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Should I buy my own equipment?

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  • Should I buy my own equipment?

    I'm currently hiring a printing shop to print invitation cards with the following specs:

    - 200M Lynx Opaque Coated paper (thickness around 14mil)
    - Size of 7x5"
    - Flat / non-folding
    - Printed on one side only

    Every order is for 60,000 cards and I make around 1 or 2 orders a week. I currently spend around USD $2,100 per order of 60,000 cards (3.5c per card), for a total of around $9,000 per month. I would need a turnaround of around 1.5 weeks.

    * I don't know if it's relevant but the printing shop print the cards using their offset press (4 color process) using a "9 UP" setting on sheets of paper of around 24x28".

    1 - How much would it cost (rough estimate) to get my own equipment to print the cards? I know their equipment it very expensive, but could it be done using a cheaper setup?

    2 - How complex would it be for someone with no experience to learn how to operate the equipment you suggested?

    Thanks!
    Last edited by lnBetween; 05-13-2018, 09:07 AM.

  • #2
    How much are you paying now and what is the turnaround you need? These are important questions.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by PricelineNegotiator View Post
      How much are you paying now and what is the turnaround you need? These are important questions.
      Great points! I've edited my first post to add the following information:

      "I currently spend around USD $2,100 per order of 60,000 cards (35c per card), for a total of around $9,000 per month. I would need a turnaround of around 1.5 weeks."

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      • #4
        So you quoted .35, but it's really .035 per. Also if the paper is 14Mil then it is 400M/100LB Lynx (not cheap paper). At this price it would not be worth you purchasing equipment as on the digital front you couldn't save much. And what ever you saved you would lose 10 fold running a print operation.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by _socket View Post
          So you quoted .35, but it's really .035 per. Also if the paper is 14Mil then it is 400M/100LB Lynx (not cheap paper). At this price it would not be worth you purchasing equipment as on the digital front you couldn't save much. And what ever you saved you would lose 10 fold running a print operation.
          You're right I made a typo, it's around 3.5c per.

          Thank you for your answer!

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          • #6
            Agree with Socket.... Best case Scenario you pick up a digital and pay 4 Cent Clicks (depending on your deal) You can run 4 on 12 x 18 or 13 x 19 = $600 Click Charge. Rough guess would be at $100/M on your Stock (depending on your region)
            That's $1500. Just those 2 numbers already put you at what you are currently paying for your finished product.

            Now if your considering going to offset equipment that's a whole other ball game that is extremely expensive on the front side not to mention the knowledge needed to take on such a task

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            • #7
              ... and don't forget the the case when you loose the whole order for whatever reason. If you invest in machinery, you'll have a hard time paying the rent & etc.

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              • #8
                Allright, thank you guys for the detailed answer! I'll keep ordering from the printing shop!

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