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You are being redirected to ABC Office. Why? has joined their sister company ABC Office to provide our customers with a greater product selection, while offering the same great prices and service you have come to love and expect!If you have questions or concerns during this transition please give us a call at 1-800-658-8788, or email us at

Archive for the ‘Tips & Advice’ Category

What Are Cutting Sticks?

Wednesday, December 28th, 2011

Stack Paper Cutter Cutting SticksIf you’re shopping around for a stack paper cutter, you may have seen the term “cutting sticks.” Cutting sticks are long rectangular-shaped pieces of plastic that vary in length depending on the size of the paper cutter. Cutting sticks are a critical part of a stack cutter, but what are they and what do they do?

Cutting sticks, made of plastic, have a total of 4 sides. These sticks are usually placed in a grove on the bottom of the cutter, where the cutting blade of the stack cutter will ultimately rest after making a cut. These sticks are made from a durable plastic material and are designed to last for several hundred to several thousand cuts before being rotated or replaced.

The cutting stick plays a critical part in the cutting process and even help assist in producing clean cuts. Because the cutting blade rests in the cutting stick, the cut is properly completed, allowing the blade to make it through every sheet, even the last bottom sheet. Without a cutting stick, the blade would have nothing to rest on and the cut couldn’t be completed.

Stack Paper CuttersCutting sticks are designed to help prolong the life of the paper cutter blade and will not dull it. The plastic used in a cutting stick is designed to take the force of the blade’s impact while still maintaining structural integrity. Thanks to this durable design, cutting blades can last through hundreds and even thousands of cuts before being replaced or rotated.

Signs of a worn cutting stick usually results in the last 1 to 2 pages not being cut all the way through. Before replacing your cutting stick, you should be aware that each stick can be rotated a total of 8 times. Because the blade does not rest directly in the center of a cutting stick, each side can be used 2 times. Simply flip the cutting stick a full 180 degrees to use the same side again. Because the cutting stick is square, it can be turned a total of 4 times.

Ultimately, after all sides of the cutting stick have been used and worn, they will need to be replaced. Luckily cutting sticks aren’t expensive and are usually sold in bulk quantities. You can find our entire selection of stack paper cutter cutting sticks here. We sell cutting sticks for Dahle, MBM Triumph, Intelli-Cut, Tamerica, Martin Yale and Standard brand stack cutters.

If you still have questions about cuttings sticks, how to use them or where to find them, please feel free to contact one of our paper cutter experts at 1-800-658-8788. You can find our entire selection of stack paper cutters here.

Overview of the Traco SuperSealer I-Bar Shrink Wrap Machines

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

I-Bar Sealer for Shrink Wrap PackagingMany people ask me, “Do you offer an economical alternative to your high-end shrink wrap machines?” This is an understandable question. Not everyone wants or needs to spend thousands of dollars on a high-end shrink wrap system. One economical alternative is to use an I-bar sealer, like those manufactured by Traco.

Traco is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of shrink wrap machines and shrink wrap film. Their 60,000 square foot facility has been cranking out packaging equipment for years. Having been in business for 27 years, Traco has developed a stalwartly reputation. We sell a lot of Traco supplies and equipment and I can tell you from personal experience that their products really are that good.

Traco I-bar sealers use the exact same shrink wrap bags and centerfold rolls of shrink film that the high end machines do. They just use a slightly different method to complete the process. To date, their I-bar sealers range in length from 13″ up to 40″. This means you can use them to package something as small as a CD or as large as a box. To date, over 150,000 SuperSealers have been sold.

Comparable to the AIE I-bar sealers, the Traco SuperSealers are available in two different designs. You have the standard SuperSealer and the deluxe SuperSealer. So what are the differences between the two? I’ll explain.

Traco Standard SuperSealer I-Bar Shrink Wrap MachineTwo Types of SuperSealers

  • Standard SuperSealer – The Standard SuperSealer is extremely similar to the Deluxe model. It includes a roller base for the centerfold roll of film and a film separator. The spring-loaded sealing arm can be pulled down, activating the cutting wire in the “I Bar.” This cuts the film. An included HotShot heat gun can then be used to shrink the film. The entire process takes just minutes, and if sealing a small item, just seconds.
  • Portable Deluxe SuperSealer – The Deluxe SuperSealer is almost exactly the same as the standard version, but also includes a light that lets you know when the sealing process is occurring. When the light is off, the sealing is done. Some people enjoy having this visual indicator, although it is not a necessity. The Deluxe version also includes a replacement parts kit and a 50’ starter roll of film.


