View of all three Hunkler lines in the machine hall
Over the years, Elanders Print & Packaging in Waiblingen has constantly expanded its inkjet printing operations. April 2018, marked another milestone, with the third Hunkeler finishing line commencing operation in the new inkjet production facility on site. The three production lines now work in parallel using T-240 printing technology from HP and finishing technology from Hunkeler. Among other items, thousands of softcover books – including manuals for various vehicle manufacturers – are produced here daily from the white paper roll. The manuals are as diverse as the vehicles themselves. They are produced on demand according to the production schedule of the vehicle manufacturer, meaning storage of the manuals is no longer necessary. High levels of both productivity and flexibility are required here as the manuals have a different number of pages and different formats, with print runs of just a few hundred examples.
Production in two passes
The first Hunkeler book block production line was put into operation at Elanders Waiblingen three years ago. This followed some lively discussions between Peter and Christopher Sommer and Martin Kreymborg, the technicians from HP and the Hunkeler team. The goal was clear – the books had to be produced in two passes: from the roll to the printed, finished book block, intermediate stacking and then perfect binding and three-sided cutting before being shipped out. Decisive factors in online printing are perfect coordination between inkjet printing and finishing, short changeover times and very high levels of availability across the entire system. The system was soon up and running without any major problems. Building on this positive experience, Peter Sommer ordered a second line from Hunkeler one year later – followed by a third just a few months ago.
The new production facility with three production lines at Elanders in Waiblingen is used to produce books from the white paper roll.
Elanders works according to the highest quality standards. Hunkeler provides an important piece of the puzzle here, namely the quality of the book block. The finishing line produces four, six and eight-page signatures via the plowfold module, rotary cutter and star wheel stacker, where the signatures are collected with the highest precision.
The crucial advantage here is that the signatures are bound into book blocks along the spine. The quality of the book blocks is thus irrevocably fixed as soon as they leave the stacker. The absolutely flat book blocks are moved onto the pallets in perfect stacks and then transferred into the perfect binder using an automatic block feeder. The temporary gluing of the signatures is milled off in the perfect binder without any problems. Elanders works with Kolbus and Horizon perfect binders and three-knife trimmers.
Elanders is an infomedia and printing company headquartered in Sweden. It maintains a global presence in ten countries across four continents and has several subsidiaries. With a turnover of over 220 million, Elanders is one of Europe’s leading printing companies.
The pre-glued book blocks are stacked on pallets and can then be transported safely for further processing.
Elanders Print & Packaging in Waiblingen, Germany, has been part of the Elanders Group for over ten years and specializes in the production of catalogues, books and operating manuals. The Elanders client base includes renowned branded companies and well-known customers from the automotive branch and industry.