Questions and Answers

Here are some of the common questions asked by Mennonite Press customers. Please feel free to contact us if you would like more information on these questions or have a new question of your own.

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  1. What is the difference between Offset and Coated Paper?
    Offset stock is uncoated paper which is often used for 1 or 2-color pages in books, booklets, reports, newsletters and business forms. When printed, the ink soaks into the paper somewhat losing some of its intensity. Coated paper has a finish applied that makes it smoother and holds the ink on the surface. It is most often chosen for 4-color printing. Offset stock will commonly be less expensive than coated stocks.
  2. What is the difference between Matte and Gloss Paper Stock?
    Matte stock is a coated paper that has a dull or flat finish. It is often preferred for readability on projects that are text intensive or that contain charts or graphs. Gloss stock is a coated paper with a shiny or reflective finish. It is generally less expensive than matte and serves to help full color photographs, images and graphics appear more vivid, real and appealing.
  3. What is the difference between Cover Stock and Text Stock?
    Cover stock is the outside page and is thicker and more rigid than text stock. Cover stock is also used for cards, folders and other display materials. It requires a scoring procedure before folding and assembly. Text stock (sometimes called body stock) is used for inside pages as well as brochures and self-cover booklets. Do not be confused by the weight (#), as text and cover are each graded on a different scale (see question 4)
  4. What does the # in 70# or 80# paper mean?
    It is the weight in pounds of 500 sheets of text stock that measures 25" x 38". For cover stock, it is the weight in pounds of 500 sheets that measure 20" x 26". This explains why 100# cover is heavier and thicker than 100# text stock. Bond stock is weighed in a ream that measures 17" x 22". Therefore, the 20# bond which we are familiar with as copy or typing paper is similar in thickness and weight to 50# text.
  5. What is the difference between 50# and 60# of the same type text paper?
    The difference between 50# and 60# is the weight and thickness of each sheet of paper. The 60# would be slightly thicker and heavier than 50#. Heavier paper is often chosen to add volume, durability or opacity to a project. Various grades of paper are available that provide additional durability or opacity, at additional cost. However, a higher grade stock in a lighter weight may provide the best presentation at a similar cost.
  6. What are my options with 1 color printing to create a higher impact publication?
    Most 1 color printing is black ink on a white stock. However, you can design with a huge selection of inks to achieve the look you want. You can also print different color inks on different color papers to create an even more dramatic look. Another design strategy is to assign one or more screen tints of a single color; combined with the solid color and/or on colored papers. Metallic inks add an exciting dimension to your design options.
  7. What are my options with 2 color printing?
    2-color print publications frequently use black and one other color to create a higher impact than can be achieved with 1 color. However, any two colors can often be used to create just the look you need without the expense of going to 4 color process printing. Remember that the paper is also a color, be it white or otherwise, that can add dimension to two ink colors and screens of those colors.
  8. What are the advantages of full color printing?
    The highest quality and most appealing print publications are printed in full color. Studies have shown that full color increases readership and that there is over a 60% increase in retention with full color versus black and white. In the full color or 4-color (CMYK or Cyan-Magenta-Yellow-Black) offset printing process, screens of these inks are used in combination to “mix” any color quite accurately and vividly reproduce color photographs and graphics. See also Color 101 for more information about color.
  9. How should I prepare my files or artwork for printing?
    Mennonite Press can take your high resolution "PDF" file and directly output it to plates for printing. This is usually the most cost efficient way to submit files to us. However if you are not able to output a high resolution "PDF", we can also take many other types of files from popular layout programs. For those who would like help in design, layout, and picture retouching, we have a design team who will work with you to create a solution for your project. We can also provide typesetting, editing services, as well as artwork and picture scanning when needed. It is a good idea to call one of our printing consultants in advance to plan the most economical solution for each job.
  10. Why do you ask for hard copy in this electronic age?
    Experience has shown that text can reflow from computer to computer. A customer provided hard copy gives us a clear picture of what the printed piece should look like, thus eliminating guesswork. We cannot be held responsible for text reflow if hard copy was not provided. Fixing reflow problems after the job has been proofed will result in additional alteration charges.
  11. Can I make changes to my document prior to it being printed?
    Yes, you will receive a hard copy proof that you must approve before we begin printing. If changes are needed that you request us to do, you will approve the related charges before we proceed. On jobs that are designed by Mennonite Press, you will receive a page proof or working draft before we proceed with final proofing.
  12. When can I call Mennonite Press for help?
    Mennonite Press customer service representatives are available from 8:00 am to 5:00 PM (Central Time) M-F. You may e-mail us at any time or leave a voice message with your question or instructions. Click here to get a toll free phone number or email address.To submit a quote click here.
  13. Will I receive the exact quantity I order?
    Printing industry standards allow for a certain amount of overs and unders. The setup and running of machines takes a certain amount of over’s to meet the quantity you request. In most cases we may have some overs left to sell. On rare occasions, we may ship slightly fewer pieces than the quantity ordered. If underages are a concern and you need an exact quantity, we recommend adding 5% to your original quantity to ensure delivery of the number of pieces you need.
  14. What finishing or bindery solutions do you offer?
    As a full-service printer, Mennonite Press can complete your piece with a range of folding/scoring/perforating/die-cutting combinations. Popular book and booklet binding processes that we handle include:
    • Plastic Spiral binding: Plastic in a spiral form threaded through punched holes along the binding edge of the papers. Allows the document to lay open flat. Plastic spiral binding is the most popular choice out of Plastic spiral, Double Wir-O, and Plastic comb binding.
    • Double Wir-O: Wire looped through square punched holes.
    • 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.
    • Saddle-stitch binding: Using staples along the folds of the pages to bind them together.
    • Perfect binding: Gluing the outside edges of the pages together to create a flat spine and then attaching a soft cover.
    • Hard binding: Also know as Case binding consist of sewing the pages together and then attaching them to a hard cover.
  15. Does the Turnaround Time include Shipping Time?
    No, the Turnaround Time is how long it will take Mennonite Press to complete your project. This is the time from final proof approval to job shipment. MPI truck will deliver jobs in our geographic area. On jobs that require shipping, we will advise you of the best way to meet your deadline requirements.
  16. How do I save photos and graphics so that they will print clearly?
    Mennonite Press requests that all placed images be a minimum 300 dots per inch and that all black-and-white images be set to grayscale and all color images be CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow, black). After saving to PDF and before uploading, preview or print your document and check that you have achieved the correct results.