Archive for December, 2010

Widmer E-3 Electric Embossing Machine Review

Thursday, December 30th, 2010

Widmer E-3 Electric Embossing MachineYou have probably seen them on certificates, awards and other reputable documents. Embossing not only looks great, but also provides a degree of authenticity. Embossing your own documents isn’t hard; you just need the right equipment. One machine you may want to consider using is the Widmer E-3 embossing machine (found here). I have used this machine and this is my review.

I have the Widmer E-3 embossing machine in front of me now. The housing is made from solid die cast metal. You can tell at first glance that this machine was designed from the ground up to last for years.

The E-3 has quite a bit of heft to it, weighing in at 20 lbs shipped. It is still, however, easy enough to pick up and move around. It has two suction cup feet on the front of the machine that helps keep it in place when used on a solid surface or desk.

The cover casing is locked, preventing access to the striking die inside. This is ideal for security purposes and eliminates possible die theft.

The embossing die itself is custom made and is available in 3 different sizes (1 3/8″, 1 3/4″ or 2″). Once you purchase the E-3, we will request some information from you so we can get the die made. Once the die is made, it should be able to emboss documents for years to come.

The base price of the E-3 includes the cost of a die that features simple engraving or text. More complex stamping dies will need to be quoted ahead of the purchase. State seals with text can be used with the E-3, but are only available to verified government entities.

Not only can the E-3 be used to stamp legal documents, awards, certificates and other important paper, but it can also be used to emboss single and 2-sheet carbonized forms. I have personally used this to emboss standard paper all the way up to card stock.

If the impression is too light, the striking pressure can be increased. If the impression is too strong and is actually damaging or cutting through documents, the pressure can be scaled back.

Using the Widmer E-3 embosser is easy. There is no switch or foot pedal required. It has a micro switch built in. When paper is inserted, it triggers the micro switch, which in turn activates the embossing stamp. Embossed images and text can be stamped from the edge of the paper up to 3″ into a document.

If you are embossing larger documents, an optional adjustable guide shelf is available. This shelf also makes it easy to emboss documents over and over in the same place. You can see this guide in the picture I included in this review. Aligning the emboss stamp is pretty easy to do manually, which is what I am doing right now on an 8 ½” x 11″ sheet of paper.

Overall I am really impressed with the Widmer E-3 embosser. It has been around for years and I am not aware of an quality issues. It is one sturdy, tough and well-built machine. Be aware that the embossing is done by the stamp striking the document, which does produce some noise.

You can find the Widmer E-3 embossing machine here. Feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788 with any embossing questions.

Top 5 Best Long Reach Staplers

Thursday, December 30th, 2010

Staplex S-700-1NHL Long Reach Electric StaplerA long reach stapler is a stapler capable of punching at least 4 or more inches into a sheet of paper. These handy staplers are able to staple paper where most handheld and desktop staplers can’t. We have been selling long reach staplers for years now and have a pretty good idea what does and does not work.

While we offer dozens of different models of office staplers, we have come up with a list of the 5 most popular long reach staplers that we offer. Two of these staplers stand above the rest. All 5 of these staplers have an excellent track record with our customers, have been proven over time and are extremely durable.

Top 5 Best Long Reach Staplers

Kings Of Long Reach Stapling

  1. Skrebba W117L Long Reach Stapler – With a 10″ stapling depth, few staplers can compete with the reach of the Skrebba W117L. This stapler has always been popular. Not only does it have a long throat depth, it can also staple up to 120 sheets of paper at a time.
  2. Staplex S-700-1NHL Long Reach Electric Stapler – With a 9 ¼” stapling depth, few other electric staplers even come close to accomplishing what the Staplex S-700-1NHL can do. Not only can it reach where other staplers can’t, but it can also staple up to 40 sheets of paper at once.

Other Popular Long Reach Staplers

  1. Staplex HD-150P Heavy-Duty Stapler
  2. Staplex HD-350 Heavy-Duty Stapler
  3. Staplex HD High-Capacity Stapler

Do you notice a trend here? That’s right! Staplex is by far one of the most popular brands of staplers we offer. American made, Staplex staplers far outlast the foreign competition.

