WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – This record 140-page issue of CreditUnion Times is the result of a true team effort by the editorial,advertising and production teams, but there's one other vitalbehind-the-scenes player in the process – the printer. Credit UnionTimes' main editorial and production office is located in West PalmBeach, Florida, but the publication is printed each week in FallRiver, Wisconsin, a small town of about 900 people locatedapproximately 30 miles northeast of Madison. Schumann Printers is afamily-owned business started by Jack Schumann back in 1960. “Oneday I came home from work, threw my watch against the wall andsplattered it and said `I will never work for anyone for the restof my life'. I put on my suit and went down to the bank to get somemoney to buy my own press,” said Schumann who now serves aschairman. Schumann put his modest hand fed letter press in thebasement of his home to save on expenses and opened his ownprinting company. His wife Arlene was his only employee so tospeak. “We starved at first. I learned the value of how far oatmealand popcorn will go. When we finally had our first $300 week Ithought we had made it.” Fast forward 50 years and you haveSchumann Printers, a state-of-the-art printer that employs 170people, has $38 million in annual sales, and is still very much afamily business. Jack's sons Dan and Mark serve as President andVice President respectively. The relationship between Credit UnionTimes and Schumann Printers started in the early `90s. It wasn'texactly an account prospect that thrilled Schumann. “When Mike(Welch, Credit Union Times Publisher) approached me, I turned itdown for over a year. I thought there's no way I want to do thatlittle publication and have to do it every week. I was so wrong.Credit Union Times has turned into a very, very important account.At first blush it seems like it doesn't fit a $12 million printingpress, but it doesn't miss a beat,” he said. As a weeklypublication, the turnaround time of Schumann Printers has to belightning fast. Credit Union Times is printed each week in theearly morning hours of Friday on a $12 million M-1000BE Heidelbergpress that spans roughly 150-feet. Here's how it all comestogether. Schumann's receives the ad materials each week byWednesday morning. The ads are scanned and ready for plating. Theeditorial product is sent electronically over the Internet onWednesday evenings. “We pre-flight and process over late Wednesdaynight into Thursday morning. It's ready for viewing on Thursdaymorning. Credit Union Times does not see a hard proof at all at anytime, which is rare. The proof is sent over the Internet and viewedusing software called Renderview,” said Schumann. On Thursdaymorning Credit Union Times staffers in West Palm Beach view theelectronic proof using Renderview and make any changes before thepages are plated. Schumann pointed out that all pictures publishedin Credit Union Times are done in 150 line screens, a very highscreen value, which is what gives the images such crisp detail, hesaid. Once the electronic proof gets the go ahead of the West Palmoffice, the files are electronically placed in position andtransmitted to a Creo platemaker to create thermal laser imagedplates made of aluminum (which are later recycled). Credit UnionTimes is most often printed in 16-page signatures, but sometimeseights and fours are used depending on issue size, inserts andother factors. A pressman bends the plates on to a cylinder andreadies them for the print run. The last two steps are binding theissues and running them through an ink jet printer for addresslabels. In the early days, paper labels were used, but that likemany things has evolved. The issues are shipped out to theMilwaukee post office on Friday morning. The whole printing processtypically takes four hours. This day-and-a-half turnaround is evenmore difficult for an issue as large as this. No one knows thatbetter than Sue Schulze, who has served as Credit Union Times'customer service representative for 11 years. “Back when we firststarted with Credit Union Times it always came in on Wednesdays andwas sent out on Fridays, but we've gone from 16 pages then to up to140 pages now. We're lucky if we see any issues under 48 pages.It's a lot more work in the same time frame. It takes teamwork andorganization to get it done,” said Schulze. A lot of things changeon the printer's side for an issue of this size. For example, itwill be perfect bound instead of saddle stitched in order to ensurethe pages don't rip and all pages are even. The process is about asfast as saddle stitching, yet it costs about 50% more. Also, theads for this issue will take approximately 10 hours of scan timecompared to less than an hour, and the printing process will beroughly 12 hours compared to four. The work hours on Schumann's endare more than doubled. Schumann credited Credit Union Times forforcing his company to raise the bar with technology. “Credit UnionTimes was the first customer we had to go from computer to plate.You were in step with technology and not afraid to grab onto it.Today you're still ahead of the curve,” said Schumann. One thingSchumann Printers will continue to do is invest in the latestprinting technology, said Schumann. It's currently in the processof installing a next generation M-2000 Heidelberg printer. “We keepmoving forward,” he said. Schumann said it can take six months toinstall a new press like the M-2000. Schumann also touted thecompany's green factor. “Our air pollution system is top of theline; 98.6% pure air is going out of this facility. We do our partfor the environment.” [email protected]

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