Runs and Dye Lots … Have Me Measure FIRST!

I recently did a bid where the homeowners already had their paper. The problem was, they had grossly underestimated how much paper they needed. They had a total of 5 single rolls, but the job actually called for something like 26.

This is a special problem with their selections. They had chosen some quite pretty custom made, very high end papers, made to order out of state.

The problems are many and are serious. Besides having to order quite a bit more of the very expensive paper, chances are the new paper will not match what they already have, so they will have to throw away that paper and buy even more.

When paper is made, there is a “batch,” “dye lot,” or “run” number, meaning all the paper printed at that time came out of the same “batch” of ink. It’s important to use paper all from the same run. Papers printed at a different time from a different run will have a very slight color variation, because the dyes and inks were mixed at a different time.

Will this matter? You bet! If you have to use a “broken run,” it’s best to keep different runs on seperate walls. You don’t notice a slight difference in color so much, because light hits one wall differently from how it hits another wall.

The bad part about this is that if you have to split a strip of paper, as you often do, you can’t use half of the strip on one wall and then on the second wall, and then start with a new run, because the color difference WILL show when strips are next to one another on a flat wall. You can never put different numbered runs next to one another on the same wall – the difference shows as clearly as if you used strips of totally different colors. This means you end up having to buy even more paper, to allow for the difference in dye lots.

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