This is a video demo of the Traco SuperSealer in use:

Both versions of the SuperSealer produce high-quality results. Products packaged on a SuperSealer have the same professional appearance as those packaged on high-end shrink wrap systems and L-Bar sealers.

Whether you are packaging CDs and DVDs, or simply want to provide an attractive / protective sleeve for your art or photo prints, the SuperSealer shrink wrap machine has multiple uses. The best think is that SuperSealer shrink wrap machines cost hundreds, rather than thousands of dollars. The only limitation of the SuperSEaler, versus a high-end machine, is the speed. I-bar sealers, like the SuperSealer, are best used for light to medium-volume packaging.

You can find our entire selection of shrink wrap machines here and shrink wrap film here. Please feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788 to speak with one of our shrink wrap / packaging specialists.

Top 7 Best Brochure Holders

Friday, December 9th, 2011

Best Brochure HoldersIf you run an information center, a convenience store, work in a university or run a business or organization that sells or distributes brochures, you’re probably looking for a durable, affordable and professional brochure holder. We offer a great selection of multi-pocket brochure holders (found here). This includes plastic, acrylic, metal and wood brochure holders. So which should you use? Here are a few models that have proven to be best sellers over the years.

I would like to start off by saying there are several types of brochure holders. While I am going to list of 5 bestsellers, we offer literally dozens of other models that are just as solid and well priced. Keep in mind that brochure holders come in desktop, floor and  wall-mounted configurations and are made from a wide variety of materials. Some brochure holders are multi-purpose, capable of holding magazines and other literature as well. I am going to focus on holders that are designed specifically for brochures only.

Desktop Brochure HolderTop 7 Best Brochure Holders

  1. Safco 5673CL Clear2c 8 Pocket Brochure Holder
  2. Wooden Mallet LT-8 8 Pocket Oak Brochure Holder
  3. Safco 5793 Expose 10 Pocket Wall-Mounted Brochure Holder
  4. Wooden Mallet BR24-4 Wall-Mounted 4 Pocket Brochure Holder
  5. Safco 5671CL Clear2c 12 Pocket Plastic Brochure Rack
  6. Model 30-6CD 6 Tier Brochure Holder
  7. Model 18-5CD 5 Tier Countertop Brochure Holder

These models all look great, have proven themselves to be durable and are all available at a great price. These can be used to hold and display brochures, pamphlets and other similarly-sized material. These come from popular brands such as Safco, Wooden Mallet and others. As previously mentioned, we also offer a great selection of brochure holder / magazine rack combination displays.

You can find our entire selection of brochure holders and racks here. Call us at 1-800-658-8788 with any questions.

Can you Manually Close Wire or Reuse Wire for Book Binding?

Friday, December 9th, 2011

If you have a wire binding punch, lack a wire closer on your binding machine or simply want to speed up binding operations, you may wonder if you can manually close twin loop wire by hand. It is a question I get from customers from time to time. I have also had customers ask if they can reuse the wire. I will answer these questions and more in this article.

Twin Loop Wire Binding Supplies

Having personally tried to close wire using my hand. Can it be done? Yes. Does it look good? No…absolutely not. The problem is that a wire closer, used with most wire binding machines, closes all the rings of wire at the same time, providing a nice and even look. Closing each individual loop (32 loops with 3:1 pitch and 21 loops with 2:1 pitch) results in each loop being closed a little more or a little less than the next or previous loop. To put it simple, it looks horrible.

Twin Loop Wire BindingSo can you open wire and reuse it? Unfortunately this is not a possibility either. Having tried this myself, I can vouch for the fact that it is impossible. While I have seen some wire binding machines that include a wire opener, that actually does an OK job, it still never looks as good as a new wire binding element. The problem is that opening the wire causes kinks, crimps and gets fatigue spots in the wire that never look right, even when the wire is re-closed. It is also extremely hard to remove wire from a wire bound book by hand. It can easily rip and damage the document in the process.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but twin loop wire binding is not forgiving. If you need to be able to reuse or reopen a binding element, I recommend you consider using a comb binding machine. Coil binding, while it can be re-used, is easy to remove if you need to add or remove a page.

You can find our entire selection of wire binding machines here, wire binding supplies here and book binding machines here.

