Installations News
Cober invests in robotic stacker

April 8, 2024  By PrintAction Staff

Jonathan Walsh, operator, Cober; Joe Bain, lead hand, Cober; and Sam Mueller, director of operations, Cober, with Stahlfolder TH 82 and P-Stacker.

Cober, Kitchener, Ont., recently invested in a new robotic P-Stacker for its Stahlfolder TH 82 with PFX feeder. Cober is the first Canadian company to invest in a solutions that has been designed to reduce the pressures of increasing costs and the shortage of skilled labour in the printing industry.

The TH 82 replaces two older buckle folders and is used for folding the company’s 16-page signatures. Heidelberg’s PFX Feeder is designed to feed sheets like the feeder of a printing press – with the sheets shingled and underlapped in the first folding unit instead of feeding them conventionally with a sheet gap. The underlapping of sheets (shingling sheets) on the infeed register table nearly doubles the number of sheets that can be processed versus conventional sheet gap feeding at the same running speed.

According to Cober, “With our older streamfed folders, we would have three people running two folders. Now it’s one person on one folder at twice the speed.”


Cober is also saving labour while increasing throughput with its new robotic P-Stacker – a six-axis industrial robot that autonomously places each signature pile from the folder’s delivery onto a pallet. This automation complements Stahlfolder’s Push to Stop function, where the system automatically changes from one signature to the next.

Stacking up to 300 signature piles per hour, the P-Stacker helps eliminate a very physical element of the folding process for Cober’s operators. “There’s an ease of onboarding new team members into an automated environment,” said Cober. “We can bring in operators with no printing experience and have them running equipment within a few weeks whereas before, that was completely a pipe dream.”

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