Archive for June, 2010

ABC1150 Bill Counter Review

Monday, June 14th, 2010

ABC1150 Bill Counter / Money Counting MachineBill counters can be a blessing and a curse, depending on the model you use. They are a blessing because they quickly count bills in just seconds. The can be a curse when you get the wrong machine, resulting in frustrating jams. So which bill counter should you get? Have you considered the ABC1150 bill counter (found here)? Here are a few reasons why the ABC1150 may be your best choice for counting bills.

Most bill counters will handle new crisp bills without a problem. Where many bill counters falter is when it comes to counting used, crinkly bills. This is because used bills have an uneven surface, making it harder for bill counters to grasp them.

The ABC1150 handles new and used bills the same. It can hold up to 200 new bills or 100 used bills. I have personally run used bills through this machine many times over and have never experienced an issue with used bills. The same goes with our customers. I have never heard customers report issues with the ABC1150 when it comes to counting new vs old bills.

The ABC1150 is one of the easier bill counters to set up. Many bill-counting machines require finicky adjustments to get them to pull bills in properly. The ABC1150 doesn’t require any fine adjustments. Simply put your bills in the hopper and let the machine do the rest.

The ABC1150 bill counter also has features such as an LED display and batch counting capabilities. If you need counterfeit detection capabilities, the ABC1150 is available in an “ULTRA” version that includes magnetic and ultraviolet detection.

The ABC1150 is also a compact little machine, including its own extendable handle for portability. It can easily be used on a desk, countertop or table. I have personally picked this up and moved it. While it feels hefty in construction, it isn’t an inconvenience to move.

As long as the bill fits the minimum and maximum size requirements, the ABC 1150 can be used to count foreign currencies, tickets, coupons and other paper. The “ULTRA” version may not be able to handle the counterfeit properties of foreign currencies. I would recommend contacting ABC Office prior to purchasing a bill counter with counterfeit detection if you plan on using it with foreign currencies.

The biggest con, in my opinion, is that the ABC1150 is not able to differentiate the differences in value between different denominations of bills. This really isn’t a fault as most bill counters can’t do this. You usually have to spend $2,500 plus to get a machine capable of doing that.

You will find the ABC1150 bill counter here and the ABC1150 ULTRA bill counter here. Do you have personal experience with the ABC1150? Post your comment here!

Intelli-Fold DE-202AF Paper Folding Machine Review

Monday, June 14th, 2010

Intelli-Fold DE-202AF Paper Folding MachineIntelli-Fold is considered to be one of the most reliable paper folding machines available. Regardless of what your folding needs may be, finding the right machine isn’t always easy. So what do I think about the Intelli-Fold DE-202AF paper folding machine? Read more to find out.

First off, why not go with the cheaper DE-102AF paper folder? There are a few big differences between the DE-102AF and the DE-202AF. By big I mean differences in size. The DE-202AF can handle slightly thicker paper and it can also handle larger sizes of paper.

DE-102AF vs the DE-202AF

Paper Thickness

  • DE-102AF: 16# to 24# stock
  • DE-202AF: 16# to 40# stock

Paper Sizes

  • DE-102AF: 3.5 by 5.5-inches up to 8.5 by14-inches
  • DE-202AF: 3.5 by 5.5-inches up to 11 by 17-inches

Setting up the Intelli-Fold DE-202AF is pretty simple. It does require the operator to manually adjust two different folding plates, but this is easy to do. Simply loosen the thumbscrews and slide the folding plated to the desired fold. Folds are clearly marked on the folding plates. Be aware that the Intelli-Fold DE-202AF is directly comparable to the Dynafold DE-202AF.

Once set, the Intelli-Fold DE-202AF doesn’t require much babysitting. The 500 sheet feed tray allows the operator to easily place the sheets inside and let the machine do the rest. I have never experienced any jams with the DE-202AF when leaving the machine running unattended.

Multiple feed rollers pull the paper in evenly, which keep the registry dead on and help cut down on annoying paper jams. The folds are dead on and do not have the crooked or sloppy folded look some cheaper machines may manifest.

My only complaint is that the machine is almost too simple. Although not critical for my own folding needs, the machine could benefit from a paper counter, jam sensors and batch folding options. For the price, however, you can’t really complain.

If you need a paper folder that is time tested and reliable for continuous use, I would recommend that you seriously consider looking at the Intelli-Fold DE-202AF paper folding machine found here. You will find our entire selection of Intelli-Fold paper folders here.

