Bound To Last
Bill Sommer, Banta's customer service group leader, adds that in-house, "The press in a Cameron belt is connected to the binder. One revolution of the belt creates a book and goes right into the binder." By connecting these processes, Sommers believes that the book production process is generally much faster. Additionally, he says that it's not uncommon to customize imprints on covers within this same cycle, as most often with catalogs and special edition book projects. Essentially, the binding process is reconfigured to attach specialty covers on books. "It matches-up the custom content with custom covers," says Sommers. "You can't afford to stop and start the binder. We'll start from the back of the process and move forward."
He explains, "When you're talking about dealing with 2,000 imprints in a million run, a book like this would take a million-and-a-half pounds of paper. It would be some 40- to-50 semi truck loads. If you don't have a way to move production efficiently, a project like it takes two-to-three months. Our goal is to pre-set the bindery for a large project like that."
As a result, Banta uses a DocuTech for its perfect binding. "There are three of these perfect binders in the plant," says Sommers. "There are able to bind from 150 pages right up to 2,000 depending on the bulk of the paper."
Supply and demand
Automated Graphic Systems (AGS) (www.ags.com) discovered that servicing both traditional and print on-demand markets pays off. Because not everyone wants to order thousands of books at once and pay to keep half of them in inventory, to meet the demand for short-run books produced quickly, the company developed an online Print On-Demand ordering system. Users can submit titles into AGS's Digital Library by logging onto its Web site (www.ags.com/pod) to immediately order books. AGS says it then prints, binds and ships titles well under deadline.