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chrisatlemon says

Hi all,

I have a business card design which has thin outline borders around all four extremes.

Dimensions are 3.5×2” with the usual .25” bleed.

The border is 20px around the entire card (excluding bleed) and of course extends fully into the bleed.

Now the cards came back from the printer and some have the top border cut off. The printers say that the border needs to be thicker to be safe.

However even if I make the border thicker, if they don’t cut 100% symmetrically then my borders will not have the same height top and bottom.

So what’s the deal with this? Is it not a good idea to have orders around a business card? Or is it poor craftsmanship from the printers?

Cheers

Chris

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dekurvajo says

I dont get it Chris. could you illustrate?

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chrisatlemon says

Sure, sorry, so many words when an image would do just fine :) Here’s a sample design:

http://www.lemon-digital.com//temp/bleed.gif

(the blue guides indicate where the bleed starts)

The pixel height Of the border/Frame inside the bleed is 6px (I was mistaken in my first post). Many of the cards arrived with the top border almost entirely chopped off. They say that the border needs to be thicker. Maybe 6px is a bit tight … :)

However if it is thicker, say 20px, that still doesn’t make a difference if they can’t cut right as then the borders would not have the same thickness on all four sides, no matter how thick I make the border… I was able to cut it nicely here at home with a paper cutter…

So I wonder if they are just not very good at precise cutting, or if the idea of having a border around the business card is not a great idea? Or if I’m really asking to much with a 6px border/frame.

Cheers

Chris

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survivor says

Hey chris,

I had the same problem once with flyer. I called and told them to reprint it as the file was made correctly like yours in the preview image. They (imo) pay more attention to cutting and everything was ok on second try.

It also may depends on the machine they use, as the cheaper ones aren’t so accurate with cutting.

EDIT : of course they won’t tell You that they have crappy printer or cutter.

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joeBanana says

As survivor told you, there is nothing wrong with you prepress, it is a printers fault. My freelance business cards are just like yours, with a border all around, and they are printed and cutted just like they should. Change the printer or tell them to pay more attention. It is easiest to say, the prepress is faulty, for them.

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cooledition says

As survivor told you, there is nothing wrong with you prepress, it is a printers fault. My freelance business cards are just like yours, with a border all around, and they are printed and cutted just like they should. Change the printer or tell them to pay more attention. It is easiest to say, the prepress is faulty, for them.
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dekurvajo says

Chris, but you know that if you would go with this BC to a prof. printer, where they print over 10k sometimes they not even accept thin borders because they don’t want to waste the time, extra paper, etc… They should tell you how much is they guaranteed slack. I think they should promise maximum 0.1 mm slack. Strongly depends – i dont know how it is in prof.english – what kind of “cutter machines?” they got. A bit depends on the paper weight and the quality is well. But im not hesitate to tell you it depends on the cutter’s hand and experience also. – ok i was looking after the accurate of a proper machine here in my country: it says: 0.01 mm 0,001 inch slack hm.. it seems like your card should work…. and better to look after an another place.

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joiaco says

I worked at a printers for a short time and learned that especially when the blade on the guillotine is blunting, then the card shifts a bit. It is VERY expensive to sharpen the blades so they try to take it to the end and beyond of its efficient life. There are printers who won’t accept jobs like this precisely because of the extra attention it needs.

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chrisatlemon says

Many thanks for the replies everyone! I will look for an excellent printer to take care of my excellent design :)

Cheers

Chris

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quickandeasy Volunteer moderator says

I worked with some guys last year and we were foil printing with cards and flyers, everything was done to the precise millimetre on machines that were manually set up.

We also had a warehouse full of digital printers, which just spat out flyers, cards etc at a billion miles an hour – and the quality was simply not there.

But then again, you pay peanuts, you get monkeys.

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