Paper Folder Review: MBM 93M vs. Formax FD 300

July 3rd, 2014

MBM 93M and Formax FD 300 comparison

The Formax FD 300 compares well to the MBM 93M


We recently sat down and did a side-by-side paper folding machine comparison between the MBM 93M and the new Formax FD 300. We were excited when Formax announced a paper folding machine that would compete directly with the MBM 93M, a popular model with our customers.

The MBM 93M has delivered top-notch paper folding capabilities to our customers for a reasonable price. We have several satisfied customers who currently use this machine. The new Formax entry, the FD 300 has several comparable features that could give the 93M a run for the money. Let’s take a look:

Folding Speed

MBM 93M: 7,200 sheets/hour

Formax FD 300: 7,400 sheets/hour

Two hundred more sheets folded per hour is quite a big difference when you need to fold several hundred pieces each day. Time and labor savings quickly add up. Advantage: Formax.

Input Capacity

MBM 93M: 150 Sheets

Formax FD 300: 200 Sheets

Formax comes out the winner here again, thanks to a much deeper paper hopper. This translates into fewer paper feedings into the paper tray required by the operator and a significant saving of time. Advantage: Formax.

Maximum Paper Size

MBM 93M: 8 1/2″ x 14″

Formax FD 300: 8 1/2″ x 14″

Both models will fold legal size paper, a common request by our customers. The 93M and FD 300 models handle the larger-sized sheets with ease. Advantage: Draw.

Accepted Paper Weights

MBM 93M: 20 lb. bond

Formax FD 300: 20 lb. bond

Both models will process paper that’s slightly lighter and heavier than copy paper, but that’s about it. We sometimes hear from frustrated callers who assume their paper folding machine can handle card stock or other heavy types of paper. The fact is, most models are designed to fold copy paper only. Heavier stock paper presents challenges for several models. Advantage: Draw.

Warranty

MBM 93M: 1 year limited warranty, excluding wearables

Formax FD 300: 90-day warranty does not include consumable parts, labor, or shipping.

A meager warranty has always been an issue with Formax machines. We have sold Formax machines for almost 20 years, and warranty claims are far and few between. Unfortunately, potential customers do not know this when they browse our website. They often side with a competitor’s comparable model that offers a more liberal warranty time frame. Such is the case with the model 93M. Advantage MBM.

Price

MBM 93M: $458

Formax FD 300: $499

Since the Formax FD 300 is a new model, we were hoping their price would be a little more competitive. Saving $41 may not seem like a significant amount of money, but every dollar counts – especially when buying office equipment and supplies. Advantage: MBM.

As you can see, both the MBM 93M and Formax FD 300 paper folding machines offer very similar capabilities. What model do we recommend? Well, if warranty and price are a big concern, then MBM is the clear choice. If that’s not a deal breaker, then we recommend the Formax FD 300 based on performance capabilities and less time required for operation and attendance.

Coil Binding Machine Review: Akiles CoilMac-EPI Plus 4:1

June 6th, 2014

Akiles CoilMac-EPI Plus Review

Akiles CoilMac-EPI Plus 4:1


Akiles CoilMac-EPI Plus 4:1 Coil Binding Machine w/ Inserter (Oval Holes)

I recently had a customer ask me to explain the differences between two electric coil binding machines: The Akiles CoilMac-EPI Plus 4:1 and Renz SPB 360 Comfort Electric Coil Binding Machine. These are both high-volume, quality coil binding machines engineered to withstand heavy use throughout the workday. We rarely receive complaints from customers about either brand.

The Renz SPB 360 is a tried and tested model that offers several features needed for high-volume document binding. It has a unique built-in coil-crimping device that cuts and bends excess binding coil, eliminating the need for crimping pliers.

Over the years, however, I have been very impressed with how Akiles has been able to design a binding machine that has so many features to offer for such a modest price. When I entered the document finishing industry over 12 years ago, Renz was pretty much the dominant force in high-end binding machines. That prominence has changed since then, thanks to the determination of the product engineers from Akiles. They have not only successfully competed in the document binding machine market, but have surpassed their competition in several key areas.

Most coil binding machines punch round holes. The Akiles CoilMac-EPI Plus 4:1 does not. This unique electric coil-binding machine actually punches out oval-shaped holes with its built-in electric punch. This slight modification in hole design dramatically speeds up the coil insertion process. This allows for slightly more space for the coil to move within and reduces the frustration often encountered when coil and punched paper don’t always exactly match up. The machine’s 54 punch pins may be disengaged so that you can create custom-sized documents and books.