Tamerica Guillomax Plus Stack Paper Cutter Review

Thursday, June 10th, 2010

Guillomax Plus Stack Paper CutterStack cutters are very useful machines. They can be used to cut down card stock, prints, business cards and so much more. There is a new stack paper cutter in town called the Tamerica Guillomax Plus (found here). This cutter has been around for about ½ a year. So, the question of the day is: Is this a paper cutter you should consider buying? I’ll give you some of the pros and cons.

First off, the Guillomax Plus is eerily similar in look and design to the MBM Triumph 4705 stack paper cutter. The handle design, the clamping mechanism, the adjustable backstop and the Plexiglas guards all make the Guillomax Plus look like a Triumph clone. This is a good thing.

Because this cutter appears to be a reverse-engineered Triumph, it works in a very similar way. The handle pulls down in a similar way. The cutting resistance is about the same. Making length adjustments with the backstop is just as easy as well.

My favorite feature of the Guillomax Plus is the included stand. This isn’t just a flimsy sheet metal stand. This is a solid metal stand that is designed to be used with the Guillomax Plus.  The price is about $1,000 less than the Triumph 4705 as well, which is a pretty good deal.

The biggest con with this paper cutter is that it is relatively new and doesn’t have the time-tested trials our other stack cutters have. Tamerica, however, is a reputable company.

Overall, I really like the Tamerica Guillomax Plus. Time will tell if this becomes a customer favorite, but I feel it is off to a very good start. You will find the Tamerica Guillomax Plus stack paper cutter here. You will find our entire selection of stack paper cutters here.

https://www.abcoffice.com/guillomax-plus-paper-cutter.htm

Top Five Best Rated Handheld Heat Sealers

Thursday, June 10th, 2010

Handheld Heat SealersHeat sealers are one of the best ways to package a product. Simply place your product in a bag and use a handheld heat sealer to seal it shut. The process is fast, simple and very economical. Handheld heat sealers do not cost much, especially when compared to other packaging options. So which heat sealer should you purchase?

Things to keep in mind, when looking for a handheld sealer, is the length of the sealer and the with of the seal itself. Some sealers include a cutter. Make sure you are future proof and don’t get a sealer that will be too small a year down the road.

I have spoken with many customers, having sold heat sealers for years, and have come up with a list of the top five best rated handheld heat sealers according to our customers. These are sealers that are not only popular with our customers, but also sealers that have few issues and returns.

Top 5 Best Rated Handheld Heat Sealers:

As you can see, AIE is considered the king of heat sealers, but the TISH model from Traco has risen to the top as one of the most popular models. You can find our entire selection of heat sealers and bag sealers here.

Save Money Making Your Own Wedding Invitations

Thursday, June 10th, 2010

Marriage / WeddingSo next month I will be celebrating my 10-year wedding anniversary. At 10 years, I can’t help but reflect back on that time prior to getting married. To begin with, my fiancé and I didn’t have a lot of money. I can still remember talking about how we were going to come up with wedding invitations. We had to create hundreds of them, and it wasn’t going to be cheap.

We ended up deciding to make them ourselves. We would potentially save hundreds of dollars. Now I understand not everyone will want to go down this route, but here is what we did.

Thinking back on it now, I can’t help but laugh a little. Many of the machines we used to make our invitations I now help sell through ABC Office.

Materials Used:

Equipment Used:

These are the steps we took to create the invitation:

  1. First of all, we single-folded the navy blue cardstock in half. We didn’t fold it along the shortest part of the paper, but the longest part of the paper.
  2. We then took the light tan linen card stock and printed a picture my father-in-law took with his digital camera along with the wording, location of the reception, etc. We printed (in black & white) two invitations per one-sheet of light card stock. Once printed, we cut the light tan linen card stock on a manual stack cutter down the center of the longest part of the paper.
  3. The cut tan card stock now fit nicely into the single-folded navy blue card stock. We were lucky enough to find a copy shop that had a high-resolution copier as well as a paper folder and a stack cutter that they let us use for free.
  4. We then went on to cut a bunch of 8 ½ x 11-inch velum paper with the stack paper cutter. Now that everything was folded and cut, we were able to put everything together.
  5. We put the velum paper on top of the printed picture and slid it into the navy-blue folded cover. Once we finished this, we single-hole punched the corners of the invitations. My fiancé cut ribbon into four to five-inch lengths that we threaded through the punched corners and then tied. The ribbon helped keep everything together.

Stack Paper CutterThe invitations were a hit and we got several compliments from people on how unique they were. I think they meant “unique” in a good way. Sure we saved a lot of money, but I now also have some great memories of making invitations with my wife.

The type of equipment and supplies we used then (that I now help sell) are the stack paper cutters (found here), paper folding machines (found here), single-hole punches (found here) and the card stock (found here).

