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PAPER JAMS?

Home / News & Opportunities / Blog / July 2018 / PAPER JAMS?

Date: 26/07/2018

Look at this lovely fresh ream of paper. Beautifully wrapped, ready to place in your copier and, in a few moments, the satisfying whirr of the machinery will begin. 

That masterpiece of a report you spent yesterday perfecting with its’ pie charts and graphs will be printed in all its’ glory to impress the delegates at your meeting. Paper drawer closed, green button pressed and ……….. clunk. It comes to a frustrating halt. A flashing red indicator tells you that somewhere, deep inside, behind the sleek styling of the exterior, there is a paper jam. ‘Why now?’ Well – there may be a variety of reasons, but if you can tell, just by looking, what’s wrong with the ream of paper below, you may already know the most likely reason. It’s upside down. Huh? Yes – upside down!
 
All papers have a natural grain based on how the fibres are arranged in manufacture, and the fibres forming this grain are typically arranged parallel to each other either across, or down the length of the sheet. This is fundamental to way the paper will behave in your copier and you can determine this for yourself by taking a small stack – perhaps 150 sheets – and standing them on end. You will find that the paper will naturally want to bend in a particular direction, either toward or away from you. It is with the paper bent downward that it should be put into the paper tray. The reason for this is that all copiers generate heat in order to melt the plastic beads of the toner and fix the images/ words to the paper surface. This heat drives out the moisture from the paper (take your copy as soon as it leaves the copier and you’ll feel how warm it is). As it drives out the moisture, so the paper will begin to straighten out as it bends in the opposite direction ready to arrive at the exit rollers straight and level. Thus, if you put the paper in the wrong way i.e with it already wanting to curve upward, then that curvature will only increase as it approaches the exit, and a jam is almost inevitable.
 
But, to save you all the experiment, and frustration, manufacturers will typically put an arrow on one or both ends of the wrapper. Place the pack on the table with the arrow pointing upward, and you’ll see that the centre seam of the wrapping is showing to you. When you open this wrapping, then the surface facing you is the surface that should be uppermost in the tray. If you still have paper jam problems then you need to consider the quality of the paper you’re using. The price of paper is currently rising and this is bringing cheap imported stock to the market. Almost without exception, if it’s cheap then it doesn’t have the necessary stringent quality control on moisture content that is vital to smooth running. Too wet or too dry, it WILL jam. But if you need more detailed advice, Paul Bowler of Sovereign Business Solutions will be happy to help. (07970 980860).
 

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Paul Bowler

Account Manager

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