What are Sentinel Printing’s standard turn-around times?
Standard turn-around time is 2-3 weeks for most projects including manuals, directories and perfect bound books. However, if you require faster delivery, we can usually accommodate your needs.back to top

What are your standard trim sizes?
By printing within standard sizes, a customer can save costs or eliminate waste. Our standard sizes are:

Sheet-Fed
5.5” x 8.5”
6” x 9”
7” x 9”
8.5” x 11”
9” x 12”

Web
8.375” x 10.875”
8.5” x 10.875”
5.3125” x 8.375”

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Is there a minimum print run?
Sentinel Printing’s minimum run for offset printing is 500. For digital printing it is 25.

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Is my book a cost-effective "fit" for Sentinel Printing?
Sentinel Printing provides competitive pricing for many types of printing. However we are most competitive for 1 or 2 color text runs of 500-100,000.back to top

What binding options are available?
Binding may be saddle stitched, plastic coil, or perfect bound. Choosing from these in-house options allows us better quality control, faster turnaround, and a lower final price. Here are a few advantages of each:

Saddle binding - This style involves driving wire stitches (essentially staples) through the spine of folded signatures. Saddle binding is ideal for thin book and brochure projects, which can include "self-covers" or a separate four-page cover. Foldout covers and mixed stocks are possible with saddle binding.

Plastic coil binding - In this style, plastic wire is wound through holes punched in the spine of trimmed sheets and crimped at either end. The main advantage to plastic coil binding is its ability to allow books to lay flat or be folded 360 degrees for single-hand use. Index tabs, multiple stocks and cover varieties can all be included in plastic coil-bound books.

Perfect binding - In this common bookbinding method, glue is applied to the roughened spines of signatures and a separate cover is attached.

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What are your standard payment terms?
Generally, first-time customers are set up with 50% down and balance before shipping. For credit approved customers we allow for 30-day payment terms.back to top

Will you do drop shipments?
We do drop shipments to anywhere you need. There is a shipping and handling charge associated with each location.back to top

What book cover options do I have?
When selecting cover stock and coatings keep in mind your needs. From our House Stocks choose from 8, 10, or 12 point weight with varnish, aqueous, or lay-flat film lamination in gloss or matte. We can also provide spot finishes, foil stamping, and embossing.back to top

How do I figure spine thickness on perfect bound books?
Call your Sentinel representative to give you a spine thickness. Due to ever-changing calipers it is best to always get each time you print a book.back to top

What type of electronic files do you accept?
We have both Mac and PC workstations. We can accept application files from QuarkXPress, PageMaker (PC only), InDesign, Illustrator, PhotoShop, or Freehand. We also accept PDF files that are built to our specifications. We do not accept application files from Microsoft Word, Publisher, or Excel, however we can advise you on converting them to pdf files. For more information read our article on Top 10 Tips for Submitting Trouble-Free Electronic Files.back to top

Do you have a FTP site I can download/upload large files to?
Yes. Please contact your Sentinel representative for a password protected FTP login or simply use our online service at YouSendIt. back to top

Where do I get information on adding copyright information to my publication?
The Library of Congress website explains the information that is printed on the copyright page of a book. The website describes what CIP (Cataloging In Publication), ISBN (International Standard Serial Number), and PCN (Pre-assigned Control Number) are and what they are used for. The website can be found at: www.loc.gov.back to top

How do I obtain an ISBN number for my book?
You can obtain an ISBN number at www.isbn.org. The site has detailed instructions on the application process and filling out the required form.back to top

Where do I get a bar code?
Once you obtain your ISBN number, you’ll need a bar code. The at www.isbn.org website has a list of some of the companies that provide this service. Order the barcode as a digital file. The file should be an .eps file which will work for PC or Mac format. You can insert the barcode into your cover yourself, email the barcode to use, or have the barcode company send it to us directly (tell them your contact person’s name and book title). If they ask you what our dot gain is when you order your barcode, the standard is 18% - 20%.back to top

What is "bleed" and how do I set up my files to account for it?
When an image or text within your print project goes off the edge of the page on the final trimmed printed piece, it is said to have "bleed." When it does, you must extend the image or text past the edge of the page at least 1/8" within your design. Set up your page at the actual trim size then extend the artwork past the edge of the page by a minimum of 1/8”.back to topprintbleedillustration

Can you provide a template layout showing the dimensions of my cover?
Yes. Our prepress department can prepare a layout that shows the dimensions of the entire spread along with the spine width, bleeds, etc. We will need to know some of the final specs of your book before a layout can be created such as: final page count, trim size, binding style and tye paper stock that the book is printing on. Contact your Sentinel Account Executive or Customer Service person with the details and we will have a layout prepared.back to top

How wide should my book margins be?
Margin widths vary greatly depending on the style and look you want. Unless you want to have a bleed, we don’t recommend having anything print closer to the final trim than 1/4". Typically a 6" x 9" or 7" x 10" book looks best with margins of at least 1/2" at the top, bottom, and face and 5/8" at the gutter (it’s always good to make the gutter margin a little wider).back to top

What is Sentinel Printing’s policy on overs and unders?
Sentinel follows industry standard which is ± 10% of quantity ordered. This allows for setup spoilage during the production process.back to top

What are your signature breaks?
A signature is created from the sheet of paper printed on both sides to create a folded segment of pages such as pages 1 through 16. Page signatures on our sheet fed presses are 4, 8, 12, 16, and 32. The signature breaks are 8, 16, 24, and 32 pages on our web. Basically, sheet fed signatures are in increments of 4 and web in increments of 8. Of course for efficiency purposes, the larger the signature, the more efficient and inexpensively it runs.back to top

What are the minimum and maximum spine widths?
We can accommodate spine widths ranging from 1/8 up to 2-1/4 inches for perfect bound books or book blocks.back to top