17 Sep

The Down Low on Digital Print

Not all print methods are the same.

Digital printing refers to methods of printing from a digital-based image directly to a variety of media. It usually refers to professional printing where small-run print jobs from desktop publishing and other digital sources are printed using high-volume laser or inkjet printers and/or large format inkjet printers.

Digital printing has a higher cost per page than more traditional offset printing methods. Called print for pay, the suppliers of these devices earn their money from click charges which cover the service and consumables (toners) necessary to keep it running.

Digital_Printing_PressHowever, this price is normally offset by avoiding the cost of all the technical steps required to make printing plates, as in the traditional offset printing methods. It also allows for on-demand printing, short turnaround time and even a modification of the image (variable data) used for each impression.

The savings in labour and the ever-increasing capability of digital presses means that digital printing is reaching the point where it can match, or supersede, offset printing technology’s ability to produce larger print runs of several thousand sheets at a low price.

So What’s the Difference?

The greatest difference between digital printing and traditional methods such as offset lithography, flexography, gravure or letterpress is that there is no need to replace printing plates in digital printing.

In those traditional methods (analog printing) the plates are repeatedly replaced.
The benefits of digital printing are quicker turnaround times and lower cost on short to medium print runs.

The most popular methods of digital printing include inkjet or laser printers that deposit pigment or toner onto a wide variety of substrates including paper, photo paper, canvas, glass, metal, marble and other substances.

In many of the processes, the ink or toner, does not permeate the substrate, as does conventional ink. Instead it forms a thin layer on the surface that may be additionally adhered to the substrate by using a fuser fluid with heat process (toner), or UV curing process (ink). The various manufacturers of this equipment have developed methods specific to their design.

Digital and Hucul Printing

Hucul Printing utilizes both digital printing and traditional offset methods because both methods still have a place in our industry.

Ultimately, as our customer, you really only need to know that these methods exist and that we, as printing professionals, will recommend and use the method that best suits your specific needs.

Photo Credit: digital Printing Press by Coylegenec via Wikipedia
Featured image from Creative Pro
03 Sep

Blogs keeps you posted (via Friday AM)

The business landscape keeps on changing, and it has become a challenge to keep up with all the new trends and exciting tools available.

Keeping apprised to all these changes in the techno-computer world can help local businesses in-crease visibility in the marketplace.

Hucul Printing has taken on this challenge by interfacing Facebook, Twitter, and its company website capabilities.

It has also created an active business Blog.

To help stay relevant in the current business environment, this longtime Salmon Arm company is extending its information tools as a way to stay more useful to its printing customers.

“Our goal is to assist customers in a multi-faceted way by educating them on the best and most cost effective printing options,” says Jordan Pack.

“Ultimately, this will save [the customers] money, speed up the printing process, and improve the company’s presence,  look and appeal.

“Finally, the Blog will help educate our patrons about new and exciting printing possibilities.”

The internet and social media makes it easy for small businesses to engage with its customers from the comfort of the computer both at home or at the workplace. There are valuable insights to share with customers and the blogging media.

Go to HuculPrinting.com/blog and check out the latest posts. 
Learn how Hucul Printing can assist our local businesses.


 

First published in the July 11th Issue # 876 of the Salmon Arm Friday AM, BIZ BUZZ Column.

20 Aug

So What are Your Binding Options?

What kinds of bindings are suitable for your project?

Here is a run-down of the various types of bindings used for multiple page documents, booklet or books, which are common to the printing industry:

1. Saddle Stitching (Stapled Binding)

photo 3

Saddle Stitching

Booklets, magazines, catalogues and calendars can be bound with stapled bindings.

A heavy duty stitching machine creates wire staples (from a large spool of wire) to hold the pages together.
The machine drives the wire through the backbone fold of the piece to the centrefold where they clench tightly.

A saddle-stitched piece lies almost flat when opened and is the most convenient for readers.

A saddle-stiched document must be at least 8 pages… and increase in quantity, in four page increments.

This is a good binding method for documents of between 64 to 80 pages and on 60 to 78 lb. (or #)  paper stock.

If the document exceeds a thickness of approximately 3/8″ another type of binding would be more suitable.

2. Comb Binding (also known as Cerlox Binding or Surelox Binding)

photo 1

Left to right: Double Loop Metal, Plastic Spiral, Cerlox

This method of binding uses round plastic spines with 19 rings (for a standard letter sheet) and a hole punch which makes rectangular holes.

They can be used for various page sizes. Quite often, this binding is used for cook books and this type of binding has a printable surface on the spine, which is convenient for titling the book.

The comb binding is more vulnerable to damage than spiral binding, especially after repeated usage.

