Warwick Printing Company has become one of the first printers to purchase Ashgate Automation’s KF640 bookletmaker and trimmer with a squarefold in-line unit.
The Leamington Spa-based business invested just over £20,000 in the manually operated device, which was installed in mid April.
Designed to work with both digital and litho output, the KF640 produces a maximum booklet size of 320x320mm as well as more common sizes like A4 landscape and 12x12in.
It can handle a maximum sheet size of 640x320mm which means SRA2 sheets do not require pre-trimming of the short edge on a guillotine prior to producing an A4 landscape booklet.
“We’ve got the long-sheet option on our Xerox Versant 80 digital press, which meets the growing demand for short-run, A4 landscape booklets,” said director Paul Young.
“We found beforehand that we’d have to manually stitch the booklets, which was quite time consuming.”
He added: “We were originally looking for a more automated system, but we found that if we wanted the option to landscape, machines started at around £80,000. For the sort of steps that we are doing in digital it would have been a bit of an overkill to start off with.”
The squarefold in-line unit sits between the bookletmaker and the trimmer.
“We don’t use it all the time but some of our 48-page magazines are quite springy. The squarefold unit is by far the most efficient way to give them a professional, perfect bound look with the security of a stapled finish,” said Young.
“Although it is still early days, this investment will give us the opportunity to expand our short run booklet and magazine business as well as producing more personalised and laminated books.”
Warwick Printing Company also operates a Kasfold 3000 hand-fed bookletmaker, which has been retained as a backup, while a second, smaller Kasfold machine has been part-exchanged.
The 60-staff, £6m-turnover business produces print on additional Xerox and Canon digital equipment and Heidelberg Speedmaster litho presses.
Young said the firm’s volume of digital work is increasing and it is looking to buy a new digital printer later this year.