The Akiles CoilMac-EPI Plus, with rugged all-metal construction, boasts a high volume punch capacity of 25 sheets. This rating applies to 20 lb. standard copy paper. The punch motor has reverse anti-jam feature that helps you dislodge stacks of paper or covers that were too thick.

The machine also provides a full-length, heavy-duty electric coil inserter on the front of the unit for convenient coil insertion. The CoilMac-EPI Plus comes with a built-in coil diameter selector and premium oval coil crimping pliers.

When you are ready to order your electric coil binding machine, be sure to mention this article to save an additional seven percent!

Mix Bill Counter Review: Carnation CR3 vs. Ribao DCJ-280

May 30th, 2014
Ribao DCJ-280 2 Pocket Mixed Bill Counter / Discriminator

The Ribao DCJ-280 is easily updated for the latest currency


Ribao DCJ-280 2 Pocket Mixed Bill Counter / Discriminator

ABC Office currently offers two bill counters that let you drop in a stack of mixed bills and see the monetary value of each batch. This is a highly sought after feature by several of our customers, but this type of technology requires a bit of an investment on the customer’s part. Both the Ribao DCJ-280 2 Pocket Mixed Bill Counter / Discriminator and the Carnation CR3 Mixed Bill Currency Counter are priced at the higher end of the bill counter spectrum.

If your business is in need of a sophisticated, professional-grade bill counter that will distinguish the value of the bills it is counting, and is capable of recognizing the latest issued currency, then you should consider the Ribao DCJ-280. This currency discriminator, or often called a mixed bill counting machine, will process a complete range of US bills and provide you with the total number and value counted. Other foreign currency variations are available upon request, including Euro, Peso and more.

Customers often ask why the Ribao DCJ-280 is priced about $800 more than the Carnation CR3 bill counter. That’s because the DCJ-280 comes equipped with a convenient USB port that lets you connect the unit to your computer. You can then easily update the DCJ-280 so that it will detect new versions of currency issued by the U.S. or foreign countries. This feature alone makes the Ribao DCJ-280 a smart bill counter investment simply because it’s a bill counting model that will not become obsolete with the constant introduction of new currencies.

This do-it-yourself currency update feature is one that the Carnation CR3 bill counter does not offer. The CR3 model may be updated only by shipping the unit back to the manufacturer. The DCJ-280 may be programmed for note counting one of three different ways. It may be used for mixed counting, mixed sorting and piece sorting. The DCJ-280 mixed bill counter may be found in a bank, credit union, retail establishment, casino or other business that processes a high amount of cash.

Carnation CR3 Mixed Bill Currency Counter

The most affordable mixed bill counter available today

Carnation CR3 Mixed Bill Currency Counter w/ Counterfeit Detection

While most money counting machines perform a fast and effective job of counting the total number of bills that pass through the machine, they unfortunately do not display the total dollar value. If you require more from your bill counting machine, especially the nice feature of knowing the total value of dollars counted, the Carnation CR3 mixed denomination currency counter is a popular choice with several of our customers.

Sometimes referred to as a mixed currency discriminator, the Carnation CR3 bill counter pretty much does it all. This is the most affordable mixed bill counter available on the market today. The CR3 was designed from the ground up to be used with United States currency, and foreign bills and includes impressive list of useful features. The CR3 can process bills at speeds ranging from 500 up to 1,100 notes per minute.

The counterfeit scanning capabilities of the CR3 include UV, or ultraviolet scanning, MG, or magnetic scanning and IR infrared scanning. The LCD display makes it easy to see the total bills counted, total dollar amount and more. You simply drop your stack of mixed bills in the top hopper and they stack in the bottom stacker. Be sure to order your mixed currency bill counter today.

Sealer Sales Spotlights Dealer ABC Office

May 9th, 2014

Sealer Sales

Recently, Sealer Sales, the manufacturer of quality packaging equipment, published a distributor highlight about ABC Office on their corporate blog.

Sealer Sales is well known in the industry as a manufacturer of hand and large heat sealers, shrink wrap machines, shrink wrap film, I-bar sealers and other heat sealing machines. SealerSales is one of the largest manufacturers of shrink wrap and packaging equipment.

At ABC Office we sell hundreds of different machines and a wide variety of supplies from SealerSales. We have listed dozens of their products on our website and are still adding more. Their impressive lineup of products are both affordable and high quality. Our Service Department can also help with parts, repairs and support of SealerSales equipment. Be sure to contact ABC Office about SealerSales packaging equipment and supplies today!