This kind of binding can bind pieces up to 3″ thick and they come in various colours.

3. Spiral Binding, or Plastikoil Binding

Spiral binding has become popular because of its ability to be doubled over, allowing the printed document to lay flat.

This is very convenient for technical manuals, notebooks, cookbooks and calendars.

Pages cannot be added to spiral bound pieces. The pages of the piece are punched with round holes and a special coil inserter winds the coil through the punched pages.

The cut ends of the plastic coil are then crimped, so the bindings don’t back out of the page.

Spiral binding is available in plastic of various sizes (1/4″ to 2″) and colours. It is possible to bind pages up to 24″ in length by this method.

4. Wire-O or Double Loop Binding

This is similar to spiral binding, in that the pages are punched at the spine. In this method, the holes are square punched, allowing for a double loop wire to be inserted.

All of the document pages lie flat when opened, and can easily turn through 360 degrees, while staying in perfect registration with adjoining pages.

Wire-O comes in standard colours and sizing is from 1/8″ thick to 1″ thick. They are durable and are used for reference books, reports, notebooks and calendars.

5. Perfect Binding

Perfect Binding (Top two), Cloth hard Cover (bottom)

Perfect Binding (Top two), Cloth Hard Cover (bottom)

A perfect bind is actually a glued binding. This is the type of binding you see on a standard, soft cover book, or paperback book .

The book’s page signatures are gathered in page sequence and clamped together in a Perfect Bind machine.

The machine slices off 1/8″ from the left edge (spine), while at the same time milling the edge, providing a rough surface in preparation for effective gluing.

The spine edge then receives an application of glue, while at the same time applying the wrap-around cover.

Minimum thickness for books with this type of binding is 1/8″ and is appropriate for various thicknesses and book sizes.

It is recommended that the book paper stock used is not thicker than 100# paper stock.
An excellent binding for books, thick magazines, annual reports, catalogues and manuals.

6. Case Binding or Hard Cover Binding

This binding is used mostly for book production.

This binding requires a minimum of 60 printed sheets, folded into 16 or 32 pages signatures, which are collated and sewn by machine.

These sewn pages are called the book block.

The hardback case is made by wrapping paper, cloth, lamination or leather around the case board and then glued onto the book block.

The spine can be rounded, flat and/or tight backed.

The look of the hard cover book is superior with the availability of leather, papers, and multiple fabrics that can be used to encase the book.

These materials coupled with the variety of specialty finishing techniques, such as embossing or foil stamping, gives the case bound book a professional, classic or artistic appearance.

The book can have a printed dust jacket as a finishing feature.

When planning a printing project which requires special binding, meet with us at Hucul Printing to discuss the options available.

06 Aug

How to Mount Your Canvas Prints

So you have yourself an amazing photo printed on  seal-coated archival canvas which has been wrapped onto a wooden frame. Now its time to mount it on your wall.

Here’s how to mount your canvas onto your wall:


Step 1photo 1

Open the provided package of hardware which comes with your purchase of a Canvas Print from Hucul Printing Ltd. There is an instruction sheet inside that details the exact steps we are showing here, which should be read and followed.


Step 2

After you take inventory of the mounting hardware, you must prepare to fasten the hangers onto your frame.

photo 4

Measure 1/3 one third from the the top of the frame. (Quick math: [Height of frame/3])photo 5


Step 3
photo 1

With a pencil, mark the frame at the spot where you measured to be 1/3. Repeat on the other side.


Step 4
photo 2

Place the hangers on the line. The bottom of the hanger should sit on the top of the line.

photo 3

Now you’re ready to fasten them on to the frame.


Step 5

photo 3

Screw in the hangers to the frame using provided screws. Note the orientation of the hangers: The thinner part of the hole is pointing towards the top of the frame.


 

Step 6

photo 4

Locate the plastic (dimple markers/wall mounts) pieces as shown above.

photo 5

 

Insert them into the hangers and twist 90 degrees to lock. Note the dimple maker facing out; this will mark the wall with a dimple so you know precisely where to put the wall mounts.


Step 7
photo 3

Next, attach the provided bubble level to the top of the canvas using the double sided tape provided. Warning: Do not press the tape too hard into the top of the canvas because the tape is quite strong and could peel off the top layer of canvas when you remove it.


Step 8

Now its time to find a home for the new canvas!

photo 2

Find the place where you would like to put the canvas and ensure it is level by using both the bubble level and your eyesight to find the perfect placement. Once you have found the placement, carefully and firmly push the frame into the wall so that the plastic dimples create dimples in the wall.

Note that the attached dimple makers are the key to this step.


