Pricing Questions


Copies 4/1


Posted: 29 July 2010

I had to price a 4/1 copy job. I did the first side as 4/0. Then did a second quote as 1 sided black. So I have two quotes for the same job. Did I overlook something because it was a long day?

. . . . .  jerryjfm

Hhmm. Two quotes for one job? Your day must have been like mine! For the second side, it should be as simple as clicking the button in the upper right corner of the print order entry. I'd do a screen shot but I'm at home, trying to stop my head from spinning (because of the day I had, not because of any booze).

Oh. Now I see what your saying. MF won't let me do black only on the second side of a color copy. I've never noticed because I only use copies for customers that walk in with hard copy (and not a digital file). Something else I just found out - MF doesn't like when you change the category on Copies.

. . . . .  Keith

Jerry, Do you have a digital press set-up? If not, that will allow for 4/1.

. . . . .  Craig

Keith, you found that out too ... What I do is put 1 or 2 sided changes in offset and then change it to copies. Seems like you should be able to make the changes from the copy window, but nooo. It is not there. Not sure why but am sure Hal has a good reason. Oh so I need to set up digital press ... Sounds like more work to me and it has been a long week. Thanks for the input, guys!

. . . . .  jerryjfm

Keith, I think you, Craig, and Jerry have just narrowed down the subject for next month's video: "Copies vs. Digital." The reason the program won't allow black on the back of color copies is because it involves two separate machines. If one of them is taken off-line, it breaks the quote. Besides, I don't think many printers use their color copiers to run black impressions. That's the domain of digital. You were right in steering Jerry into that direction, Craig.

. . . . .  Hal Heindel

Jerry, you can make the changes from the copy window. To quote a two-sided copy, either select a C1/1 in the F2 browse box, or go to the Ctrl-F2 Custom Product window and click the little red button in the upper right hand corner. To quote 4/1 though, you will have to set it up in digital, as Craig suggested.

. . . . .  Hal Heindel

Well this Copies vs Digital brings up many questions. First what defines the digital press? To me it would seem to involve ink. If not, it would make it the same as a digital copier with lager format. So is it ink or toner? Does the word digital cover both?

Now with the pricing of copies. Our machines do not charge the same for color and black. I pay more for the color and much less for the black on the same machine. So I do not charge the color price for a black backer. While color on a color machine is very popular so is a black backer. A full color with a black map on the back is common here. So it does change the pricing a great deal. Yes most fliers are full color 1 side or 2 side. Yet there is enough 4/1 work for us too. I am thinking maybe this is were the digital comes it. I am not sure yet though. Because like I said I can run 4/1 from my computer and it will come out finished from the same color copier. Seems rather common around here.

So you guys need to educate me a bit more on this subject I guess.

. . . . .  jerryjfm

Jerry, Take a look at the digital press set-up. You have "Click" charges for both color and black. What I like best is that you also have an hourly rate that can be added as well. I use the digital press for 99% of my "Color Copy Work." I can't tell you the last time I have used the color copy option. We do not have much "walk in" off the glass work ... as a matter of fact our DC8000AP doesn't have a glass, it only prints from the rip.

. . . . .  Craig

Given the current state of technology, copier versus digital has very little to do with toner versus solid or liquid ink, Jerry. In reality, it's mostly a pricing scheme. If you're looking for a clean and simple (overly simple!) dividing line, I'd say a copier produces work off the glass, a digital unit works from files and is connected to a computer. It may or may not have a scanner.

The way Morning Flight looks at it, the difference is mainly in how the work is priced: Copies per piece, with brackets for different quantities, digital based on hourly rates, click charges, and consumables. Any 4/1 job needs to be priced as digital, whereas 1/1 and 4/4 jobs can priced either way.

. . . . .  Hal Heindel

Wow! This forum is abuzz with activity! I like it! Anyway Hal, when I select copies and then go into category to change from say, black sheet to color sheet (or vice-versa) all the prices turn into pound signs and gibberish. It kinda scared me at first, I thought I broke MF. Say, I select the product Copies 1/0 and instead of going back into products to change to 4/0, I go into Category and change it to Black Sheet. When I go back into the product window (I'm not at my shop so I don't have MF in front of me), the price breakdown turns into gibberish.

Jerry, as for Digital, it doesn't care if it's toner, ink, inkjet, or solid ink. Like Craig, I use Digital 99% of the time especially since I have no offset. But I even use that for the offset stuff I farm out. You'll find that digital has far more options and flexibility over copies. Like Craig, I have an hourly rate set. But I don't have a click charge in MF because my Xante is not on a service contract. Instead, I have a dollar amount based on coverage. My Xante only does envelopes now so I need to be able to adjust the coverage to get the price where I need it.

For example, my product for Flyers is set at 30% coverage but I leave it there no matter what the actual coverage is because my Xerox is on click charge. My envelope products are set at 10% coverage because a) They hardly use any toner, and b) if I left the coverage at 30% I'd be priced out of the market. But I'd imagine all that will change with the introduction of user defined presses.