Paper Folding Machines that Fold Stapled Sheets of Paper

April 29th, 2014

1611 Paper Folding Machine by Martin Yale

This model can fold up to five stapled sheets at a time.

Do you need to fold multiple sheets of paper that are stapled together? This is a feature that most paper folding machines cannot do. But not to worry, there are a few models out there that can fold stapled sheets.

This is one of the most common questions we are asked at ABC Office. Unfortunately, there are some who assume most paper folders can do this special task. They soon learn the paper folder model they purchased is not capable of folding multiple sheets and their paper folding plans are crushed.

You may be wondering if there is a paper folding machine capable of folding stapled sheets automatically. For example, is it possible to place a stack of stapled sheets in the paper feed tray, push a button and let the paper folder do the rest? Unfortunately such a model does not exist. You must feed each stapled set by hand. Even though this may still be an inconvenience, the timesavings offered by a paper folding machine is significant when compared to folding sheets by hand.

There is currently a limited selection of paper folding machine models available that boast multiple sheet folding capabilities. This article features a few of our best-selling paper folding machine models that have the capability of folding (in some cases) up to five stapled sheets at a time.

The Martin Yale 1611 Ease-of-Use AutoFolder Paper Folding Machine is the first model we typically recommend for folding stapled sheets of paper. The first reason why is it’s affordably priced for a semi-automatic paper folding machine. It’s also straightforward when it comes time to operate the machine.

Up to five stapled sheets may be folded by simply hand-feeding the stack into the bypass feed table located on the top of the machine.

Very similar to the model 1611, the Martin Yale 1711 Electronic Ease-of-Use AutoFolder Paper Folding Machine is also recommended. That’s because in addition to its multiple sheet folding feature, the 1711 is a fully automatic machine. This is desired by some who prefer not to spend the time adjusting the folding plates on a paper folding machine manually.

The Formax FD 38X Automatic Tabletop Paper Folder is a high-volume model capable of folding up to 20,100 sheets per hour. It has a multi-sheet feeder that allows up to four sheets, stapled or unstapled, to be folded at one time.

Be sure to contact ABC Office today at 1-800-658-8788 to find out more about paper folding machines that can fold stapled sheets of paper.

Looking for a Safe School Arm Paper Cutter?

April 23rd, 2014

Quality arm paper cutter that is both safe and accurate

The Dahle 561 Premium Guillotine Paper Cutter


Dahle 561 Premium Guillotine Paper Cutter

If you’ve been searching for a quality arm paper cutter that is both safe and accurate, then we highly recommend the Dahle 561 Premium guillotine paper cutter. Why? Because the Dahle 561 cutter has a unique rotary blade guard that makes it almost impossible to accidentally cut yourself. This cutter’s impressive German engineered design makes sure that the blade is covered throughout the entire cutting process. Older arm paper cutters can be dangerous if not used carefully. That is why we highly recommend the Dahle 561 cutter for use in schools and other places where children are present.

The Dahle 561 paper cutter was designed to deliver a solid, long-lasting machine that also gives you precise, accurate paper trims with every stroke. Speaking from experience, this cutter is both easy to use and simple to set up. The manufacturer lists the Dahle 561’s cutting capacity at 35 sheets and this is no overstatement. We have a demo model on our showroom floor here at ABC Office that we use on a frequent basis. You can view a video demonstration of the Dahle 561 paper cutter in action here.

Cutting thick stacks of paper is indeed possible and quite easy to do. We have been impressed with this cutter’s accurate, no-slip paper trimming thanks to a tight paper clamp that ensures zero paper stack movement while cutting.

The Dahle 561 paper trimmer has ground upper and lower blades, a rotary safety guard, automatic paper clamp, measuring scale bar and adjustable paper backstop. It has a cutting length of 14.5 inches. The 561 comes with a lifetime manufacturer’s warranty against defects, materials and assembly.

The unit boasts a genuine German Solingen steel cutting blade — an impressive feature for a guillotine trimmer in such an affordable price range. You can accurately cut paper, photographs, card stock, small posters and signs, art projects, laminated paper and much more. Be sure to ask ABC Office about the Dahle 561 Premium arm paper cutter today.