Step 9

photo 4

Remove the dimple markers from the hangers and place them into the dimples you just made. Put the provided nails in the hole in each wall mount so that the nail is pointing downwards. photo 5

 

Nail them in!photo 1

Now you have two wall mounts perfectly placed and ready  to accept the canvas!


Step 10

Almost done!photo 4

Locate the spacer piece as shown above. Remove the tape covering.

photo 5

Measure out the bottom stay and place a the spacer exactly halfway on the bottom frame.


 

Final Stepphoto 2

Slide the Canvas’ frame hangers into the wall mounts and your are done!

photo

 

23 Jul

Sending Us Your Press-Ready File

Not every job we print is designed, or set up, by Hucul Printing.

Many customers create their own files and we also receive files from Graphic Designers. In turn, we have customers and graphic designers posing questions about how to prepare “press-ready” files for us to print.

 

A common question we receive is:

What sort of File should I send you?”

While there are many avenues to take to convert our customer’s files, our most preferred file type is a Portable Document Format, most commonly known as a “PDF”.

A PDF is a nifty file format because not only is it compatible across many operating systems and programs, it is easy to send via email due to its compact size.

A PDF preserves all the visual graphics. This is especially helpful because the file does not need to be editable if it’s press-ready. For example, if we were to receive a working file, any links (or elements placed within your file) would have to be sent along with your document, which makes the process a lot more complicated and lengthy than it should be!

 

“How should I send the File?”

Files can be received in person on a jump/flash drive, via email, or if files are too large to send as an email attachment and they can be sent through DropBox. For assistance on how to use Dropbox, see:  https://www.dropbox.com/.

It’s also free!

 

Another common question we receive:

“How should I set up my File?”

One of the first questions we will ask you in return is whether you wish for your graphic elements to print right up to the edge of the paper. In this case, we ask for the document to have a bleed.

A bleed is a well-known printing term referring to elements, or graphics, that extend past the part of the document and are meant to be trimmed off.

This means that there is no white margin around the document (just colour) and the document must be printed on a sheet that is bigger than the document.

If you wish to have us print your posters, brochures (or any printable document) ask yourself whether you want your document to be printed to the edge. If so, provide us a file that includes a bleed, making sure that all important information, such as text, is away from the cut line.

Please see the example below and do not hesitate to contact us with any questions.

BlogBCpdfspecs

09 Jul

How to Find a Colour Scheme for Your Business

A common source of consideration and thought is how you can make your business look good and be memorable, when it comes to starting a new business, or if you are updating your look.

Find a consistent Colour Theme

One of the best ways to do this is to find a brand that follows a consistent colour theme, will project well and will also be appealing to your customers.

If your company is a conservative business such as Law or Accounting firm, you wouldn’t want to use lime green, or any of the neon colours, as your business colours. Those bright colours would be better suited to a Child’s Day Care, or a Toy Store!

Hucul Printing's colours created on Kuler

Hucul Printing’s colours created on Kuler

So how do you come up with your business’s colour scheme? There is a fantastic website that Adobe has created called “Kuler” where people can develop professional colour schemes and post them publicly to share. Each colour scheme comes complete with downloadable colour pallets for your designer to use with popular design software programs.

Each colour scheme comes with a universally recognizable colour code which can be typed into most software programs. This means you don’t have to go clicking around to find the  colour that is just close enough.

Further more, you can tweak the colour schemes you find and save them to your favourites for future referral. Its a great service!

Here are some examples of colour schemes I pulled from the site so you can see what I am talking about.


The first example,  I randomly found, is called Historic Neighbourhood. It has a muted and sophisticated pallet which would be appropriate for a business with an historical and welcoming or friendly feel. Depending on the image you wish to portray, these colours might be excellent for a photography shop, or a museum, or gallery.

Image

“Historic Neighborhood”


The next example is called Toy Store.  As you can see, it is bright, colourful and playful. This would definitely be suited for… a Toy Store!

“Toy Store”


This next example is called Lawyer; it has the professional blue as the base colour with highlights of steadying, complimentary browns.

Image

“Lawyer”


This sample, I found by searching the key words *Health food*.  This was the top result. The example contains an earthy and green feeling and is called Health Food Store. I’d feel comfortable if these colours were in my Health Food Store!

"Health Food Store"

“Health Food Store”

 

By choosing a professionally developed colour pallet from sites like Kuler, your business brand will look professional.

With a tool like this, you can forge ahead by generating ideas and get a good feel for how  you would like your business to look.

And…when you realize that there is more to branding your business than surfing the internet (which is true), you can come to us and we can help develop an overall look for your business.