Shrink Wrap Film: 60, 75 or 100 Gauge? Which is Best?

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Polyolefin Shrink Wrap FilmShrink wrap film, whether it is a centerfold roll or a shrink bag, comes in different thicknesses. The thickness of shrink film is referred to as the gauge. Many customers call asking which gauge they need for their product. The answer the question, “Which gauge thickness should I use?” depends entirely on what you will be packaging.

One hundred gauge film is 1 mil thick (0.001″). That gives you an idea on just how thick the shrink film is that you will be using. Remember that as the film shrinks it gets thicker. This is because the surface area of the film shrinks when direct heat is applied. As the surface area shrinks, the film thickness increases. Most shrink film shrinks about 40% its original size when in contact with a heat gun or tunnel.

PVC Shrink Wrap FilmMost shrink wrap film is available in 60, 75 and 100 gauges. This isn’t always the case, but is the norm. The higher the gauge number, the thicker the film is. Shrink wrap film comes in 2 different flavors, PVC film and Polyolefin film. PVC film, which is more common, has a tougher texture and feel to it, where Polyolefin has a more pliable / stretchy feel to it. Polyolefin is safe for use in direct contact with food.

PVC shrink film is almost always available in 75 or 100 gauge thicknesses and Polyolefin film comes in 60, 75 an 100. Polyolefin film is available in 60 gauge, because the thinner film is more durable than PVC film. A 60-gauge thickness in PVC film would be too thin and would break too easily.

As a general rule, if you are only packaging a single item, the thinner film is almost always fine. That means if you are packaging a single DVD, CD or box, 75 gauge PVC or 60 gauge Polyolefin is almost always more than enough to keep things coated and protected. This isn’t, however, the case when bundling multiple items together.

If you are bundling multiple items together, let’s say 2-3 DVDs, you will want to use a thicker film. The thicker film helps prevent movement and is less likely to break apart in shipping or while being handled. This means if you are bundling multiple items together, you may want to consider 100 gauge PVC film or 75-100 gauge polyolefin film.

Hopefully this helps answer the question, “Which film thickness should I use?” If you need additional clarification, or simply have a shrink wrap packaging question, please contact one of our specialists at 1-800-658-8788.

You can find our entire selection of shrink wrap film here and our entire selection of shrink wrap machines here.

Top 10 Best Scrapbooking Paper Cutters for Christmas 2011

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Best Scrapbooking Paper Cutters for ChristmasIf you are a scrapbooker, are married to one or have a close friend that loves scrapbooking, you probably know that a paper cutter is their closest friend. These paper cutters are used for trimming down paper, cutting cardstock or re-sizing photographs. Many even include special perforating, scoring or patterned blades. At ABC Office, we offer some excellent cutters that are a hit with our scrapbooking customers.

A diehard scrapbooker will probably use their paper cutter at least a couple of times a week. Because repetitive use is a must, and the fact that the paper cutter will be used often, it is important to get a cutter that can hold up for a long time. We have found that three brands in particular seem to have a great reputation. These brands include Carl, Dahle and Rotatrim.

While there are several styles of paper cutters out there, the rotary style seems to be the best all-round cutter for precision trimming of paper and photos. These types of cutters have a round blade that sits inside a housing that slides along a rail. As the blade moves along the rail, it spins (like a pizza cutter). This design makes paper cutting extremely easy.

Top 10 Best Scrapbooking Paper Cutters for Christmas 2011

  1. Carl DC-300N Rotary Paper Trimmer – This trimmer is feature rich, extremely affordable and has an impressive 20 sheet cutting capacity. It can cut cardstock, mat board, paper, photos and more!
  2. Carl DC-238N Heavy Duty Rotary Trimmer – This trimmer can cut 36 sheet of paper at a time! It features an impressive 18″ cutting length and is made out of 100% recycled materials.
  3. Dahle 507, 508 & 507K Personal Rotary Trimmers – This trimmers are affordable, compact and great for taking from one place to another.
  4. Carl RT-200N Professional Rotary Trimmer – This trimmer is available under $50, is made from recycled materials and is excellent for daily use. It replaces the previous bestseller the RT-200.
  5. Rotatrim Professional M Series Rotary Paper Cutter – While this trimmer may be on the higher end of the price scale, this British-made cutter will probably also last a good 10 years. This is the cutter professional photographers use.
  6. Carl DC-220N Heavy Duty Rotary Trimmer – With a 36 sheet cutting capacity, a luminous cutting clamp and a wide range of cutting patterns on the base, this cutter makes paper trimming easy.
  7. Rotatrim Mastercut MC Series Paper Cutter – Once known as the monorail, this Rotatrim paper cutter is sturdy, features a square rail and is excellent for precision cutting.
  8. Dahle 550, 552 & 554 Professional Rotary Paper Cutters – These cutters are very popular with photographers, artists and others that need reliable paper cutting. German engineered to perfection, these cutters mean business.
  9. Carl DC-100N Personal Rotary Trimmer – This paper cutter is compact, can fit in a purse and is great for the hobbyist. While it isn’t designed for heavy-duty cutting, it is still a high-quality compact trimmer that won’t disappoint you.