Little-Known Features of the Formax FD 6102 Inserter

April 9th, 2014

Envelope Paper Folder Inserting Machine by Formax

The FD 6102 has several features typically found on higher-end models


The Formax FD 6102 is our best-selling paper folder/envelope inserter machine. Several customers have used this very model for a wide variety of business mailing needs. Although the FD 6102 is rated as a low-volume model that processes up to 5,000 mail pieces per month, its duty cycle is more than adequate for most of our customers.

The FD 6102 has several features typically found on higher-end models, thus enhancing its value for the price. Some of these features include a large, color touch screen display panel. The panel is clearly marked and offers easy, step-by-step prompts and guidance through any folding and inserting job. This feature alone was not available on previous versions or competing models for that matter.

In my opinion, the FD 6102 is designed for almost anyone to use. Formax does offer free set up and training after purchase, but most customers can operate the unit right out of the box. It’s really that simple.

Other Easter eggs, or hidden features offered by the FD 6102 include the machine’s dual automatic and semi-automatic mode options. This means you can program the folder inserter to do extra tasks that are typically only performed by a higher end model. For example in semi-automatic mode, the FD 6102 will fold and insert up to five sheets of 20 lb. stock, either stapled or unstapled.

In fully automatic mode, this paper folder/envelope inserter can do the following:

· One sheet folded and inserted
· One sheet folded, return envelope nested and inserted
· Two sheets collated, folded and inserted
· Two sheets collated, folded, return envelope nested and inserted
· Folding only without inserting

The Formax FD 6102 can handle documents up to 14 inches in length. It also has seal and non-sealing capabilities. The fold types that this model can do include: Letter, Half, Double Parallel and no fold.

Be sure to call us at 1-800-658-8788 today to learn about all of the impressive capabilities of the Formax FD 6102 folder inserter – a feature-rich folder/inserting model available at a low, competitive price.

Why we recommend the AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap System with Heat Gun

February 28th, 2014

The I-Bar Shrink Wrap System by AIE ranges in models measuring from 13 to 40 inches in length.

The AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap System features sturdy, metal construction.

We speak with dozens of customers each month who are looking for the best shrink wrap machine for their money. They want to be sure the machine they order will do the job the right way the first time, and they want a model that will last. They also need to know if the machine they order has supplies and replacement parts readily available.

Quite often, we recommend the I-Bar Shrink Wrap System with Heat Gun from AIE (American International Electric Inc.). This unit will handle most low to medium volume business shrink wrap needs. If you need a machine that can tackle high-volume production requirements, then we highly suggest a L-bar sealer with inclusive tunnel.

The I-Bar Shrink Wrap System by AIE ranges in models measuring from 13 to 40 inches in length. If you do not know what I-bar length is best for you, a general rule of thumb is to measure the largest item you plan to shrink wrap. Add its width to the height and add two inches. This method is a pretty safe bet when selecting the shrink wrap model that will fit your needs.

When you uncrate the AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap System you will notice its sturdy, metal construction. This ensures years of consistent machine operation and use. Parts are fairly simple to access and replace such as the cutting wire. It also includes a handy pop-up heat gun rest/holder that prevents possible injuries or damaged materials due to a misplaced hot heat gun nozzle. AIE is a leading manufacturer of quality shrink wrap and sealing equipment. Their products are manufactured in ISO-9001 certified facilities.

The AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap System Professionally shrink wraps boxes, packages archived items, food and other products for just pennies each. The unit has a simple three-step operation process with no warm-up time required. The shrink wrap process lets you enhance the appearance and value of your products by protecting it against dirt, dust, moisture, handling and pilfering.

The AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap System includes: bar sealer, timer, heat gun, heat gun holder, film rack, a free 500-foot roll of centerfold PVC 75 gauge shrink film, outlet plug and spare parts kit. Be sure to order your I-bar shrink wrap system from ABC Office today: an excellent model for the money.

 

How to use a Wire Binding Machine

February 26th, 2014

“How do I use my new wire binding machine?”

The Akiles WireMac Wire Binding Machine Comes Highly Recommended

Akiles WireMac

That was the question I was asked earlier today from one of our customers. He recently purchased a popular wire binding machine model from ABC Office and he had a lot of questions about how to use his new wire binder. His binding machine was perfectly fine, he was simply new to the whole binding process.

Thankfully, ABC Office has produced over the years in-depth video demos that have  helped hundreds of customers with the set up and operation process of their binding machines and other office equipment. I pointed him in the direction of this Akiles WireMac wire binding machine video demo we produced in-house several years ago. The picture and sound may not be the optimum quality that you expect today, but this was considered cutting-edge back in 2003 (when we made the video)!

