Bell & Bain scores UK first with Muller Martini install

Jenny Roper
Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Glasgow printer Bell & Bain has become the first UK printer to install a Muller Martini Diamant MC case binding line.

The new line is being installed this week, along with a Horauf casemaker, at the company’s Lawmoor Street facility, and will enable the company to bring all outsourced hardback book work in-house. 

“We’ll be supplying work for existing customers, such as Cambridge and Oxford University Presses, and this’ll take us into new markets as well,” said managing director Stephen Docherty. “It’s all about the quality. The people who’ve helped with outsourcing have been great, but this binder is just on a new level.”

Of the quality of the binder, Docherty added: “It’s just the shape of books and how it forms them; it’s just crisp and sharp.”

The new binder joins an existing Muller Martini A7 binder and stitching line at the Lawmoor Street premise, which Bell & Bain bought for £500,000 at the end of last year.

The firm has also recently installed a Technotrans bulk ink pumping system for its eight-colour KBA Rapida 142 long perfector. This has enabled press minders to concentrate on quality results rather than keeping ink ducts regularly replenished with tins, and is particularly useful for heavy coverage work, such as the high-end coffee table books the firm produces.

“Really you’re wanting your printer to be keeping his eye on his colour, making sure it’s not drifting. You want him to be looking for marking – there are various different things he should be concentrating on rather than being away from where it's actually happening just to make sure his ducts are continually getting fed,” said print manager Scott Hill.

Next on Bell & Bain’s kit wish list is another KBA Rapida 142, reported Docherty. “Ideally in a perfect world I’d like to buy another KBA 142; that’s on the agenda but it’s just saving the funds back up to do it,” he said.

Docherty added that the company was on track with its plan to grow turnover from £10m last year to £11m or £12m this year. “We’re 24% up on what we were this time last year,” he said. 

The list price for the Muller Martini Diamant MC is in the region of £550,000. The list for the Tehcnotrans bulk ink pumping system, £40,000-£50,000.

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