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How to Avoid Folding Problems with Your Printing

Most of the steps in the printing process are amazingly precise. The folding process is one of them. Even the slightest inaccuracy in a fold can cause a snowballing effect that can create major problems. This is because the inaccuracies cannot be self-corrected and instead get worse. For example, if the first fold is a bit off, the second fold will be even worse because it is starting from a spot that is already incorrect, and each fold thereafter will be worse than the last. Errors in the folding process are especially harmful for projects that feature type spread across two pages. Here are a few tips on how to avoid folding problems:

- Put crossovers on center spreads so that a precise fold isnít necessary in order to maintain readability.

- Leave a 3/8" gap between type and the trim in order to avoid type being cut off or caught in an incorrect fold.

- Try to keep folds balanced, so that the edges are touching rather than having one longer than another.

- Donít design a piece that uses more than 5 folds.

If you are unsure about any of these items, or the folding process in general, talk to your printer and have them walk you through the process so you can see where errors are introduced and what you should avoid.

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