Posts Tagged ‘Booklet Making Machines’

Review of the MBM Bookletmaker Jr.

Thursday, February 16th, 2012

MBM Bookletmaker Jr Booklet Making MachineIf your business or organization prints and creates your own literature in-house, you may have the need of a booklet making machine. These machines are designed to fold and staple paper into booklets. We recently added the MBM Bookletmaker Jr. to our site (found here). I have had an opportunity to personally us this machine and would like to share my thoughts with you.

For starters, I have to say that I am very impressed with MBM as a company. They produce some of the nicest machines out there. You may have heard of some of their other machines such as Destroyit paper shredders, Kutrimmer guillotines and Triupmh stack cutters. Their machines feature sensible designs, are easy to use and they don’t cut corners in the manufacturing process.

Upon unboxing the Bookletmaker Jr., you may notice that it is very similar to other machines out there. Having used several machines myself, I have to say that the MBM Bookletmaker Jr. is very similar in look and operation to the Formax FD 160 (found here) and the ISP BookletMate (found here). The operation is almost identical. This isn’t to say that they are made in the same place, but the share a similar design.

There is very little setup required to use this booklet maker. It consists of a metal base, motorized rubber rollers and two staplers mounted to a arm. It is a fairly simple machine, but the subtleness of the machine is part of what makes it so incredible. It can be used with paper ranging from 8 ½” x 11″ up to 11″ x 17″. The guides, which help center the paper, auto center the staplers as they are lined up to the edges of the paper.

Once the paper is inserted, bring the stapler arm over to the other side (about a 180 degree motion) and press the arm down. This activates the staplers. This part of the process is manual. Once the stapling is complete, move the stapler arm back to its original position. The motor will automatically pull the paper and fold it in half. Voila! You have a booklet.

I found that I was able to insert the paper, staple it and fold the paper in about 3-5 seconds. It is a very efficient process, however, I would still rate this machine for light to medium volume use simply because there is still enough manual effort involved that an operator wouldn’t want to repeat this process over and over again on a large scale. If you need to create hundreds to thousands of booklets, go with a fully automatic / electric machine.

This machine is ideal for use in schools, churches and businesses. It is definitely portable, at 40 pounds shipped, but isn’t something that you want to move around on a regular basis. It is light enough to be used on most tables and desks. Aesthetically it is a very nice looking machine that I feel will blend in with most office environments.

The MBM Bookletmaker Jr. has a 10 sheet stapling capacity. That is based on standard 20# copy paper. The sheet capacity will be less if you are using card stock. Because it can staple 10 sheets of paper, it can bind a booklet of 40 pages (front and back / side to side).

Would I consider using this machine for my own booklet making operations? You bet. It is backed by a one-year warranty and the support from us (at ABC Office) and MBM will keep you happy. It should hold up for years without causing you any issues.

You can find the MBM Bookletmaker Jr. here and our entire selection of booklet making machines here. We are one of the most reputable online dealers of office equipment online (in business since 1980) and we offer some of the best prices available online. If you have any questions, please call us at 1-800-658-8788.

How Does a Booklet Maker Work?

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Booklet Makers / Booklet Making MachinesIf you want to bind a booklet or instructional manual, and don’t want to use a binding format that uses a spine, you may want to consider using a booklet maker (found here). These compact machines come in a variety of sizes, depending on the amount of books you want to create. So how exactly does a booklet maker work?

Booklet makers use staples, instead of binding elements, to bind books. These staples, usually 2 or 3, are placed along the middle of the booklet rather than the edge. Booklets bound on a booklet maker are usually 8 ½” x 5″ folded and usually range in size anywhere from a couple of pages up to 60, depending on the machine that’s used.

Booklet makers typically complete the binding process in a matter of a few of steps.

  1. Paper is first inserted into the machine.
  2. The booklet maker then applies staples along the middle of the sheets.
  3. The booklet is then folded in half, completing the process.

The size of the book depends on the capacity of the booklet maker. An entry level booklet maker typically staples around 10 sheets of paper, which ends up being 40 pages (front and back). High end machines can staple up to 25 sheets, which ends up being 100 pages (front and back). Keep in mind, when looking for a booklet maker, that sheet capacities are based on standard copy paper. That amount will need to be decreased if you are using card stock.

Before booklet makers existed, paper was first folded in half using a folding machine. Folded paper was then placed on a saddle stapler and stapled. This process involved multiple machines and took a minute or two to complete. Booklet makers cut that time by at least half.

Booklet makers can be broken up into three different categories, based on how the machine is built and how it is used. These three styles include semi-automatic, automatic and in-line. I will briefly cover each of these machines.
Automated Booklet Makers

  • Semi Automatic – This type of booklet maker is especially popular because it is much more affordable. It is usually designed for low to medium-volume work. The operator typically pulls a lever, which activates the staple heads. When the lever is returned to its original position, the booklet maker then grabs the paper and folds it in half (by means of an electric motor). The process is extremely quick.
  • Automatic – Automatic machines use a motor to staple and fold the paper. Most of these machines still require the operator to feed the paper into the machine, but the rest is automated. A book takes just seconds to complete on an automatic machine.
  • In-Line – These machines are designed to work in conjunction with a collator. Separate stacks, usually hundreds of sheets of paper, are placed into the collator. As the collator collates the paper, it feeds the stacks automatically into the booklet maker where the document is stapled, folded and comes out the other side of the machine completed.