These paper cutters all have a proven track record. They are great for scrapbookers and should make an excellent Christmas gift. If you’re not sure which of these fine cutters are best for you, please don’t hesitate to call one of our paper cutting experts at 1-800-658-8788. They will be able to help guide you to the right cutter and answer all your questions.

You can find our entire selection of rotary paper cutters here and our wide selection of paper cutters here.

Wood Tissue Box Covers and Holders – In Time for Winter

Monday, December 5th, 2011

Wood Tissue Box Covers and HoldersThe air is getting cold for many parts of the United States and people are beginning to spend more time indoors. As a result, more people are getting colds and the sniffles, which means a lot of people going through a lot of tissue. If you have an office lobby or waiting room, you probably offer customers tissues. Rather than putting a tissue box out on a table, in all its horrible flower décor glory, consider using a wood tissue box holder or cover. Your customers, clients and patients will be impressed.

Wood tissue box covers and holders provide a secure and professional way to display otherwise ugly tissue boxes. This allows the tissue box to blend in nicely with a wood table, wood seating and other wood furniture. It helps provide protection to the tissue box, while adding a professional element to the ambiance.

Our tissue box holders look great and come in dark red mahogany, light oak or medium oak. These wood tissue holders can be set out on a table or they can be mounted to a wall (mounting hardware included). These boxes are made out of oak, so they are designed to hold up well with continuous use. They can also be used in doctor’s offices, hospitals and medical facilities to hold latex or rubber glove boxes.

Wood Tissue Box Holder from Wooden MalletWhile these tissue box covers may commonly be found in lobbies and waiting rooms, they are also popular in schools, churches and even in homes. Choose from a single, double, triple or a quadruple wood tissue box holder design. These boxes are made by Wooden Mallet, so you can expect the utmost in quality.

While the quality is excellent and the finish is extremely professional, I think one of the best features is the great low price! You can find our entire selection of wood tissue box covers and holders here.

ABC Office December 2011 5% Off Coupon Code

Thursday, December 1st, 2011

During the month of December we are offering a great deal on everything we sell! This includes binding machines, paper folding machines, supplies and other office machinery. All you need to do is use the 5% off code listed in this e-mail. This code may be applied to the shopping card or it may be used over the phone by calling 1-800-658-8788. This is a great way to save your business money!

The coupon code for the month of December is DECBLOG05. As mentioned earlier, this coupon code can be applied to any of the supplies or equipment we sell and can save you up to a maximum of $200!

ABC Office December 2011 Coupon Code

We sincerely appreciate your business and value you as a customer. We are always more than happy to help you find ways to save your business money. Please feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788 for quotes, bulk quantity discounts and much more. You can find everything we sell by visiting our online store here.

Some restrictions do apply to this coupon code. You can read those restrictions here.

Different Types of Akiles WireMac Binding Machines

Thursday, December 1st, 2011

The Akiles WireMac is one of the most popular wire binding machines in the United States. These machines are used to bind reports, presentations, books and much more. You will find the WireMac in businesses, schools, churches and other organizations. We currently offer 4 different variations of the WireMac. This article will explain the differences between each.

Types of Akiles WireMac Binding Machines

Akiles WireMac Binding MachineAkiles WireMac (2:1 or 3:1) – The first and most common version is the standard Akiles WireMac (found here). It is a manually operated machine and is available in a 2:1 pitch hole pattern or a 3:1 pitch hole pattern. This wire binding machine is completely manually operated. It includes a handle for punching paper and a separate handle for closing the wire. It features fully disengageable punching dies, an adjustable margin depth and a dial that sets the wire closer (prevents over closing or under closing wire). This is the most popular WireMac. This is because it is the least expensive, yet still features an extremely durable metal frame and shell.