You can find our entire selection of office staplers here.

Best Rated Saddle Staplers (Electric & Manual)

Thursday, December 30th, 2010

Staplex SS-45NHL Heavy-Duty Commercial Saddle StaplerSaddle stapling has many benefits and is best suited for booklet making and stapling paper at odd angles. There are a lot of good saddle staplers out there (and a few lemons). We have been selling saddle staplers for decades and have refined our offerings to 3 highly rated models.

These saddle staplers have continued to show time and time again that they have what it takes to get the job done and last for years. This list includes two electric staplers and one manual stapler. I have personally used two of these staplers and vouch for the effectiveness of them all.

Best Rated Saddle Staplers

  1. Lassco Skrebba W115 Saddle Stapler – This saddle stapler is manually operated, but don’t let that fool you. It is still as tough as most electric staplers and is extremely easy to use. This stapler can convert from saddle stapling to flat stapling in just seconds.
  2. Rapid 106 Electric Saddle Stapler – The Rapid 106 has always been popular with our customers. It is easy to use, is well built and is extremely versatile. It can be converted from saddle to flat stapling in seconds and can even be linked together with multiple Rapid 106 staplers for simultaneous multi-stapling capabilities.
  3. Staplex SS-45NHL Dual Capacity Commercial Saddle Stapler – Staplex has developed an excellent reputation for not only making some of the best commercial staplers, but also some of the best American-made staplers around. The SS-45NHL is perfect for industrial and commercial saddle stapling jobs.

These staplers are extremely easy to use, hold up well with continued use and are affordable priced. You can find our entire selection of staplers here. Feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788 for answers to any of your stapling questions.

High Speed Ticket & Coupon Counters

Thursday, December 30th, 2010

ABC 1150 High Speed Bill & Money CounterDo you need to count a lot of tickets, coupons or other sheets of paper? One way to do this is by hand, but if you need speed, a bill counter may be just what you need. Here are a few tips on using a bill counter for counting coupons or tickets.

To begin with, bill counters are designed to not only handle money, but paper and card stock as well. This is done on purpose. In effect, a bill counter could be considered a paper counter.

What you need to do is look at the minimum and maximum capacities on the bill counter. Let’s take the popular ABC 1150 bill counter as an example.

The ABC 1150 can handle paper as small as 2″ x 4″ or as large as 4″ x 7-1/3″. These dimensions fit the sizes of many coupons and tickets. The ABC 1150 is capable of counting at speeds of up to 1,000 pieces per minute. Try doing that by hand!

We also carry popular bill and money counters from Cassida, Semacon, Magner, Klopp and more. Almost our entire selection of bill counters can be used to count paper, coupons and tickets.

Industrial Paper CountersBill counters are dead on accurate. Technology has been developed to a point that the same stack of bills, paper, tickets or coupons can be run through a machine multiple times with precise results every time.

If you are counting thousands upon thousands of pieces per day on a consistent basis, you may need something a little more robust. We do also sell industrial paper counters.

You can find our entire selection of bill counters here and industrial paper counters here. Good luck and happy counting!

New Pressure Seal Checks & Mailers Now Online

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

Formax Pressure Sealer MachinesToday we have just added several new pressure seal checks and pressure seal mailers that can be used with most of the Formax and Duplo pressure sealers we offer online. These pressure seal checks and forms are made by Relyco and come in a variety of styles, colors and formats. This includes Z-fold, C-fold and V-fold pressure seal paper.

Pressure sealers, often confused with folder inserters, use special pressure seal paper that has built-in pressure activated glue. As a pressure seal check or mailer runs through a pressure sealer, steel metal rollers press the paper down and activate the pressure-activated glue. This glue holds the document in place, making it easy to mail.

Relyco Ultraseal Pressure Seal ChecksYou have probably received pressure seal checks or statements in your own mail at home. They are often used for mailing utility bills, checks, rebates, school grades, statements and other material. Typically the sides and ends are perforated (which are torn off), making contents easy to access and open.

