After travelling back home, the next day I travelled up to the printers.
When walking through the door they knew immediately who I was and what I had come into the shop for. I was told by them on the phone to arrive for nine so I was the first lot of printing of the day.
The woman who I had been speaking to on the phone brought over a print out of the test file which I had sent over and showed it to me. The image was badly lined and discoloured. The woman explained to me that the printer was having problems and that she thought that what I wanted printed out was unachievable. They also informed me that the engineer was not coming out to visit until the Monday and it wasn't guaranteed to be fixed by then. I was hoping to get my prints back by Monday evening so this information totally threw me. I was a little annoyed at the fact she could of told me this over the telephone as I double checked everything was okay to print the day before. As the business was a franchise she advised of another place I could go to instead.
When arriving at the other printers I walked through the door and instantly saw that they had different, older and smaller looking printers. I explained to the woman the problems that I had had and asked if she would give me a quote. It was nearly twice as expensive as the other place! I couldn't believe it but I knew that I needed to get it done and this is something that I may need to do. I asked if they would be willing to print my calendar and if they would be able to start it today. The woman was very blunt and rude and simply said no. I was a little annoyed at the bluntness and the fact that there seemed to be no printing already going on as none of the printers were in use.
After explaining that I would eventually need another lot printed she came round to the point of saying yes. I asked her if I could have just a test page printed to check out the quality of their printing. The woman printed out the first page of the calendar and showed me. It had marks and grids all over it, and the grey was dotted with yellow. I was not impressed. When highlighted to the woman, she printed off another, different page. The lines weren't present but the grey was still not solid. The woman put it down to my file having the problems on. I was so annoyed at the fact they were blaming my file. I knew it wasn't as I had had the image printed at University and none of the problems were on the copy. I was not impressed with the printers and left, with the test sheets they printed.
Luckily I knew of one other printers so i drove there. After speaking to the woman on the desk it became clear they were not interested in helping me. I think I had this problem because I was visiting printers who print for businesses and do batch orders, where as mine was a order of around 10 making them not interested. I asked for a quote at the printers and they said that i would need to email over the details as they were unable to tell me there and then. I asked when they would be able to print for me and they said not till about a week. I needed the calendars before then so I left.
I was now stumped about what to do next. It was a Friday afternoon and I now had no printers to print my calendar. I scoured the internet for the next hour and phoned up a few companies. Most said they would be unable to print for me in the time slot I needed. On my fourth attempt of ringing a printers I found a company who was willing to do it for me. They were very local and when asked for a quote over the telephone, extremely reasonable. I said to them would I be able to send over a test file for them to print and then I could come down and asses the quality. They said they would.
An hour later I went down to the printers and they had printed off the test file for me. I had also taken along the other test sheets from the other printers to check that the files were going to be better quality. They were. They also showed me a range of papers and found a more suitable, thicker card.
The test file which they printed off was far more Magenta than the other files which had been tested. I mentioned this and the worker changed the settings on the computer and printed it out again. It was better but still far too Magenta. As I still had the individual files and InDesign file he opened up the files, adjusted each one and printed again. It was starting to get better but the colours were not right.
He then told me that he would get in contact with the printer manufacturer and get them to show him how to adjust the printer settings. Once he had done this he would then print out the test file and call me back to see whether it was any better. He gave me the failed test files back and when I left the shop and got back home I realised that the Magenta images did not look half as pink in natural daylight.
A few hours later I returned to the printers to see that he had fixed the colouring. I commented that the colourings looked totally different in the natural daylight so we took all of the test copy's by the window and realised that the new settings on the computer were in fact too Cyan. He assured me that he now knew how to change the settings and would just go back to printing in the old settings. I confirmed that I was just wanting the one calendar printed for now and then I would then come back and asses whether I want more printed. I was going to get the calendar back on Monday evening which was expected but it now meant that I would have to delay going back to Southampton.
They gave me a quote as I said I would want 5 printed and they said for the same price they could print 10 so if all goes well I am going to get another 10 printed.