I hope this helps someone facing a similar situation. Now I need to talk with my wife and see if I can get a picture of the invitations so you can all see what they looked like.

Do you have experiences making your own wedding invitations? Post your comments here!

Ring Binders / Ring Binding Machines – What Are They?

Thursday, June 10th, 2010

Ring Binding Machines and SuppliesWe have had a few questions from customers asking us what ring binders are and whether or not we sell them. Ring binders? At first I thought they may be referring to three-ring binders, but they weren’t.

After conversing a little more, I discovered that they were referring to a coil-binding machine (aka spiral binding machine). Now that I think of it, spiral binding machines do consist of tiny rings wound into a coil.

So I looked into this a little more and discovered that the term “ring binding” is more commonly used outside the United States, but that doesn’t mean that the term is completely foreign in the U.S. (pardon the pun). I have also found examples of people in the scrapbooking community using the term ring binding. I can now proudly say that if you have a question about ring binders, I can help.

You will find our entire selection of ring binding machines here.

Rotatrim Professional “M” Series Paper Trimmer Review

Wednesday, June 9th, 2010

Rotatrim Professional M Series Rotary Paper TrimmerNot all paper cutters are created equal, especially when it comes to precision cutting. There are several reasons for this.  If you are a photographer, or require precision cutting, you may want to consider using a Rotatrim Professional “M” Series paper trimmer. These Trimmers used to be known as the Rotatrim Mastercut series.

Why choose Rotatrim and what is so nice about the Professional line of paper cutters? There are several reasons why Rotatrim is the king of rotary (roller) paper trimmers and cutters. I am going to break down this cutter and explain why you may want to consider using a Rotatrim.

  • Cutting Blade: The cutting blade is really big in this Rotatrim cutter. This allows the blade to easily cut through thick paper and card stock without stumbling. Smaller blades require more force to get the same job done.
  • Rails: The Rotatrim Professional series paper cutters use two round rails. This adds a lot of extra stability to the cutting blade. If you have ever used an alternate rotary trimmer, you may have noticed how much play there is in a single-bar system.
  • Clamping Mechanism: The Rotatrim Professional series paper cutter has a plastic clamping mechanism that keeps paper in place. The clamp is activated by the cutting head, which means the maximum amount of cutting pressure is being applied where the blade is cutting.
  • Base: Many rotary paper trimmers and cutters use a folded sheet metal base. Rotatrim uses a wood bade which is much heavier. Because the base is heavier, there is a lot less movement in the cutter on the surface of a table. This allows for straighter cuts.

Rotatrim paper cutters are no longer just being used by photographers. There is a growing movement in the scrapbooking world by scrapbook to start using Rotatrim cutters. Most realize Rotatrim costs more than a Fiskars or Purple Cow trimmer, but they also realize that the Rotatrim cutter will last a decade or more and the cutting quality is unsurpassed.

There are eight different sizes available. These are the M-12, M-15, M-18, M24, M-30, M-35, M-42 and M-54. The number is the length of the trimmer in inches.

I like to think that I am open minded when it comes to Rotary paper trimmers. I have used Carl, Dahle, Fiskars, Keencut, Foster and other cutters. I have to say that Rotatrim is the king of them all. You can find our Rotatrim Professional Series paper cutters here. Our entire line of rotary paper trimmer and cutters can be found here.

Intelli-Fold DE-102AF Paper Folding Machine Review

Wednesday, June 9th, 2010

Intelli-Fold Paper Folding Machine DE-102AFAre you in need of a good paper folding machine? Tired of your current paper folder eating more paper than it folds? Perhaps you should consider using a Intelli-Fold DE-102AF paper folding machine. Why? I will give you a few good reasons.

First off, the basic design of the Intelli-Fold DE-102AF machine is tried and true. It has literally been around for over a decade. Have you seen a Intelli-Fold paper folder? The brown and orange colors on these paper folders look like something warped in from the 1970s. Don’t be fooled though. This paper folding machine is tough as nails.  Be aware that the Intelli-Fold DE-102AF is directly comparable to the Dynafold DE-102AF.

The Intelli-Fold brand has been around for some time, so there is definitely some name recognition involved, but more than anything Intelli-Fold folding machines have developed a very good reputation. We have a Intelli-Fold DE-102AF sitting on our showroom floor and I have had a chance you use it on several occasions.

The Intelli-Fold DE-102AF paper folding machines does require some manual setup prior to use, but adjusting the folding plates is easy. Once set, the registry is dead on and the folded edges line up nicely.

Another nice feature about DE-102AF is the feeding system. The rubber rollers on this machine pull the paper in straight and evenly. Why is this a huge benefit? It prevents paper jams and creates accurate folds.

