The 3692, which can be used in the Pantera and Alegro A6 perfect binding lines, can handle large oblong signatures, such as A4 landscape, at the full 6,000 cycles per hour speed, unlike the 1571, which had to reduce speed to around 2,000cph.

In addition, the 3692 can handle spine lengths up to 460mm and signature thicknesses of up to 6mm, versus 450mm and 4mm on its predecessor. Muller Martini UK sales director David McGinlay said that this tied in better with the size ranges available on the Alegro A6.

Another enhancement with the new machine is the fact it is compatible with the Muller Martini Application Platform (MMAP), which means it can be connected to Muller Martini’s Book Data Center (BDC), which measures the thickness, size, trim, spine position and everything else relevant to the production of a book and automates the setup of the whole binding line.

“The BDC automates the setup of the whole line, the gatherer, binder, conveyor, stacker, trimmer and the splitting saw for 2up A5 production,” said McGinlay. “The old 1571 couldn’t be networked but with the 3692 the whole line can be networked – that alone is going to reduce job changeover times by more than 50%.”

The 3692, which comes with four stations by default, is also compatible with Muller Martini’s book verification system, which comprises an optical scanning system that reads an AsirCode printed on the spine or outside the trim to prevent production with incorrectly set-up signatures.

“The book verification system ensures with 100% accuracy that the correct text goes with the correct cover, so you don’t end up with the Spanish cover on the French text, for instance, and that all the signatures are in the correct hoppers,” said McGinlay.

“It’s driven by the fact that first book you create has to be saleable, because in the digital market you might only be doing a run of one book – you can’t take 10 copies to get the machine set up.”

McGinlay added that the first commercial install of the 3692 was currently taking place at Micropress in the UK, on an Alegro A6.