Me & My: Impel-Welbound Bindwel Freedom 4K

Naresh Chandna, director, Sai Printo Pack

Naresh Chandna, director, Sai Printo Pack tells Rahul Kumar his reasons to choose the Bindwel Freedom 4K from Impel-Welbound.

Please describe your company.

We are an integrated book printing firm with in-house capabilities from design to fulfilment. We address a large variety of publishers from legal, academic, education and trade. We are equipped with both digital and offset printing facilities for both hardcover and paperback production.

When did you start using the Impel-Welbound product?

We had a single-clamp binder from Welbound long back. We decided to have a look at one more machine from them after Impel broke away from the Trivandrum group and put up its products in the last PrintPack exhibition. We installed the Freedom 4K binder in October 2019.

What are the features of the machine you like?

Its speed, flexibility, expandability and reliable local service support. Above all, it is future-ready for various gluing technologies.

Why did you decide to use the Freedom 4K?

We already had a medium speed binder with us, before, that gives about 1,500 books per hour. However, we faced bottlenecks while addressing the changing needs of our customers, be it in terms of turnaround times or quality. Impel introduced us to the Bindwel Freedom 4K machine that can produce up to 4,000 books per hour, and also can be linked to a gatherer and three-knife trimmer.

What are the features that tilted the favour in this?

Freedom 4K gives you the freedom to add machines before or after it, to complete the line. One can upgrade to PUR binding without any difficulty. Job changeover is fairly easy to handle. It is a modern machine, unlike some of the pre-owned imported models that we looked at, and helps produce high quality books while keeping your operational costs minimal. Its powerful MIS interface gives us timely information on production and costs.

How much have these features helped you?

We have been able to address our customer requirements better, providing deliveries faster than before. Our customers also have appreciated the quality of ornamental creasing, side gluing and firmly nipped book spines.

For what applications is the product used?

We use the binder for all our soft cover book production requirements.

If there’s a critical post press job that has come your way, would you rely on this to see it through?

Yes, of course, with a brand new machine and with the support of capable application engineers from Impel — there will be no concern at all. The advantage of dealing with a forward looking company like Impel is that they do not go only by the specs sheet, and are willing to address some on-the-job issues we are likely to encounter.What’s the quality like?

Compared to our earlier process, the spine and side gluing are much better, and so are cover creasing and the firmness of the book spine.

How easy is it to use and handle?

This machine is ideal for book printers who have production requirement of above 10,000 books per day. As the future is for inline binding — as space, manpower, energy and wastage need to be reduced — this is an ideal machine to invest in.

Would you say that it offers value for money?

The machine offers a good value for money. Though the investment costs are higher compared to pre-owned European machines, the overall cost of ownership is much lower. Be it energy consumption, space requirement, upgradeability – Freedom 4K stands ahead.

Were there any difficulties during the use of Freedom 4K?

There are teething issues with any new machine or technology and we faced it in this case as well. The biggest advantage I see is the quick response of the service team and their ability to address the issue without any delay.

Who do you think the Freedom 4K is right for?

Inline binding has become a necessity and every book printer will need to switch over from the current offline solutions based on the production requirements.

Under what circumstances would you recommend it to others?

Unless your requirements are short to medium run or if you are in the digital book print business, you will need a machine of this speed and expandability.