Pressure seal paper can be used in most laser printers, inkjet printers and copy machines. Once the paper is printed on, it can be placed in a pressure sealer.

Why Use A Pressure Sealer?

  • Security – Pressure seal checks and paper are tamper proof. Contents cannot be access without obvious proof of tampering. Most pressure seal checks and forms also include a colored security watermark, making contents impossible to see without opening.
  • Convenience – Pressure sealed mail is really easy to open and has a higher open rate than conventional mail in envelopes. Pressure sealers also run at a much faster speed than folder inserters, making pressure sealers ideal for bulk mailing.
  • Cost – It is cheaper to fold pressure seal checks and forms than to fold paper and insert it into an envelope. Pressure sealers typically cost less than envelope stuffing machines. Pressure sealers completely eliminate the need of an envelope, cutting down on waste and cost.

These are just a few reasons why you may want to consider using a pressure sealer. If you have a pressure sealer, our Relyco Ultraseal pressure seal checks and mailers are some of the most compatible, affordable and durable available.

You can find our entire selection of Relyco pressure seal checks here and Relyco pressure seal mailers here. You can find our entire selection of pressure sealer machines here.

Martin Yale 959 Heavy-Duty AutoFolder Folding Machine Review

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

Martin Yale 959 AutoFolder Paper Folding MachineDo you have high-volume paper folding needs and are in the process of shopping around for a machine? There are a lot of machines out there to choose from. One model that you have probably seen around is the Martin Yale 959 Heavy-Duty AutoFolder paper folding machine (found here). I have used this machine several times over the past 10 years and this is my review.

To begin with, the Martin Yale 959 folding machine has been around for some time. I remember this machine being around when I first started with ABC Office 10+ years ago. It features a time-tested design that has undergone few changes. This is because the formula works.

This folding machine is considered to be a heavy-duty machine and is the toughest friction-feed folding machine that Martin Yale offers. Martin Yale also makes an air-feed version of the 959.

The specs on this machine are very impressive, especially compared to what’s out there. While many machines tout the largest size of paper they can fold, which is 14″ x 20″ on the 959, few brag about the smallest sheet they can handle. The Model 959 can handle paper as small as 3 ½” x 3 ½”. This means you can use the 959 to fold paper large enough for restaurant menus or paper small enough for a wedding invitation.

The Martin Yale 959 can also handle an impressive range of paper thicknesses. It can handle card stock up to 110 lb. index or paper as thin as 9 lb. onion skin. While the 110 lb thickness is impressive, I am almost more impressed with its ability to handle the extremely thin stuff.

The 959 utilizes two manually adjusted folding plates. These plates are very easy to adjust and paper folds are clearly marked, making adjustments easy. Once set up, the folding plates stay in place. Folds are always registered correctly and the skew is dead on.

This is a tough folding machine, so I definitely would not consider it a desktop model. It weighs in at 108 lbs shipped. You will need a table, counter or work surface capable of handling this weight. Most desks are capable of holding this machine.

The Model 959 AutoFolder can handle the toughest, simples and most common folds out there. It can easily handle a letter fold (C fold) or an accordion fold (Z fold). It can also handle the difficult cross fold (French fold) and the Baronial fold. Because the folding plates are manually adjusted, custom folds are very easy to set up.

The exit tray on the 959 includes a conveyor system. This conveyor keeps folded material in order, which is ideal for alphanumerical documents.

A quick-release journal shaft can hold perforating, scoring and slitting wheels. This means you can perforate, cut or score paper while folding it. Few folding machines are capable of doing this. This is especially ideal for custom folding jobs, mailers and other material. It includes a 7-tooth perforating wheel and 2 scoring wheels.

I think the term “old school” sums up the Martin Yale 959. It is as tough as a steam engine and just seems to keep on going and going. I have always been impressed with this machine and consider it to be the best Martin Yale has to offer.

You can find the Martin Yale 959 Heavy-Duty AutoFolder paper folding machine here and our entire selection of paper folding machines here.

