FAQs

How do I go about getting an estimate from you?

Simply use our online estimate request form by clicking here. Otherwise, the best way to ensure that we get all the information necessary to do an accurate quote is to give us a call and speak with one of our staff.

 

How long will it take for you to complete my order?

Every job is different. Some jobs can be produced in minutes while some may take several days to complete. Let us know when you need your job completed and we’ll let you know if it can be done. We go to great lengths to meet even the most demanding time lines.

 

What is the best file format for submitting a document for printing?

The Portable Document Format (PDF) is generally the preferred file format for submitting a document for printing as it works with virtually all professional printing and digital output devices. By design, a PDF file incorporates the information needed to maintain document consistency from system to system. Most other file formats such as Adobe InDesign, Illustrator and Microsoft Word are easily converted to PDF format. There will be times that we will request the native file instead.

 

How well will what I see on my monitor match what I see on paper?

There are sometimes noticeable differences in color calibration from monitor to monitor and consequently from screen to print. The process for minimizing any variance begins with adjusting your monitor for optimal color and clarity according to the manufacturer’s recommendations as outlined in its product manual or website. Doing this will alleviate a number of potential issues.

 

What is a proof and why is it needed?

A proof is a copy of your document used for visual inspection to ensure that the layout, type and colors of your document are exactly how they are intended to be. Typically, we will produce a proof that will be sent to you online in PDF format or on printed paper, which can be either viewed via fax or in our store. Your approval on the final proof is the best assurance you have that every aspect of our work and your own is correct, and that everything reads and appears the way you intended. Mistakes can and sometimes do happen. It benefits everyone if errors are caught in the proofing process rather than after the job is completed and delivered.

 

What are the different grades of paper and their respective basis weight?

The basis weight of a given grade of paper is defined as the weight (in pounds) of 500 standard-sized sheets of that paper. With that in mind, here are different examples of paper grades and their basis weights: Bond: Commonly used for letterhead, business forms and copying. Typical basis weights are 20# for forms and copying and 24# for stationery. Text: A high-quality grade paper with a surface texture. Basis weights range from 60#, 70#, 80# and 100#. Uncoated Book: The most common grade for offset printing is 60# to 70#. Coated Book: Has a glossy or matte finish that yields vivid colors and overall excellent reproduction. Basis weights range from 80# to 100#. Cover: Used for printing business cards, postcards, book covers, etc. Can be either coated or uncoated. Basis weights for this are 60#, 65#, 80# or 100#.

 

What is the difference between coated and uncoated paper stock?

Uncoated stock paper is porous and inexpensive, and typically used for letterhead, business forms, resumes, menus, booklets and some brochures and newsletters. Coated stock is made of higher quality paper having a smooth glossy, matte, or dull coat finish that works well for reproducing sharp text and vivid images. However, it tends to be more expensive.

 

What does “camera ready” mean?

It means that the artwork is properly prepared, and ready without further preparation or alteration, to be photographed for platemaking.

 

What is color separation?

Process Separation: Color separation is the process of separating a colored graphic or photograph into its primary color components in preparation for printed reproduction. For example, to print a full color photo with an offset printing press, there would be four separate printing plates created for one of the four basic printing inks (cyan, magenta, yellow, and black) needed to reproduce the image. As the paper is fed through the press, each single-color plate puts onto the paper the exact amount of ink needed at exactly the right spot. As the different colored wet inks are applied, they blend together to create the infinite pallet of colors needed to reproduce the original image. Spot Color Separation: For offset printing, separation of solid premixed ink colors (for example, black, red, blue, etc.)

 

What is a halftone?

A halftone is a method of representing different shades of gray with dots of solid color. The more closely spaced the dots, the darker the color. The resolution (or number of dots per inch), determine how many shades of gray can be produced.

 

What are Pantone (PMS) colors?

A color system of over 1,200 colors developed by Pantone Inc. Pantone Matching System (PMS) is a popular color matching system used by the printing industry to print spot colors. Most applications that support color printing allow you to specify colors by indicating the Pantone name or number. This assures that you get the right color when the file is printed, even though the color may not look right when displayed on your monitor. PMS works well for spot colors but not for process colors, which are generally specified using the CMYK color model.

 

What are the most common sizes for booklets and newsletters?

Standard sizes for booklets and newsletters are 5-1/2” x 8-1/2”, 8-1/2” x 11”, 11″ x 17.”

 

What are the most common sizes for brochures?

Most common brochure sizes are 8-1/2” x 11”, 8-1/2” x 14” and 11” x 17”.

 

What are the most common business size envelopes?

Business envelope sizes are referenced by a number such as #9 or #10.

 

What is the standard size of the address window on a business envelope?

The address window on a typical business envelope measures 4-1/2” x 1-1/8”.

 

What are the standard sizes for postcards?

Postcards are found in three common sizes: 4” x 6”, 4-1/4” x 6” and 5-1/2” x 8-1/2”. 4-1/4” x 6” is the largest size postcard to be used and still get postcard rate through the Post Office.

 

What are the most common card stocks used for postcards?

The most common card stocks used for postcards are: 14 pt. stock coated on both sides: a premium paper with a high luster finish, 100# stock coated on both sides, 100# stock uncoated, 80# stock uncoated and 65# stock uncoated.

 

What are the most common sizes for personalized note pads?

The two most popular sizes for personalized note pads are 4-1/4” x 5-1/2” and 5-1/2” x 8-1/2”.

 

What different types of material can be used for labels?

Materials for labels and their application include: Paper, Uncoated: Uses where you need the label to be easily written by hand or printed on by machine. Paper, High Gloss: Use when you need good printability. Keep in mind that it cannot be written on easily by hand. Vinyl: Use vinyl for outdoor environments. Acetate: Use when the label needs to be transparent.

 

What are the types of bindings that can be used for multi-page projects?

Common methods of binding books and other multi-page documents include:

  • Saddle stitching: Using staples along the folds of the pages to bind them together.
  • Spiral binding: Wires in a spiral form threaded through punched holes along the binding edge of the papers.
  • Plastic comb binding: Similar to spiral binding, but using a tubular plastic piece with teeth that fit through rectangular holes punched into the binding edge.
  • Three-ring binding: Holes are punched into the pages and fitted into a binder.