Michigan State University

What is the Espresso Book Machine at Michigan State University Libraries?

The Espresso Book Machine (or EBM) doesn't make coffee; the EBM is a completely self-contained book publishing machine. The EBM can print anything from your family cookbook to a novel you’ve written or any of the seven million titles available from our catalog. The machine will print, bind, and trim a book within minutes – it will do this for virtually any book.

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Where is the EBM located?

The EBM is located in the Copy Center in the Main Library. The Copy Center is on the second floor of the west wing.

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How does it operate? What is the basic process?

The EBM uses a high speed copier to print your pages (called the book block). The pages enter the Espresso Book Machine and are held in a collator tray in preparation for binding. While the book block is printing, a full color cover is printed from an inkjet printer and is automatically fed into the EBM. The book is then bound by gluing the book block to the cover page; this forms the spine. The cover is clamped against the spine and pages to create a perfect-bound book. Then, the newly joined book block and cover page are trimmed to your exact specifications. The finished book then travels to the pick-up slot for retrieval.

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Can I see the EBM in action?

Yes! The machine runs during normal Copy Center hours and is fully accessible to see up close.

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Can I receive help with formatting my book block and/or cover?

Yes! There is a dedicated staff position for the EBM that will be available during posted hours to help you with any EBM needs. Quick advice is always available; there are fees and limitations for certain services. Please refer to our pricing page for more information.

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How long will it take to print my book?

Your book will print in less than ten minutes if the files are fully ready for print. There are various factors in each case, so refer to the times provided by the EBM staff; they will provide estimates for each case. Books ordered online from the catalog will be available the next business day. If orders are placed on the weekend, allow for two business days for processing and printing.

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Are there templates available for formatting the book block and cover?

Cover templates may be provided upon request. Email your inquiry to us and we can send you a custom-made template. Please include the size of your book (width and height) as well as the page count (the total number of pages in your book). If you have specific software you prefer for the cover design, please specify that as well. We can provide templates in InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, PowerPoint, or Publisher.

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Where can I learn more technical information about the machine?

You can either speak with the EBM staff or look on the manufacturer's website. On Demand Books developed the EBM and Xerox manufactures the high-speed copy machine (the model is a Xerox 4112) used to print the book block. The inkjet printer that prints the book cover is made by Epson (the model is Epson Stylus R1900).

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What type of books can the EBM print?

The EBM can print:

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Who can use the EBM?

Anyone! You don't have to be a student or faculty to use the EBM at Michigan State University. You don't even have to live in Michigan. Contact us to see how we can serve your needs.
 

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