Mailroom technology from Ferag
Nowadays, innovative newspaper publishers invest in highly versatile mailroom systems that allow for a much broader product portfolio. With its pioneering technology and product ideas, Ferag has paved the way here for many years. With this in mind, the company from Hinwil in Switzerland will be at the World Publishing Expo 2019 (IFRA Expo & Conference) on 8 and 9 October 2019, with their motto “Flexible technology for flexible orders”. Ferag will not only be presenting its precisely coordinated range of products at Messe Berlin (Hall 21a, Stand E.02) – also on show will be comprehensive retrofitting services for ensuring future reliability while maintaining the guarantee of the original product.
EasySert, FlyStream, SingleSheetFeeder
For decades, classic Ferag mailroom modules – such as the MSD and RSD inserting drums, MultiDisc storage systems or MultiStack compensating stackers – have proven themselves around the world when it comes to reliable production and the punctual output of large newspaper print runs. However, an increasing number of publishers and newspaper printing plants are now broadening their product portfolio. For example, newspapers now increasingly come with stitched special supplements and magazines, while freesheets are now becoming successful carriers of numerous advertising inserts.
Ferag identified these trends in good time and supported them with tailored technology. The EasySert inserting drums, FlyStream precollecting line with its unique repair function and the highly flexible JetFeeder hoppers are some of the real success stories of the 2010s. FlyStream and JetFeeder are designed for processing collections made up of many inserts of different formats. In the past year, a special hopper for single sheets was launched following requests by customers. This product – SingleSheetFeeder – stands out thanks to its particularly large capacity, meaning it requires little in the way of operating manpower.
Extra equipment for extra benefits
Enterprises currently making investments expect tangible added value – in other words, extra benefits – from their mailroom technology. The “extra equipment for extra benefits” thus includes the Ferag StreamStitch stitching drum, Ferag SNT-50 trimming drum, Ferag TriLiner for applying MemoSticks and cards, and the Ferag StreamFold quarterfold system. These not only simply expand the possibilities in postpress processing, they are tailored to one another in such a way that the flexibility of the production plants and the associated product portfolio grows exponentially.
A customized insert collection for every recipient
Ferag technology – with conveyors consisting of single grippers and the processing stations, which can also feed newspaper copies or inserts to individual compartments and grippers – forms the ideal basis for an important future project: personalized insertion. In future, the goal is to produce completely customized insert collections for every newspaper recipient.
In terms of hardware, the mailroom at a Swiss printing plant has been completely equipped with “reference clamp technology” for the first time, which can be used to address and track each individual newspaper copy with its insert collection. All latest-generation Ferag inserting systems come ready for the individual assembly of collections. The moment a particular insert is fed off the stack, it is already firmly assigned to a delivery address.
Ferag also estimates that the software requirements for implementing specific projects will be in place at its pilot customers within the coming two to three years. A software solution then enables “guaranteed personalization” and bundles sorted according to delivery route sequences.
Retrofitting, upgrades and the DGUV audit
As postpress processing generates the most added value at many newspaper companies nowadays, the constant availability of the systems is a crucial factor in the company’s success. Ferag thus offers tailored service packages and retrofit concepts in order to maintain this availability on a long-term basis. In Germany, the Ferag service now also includes DGUV follow-up audits for mailroom systems (“Electric systems and equipment”).
Over Ferag systems’ frequently long service lives, it can happen that hardware components, particularly control electronics, are no longer available. Appropriate retrofits can extend the operating lifetimes of older systems that in mechanical terms often continue to be absolutely reliable. At the heart of many current retrofit solutions is the PRA PC central line control unit, which enables functions such as regionalized inserting, the individual addressing of products via inkjet and programmed bundle production. Since 2013, Ferag has been offering customers the successor model PRA Plus, which is fully compatible with the Internet addressing protocol IPv6 and modern network architectures.
The JetFeeder hoppers are one of the most heavily used components in any inserting line. Ferag offers retrofit packages here with the right mix of services, cost level and quality guarantee. Following a “traffic light” concept (red/yellow/green depending on the degree of urgency), the wearing parts of the overall system are gradually replaced and even the most complex JetFeeder configurations brought into shape for the coming years. This is something that can make sense for many newspaper printers.sbr / 08/13/2019