The demonstrator was David Stuart, our marketing supervisor. David had about 15 years experience with most of our office equipment, so he definitely knew what he was talking about. The video, although about 11 years old, still holds up just fine today. David offers several helpful hints on how to initially set up your machine for optimum punching and binding. He also demonstrates how you can produce a professionally looking bound document, thanks to placing the back cover on the top of your document before crimping the wire shut.

If you have any questions about using your wire binding machine, the video demo I mentioned covers just about everything you will need to know. However, if you still have questions we would love to talk to you. You may still have concerns about the best report covers to use, what’s the best wire pitch for your needs (2:1 or 3:1) or what brand/models we recommend. Call 1-800-658-8788 with your questions today. We look forward to helping you with your new wire binding machine!

What Makes a Good Comb Binding Machine?

February 21st, 2014

Comb Binding Machines - Features to ConsiderCustomers ask me all the time, “What features do I need in a comb binding machine?” It’s a good question and I would like to point out some “must-have” features and some “optional” features. While most comb binding machines share a lot in common, some have some very cool and unique tools you may want to consider for your business. Before I go much further into this article, you can find our entire selection of comb binding machines and supplies by visiting us here.

So what is comb binding? Comb binding is a method used to organize and bind multiple sheets of paper into booklet format. These machines punch a total of 19 holes along the 11” side of a sheet of paper. Once the holes are punched, a plastic 19-ring comb spine is inserted through the holes and closed shut. This plastic spine is what holds the paper together. These style of binding has been around for literally decades and is one of the most affordable ways to bind a book, presentation or report.

Advantages of Comb – Comb binding is affordable, plain and simply. The machines don’t run too much money and a box of 100 combs can usually be purchased for under $10 (often much less). Comb binding allows the spines to be re-opened to remove or add additional pages. The combs themselves are very resilient and are available in a variety of different colors.

Disadvantages of Comb – Comb binding elements can wear out over time and with excessive use, causing the spine to open a little resulting in pages falling out. While this is rare, it can happen. Comb binding also doesn’t allow pages to be wrapped around 360 degrees like coil binding does.

I would now like to cover common and not-so-common features you can find in a comb-binding machine.

  • Side Margin Control – This is the guide that allows you to adjust the positioning the paper left and right. Almost all comb binders have this feature.
  • Margin Depth Control – This is a feature that allows you to set how far into the paper the holes are punched. This is nice if you are binding a variety of book thicknesses. You may want to punch further into the paper when binding thicker books to prevent pages from tearing out. Only about have of the machines out there offer this feature.
  • Manual / Electric Punch – Comb binding machines are available with manual or electric punches, not both. You’ll have to choose. Most people go with manual punches unless they are binding a lot of books per day. I generally recommend electric for people who are binding dozens or more books per day. Electric really does cut down on fatigue.
  • Vertical / Horizontal Punch – Most comb binding machines have a vertical punch, where you lay the paper flat on the surface while punching the paper. Some manufacturers have designed machines with a vertical punch, where the paper stands on its end while being punched. The vertical punch can be nice because it keeps the edges of the paper lined up during the entire process using gravity.
  • Singe / Double Handle – Some comb binding machines use dual handles for punching and binding, where others use a single handle. Single-handle machines punch paper when the handle is pulled and open plastic combs (using the metal comb fingers) when the handle is pushed back. Dual handle units have one hand that punches and another that opens the combs.
  • Disengageable Dies – Have you ever punched paper only to end up with a half-punched hole on the edge? It can ruin the entire book. While side-to-side margin adjustments can fix some of this, it isn’t going to fix everything…especially when binding odd sizes of paper. Machines with desengageable dies allow you to disable specific punching dies. If you have a half-punched hole, simply disengage that die. You could, although I don’t know why you would want to, punch every other hole using a machine equipped with fully disengageable dies.
  • Plastic / Metal Build – Machines vary in build quality. While they all use metal punching pins, the gears, handle and body of the machine can vary in build quality. As you might imagine, lesser expensive machines typically utilize more plastic in the design where higher-end machines use more metal. Some manufactures, like Akiles, use a lot of metal in their machines.

I hope this helps. There is a lot of information there to assimilate. If you still have questions, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-658-8788. We would love to help you out. We also do repairs on comb binding machines. If you need your machine repaired, call us at 1-800-658-8788 and ask for extension 129. Thanks again for reading!

Click to verify BBB accreditation and to see a BBB report.

by Category