Best of PI - Paper

Fall 1987 Describing Text Paper

One thing that seems to confuse people is what "60 lb." means when it is describing text paper weight and why is 65 lb. cover stock so much heavier than 60 lb. text stock.

Here is as simple an explanation of this as I know how to make.

In describing text paper, the "basis" weight (50 lb., 55 lb., 60 lb., etc.) is actually the number of pounds that 500 sheets, 25" x 38", weigh. Thus, if you have 1000 sheets of 25" x 38" stock and it weighs 120 pounds, you have 60 lb. paper.

For cover stock, the usual basis weights are 50, 65 or 80 lb. with 65 being far and away the most common. The 65 means that 500 sheets will weigh 65 pounds. However, in cover stock that weight is for 500 20' x 26' sheets, not 500 25' x 38' sheets. Thus, relating the weight of a square inch of the two stocks, 65 lb. cover is about twice as heavy as 60 lb. text stock. lOpt CIS is a cover stock described by its thickness, not its weight. A 20" x 26" sheet of l0 pt CIS cover stock is approximately the same thickness as 65 lb. cover but it actually weighs 23% more than a similar sized sheet of 65 lb. cover stock.

In addition to this weight differential, 10 pt is a coated stock that only comes in white. 65 lb. cover is a soft (uncoated) cover stock that comes in many colors in addition to white.

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Winter 1991 Paper: Equivalent Sheets

We frequently have customers request a quotation where they specify a particular manufacturer's paper. When this happens, we generally will quote on the nearest equivalent sheet that we have on the floor and send a sample of that sheet with our quotation.

We do this because we feel you will be better served by using the printer's floor sheet than by asking them to special order a small amount of paper. Frequently publishers will tell us that a paper sales rep says their particular sheet is the same price as all other comparable sheets so it will not cost any more if their sheet is specified.

That pricing argument is likely true if you order that sheet in carloads but the likelihood of your needing a carload (40,000 lbs.) is going to be small, and, if you only need 1000 lbs. or so, the price sheet could be close to double the cost of the printer's floor sheet.

In addition, most printers are going to be more effective printing on their own paper because they are familiar with its characteristics.

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Winter 1992 Non Standard Text and Cover Stocks

There is a high cost associated with doing a short run book on text and cover paper that the printer does not stock. We get requests from time to time asking for a 500 copy book to be done on some exotic and expensive sheet with an equally exotic cover stock. The problem in producing this is that the printer has trouble buying stocks in small amounts, (a single carton of cover stock will usually be enough for 4OOO books and you usually have to order in even cartons) you will need to order more text stock than you will normally need (you don't want a production problem to cause you to end up 300 sheets short on the last signature) and production is invariably slower and quality less assured when you're running a sheet your people are not faniihar with. These factors can double the cost of a short run, soft bound book.

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Fall 1993 T-S Switches Our Natural Shade Floor Paper to a Premium, Opaque, Recycled Sheet

Glatfelter B-16 or B-31 text paper has been our natural shade house stock or floor sheet for what seems like my entire lifetime. Glatfelter is probably the best known paper maker specializing in book papers and they have pretty much been our major paper supplier since we began in 1972.

However, in the past year or so, we have had more and more publishers asking for recycled paper and now three states have actually passed resolutions that strongly encourage their state printing buyers to specify recycled paper. Since we do a lot of work for the university presses in each of these states, we have been stocking, in limited amounts, a recycled natural not made by Glatfelter.

Now Glatfelter has approached us with a proposal that will allow us to get a recycled natural paper from them in a sheet that is more than the equal of the B- 16 sheet we have been using. This sheet is actually two grades higher than our B-16 and with a significantly increased opacity.

The comparitive figures of Supple Opaque and the B-16 sheet are: 50 lb Supple Opaque is 93 vs. 91 for B-16 and 60 lb supple is 94 vs. 92 1/2 for B-16. Since opacity is one of the main factors that determine paper price, we believe the Supple Opaque represents a significantly increased value. The new sheet can, and in the case of the first customers who learned of this switch already did, allow publishers to switch from 60 or 55 lb to 50 lb and lower their price accordingly.

If opacity is the reason you select a 60 lb sheet over 50 lb, then the Supple Opaque sheet will provide a higher opacity at 50 lb than the B-16 did at 60 lb and it would lower your paper cost by nearly 17%. One of our largest customers who learned of this change already says they will change all of their printing from 55 lb or 60 lb sheets to 50 lb paper, unless the page count is low enough that they feel the greater bulk of 60 lb is necessary. For an illustration of their comparative bulks, a 192 page book printed on either of the 50 lb. sheets would have a paper bulk of .45 inches while 60 lb would bulk.52 inches.

We believe this paper change is an exciting and potentially profitable development for T-S and our customers. This is just another example of our never-ending search for ways to save you money and be kind to the environment. Remember what your mother said and save those trees . . . specify recycled paper.

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