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Printing guidelines

Information to help you avoid problems with files that you create for us to print
If you follow these guidelines on artwork production they will save you time and money
Click on any Bold Blue Text below and a popup window will appear with a screen shot of the option

PDF FILES
We prefer files to be supplied as a final size print ready PDF, including bleed if required. If we have to create the PDF this will incur an additional charge.
You can download a FREE PDF creator from here www.primopdf.com (Link opens in a new window)
When making a PDF with PrimoPDF select File>Print from your program's menu and select the PrimoPDF printer, then select 'Printer Properties' and set the orientation of your page ur the 'Layout' tab, then select the 'Paper/Quality' tab and select Black & White or Colour (NB If your file is created in colour but you only want us to print it in Black, then choose the Black & White option). Now click on the 'Advanced' button in the bottom right hand corner and select the size of your page from the drop down menu, then select 'Print Quality' and from the drop down menu select '1200dpi' , then select 'True Type Font' and from the drop down menu select 'Download as Softfont', then click 'OK' and 'OK' again, then select 'Print', when the PrimoPDF window pops up select 'Prepress' to create the highest quality file, then click 'Create PDF', then you will be asked where you wish to save your PDF, enter a file name that easily identifies your file and click 'Save' and your PDF will be created. See further instructions below for making a PDF from Microsoft Publisher (see Guideline 4 below).

Guidelines for creating your files

1. Document size
Please create your document at its finished size plus bleed if required
(see Guideline 2 below). Be aware that Microsoft Word often defaults to Letter, so you will need to set up the correct size for your document before you do anything else. If we have to resize your file(s) this will incur an extra charge. Please note that resizing can alter the layout and type size of your document.
To assist you with designing your layout we have a small range of templates that you can download here.

Some standard sizes that we use and common uses
Standard sizes Used for Standard sizes Used for
A3 297 x 420 Posters, Leaflets*, Newsletters* A4 297 x 210mm Leaflets, Letterheads, Forms
A5 210 x 148mm Leaflets, Letterheads, Forms A6 105 x 148 Address/Correspondence Cards
⅓ A4 99 x 210mm Compliment Slips - 55 x 85mm Business Cards
* Folded to give four A4 pages

2. BLEED & QUIET BORDERS
Understanding the need for Bleed and a Quiet Border is vital to achieve an excellent finished print job.

BLEED (This is where your printed image/background goes right to the edge of the page)
We require Bleed to allow for the tolerance of our guillotine (the machine used for cutting your job after printing). Even with our state of the art equipment there is a margin of error with the operation. If your image finishes exactly at the edge of your required finished size then these small deviations may produce unsightly white flashes at the edge of your print. By extending your background colour or image beyond the edge of your finished job the effects of the same deviations are not noticeable.
We recommend that elements intended to go to the very edge of your finished job should extend 3mm beyond the edge.

QUIET BORDERS
A Quiet Border is the distance you should allow from the edge of your finished page size for text, diagrams or images not going to bleed. The reason for the border is again the tolerance in cutting. If you have a design where the text runs to the very edge then any cutting deviation will result in some of your text being cut off!!
With a very small Quiet Border even the smallest cutting deviation could result in the finished job looking uneven. We recommend a Quiet Border where there is no text etc. of at least 5mm around the edges of your job.

Professional design programmes, such as InDesign, Illustrator, Corel Draw, Microsoft Publisher or Serif PagePlus allow elements to extend beyond the size of the page. This makes it very easy to bleed backgrounds and pictures beyond the trimmed edge.
With other programmes, such as with Microsoft Word, bleeding beyond the boundaries of the page is not possible. However it is still possible to create a page with bleed using these programmes. This is achieved by setting up pages which are 6mm bigger than the required sheet size in each dimension. (e.g. for a required finished size of A4 (210mm x 297mm) set up your page to be 216mm x 303mm. For a standard size business card (85mm x 55mm) make your sheet size 91mm x 61. Next make your background image extend to the edge of this bigger sheet size. In effect this is then 'bleeding' 3mm beyond the edge of the required page on all sides. Ensure that any element which you do not wish to bleed is at least 8mm inside the extended page edges (3mm of bleed plus 5mm of quiet border). When the PDF is created it will be fully compliant with the bleed and quiet border requirements.

3. IMAGES (The following does not apply if you are using Microsoft Word as it does not support CMYK, see paragraph below.)
Images need to be a minimum resolution of 300dpi and should ideally be final size in CMYK and saved as a TIFF, images copied or downloaded from the internet are not usually of sufficient quality for colour printing, as they are normally low resolution (150dpi or less) and in RGB format. Black & White images also need to be a minimum resolution of 300dpi and should ideally be final size and saved as a 'greyscale' TIFF. If you are unable to save images a TIFF files then you can save them as JPEG files.
Images in Microsoft Word As Word only works in RGB we can convert your image file(s) to CMYK but be aware that the colour of any images and text may change due to limitations in the conversion process and may not look the same as those on your computer screen or inkjet/laser printout.

