of-one environments (where every book is different) with specially designed software that speeds-up changeover time between different book thicknesses. To boot, Horizon even added a digital caliper after users commented on the production slow-down associated with measuring book thicknesses and entering this data for ultra short-run production. Now a digital caliper measures the book block and conveys the data to the binder for fast, automated changeover. The binder cycles at 1,350 books per hour, so it can be used efficiently for run lengths up to 5,000 units or even longer.
Current users of the system seem to agree that versatility is the name of the game these days. "We’re well-known as a quality heatset web shop that offers a broad range of bindery services, but adding short-run digital one- and four-color books diversifies our offerings and helps us enter new markets," said Rick Dunn, vice president of manufacturing for Hamilton Printing Co. in Castleton-on-Hudson, NY. Like many companies looking for new growth opportunities, Hamilton recently added Digital Book Manufacturing to its service offerings.
So how does it work? Let's say you're changing from EVA to PUR. The operator slides the glue tank from the binder on an integrated track rail system (visualize a heavy-duty drawer) and disconnects two plugs. Horizon provides a hydraulic trolley that is specially fitted to receive the tanks. The operator wheels the trolley under the EVA tank, raises it to lift the tank slightly, and then wheels it over to a receiving station where it can lowered into a resting position. Using the same trolley, the operator can pick up the PUR tank from its receiving station, wheel it into position on the binder, connect the two plugs, slide it in, and proceed to warm-up the glue. You can watch a short video of the process here
Now let’s talk numbers, since that’s what everyone wants to know. The BQ-470 with EVA tank is approximately $117,000. PUR-only with Nordson Pail Loader is $154,000. The machine configured for both EVA and PUR sells for around $175,000. The dual adhesive feature is not retrofittable to other models, however the format is modular, allowing the customer to start with EVA only, and offering the ability to add PUR capability at any time in the future.
Watch for it! The interchangeable glue tank feature will also be incorporated into the all-new Horizon CABS 6000 17-clamp binding line that will premier at Ipex in May. Should be interesting...
For more information about the BQ-470, click here