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CEO of Finishing Resources, Inc

The Finish Line

By Don Piontek

About Don

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.
 

PRINT 13's Finishing Reviews

So, was there any new "breakthrough" in finishing technology presented at PRINT 13? Not really. What we did see were more finishing systems that are better integrated with digital print. This is a trend that has continued over the years as digital printers have gotten faster. Almost all high-volume finishing now starts from the printed roll (or the printer). The goal is to make this an end-to-end solution that can be run by a single operator in the best case.  Read More >>

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PRINT 13 Delivers the Goods

The pundits who have proclaimed PRINT 13 a great success are not exaggerating. Most exhibitor booths were busy, busy, busy. There was an energy present that had been sorely missing from earlier GRAPH EXPO shows.  Read More >>

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Finishing Stars at PRINT 13

While digital print is the star, finishing is more important than ever. And there will be lots of new stuff on display in Chicago. It would take more than a few pages to highlight all of it, so I'll just pick a few that I think are worth a visit.  Read More >>

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Let's Have a Hand for...Inkjet Papers!

The surge of inkjet technology into commercial print got me thinking about the role that paper was playing in inkjet. So I'll divert from my usual finishing perspective and explore paper's part in this drama.  Read More >>

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A Checklist for Would-be Digital Finishing Manufacturers

Before you decide to re-tool your commercial bindery gear for digital, take some tips from my checklist. Believe me, it's been gleaned from experience.  Read More >>

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Keep It in the Film!

At the end of the day, coatings (of all types) and laminating are a huge part of print finishing, and the applications are addressed by an equally wide variety of machinery manufacturers and consumable suppliers.  Read More >>

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Make It Mechanical

Quick, what's the most widely used form of binding? If you answered mechanical binding, you are correct.
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Reality Hits Print Finishing Manufacturers

Müller Martini is not the only finishing manufacturer facing tough times. As the printing industry consolidates, there is a small flood of very recent vintage saddle-stitchers, folders, perfect binders, collators, diecutters, and other bindery machinery on the market as the result of closed shops.  Read More >>

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For High-speed Digital, Put Finishing First!

The more the printer professional "schools" himself, or herself, on finishing technology, methods and workflow, the more complete and efficient solution they can present to the prospect, and the more orders they will win.  Read More >>

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Making Your Case

You can set up a short-run, hard-cover module that can produce a few thousand books a day without making a million-dollar (or more!) investment. So don't routinely send the work out if you've got it. Looking at the options for bringing it in-house can add to your cash flow and improve your bottom line.  Read More >>

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Digital, Meet Offset. Offset, Meet Digital.

Both the offset and digital community have much to offer each other, and much to learn from each other. I'm waiting for a new finishing community or organization to arise that will help bring them together.  Read More >>

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Finishing's Future?

It's no secret that the U.S. print and finishing sector has been quite a challenge for vendors over the past five years, or so. Economic conditions and the continuing consolidation of the print industry have completely re-shaped the landscape they were so familiar with.  Read More >>

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Get Ready for All-in-One Printing/Finishing!

There were many attempts to integrate press and finishing over the years. A few actually worked. But most were considered as a drag on press output. When the in-line finishing module stopped (for whatever reason), so did the press. And this was a definite no-no.  Read More >>

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Is Packaging Finishing's Future?

While the conventional bindery may be in a bit of danger (long-term), packaging faces a more robust future. It might be well worth it for today's "bindroids" to get up to speed on this market.  Read More >>

Industry Centers:

Will A 'New Bind' Arrive?

The last major milestone in adhesive binding was the introduction of PUR (polyurethane reactive) glue, which cured by forming a chemical bond with paper. But a newer adhesive system may be about to make a debut.  Read More >>

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PURFection

There are lots of additional techniques that can be used to enhance the PUR process. One new technique is a plasma-discharge station (similar to the electrical corona discharge used to treat many flexible films). This is thought to change the surface tension and polarity of the book block, enhancing the bind strength.  Read More >>

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Making The Cut

In a large finishing operation, the sharpening budget can be a major operating cost, so it's the knife life after sharpening that should be watched closely. Not many of us think of knives as being so critical to finishing, but they're essential in your ability to "make the cut."  Read More >>

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Get Your Rear (Workflow) in Gear

While continuous digital presses are a long way from the (close to) mile-a-minute of paper of the fastest offset web presses, they are closing in on the 1,000 feet-per-minute mark. This is creating an issue for the postpress equipment that accompanies the press. Much of the current crop of post-press unwinders, cutter, sheeters, and web perforation systems top out at around 600 feet-per-minute.  Read More >>

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Develop Quickly, Or Else!

Back in the heyday of high-volume print, the pecking order among bindery manufacturers was fairly well-established. The "heavy-iron" firms in the U.S. had their place, but the renowned German and Swiss firms (like Muller Martini) were rapidly gaining U.S. market share. But as digital print began to gain traction in the new millennium, a curious thing happened. The mainline manufacturers were slow to match their machines to the new realities of the digital space.  Read More >>

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Go EAST Young Bindroid!

It would be fair to say that the combined China-India-Asia print market is now the largest in the world. But the EU firms don't have an easy ride. There are hundreds of local Chinese manufacturers (like JMD Machinery Group) competing fiercely for the business. Still, the bindery is alive and well. It's just that much of it is now in China.  Read More >>

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