Some companies require certain items to be printed using full-colour ink. These items can include anything from door hangers to business cards to flyers. One way for companies to save significant amounts of money is by choosing a printing company with the capability to complete a gang run, also known as a combo run.
Multitasking at its Finest
The gang run is known in the printing industry as a process where several smaller jobs are grouped into a single large production run. The gang run occurs with the help of an offset printing press for an incredibly high-quality printing result.
Substantial Cost Savings
An unfortunate reality of offset printing is that there are substantial costs involved to set them up, which can place this printing type out of reach for those who need shorter production runs. However, when the gang run process is used, the printing jobs of several customers can be printed at the same time, which substantially reduces the cost of each job due to the costs for press preparation and plate charges being distributed across several jobs instead of only one.
The offset printing process used in conjunction with a gang run can allow for both sides to be printed on a business card as well as coated with UV protection, where other processes may only be able to print one side of a business card in a single colour without UV coating for the same price.
The Rules of Gang Run Printing
Ideally, saving money by using gang run printing would only require putting several jobs through the offset printing process. However, there are certain rules that need to be followed beforehand for the gang run to be successful and all printing jobs to come in at a lower cost.
One of these rules is that all printing jobs being placed in the gang run must have the same specifications for both ink and paper. For example, business cards, door hangers, postcards and the like are usually ideal candidates for this process, as they are all produced with the same paper and require the same ink.
Colour and other Considerations
Although the gang run is a very effective means of printing several items in very high quality for a very low cost, it doesn’t work for all items that need to be printed. Some items may be better suited to their own press run. The kinds of projects best suited for their own press run are those which require a high degree of control over colour, and that will only be distributed at certain times of the year or on another similar kind of limited basis. Some examples are a brochure for a new launch or an annual report.
Another thing to consider before choosing a gang run is whether or not the project being printed has other special requirements. Some items, for example, may require special effects on the type or an image that offset printing simply is not capable of providing. Others may require a special type of paper that the other items in the gang run simply do not.
The best thing to do when considering a gang run for any printing project is to make note of your colour and paper requirements. Then, you can contact your printer with these specifications and see whether or not they have a planned gang run with room for what you need to be printed.
In some cases, money can be saved on individual offset printing by simply revisiting the documents needing printing and deciding to eliminate those special papers and effects that may disqualify a project from the gang run. However, each project is different, and what is required will depend on the needs and aims of each business.