RE: Binding printed doc

Subject: RE: Binding printed doc
From: Steve Shepard <STEVES -at- YARDI -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 8 Feb 2001 09:06:40 -0800

When I first arrived here, we were photocopying (actually, photocopying
photocopies of the originals) our docs and "tape" binding them (you know,
that ugly black tape down the spine). Then marketing got the idea of
creating a binder that hold the docs of our entire product line. Nearly 1000
pages. The thin took up almost 3 square feet of desk space when open. And it
cost nearly $40.00 to ship overnight.

I looked into other alternatives and we found several companies that could
produce prefect bound 7"x9" books in relatively small runs at a pretty good
price. These are single sheets that are scored and glued into the binding
(not a group of saddle stitched signatures as in traditional book binding).
The covers are digital color copies. So now we produce professional looking
docs with full color glossy covers. When you add together the cost of a
custom binder, printing, maybe tabbed inserts, and collating and assembling,
this perfect bound books are pretty cost effective.

To give you an idea a 330 page user guide, perfect bound with a color cover
initially cost us about $13.00 each in a run of 300. Another smaller (88
page) guide ran about $3.80 each.

A local company that we have used in the past has recently tooled up for
this kind of thing and is doing the same thing for considerably less. One
difference, we print the covers in larger runs and they warehouse them so we
can print them on a four color press and varnish them. That same 330 page
user guide is running about $6.50 now. I don't think you could touch a
custom binder for near that price. This seems to be an extraordinarily good
price from what I can tell. You might have trouble finding that kind of
price where you are located.

The main thing you have to watch out for with this type of binding is
durability. If the job is not done right, the pages with come out of the
binding. My WebWorks docs are obviously bound this way and they are starting
to fall apart with relatively light use. Both vendors we have used have done
a good job in this regard.

The first company we dealt with did very good work and I would recommend
them if you can't something locally. In fact, I can give you the names of
both vendors if you wish.

Steven Shepard
Manager, Documentation Group
Yardi Systems, Inc.
819 Reddick Avenue
Santa Barbara, CA 93103
steves -at- yardi -dot- com

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Joyce Fetterman
My questions:
> 1. How do you other Whirlers bind your documentation for
> distribution to
> customers?
> 2. Do you have any suggestions for a compromise solution? (It
> must be no
> more expensive than the 3-ring binders!)
> 3. Can anyone point me to studies that have been done about
> this? If I'm
> going to make a change, I'll have to prove to them that the
> new look will
> give our customers a positive impression!

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