. . . . .  Keith

After four days of five-hour nights (if that makes any sense) putting together FlyBy, the video, and the MyWay demo, I need to decompress, and chatting on the forum is just the ticket.

Keith, that bug you described was fixed some time ago. When you get a chance, download the demo from the link in the July newsletter and install it into a separate folder. If the problem goes away, I'd suggest to download the latest MF version from the link I e-mailed you a month ago. Let me know.

. . . . .  Hal Heindel

Thanks guys. I have too much to think about now. Guess I need to rethink this. Our copiers are run from the computer as well. So this pricing is going to get a bit deeper I think. The info was a help though.

. . . . .  jerryjfm

B&W Copies vs Color copies vs Digital, again. After 30 years in the offset business, I am finally installing my FIRST copier/digital printer/press(?). It's a used Xerox 252 Docutech with inline collating, rip and scanner. This one machine will do both b&w and color. I expect 99% of the copies will be ripped from digital files. Click charge for black is much lower than color. NO price changes for 11x17 or 12x18. NO consumable charges. Max sheet size of 13x19.

Since it's a new area for me, I've been trying to get used to MF Gold's copies vs digital set up. It's clear to me that I don't understand how it works. The b&w copier has options for multiple originals and in-line collating. The Digital Press setup does not but I envision scenarios where multiple originals could be needed. And what about in-line collating for a color job?

Should I be setting up the Canon 4-color copier as a virtual machine to handle color copying jobs that don't fit as Digital Printing? Any help from someone using only one copier for all their b&w and color work would be appreciated. Thanks.

. . . . .  Gary

I have two machines and both are color. I treat them both as digital presses, since like you, 99% of my work is from a file. If someone gives me a hard copy that has to go through the scanner, then I treat it as a copier and use the copy pricing I have in MF. When dealing with multiple originals as a digital press, I just bump up the Make Ready slider unless I'm feeling nice and they have the file as a single multi-page PDF.

I guess you can say I'm a Morning Flight power user. If it doesn't fit into the program easily, I make it fit and shove it in there. So please, feel free to ask me any questions, it would be my pleasure to help.

. . . . .  Keith

Hi Keith, I'm taking you up on your offer.

1) Since your machines are color and you quote as Digital Presses, do you still use the 1 color Copies set up for black only?

2) Do your machines have in-line collating? If so, and you quote as Digital Presses, do you just ignore in-line collator (since Digital doesn't have a check box for that) and add collating to Post-Press or Bookbinding?

3) For Rip time, do you just add time to Pre-Press since Digital also doesn't have a check box for that?

4) As a guy who's going from offset to digital, I thought my new digital copier would simplify and streamline some of the small stuff I now put on the press -- no plates, no PMS mixing, no washup, automatic backup, faster makeready,etc.-- so why do you think quoting Digital Press is better or more flexible than quoting Color Copier?

Thanks for your insights.

. . . . .  Gary

I'm at home know so I'll do my best to answer these off the top of my head. If I notice anything different from what I say after I get back to my shop, I'll let you know.

Yes, I still use 1-color copy pricing. It's a different animal with different margins so I don't want to have to compromise my digital press prices. I use it whether I am running it in-house on my color machine or brokering it out to a friend with a monochrome machine.

Yeah, it collates. In fact, I think I have the same machine as you - a Xerox Docucolor 252. Yes, I ignore anything about collating. My bookbinding has the collating box checked (meaning it's included in the price). The only time I add collating is in My Postpress for jobs with a separate card stock cover. I consider RIP time a part of Makeready in digital.

I have an offset background and digital is WAAAAYYY easier than all that crap you mentioned about plates and stripping, etc. (I even did a darkroom!). Digital Press has a lot more options and flexibility, like VDP. You can do 4/1 with it but the Copy pricing cannot, it's either 4/4 or 1/1. Although it's digital, there is still "makeready"- mainly preflighting and imposition. Bleed. Digital will factor in bleed, I don't think Copy will. And then you have all those sliders to adjust the price - Makeready, Spoilage, Press Speed, Coverage, etc., that allows you to tweak the price of different products.

Remember, MF is product centric, that's the beauty of it. Some products can command a higher price. For us printers, they're all impressions. Doesn't matter what you call it - flyers, letterhead, etc. For instance, I do bumper stickers on my Xerox and people pay more for them whereas flyers are a commodity with razor thin margins but they are easier to print so the sliders (spoilage, makeready, etc.) get turned down.

I hope that helps you. Don't hesitate to ask more questions, you can even call me if you'd like.

. . . . .  Keith

Thanks for the advice. Let me play around some more and I'll give you a call. Appreciate the kind offer.

. . . . .  Gary

Just one thing to add, Gary. Digital does have a check box for RIP time, but you'll have to quote digital using "MyWay" for that. On all other points, what Keith said. He's without question a Morning Flight expert, one who's always ready to share his knowledge of the business and the inner workings of the program.

. . . . .  Hal Heindel