Collators Versatility Required
In-plants produce a diversified range of products. Their collators must be just as versatile.
By Kristen E. Monte
FLEXIBILITY, VERSATILITY and productivity are three key qualities in-plant managers look for when choosing a collating system, says A.B.Dick's Dennis James. More specifically, he adds, in-plants look for equipment that can handle a variety of paper stocks without taking up a lot of floor space.
In-plants today produce a diversified range of products, adds Ron Bowman, vice president of sales for Rosback Co.
"Many of the items [in-plants] wish to collate...are varied and come in all sizes, shapes and weights," says Bowman. "They require a heavy-duty, versatile collator to collect these varied materials for the next step."
Since in-plants must be able to collate a variety of products with ease, collators are becoming increasingly automated.
"A collating system is a key element of an in-plant bindery because so many different types of jobs typically flow through it," says Don Dubuque, marketing manager at Standard Finishing Systems. "In-plants recognize the benefit of investing in equipment that offers automation benefits today, but will also be ready to be integrated into a comprehensive JDF workflow when they are ready."
Here is a look at the latest offerings from some of the top collator vendors in the industry.
Friction or Suction
The A.B.Dick Watkiss Vario modular collating system offers friction or suction feed options along with three different feeding systems to mix and match bin types. Productivity of the unit is furthered with flexible bin linking, multi-set programming, batch insertion and preset memory functions. The Vario has a Graphical User Interface (GUI) that provides control over stitching, folding and trimming functions. Accessories include online stitching, folding, trimming and an inline SpineMaster unit that squares the spine of the booklets to emulate perfect binding.