The Intelli-Fold DE-102AF also has a small footprint. It simply does not take up much space. The exit tray can be compacted for storage and you really shouldn’t have a problem using the DE-102AF on a desk or counter surface.

Who uses the DE-102AF folding machine? This is very popular for organizations that fold brochures and handouts. It is also commonly used for folding mailers. The Intelli-Fold DE-102AF can create letter folds, accordion folds, single folds and many different custom folds.

I feel the Intelli-Fold DE-102AF is one of the best folding machines in its class and price range. It is priced right, made from solid metal components and as previously mentioned it has been proven itself over and over gain to be a reliable paper folding machine.

You will find the Intelli-Fold DE-102AF paper folding machine here. You can also find Intelli-Fold’s entire line of paper folding machines here.

What Is Paper Shredder Oil Made From?

Tuesday, June 8th, 2010

aper Shredder Oil / LubricantI have had a few people ask me what shredder oil is made from. This one I didn’t know off the top of my head. I had to look into this one. To start with, shredder oil is specially designed and mixed to work with a paper shredder.

Shredder oil is a fairly lightweight oil, about the consistency of vegetable oil. It is not, however, vegetable oil. Vegetable oil should not be used to lubricate a shredder. Vegetable oil will eventually gum up a shredder and make your shredder smell like French fries. If you’re dealing with a high-end ($$) office shredder, you do not want to cause possible maintenance and repair issues by doing this.

I have even heard people recommend using Kerosene to lubricate a shredder. Please do not do this as it will not lubricate the shredder properly and poses a huge safety risk. I have also heard of people using WD-40 to oil a shredder. Again, this is not a good long-term oiling solution. WD-40 is too lightweight and is not designed specifically to keep a shredder lubricated.

The shredder oil we sell is from Destroyit and works on all shredders, both strip and cross cut designs. The bottle itself did not let me know what the shredder oil was made from, so I had to dig up the MSDS sheet (Material Safety Data Sheet).

So here it is. This is exactly what’s in shredder oil:

Composition:

Shell Base Oil  (92-98 Percent)

  • Solvent Refined Hydrotreated Middle Distillate (30-40 Percent)
  • Severely Hydrotreated Light Naphthenic Distillate (60-70 Percent)
  • Butylated Hydroxy Toluene (< 0.2 Percent)

Note: Oil contains no detectable (< 1 PPm) of PCB as measured by ASTM D4059.

  • Commercial Oleic Acid (2-8 Percent)

Now I can’t tell you what all that stuff is, but I can tell you that it works well and keeps a shredder running like the day it was made. You can find our paper shredder oil here.

Minipack Galaxy Shrink Wrap Machine Review

Tuesday, June 8th, 2010

Minipack Galaxy Shrink Wrap MachineThere are a lot of different ways to package your DVDs, playing cards, soap bars, boxes and other products, but shrink wrap is probably the most economical and easiest way to do this. The Minipack Galaxy makes shrink wrapping even easier by making a machine that is compact enough to be used in just about any room. I have a lot of experience using the Minipack Galaxy and will post my thoughts on this shrink-wrap machine here.

To start with, the Minipack Galaxy is actually a replacement to the Minipack Mini Plus. The Minipack Mini Plus was a huge hit with our customers, so it comes as no surprise that the Minipack Galaxy not only rivals that popularity, but now also surpasses it.  You can find the Minipack Galaxy shrink wrap machine here.

The Minipack Galaxy is a compact shrink-wrap system that incorporates a shrink film feeder, an L-bar sealer and a heat shrink tunnel into one single machine. From start to finish the entire process only takes a few minutes. The Galaxy is available in five different systems, depending on exactly what you need.

The system sits at about waist height, which makes it really easy to set stuff on the surface. The control panel is on the front of the machine’s bezel, which is really easy to set up. The control panel will allow you to adjust the amount of time the sealing blade is on and the amount of time the heat is applied.

The Minipack Galaxy can be used with both Polyolefin film and PVC film. I have used it with both and the results turned out well both times. The Galaxy is designed to be used with centerfold shrink film.

The film is easy to feed through the machine. Once the film is loaded, simply place your product in the open end of the film, slide it over to the L-sealer, pull down the hood and the machine does the rest.

The Minipack galaxy is probably my favorite entry-level shrink-wrap system I have used. It can be used continuously throughout the day without a hiccup. I don’t know how Minipack does it, but the Galaxy emits very little

The only con I can really think of is that you may be limited by the size of the machine’s hood. If you need more sealing area or height, you may want to look at the Galaxy’s big brother the Minipack Galileo found here.

Do you have a Minipack Galaxy or have you used one? Post a comment here!

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