Do you still have questions regarding the Martin Yale 959? Feel free to call one of our folding machine experts at 1-800-658-8788. They all have detailed experience with this machine and should be able to answer all your questions.

Have a great day!

Traco TISH Handheld Bag Sealer Review

Wednesday, December 29th, 2010

Traco TISH Impulse Bag SealerBag sealers are a very important tool in the retail and packaging market. Bag sealers (aka heat sealers) can be used to seal a wide variety of PVC, poly, foil, mylar and other bags. They can also be used to seal bubble pack bags and padded mailers. If you need a good solid bag sealer, you may want to consider our Traco TISH impulse bag sealers (found here). I have used these and this is my review.

One of the most popular bag sealers we sell is the AIE line of handheld sealers. The Traco TISH line the second most popular line we offer and it is quickly rising in popularity. This is due in part to the excellent pricing and the fact that TISH sealers are made from the same parts as the AIE sealers. This means the TISH sealers equal the quality of AIE sealers, usually at a much better price.

Traco has been making shrink wrap equipment and machines for years. Manufacturing impulse bag sealers fit right in with their existing product line.

The TISH line of impulse heat sealers comes in a variety of different designs. These include the TISH-100, TISH-200, TISH-200C, TISH-300 and the TISH-300C. These sealers are all very similar in make and construction. The biggest difference is the cutting width. Models ending in “C” include a built-in cutter.

These sealers use impulses of electricity to quickly seal bags shut. This is a huge advantage over traditional heat sealers as impulse sealers produce less smoke and less odor.

The TISH line of bag sealers can be used to seal polyethylene, polypropylene, PVC, foil and surlyn, mylar or bubble pack / padded mailers. This makes the TISH sealers extremely versatile.

Very little training is needed to get one of these bag sealers up and running. Once the time duration has been set, simply plug in the machine, insert a bag and pull down the arm. In just seconds a bag will be completely sealed shut.

The TISH line of sealers weigh in at 6-12 pounds shipped, depending on the model. This makes them very light and very portable. This is great, especially for packaging operations that require a portable machine.

We have been selling TISH bag sealers for several years now and I am not aware of any quality issues. The build quality seems to be right where it should be. Traco claims, and I agree, that the TISH bag sealers are designed to hold up for years.

You can find our Traco TISH bag sealers here. You can find our entire selection of heat sealers and bag sealers here.

Akiles UltraLam 250B & 250P Laminator Review

Tuesday, December 28th, 2010

Akiles UltraLam 250B Pouch LaminatorAre you tired of cloudiness, bubbles and ripples in your laminating film? If you are experiencing any of these issues, or if you simply need a great all-round laminator, you may want to consider using the Akiles UltraLam 250B or 250P pouch laminators (found here). This is my review.

Akiles has a great reputation with binding machines and their laminators are no exception. Akiles now offers over a half-dozen different pouch laminators. The UltraLam 250B and 250P are some of their newest additions. The UltraLam line of laminators is Akiles higher-end line of laminators.  These new laminators have several benefits that you may like to utilize in your own daily laminating operations.

To begin with, the UltraLam 250B and 250P are essentially the same laminators with one minor difference. The Model 250B utilizes a traditional bimetal temperature control (screw) where the 250P uses a more modern digital electronic temperature adjustment (dial). Both laminators produce identical results.

The UltraLam 250 series laminators have a 9″ (A4 size) opening. This opening is able to accommodate most letter-size documents with about a ¼” buffer on each side of the paper. This helps cut down on jams and makes it easy to laminate not only letter-size paper, but also photographs, businesses cards and other material.

The Akiles UtraLam 250 is a tough little laminator, capable of laminating documents up to 10 mils thick. It can be used to laminate not only 10 mil thick film, but it also handles 3, 5 and 7 mil thick film without any problems. This is due in part to the UltraLam’s great temperature range (85° -160°C).

These laminators are designed for daily, continuous use. There is no need to worry about this laminator overheating, and thanks to solid metal gears, you shouldn’t have to worry about any downtime.