TROUBLESHOOTING:

The biggest complaint I here from customers using booklet makers is that the page edges don’t line up. This is perfectly normal and occurs as more sheets are stapled together. The edges of the paper will gradually fan out as more paper is stapled together. For this reason, many businesses like to use a stack cutter to chop of and align the edges of the booklets. Some higher-end booklet makers include built-in cutters for an all-in-one process.

BRANDS:

There are several different brands of booklet makers. I really don’t have any issues with any particular brand. For entry-level booklet making, I really like machines by Formax, MBM, ISP and Martin Yale. For higher-end booklet making, I really like machines by MBM.

You can find our entire selection of booklet makers here. We currently offer about 14 different models, so feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788 if you have any questions about them. We have been selling booklet makers for decades, so we have a lot of experience that may help you with your choice.

Booklet Makers & Paper Cutters – A Match Made In The Print Shop

Monday, April 4th, 2011

Skewed Booklet Maker PaperBooklet makers are wonderful machines. They take what would normally require a saddle stapler and a folding machine and do everything in a single pass. One common complaint when it comes to booklet makers is how the edges can sometimes become crooked or slanted. There are several reasons for this.

To begin with, as a booklet gets thicker, the spine of the booklet gets thicker as well. This causes the opposite front edges of the paper to slope at an angle, coinciding with the thickness of the stapled spine. Take a stack of 20-30 sheets of paper and fold them in half. You’ll see what I am talking about. The front edges just aren’t straight. No amount of adjustments on a booklet-making machine can fix this problem.

While this may all sound a little confusing, it all boils down to this. Thinner books don’t usually suffer from angled edges, where thicker books do. So what can be done about this?

Folded Booklet Maker Sheets

The most common solution, especially when binding thicker booklets together, is to use a stack paper cutter to straighten up the edges. A guillotine paper cutter may be used for light-volume booklet making. This solution basically lops off the angled edge of the front of the booklet.

You essentially take your stack of bound booklets and place them in the stack cutter. You will want to make adjustments to the stack cutter so that the blade will cut off the paper approximately where the cover sheet ends. This will allow all the sheets of paper to have the same even front edge. This is a very common practice when it comes to booklet makers.

If you are using a booklet maker for binding thicker booklets, I personally recommend using a stack paper cutter for medium to high-volume booklet making or a guillotine paper cutter for low-volume booklet making.

You can find our entire selection of booklet makers here, guillotine cutters here and stack paper cutters here.

Feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788 with any booklet making questions. We are more than happy to help.

How To Choose A Booklet Making Machine

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

Formax Booklet Making MachinesBooklet makers are wonderful machines that make it possible for you to quickly create booklets, reports, presentations and much more. These handy machines quickly staple folded paper and fold it in half. The end result looks great. If you want to save money and start making your own booklets, here are a few tips that may help you find a machine.

  1. Paper Size – One critical part of choosing a booklet making machine is finding a machine that can handle your paper size. Most booklet making machines can handle standard 8 ½” x 11″ paper. Not all machines, however, can handle larger 11″ x 17″ and 12″ x 18″ paper sizes. Be sure the machine you buy can handle your paper size.
  2. Stapling Locations – How many staples do you need in your booklet? If you are stapling a standard letter-size document, 2-3 staple heads are usually more than sufficient. Most booklet makers come with at least 2 staple heads. If you are creating a larger booklet from 11″ x 17″ or 12″ x 18″ paper, you may need at least 3 stapling positions to keep everything stable.
  3. Booklet Thickness – How thick do you need your book to be? You should be aware that booklet makers typically take into account the front and back of a folded sheet of paper. This means if your booklet maker can handle 12 sheets of paper, it can create a booklet with 48 pages (front and back). Few booklet makers can create stapled booklets over 100 pages in thickness.
  4. Type Of Paper – What type of paper will you be folding and stapling? The thicker the paper, the fewer the amount of sheets you will be able to fold and staple. You should also be aware that most booklet making machines use friction to fold the paper. If the paper is too glossy, it is possible that the friction rollers will slip on the paper. If you aren’t sure if you’re paper will work, send us samples and we’ll test them prior to you making a purchase. You can reach us at 1-800-658-8788.
  5. Speed & Automation – How many booklets do you need to create per day? Booklet making machines vary in speed depending on how automated the machine is. Booklet makers can be divided up into manual, semi-auto and automatic.Manual machines usually require the stapling to be done manually while the folding is electric. Semi-auto machines usually staple the paper, but require you to manually feed the paper into the machine. Fully automatic booklet making machines are typically interfaced with a collator for streamlined operations.
  6. Location – Where will you be using your booklet making machine? Be sure you have enough space. Most booklet making machines will fit on most tables and desks, but some of the higher-end machines may require a more stable surface.

These are the most common points you will want to take into consideration prior to purchasing a booklet making machine. You can find our entire selection of booklet making machines here.

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