More how to news

View all the latest news here


Is your shop Chain of Custody certified?

May 1, 2008 12:00 AM,

Tell us about it and enter AMERICAN PRINTER's Environmental Excellence Awards. See pg. 56 for details and an entry form.

At your service

May 1, 2008 12:00 AM,

NPES was founded as the National Printing Equipment Assn. in 1933 with 26 charter members. NPES currently has more than 400 members, including five charter members: Baumfolder, founded in 1917 as Liberty Folder Co. Brandtjen & Kluge, founded in 1919. Challenge Machinery Co., established in 1870 as an electrotype foundry; reorganized as Challenge in 1893. PMC/Printing Machinery Co. founded in the 1920s,

Art history

May 1, 2008 12:00 AM,

From 1890 to 1940, INLAND PRINTER was a key player in one of the greatest eras of American illustration. Many important designers were commissioned to do covers, including Will Bradley and Frederic Goudy, says RIT's David Pankow. The magazine featured many fascinating typographic inserts provided by the industry, as well as excellent articles by authorities in the graphics arts. The practice of tipping

Get enthused about your customer's business!

May 1, 2008 12:00 AM, Michael Casey

Printers on average get great marks for meeting deadlines and delivering to specifications; both core satisfiers or basic requirements for maintaining clients. What turns a printer from supplier to strategic partner is your ability to get involved in and understand your customer's business. One in 10 print buyers feels their printer is not enthusiastic about their business nor cares what they are


May 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By M. Richard Vinocur

This is a series I started in January: Six decades of business lessons. I'm sharing the experiences that helped hone my managerial and marketing skills. If you got hooked, as I did, on the TV series Mad Men, which debuted on cable channel AMC last year, you'll know what my office was like in the early 1960s. The series depicted an ad agency during those years, and our office was a carbon copy of that

Johnson's World: Whither Pluto?

May 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Steve Johnson

At the old entrance to the Adler Planetarium on Chicago's Northerly Island sits a plaque with symbols representing the eight planets. Eight, because the planetarium opened just before the discovery of Pluto in 1930. This plaque gave the planetarium an ancient, venerable feel. Now the plaque is as modern as the day it was installed. Suddenly, Pluto has been stripped (sort of) of planetary status. In

Customers, in-plants & other competitors

Apr 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Dick Gorelick

Competition isn't necessarily confined to other commercial printers. This is a complicated subject. It's impossible to do justice to this scenario in this column. The objective here is to call attention to two competitive factors that are underappreciated: customers and in-plant print shops. The following comment undoubtedly will elicit strong disagreement in some quarters, but I believe it's folly

Birth of a salesman

Apr 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By M. Richard Vinocur

After I sold some directory ads as an editor, the bosses asked me to move over to sales full time. I was reluctant, but several other editors suggested that was where the money was. After serious consideration, I made the move. There was little training available, so I developed my own techniques. As the contracts rolled in, I realized that I wasn't selling for the top publication and decided to look

Making hickeys an endangered species

Apr 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Raymond J. Prince

How many hickeys are allowed in a printed piece? For today's buyer, the answer is easy: none. Years ago, there were internal company standards for dark center (ink color) hickeys and for white voids in solids/type. These specks and spots in the image, as well as non-image, areas of the print plagued the industry for many years. Today, it is possible to eliminate virtually all of the specks and spots

And the winners are printers A & C

Apr 1, 2008 12:00 AM, Michael Casey

The buyers were given 14 choices, but five floated to the top and great customer service was way out in front as the No. 1 reason. Who says there is a price war out there? Competitive prices, meeting delivery commitments and producing quality product were in a dead heat for second place; fast turnaround was a distant third. Of the seven printers participating in the study, six found their customers

Making the green scene

Apr 1, 2008 12:00 AM, Katherine O'Brien

Two years ago, I invited AMERICAN PRINTER readers to share their stories of environmental stewardship. Mercer Color (Coldwater, OH) was among the first to respond. For more than 15 years, we have been practicing and perfecting ecological manufacturing, wrote Pat Berger, vice president and owner. We have beta tested and recommended modifications to many products. Berger noted that petroleum washes

All is fair in love, war and printing

Apr 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Steve Johnson has announced that any books printed on demand must be printed by Amazon itself if the book is to be made available via the Amazon Web site. In the interest of keeping things open and honest, I should remind you that when I'm not serving as mayor of Johnson's World, I am a digital printer of short-run books. This means one of the most lucrative and successful implementations of digital

Where to diversify and expand in 2008?

Mar 1, 2008 12:00 AM, Michael Casey

In 2007, quick printers and small commercial printers asked over 4,000 print buyers the following question: What additional products or services would you like us to offer in the future? Almost one in five customers wants more online ordering capabilities. You might want to seriously consider an initiative in 2008 to upgrade your current online solution, or at least start somewhere. Just be careful

Buyers have their say

Mar 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Katherine O'Brien

I have interviewed many printers over the years, but only a handful of buyers. As the editor of a new quarterly publication for print buyers, PRINT & MEDIA BUYER, I am eager to learn more about this elusive demographic. Attending Margie Dana's Second Annual Print Buyers Conference ( this past fall proved to be a real eye opener. Four print buyers participated in a far-ranging

Want to double your money in the pressroom?

Mar 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Raymond J. Prince

No, this is not an Internet scam. I would like to share with you a recent experience that might open your eyes, as it did mine. I was retained by a commercial sheetfed printer to test a four-year-old press that he wanted to purchase. He asked me to accompany him to the seller's plant and test the press onsite. The machine was a six-color, 40-inch press with coater and all the standard accessories.

Some things indeed have changed

Mar 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Dick Gorelick

Despite many quantitative changes in the graphic arts industry, many basics of the business have remained the same since the days of Gutenberg. Economic conditions and technological developments outside of the graphic arts industry, however, have resulted in a major, fundamental qualitative change in management, a change that many companies have not accepted or, in some cases, adequately considered.

Food for thought

Mar 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Steve Johnson

For a while, the was popular in hotel rooms. You are all set, sir. Here is your room key, and the key to the minibar. I always gave the key right back to the clerk. If I awaken at 3:00 a.m., I don't need to be tempted by a bag of M&Ms or a jigger of scotch. The minibar seems to be fading from the hospitality industry. I don't know why, but it must not have been the moneymaker it was supposed to be.

Life lessons

Mar 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By M. Richard Vinocur

My interview with Rueben H. Donnelley, as I mentioned in Part 2, was weird. Jack Martin, with whom I had the first meeting, asked questions that mystified me. Are you married? was the first one. Give me a break. I was only 22. So I answered in the negative, but added that I had a girlfriend and expected to get engaged sometime in the near future. The next question floored me. What's her name? I replied,

Roller care for a sheetfed press

Feb 1, 2008 12:00 AM, By Raymond J. Prince

Keeping in mind that there are 125 variables to control on a lithographic press, consistency is not easy to achieve. My prepress friends always tease me by saying they can output a digital plate within 0.5 percent constantly, while in pressrooms we vary all over the place. Why we vary is a complex issue, but we can control the press better by adhering to best practices and strongly insisting on process