4. Setting up MICROSOFT PUBLISHER
Colour settings
We recommend setting up Publisher for CMYK printing. To do this in Publisher 2010, click on 'File' and 'Info' should be highlighted, then click on 'Commercial Print Settings', from the menu that appears select 'Choose Color Model'. In the popup window that appears click 'Process Colors (CMYK)' and click 'OK'. In earlier versions click on 'Tools', go down to 'Commercial Printing Tools' and from the flyout menu select 'Color Printing', in the popup window that appears click 'Process Colors (CMYK)' and click 'OK'.

Text boxes
We recommend that when you create a Text Box you right click on it and select 'Format Text Box' from the menu, then under the 'Colors & Lines' tab ensure that 'Fill' & 'Line' are set to 'No Color'. This assumes that you do not want a coloured background or border to your text! If you do want a coloured background to highlight an area of your text use a tint of 10% - 20% to fill your text box.

Using Templates
The Templates supplied in Publisher DO NOT allow for 'Bleed and Quiet Borders' (see above), so any elements of the template that go to the very edge of your page will need to be dragged beyond the edge of the page by 3mm and also check that any text or object is a minimum of 5mm from the trimmed edges. This mostly applies to the Business Card templates.
If your job is a label please contact us for advice as we DO NOT support any of the 'Manufacturers' templates that Publisher uses.

Making a PDF in Publisher
If you have Adobe Acrobat installed on your system the easiest way to make a PDF is to use the 'Save As' option under 'File', then from the 'Save as type' drop down menu select PDF, then click on the 'Options' button, then in the popup box highlight 'Commercial Press', then click on the 'Print Options' button. In the popup box select 'One page per sheet', then do one of the following:-
1. If your page has no 'Bleed' click 'OK', click 'OK', then click 'Save' to create your PDF.
2. If your page has 'Bleed' then under 'Paper' select 'Custom Size' from the drop down menu, then increase the Width & Height of your page by 1.5cm, then under the 'Preview' box where it says 'Printer's Marks' make sure all 3 boxes are ticked,, if you click inside the 'Preview' box you should see the 'Crop & Bleed' marks. Then click 'OK', click 'OK', then click 'Save' to create your PDF.

If you are using PrimoPDF then select 'File', 'Print'. Under the 'Printer' heading select 'PrimoPDF' from the drop down menu. Under the 'Settings' heading click the down arrow to the right of 'Print All Pages' and select which ever option is appropriate to you publication. Next under the heading 'Pages' select 'One page per sheet' from the drop down menu, then under the 'Printer' heading, click on 'Printer Properties', in the popup that appears select the 'Layout' tab and choose the Orientation of your page, then click on the 'Paper/Quality' tab and under the 'Color' option select 'Balck & White' if your publication IS NOT colour. Now click on the 'Advanced' button and do one of the following:-

A. (1) If your file DOES NOT have 'Bleed' select your page size from the drop down menu under 'Paper/Output'. Under 'Graphic' change 'Print Quality' to 1200dpi, ensure 'Scaling' is 100% and 'True Type Font' is set to 'Download as Softfont', then click 'OK', 'OK'. Then click the 'Print' icon to create your PDF.
(2) When the PrimoPDF window pops up select 'Prepress' to create the highest quality file, then click 'Create PDF', then you will be asked where you wish to save your PDF, enter a file name that easily identifies your file or accept the default name and click 'Save' and your PDF will be created.

B. If your file DOES HAVE 'Bleed' select 'PostScript Custom Page Size' from the drop down menu under 'Paper/Output', in the popup menu under 'Unit', make sure the 'Radio Button' next to Millimeter is highlighted, then under 'Custom Page Size Dimensions' enter the Width & Height of your page plus 20mm (e.g. if your page is A4 (297x210mm) enter 317x230mm). Then click 'OK'. Under 'Graphic' change 'Print Quality' to 1200dpi, ensure 'Scaling' is 100% and 'True Type Font' is set to 'Download as Softfont', then click 'OK', 'OK'.
Now you can see an image of your file in the 'Preview' pane. If it looks odd like the image below left, then under the 'Settings' heading change the page orientation from 'Landscape' to 'Portrait' or vice versa, you should then see a preview that shows the 'Bleed & Crop' marks, like below right. Then click the 'Print' icon and. then follow the instructions in 'A (2)' above to create your PDF.

5. SUPPLYING FILES FOR A BOOK
Books (multipage) - Pages to be supplied as one PDF containing all pages running in order, cover to be first page (DO NOT supply pages in pairs).
Unless you are giving us a PDF file, please create a single continuous PLAIN TEXT file and include place holders for any images. IMPORTANT, DO NOT create and save a separate file for each chapter. If your book includes images please supply these as separate files at final size(See Guideline 3 above).

 

 

 

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