If you need to keep the laminator on all day, you can help prolong the laminator motor’s life by turning it off. This way the laminator stays hot for fast lamination and the motor stays off when not in use. This is all possible thanks to independent temperature and motor controls.

Both the 250B and 250P utilize special heat plats and silicon rollers to evenly distribute heat. This helps to cut down on cloudiness, bubbles and ripples. This design also allows these laminators to laminate documents with or without a carrier.

Overall I consider the Akiles UltraLam 250 series laminators to be solid laminators. They should be up to the task of laminating just about anything. I would personally have no problem using this laminator for my own medium to higher-volume laminating jobs.

You can find the Akiles UltraLam 250B or 250P pouch laminators here and our entire selection of pouch laminating machines here. Feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788 with any questions.

Envelope Inserting Machine Problems? Consider Relyco Envelopes!

Tuesday, December 28th, 2010

Formax Envelope Stuffing MachineFolding and inserting machines are great for mailing bills, brochures, applications, receipts and a wide variety of other mail. These machines can insert paper into envelopes in a fraction of the time it takes to do it manually. While folding and inserting machines are great, they can sometimes be picky when it comes to envelopes.

At ABC Office we offer a wide variety of Formax envelope stuffing machines. Prior to sending out a machine, we typically require a customer to mail in envelope samples for testing. This is because some envelopes simply will not work with folding and inserting machines. Symptoms of incorrect envelopes include tearing, improper sealing and overall machine jams.

Reclyco #10 Inserter EnvelopeWhether you need to speed up your Formax inserter order or currently have a machine and are experiencing issues, you may want to consider using Relyco envelopes. We recently added several #9 and #10 Relyco envelopes to our site that are designed from the ground up to be used with Formax and other envelope stuffing machines.

Formax uses Relyco envelopes with their own inserting machines. These new envelopes include single window, dual window and bottom flap designs. They also feature a security tint that helps protect envelope contents from unwanted reading.

You can find our entire selection of envelope stuffing / inserting machines here and our entire selection of inserter friendly Relyco envelopes here.

Dahle 848 Professional Stack Paper Cutter Review

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

Dahle 848 Professional Stack Paper CutterStack paper cutters have a variety of different uses. They can be used to cut larger paper down into tiny strips, create business cards, cut down prints and much more. Finding an effective stack paper cutter can be tough. I’ll be honest. There is a lot of junk out there floating around on the Internet.

At ABC Office, we try to only carry high-quality products, which includes stack paper cutters. One stack cutter that continues to be popular with our customers, and offers a great track record, is the Dahle 848 professional stack paper cutter (found here). This is my review.

To begin with, all of Dahle’s stack paper cutters feature high-quality German engineering and build construction. This means that our Dahle line of paper cutters hold up well with continued use. This includes the Dahle 848.

The Dahle 848 is completely manually operated. Don’t let this scare you off. Although it is manual, it is remarkably easy to set up and it is very easy to use. It can still be used to keep up with medium to higher-volume jobs.

The blade is capable of cutting up to 700 sheets of standard paper in a single pass. This means if you need to cut a few thousand documents, prints or sheets of paper, you will only need to make a few passes of the blade to get the job done.

If you look at a picture of the Dahle 848, you will notice that the cutting handle is fairly long and features a series of angles. These angles aren’t just for design, they provide incredible amounts of leverage, which makes stack cutting easy.

The backstop on the Dahle 848 is spindle driven and it locks in place. This makes the backstop extremely sturdy and stable. It also makes adjusting the backstop for precision cuts simple and easy. This is also ideal for repetitive cutting.

Both sides of the blade, including the paper, are covered and protected by a clear protective shield. This shield is designed to prevent injuries, and if opened, disable the ability of the Dahle 848 to cut paper.

We have sold the Dahle 848 for well over 10 years now, at least since I started working here, and this cutter has a great track record with our customers. While I still personally prefer the MBM Triumph cutters, I still consider the Dahle 848 to be an excellent value for the money.

You can find the Dahle 848 professional stack paper cutter here. You can find our entire selection of stack paper cutters here.

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