Trade finisher Ace Binding has invested in the UK’s first Renz Inline 500 Classic fully automatic punching and ring wire-binding machine.
The machine, which was installed at the Birmingham-based firm’s 930sqm premises around three weeks ago, cost £200,000. It has taken the place of a Renz Inline 500 Compact, which the company bought last year and has now part-exchanged.
“We took the decision to invest in the Compact because demand for wire-binding meant we were full and having to run a lot of overtime shifts. It addressed that immediately and paid for itself in six months,” said Ace Binding director Rob Hart.
“Then demand grew quickly which meant we were starting to run more and more overtime shifts again. We even got to the point where we were having to turn work away.”
He added: “We spoke to Renz and they recommended the next system up. The Classic is bigger, faster and does a lot more. It’s positioned at the high end of the market and is about as far as we can go so if we outgrow that then we’ll have to buy another one.
“We’ve got a very good working relationship with Renz. They look after us and their machinery is so user-friendly – you’re up to speed after an hour’s training, which is why we keep sticking with them.”
The Inline 500 Classic can bind products at a maximum speed of 2,000 per hour. It is suitable for books, calendars and skip binding and includes Quick Size Adjustment for high flexibility and quick changes between different paper formats.
“The Classic allows us to be more versatile with the size and thickness of books and calendars. We are finding customers are increasingly requesting bespoke products which it can easily handle,” said Hart.
“It has more than doubled our capacity. That gives us some breathing space, especially in the run up to our busiest time of the year.
“The wire binding side of the business is our most productive and seeing record growth. As a result, we expect the new system to achieve return on investment in 18 months.”
Ace Binding, which turns over £1.8m and has 36 staff, also operates a Muller Martini Alegro binder, three MBO folders and two Stahl folders, a Polar 115 guillotine and a Heidelberg stitcher as well as shrink wrapping and collating kit.