Akiles WireMac-Combo Binding MachineAkiles WireMac-Combo (Comb / Wire) – This version of the WireMac combines both 2:1 wire and comb or a 3:1 wire and plastic 19-ring comb binding. The Akiles WireMac-Combo (found here) features a wire punch and a comb binding punch. Also included is a wire close and a comb opener / closer. This is especially nice for people that don’t want to settle on any one binding format. While this machine is completely manual, it is easy to use and is fast to operate. This machine is robust, powerful and is made from durable metal construction. It also features disengageable punching pins, an adjustable margin depth and much more.

Akiles WireMac-Duo 2:1 / 3:1 Binding MachineAkiles WireMac-Duo (2:1 & 3:1) – If you can’t settle on a wire binding hole pattern, you may want to consider the Akiles WireMac-Duo (found here). This version of the WireMac features both a 2:1 pitch and a 3:1 pitch punching die. This allows you to create reports using a tighter hole patter (3:1 pitch) or a wider spaced hole pattern (2:1 pitch) that allows for thicker books. It can also punch through clear covers, card stock and standard paper. This is a great wire binding machine for a business environment due to its versatility. The WireMac-Duo is a very popular binding machine. It is both affordable and features a superb build quality.

Akiles WireMac-E Binding MachineAkiles WireMac-E Electric Wire Binding Machine (2:1 or 3:1) – If you really like the WireMac, but need to increase your binding output, you may want to consider using the Akiles WireMac-E (found here). This version of the WireMac features an electric punch and a manual wire closer. This machine is available in either a 2:1 pitch hole pattern or a 3:1 pitch hole pattern. Unfortunately, as of the writing of this article, there is no WireMac-E-Combo that combines both hole patterns. This wire binder features a foot pedal for hands-free operation and can punch 20 sheets of paper at a time. This machine is a beast and will easily keep up with your daily wire binding operations.

The WireMac line of wire binding machines has an excellent track record with our customers. As long as you know the differences between the models, you should be very happy with your purchase. I personally love selling Akiles WireMac machines because I know that I won’t have to worry about customer service issues later down the road. I personally recommend that you invest a little extra money in a WireMac that will easily last for years, versus a slightly cheaper machine that may last 1 year.

You can find our entire selection of Akiles wire binding machines here. Please feel free to contact one of our customer service representatives at 1-800-658-8788 with any questions. We are more than happy to help you find the right machine. You are also more than welcome to post your question as a comment at the end of this article.

Why Buy a Semacon Bill Counter?

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

Semacon Bill Counters / Money Counting MachinesWhen shopping around for a bill or currency counter, you want something that is extremely reliable and durable…right? If so, you may not necessarily want to go with the cheapest money counter out there. While this isn’t always the case, you often get what you pay for. One high-quality line of bill counters you may want to use is made by Semacon.

Because Semacon bill counters go through rigorous testing, are made in high-quality manufacturing plants out of Japan and feature one of the best warranties in the industry, they aren’t the cheapest, however, they are considered by many to be the best.

Semacon bill counters go through a rigorous “burn-in” process. This means that bills are run through them to ensure that they will definitely work right out of the box. This is a huge relief for many businesses that need things to work right the first time.

Many Semacon bill counters are also made in Japan, rather than China. While this may not be a big deal for some people, Japanese factories are known for their state-of-the art facilities and excellent quality control. Quality is not sacrificed to make a buck.

While Semacon bill counters are not the cheapest currency counters on the market, they are by far some of the most reliable. If you consider that a cheap bill counter may last a few months to a year, and a Semacon machine will probably last several years, the Semacon money counter ultimately ends up being the best deal.

Semacon also offers one of the best warranties around. Their unconditional warranty includes limitless and free tech support and training (over the phone).

So who uses Semacon currency counting machines? These are just a few of the businesses that have high-volume counting needs that often rely on Semacon.

  • Banks
  • Credit Unions
  • Casinos
  • Vending Operators
  • Amusement Operators
  • Retail Stores
  • Restaurants

Here are 5 great Semacon bill counters that you may want to consider using:

At ABC Office we are currently offering some of the best prices available online for Semacon bill counting machines. In fact, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better price. If you do, let us know and we’ll match it!

You can find our entire selection of Semacon money handling equipment here. Please feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788 with any questions regarding Semacon bill counters.

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