A Brief History of Bindery Equipment

Before books there were scrolls, before scrolls there were tablets. Circa 100 BCE, Early books were bound in India by threading leather cord or twine through holes in multiple layers of palm leaves or bark. But how did we make the leap from scratching scriptures onto palm leaves to the ornate books and bindery techniques we see today?

palmleaf2_mc78E_6648Book covers evolved from goat leather to pigskin, vellum and calf leather. Pasteboard covers did not catch on until the 1500s. Cloth book covers came about in the 1800s when British publishers began wrapping pasteboard in fabric to be stamped. This is the first instance of automation in book bindery.

Although the perfect binding technique was developed in the late 1800s, it did not rise to popularity until the 1930s when the first paperback books were developed. This cold-glue method quickly caught on and spread from Germany to England to the United States. The hot glue method was developed by the Dupont company in the 1940s, resulting in a more durable and long  lasting book.

The 1950s gave rise to plastic comb binding in offices across the United States. Companies began binding their own documents and reports using spiral binding. In the late 1960s, David McConnell Smyth invented a sewing machine specifically for book bindery. The “Smyth sewing” technique involved sewing through the fold of smaller booklets, then binding them together to form a thicker spine. This method is still widely used today.

 

img_9879.525c3c0be7788Perfect bind technology continued to evolve through the 1980s and beyond. Polyurethane Reactive glue was developed in the 1989 and quickly proved superiority over EVA, which tended to crumble over time.

Many would tell you that book bindery is falling away as e-books rise to popularity. Recent data would suggest otherwise. According to CNN, e-book sales dropped 17% in the UK while physical book sales climbed by 7% this same period.

Whether you are looking for a coil binder or a perfect binder, you can find it on WireBids. We hold multiple auctions a month to provide you with the quality used equipment you need to run your business.

5 Tips for Getting the Best Price Possible for your Used Printing and Bindery Equipment

Selling used printing and bindery equipment with WireBids is easy. Our user-friendly platform connects you with a global audience of enthusiastic and loyal buyers online. Here are some tips to make sure you get the best price for your used printing press or paper folder:


Quality Photographs

Well-lit, detailed photographs go a long way. The more photos the better. In one extreme case, a lot with 48 quality photographs sold for $13,000 more than the exact same piece of equipment that only listed 3 general photos. Include pictures of the serial number plate where possible.

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Videos

WireBids has found that adding a video to your listings improves bids exponentially. Lots with videos of the equipment in action fetch better prices and receive more bids than lots without videos. Videos offer bidders assurance on the quality of the machine and add transparency about potential flaws. Take a short video yourself- we can help you upload it!

Quality Descriptions

Transparency is key when selling used equipment. Quality listings indicate any necessary repairs, number of impressions and other pertinent details. Buyers will bid more if they know the the machine has new rollers, an up-to-date service history or has been recently refurbished.

Shipping Information

Sellers who spell out shipping costs also garner higher prices. Listing palatalizing and estimated freight costs gives piece of mind to bidders who may be hesitant on purchasing equipment located on the opposite end of the  country. No one wants to buy a machine for a great price only to find that shipping it would cost an arm and a leg.

Good Communication

Reaching out to your buyers soon after the auction closes decreases the chances of a non-payment. Speaking with the buyers right after the auction ensures you can reach out to back-bidders in the event of a non-payment before they have a chance to purchase a similar machine elsewhere.

Call us at (888) 229-5733 or email sarah@wirebids.com today to sell your equipment with WireBids.

Shipping Canadian Printing Equipment: A quick guide

Buying Canadian equipment is easier than you’d think. There are a number of generally low filing fees that the shipper may pay.

International Commercial Terms (INCO) in the contract will define liability at each step. The two most common types are FCA and EXW.

FCA: “Free Carrier”: The seller delivers the goods to the carrier or another person nominated by the buyer at the seller’s premises or another named place. The parties are well advised to specify as clearly as possible the point within the named place of delivery, as the risk passes to the buyer at that point.

EXW: “Ex Works”: The seller delivers when it places the goods at the disposal of the buyer at the seller’s premises or at another named place (i.e.,works, factory, warehouse, etc.). The seller does not need to load the goods on any collecting vehicle, nor does it need to clear the goods for export, where such clearance is applicable.

WireBids requires our Canadian sellers to provide buyers with a commodity code to determine duties. This commodity code can be found on the United States Census Bureau website.

Common Commodity Codes

 34992: Bookbinding, Type Foundry, Typesetting or Printing Machinery

34519: Lifting, Handling, Loading or Unloading Machinery

38220: Photocopying, Thermo Copying

34320: Air Pumps, Vacuum Pumps

When in doubt, contact the seller. Please call us at 888-229-5733 if you have any questions.

What Kind of Paper Cutter Should I Buy?

A quality cut can mean a world of difference in your client’s final product. It is important to purchase the right style of cutter for your operation. Expensive print jobs can easily be ruined with dull blades or improper cutting pressure.

Here are a few styles you can find on WireBids:

Hydraulic Cutters

Hydraulic paper cutters are the most powerful pieces equipment around. These heavy duty cutters are best for high production print operations. They offer the most accurate cuts and have multiple safety features. A properly maintained hydraulic cutter could last for nearly 10 years before a replacement is needed.

Challenge 305 MPX Fully Programmable Paper Cutter

This machine employs the two-button cut to make sure the operator’s hands are safely out of the way before the power clamp and cut engages. These machines are ideal for multiple cuts as you are able to program the cutter to cycle through a set of predetermined cuts.

Electric Cutters

Although these electric cutters don’t pack as much power as their hydraulic counterparts, the machines are ideal for smaller shops because you can plug them into a single outlet and wheel them out of the way when you are finished. Very few things can go wrong mechanically with these light machines.

Martin Yale Powerline PI2120 Electric Cutter


This machine will not cut unless the safety hood is down. This machine features a manual back gauge and can clamp independently of the cut. With a weight of around 700lbs it is easy to roll away when not in use.

 

Manual Cutters

This type of machine is good for small print shop operations, for churches, schools or small offices. Very few things can go wrong with this type of machine.

Challenge 230HL 23” Manual Paper Cutter


This cutter features a manual clamp and back gauge. The ruler on the side serves as your guide. The clamp and back gauge are operated by crank wheels. The operator must hold down the red safety lever before bringing the blade lever down. The safety button returns at the end of each cut to ensure the blade does not fall on your hands.

Check out our current auctions to see what kind of paper cutters we have available. Feel free to call us at (888) 837-8101 for more information on paper cutters and other equipment needs.