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Printing Industry Exchange ( is pleased to have Steven Waxman writing and managing the Printing Industry Blog. As a printing consultant, Steven teaches corporations how to save money buying printing, brokers printing services, and teaches prepress techniques. Steven has been in the printing industry for thirty-three years working as a writer, editor, print buyer, photographer, graphic designer, art director, and production manager.

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Archive for May, 2011

Printing Companies Serve You Better if You Understand Paper Weights

Tuesday, May 31st, 2011

Printing companies share something in common. For the most part, they all put ink on paper. Knowing how to communicate your paper needs will go a long way in helping you get the results you expect from your printing services, whether you’re working with catalog printing companies, large format printing services, or book printers. (more…)

Printing Companies Can Save You Money When You Specify Paper

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

It is a fair assumption that the majority of custom printing jobs are printed on paper. In many cases paper costs are a large portion of the total price you pay printing services for their efforts. This is particularly true when you work with book printers or catalog printers (or other print companies that provide multi-page “signature” work). In some cases, paper can comprise up to 30 percent of the total cost of a business printing project, so it behooves you to consider what you are buying. (more…)

Custom Book Printers Provide One Final Chance to Proof the Hardcover Case

Sunday, May 22nd, 2011

Of all the different printing services you will purchase as a print buyer, hardcover books will cost more than most business printing jobs. It therefore pays to get everything right with these projects. Print companies that specialize in custom book printing will often send you a sample case upon request so you can review the part of the book the reader will see first, one last time before the book has been bound. (more…)

Custom Printing: Flexography Excels in Package Printing

Thursday, May 19th, 2011

Custom printing services comprise multiple technologies, from letterpress to gravure, from digital to offset, from thermography to engraving to flexography. Whether you want to print custom labels to affix to your wine bottles or print custom decals to advertise your business, a printing technology exists that is ideally suited to your needs. Among these, one form of business printing with which you may not be familiar, but which you hold in your hand every time you pick up a carton of milk, is flexography. (more…)

Printing Companies Offer Three Levels of Proofs

Monday, May 16th, 2011

The terms “Level 1, 2, and 3 proofs” are distinctions made by offset printing companies to qualify certain proofs as being of a higher color accuracy than others. Level 1, 2, and 3 are inkjet (not laser) digital proofs. This is a particularly useful designation for multi-page print jobs produced by paperback book printers, hardcover book printers, catalog printers, and magazine printers, since the proofs vary widely in cost, and over the course of a multi-page job, the price difference can really add up. (more…)

Printing Companies Negotiate Standards for Overs/Unders

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

As a general rule, printing companies can charge for up to ten percent overs. This goes for paperback book printers, hardcover book printers, catalog printers, magazine printers, even vendors that print newsletters or provide brochure printing. They can also deliver up to ten percent fewer copies than ordered. This is industry standard. (more…)

Hardcover Book Printers: A Case Study on Book Binding

Sunday, May 8th, 2011

A custom book printer recently sent me a contract including the following proposal for book binding. Hardcover book printers are very specialized in their skill set, and their jargon is somewhat arcane. The following explanation will help you understand the contracts you receive from book printing and publishing companies. Contracts from book printers are often more complex than contracts for such jobs as custom envelopes, print newsletters, and the like. Ask your book printer to explain anything you don’t understand. (more…)

Book Printing: Self-Cover vs. Plus Cover

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

When you work with book printers, catalog printers, or magazine printers to produce multi-page documents, it is important for you to specify whether your job will be “self-cover” or “plus cover.” (more…)


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