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6/1/2016 11:24:57 PM

Purple Pisces
Purple Pisces
Posts: 878
Amy I have a subscription to Dell's Logic Problems and have noticed similar results in the last 2 or 3 magazines. If you use pencil it's not that bad. The print will become lighter the more you erase over it. I make sure not to use the frixion pens with these issues or it will turn into a mess.

6/2/2016 6:13:31 AM

Amy Lowenstein
Amy Lowenstein
Posts: 1599
Thanks for the warning, Purple. I'll have to decide if I want to order a new subscription, stick to pencil, and make my own grids on Excel if I have to redo a puzzle, or order some of their "oldies but goodies" or work on some of my favorites that I've made into Microsoft Word and/or Microsoft Excel files.

--
Amy

6/23/2016 1:30:45 PM

Bernadette1959
Bernadette1959
Posts: 245
(Just reposting a response here that I made to Amy on another thread, since it pertains to the subject of this thread.)

Amy, I don't see the spam post you referred to so it looks like the moderator already removed it.

These spam posts really don't bother me so much. What I do find very offensive is that someone from PennyDell will come on here and remove spam but won't even bother to comment on threads or respond to questions.

The thread about the quality of the ink now being used in PD's publications was started over three months ago and as of today no one from the company has yet bothered to post any sort of response or explanation. Yesterday I had to practically redraw the entire graph for a diagramless fill-in that I messed up in a big way because after I finished erasing my mistakes most of the puzzle itself was also gone. Today I went to Books-A-Million to purchase two PD publications. For one of them, I had to pick up and leaf through three copies before I found one that didn't have faded ink in places, the other one I had to go through two. I went ahead and bought the magazines because they were ones I really wanted but it aggravates me to no end that PD won't even come here and tell us if this is the future of their magazines, or they just went with a different printer and now realize it was not a good idea. That shouldn't take too much of anyone at PennyDell's time but evidently it's more than they are willing to spare.

Bernadette

7/1/2016 4:17:41 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
Bernadette,

I spoke to someone in the production and design department (I had to call them, of course) and they said they are speaking to the printer about using an ink that sets better. I may have posted about this interaction in this thread, not sure.

So *maybe* something will get done, but I think we are stuck with this printer until the contract expires. But I was disheartened by one particular comment of this person I spoke to, which was basically to the effect of, "This is a common issue in puzzle magazines."

My response to her was maybe it is in cheap magazines, but I've never noticed it in PP magazines until this year. But I didn't like her comment, because to me it sounded like "That's just how it's going to be," as if they don't see it as a big enough issue to deal with.

7/1/2016 4:49:41 PM

Bernadette1959
Bernadette1959
Posts: 245
Yes, that comment really is disheartening, John. I've not had any issues with the ink in the magazines I purchase that are put out by other publishers. And certainly never had any issues with PennyDell until just recently.

For the time being, I'm trying to be very careful whenever I have to erase. This isn't easy when you're solving puzzles like Anacrostics. The numbers under the spaces are small and trying to keep the eraser from touching them in some cases is really impossible. Same thing with puzzles like the diagramless fill-ins and kriss krosses/frameworks, where you're trying to erase inside of small boxes.
edited by Bernadette1959 on 7/1/2016

7/6/2016 9:47:12 AM

Bernadette1959
Bernadette1959
Posts: 245
John,

I wanted to come back and share some possibly hopeful news with you. I came across a small bin of older magazines yesterday that I've had sitting in an attic closet. There were two Dell puzzle publications in there, one was published in October 2007 and the other in November 2008. Both have the "printed with soy ink" emblem on the front page and both were printed in Canada. Of course, I had to do a test with my eraser and even after seven years in a frequently very hot attic, the soy ink in these issues is still coming off, though not as bad as it is in the most recent issues of PD's magazines.

So PD has definitely used soy ink in the past and then returned to a better quality ink. Hopefully, they will again!

Bernadette

7/6/2016 11:29:13 PM

Josh
Josh
Posts: 170
Bernadette1959 wrote:
John,

I wanted to come back and share some possibly hopeful news with you. I came across a small bin of older magazines yesterday that I've had sitting in an attic closet. There were two Dell puzzle publications in there, one was published in October 2007 and the other in November 2008. Both have the "printed with soy ink" emblem on the front page and both were printed in Canada. Of course, I had to do a test with my eraser and even after seven years in a frequently very hot attic, the soy ink in these issues is still coming off, though not as bad as it is in the most recent issues of PD's magazines.

So PD has definitely used soy ink in the past and then returned to a better quality ink. Hopefully, they will again!

Bernadette



I think my earlier post on this may have been misinterpreted; Dell has been (to my knowledge) continuously printing with soy ink since the early '90s. They made a big deal about it when they put the logo into their magazines, and I can't recall it not being there since. Not home today but will check soon!

Soy ink has environmental benefits, which was the main reason for the initial change.

Josh

7/7/2016 6:56:13 AM

Bernadette1959
Bernadette1959
Posts: 245
Josh wrote:
Dell has been (to my knowledge) continuously printing with soy ink since the early '90s. They made a big deal about it when they put the logo into their magazines, and I can't recall it not being there since.


Josh, if that's true, they definitely have not been including the "soy ink" emblem in every issue. I don't have many older issues of the Dell magazines around but for right now I was able to pull out a copy of Dell All-Time Favorite Variety Puzzles for October 2013 and there is no advertisement about soy ink listed at all. It could be they simply didn't include it in every issue.

Well, whatever PD has done in the past, either they've just changed back from regular ink to soy since the beginning of 2016, or else the quality of the soy ink being used has gone way down. The change is just very obvious, especially if you're solving out of current magazines (since January 2016) and those from 2015 at the same time, as I am right now.

Bernadette

PS. I will add that I'm getting better at not erasing over the printed lines anymore. LOL wink
edited by Bernadette1959 on 7/7/2016

7/7/2016 10:33:18 PM

Josh
Josh
Posts: 170
Bernadette1959 wrote:
Josh, if that's true, they definitely have not been including the "soy ink" emblem in every issue. I don't have many older issues of the Dell magazines around but for right now I was able to pull out a copy of Dell All-Time Favorite Variety Puzzles for October 2013 and there is no advertisement about soy ink listed at all. It could be they simply didn't include it in every issue.


You're right - it looks like the contents for All Time Favorite was too crammed to fit the logo. If you look at Official Variety Puzzles, the logo's been in the same exact spot for more than a decade. We know they use the same printer for all the magazines, so I highly doubt they printed some with and some without. Probably was just what they could fit in a given magazine.

Bernadette1959 wrote:
PS. I will add that I'm getting better at not erasing over the printed lines anymore. LOL wink


Just in time to pick up one of their coloring books, eh? smile (I still need to re-read that thread on erasable pens and give that a go sometime.)

7/19/2016 12:32:37 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
Bernadette1959 wrote:
John,

I wanted to come back and share some possibly hopeful news with you. I came across a small bin of older magazines yesterday that I've had sitting in an attic closet. There were two Dell puzzle publications in there, one was published in October 2007 and the other in November 2008. Both have the "printed with soy ink" emblem on the front page and both were printed in Canada. Of course, I had to do a test with my eraser and even after seven years in a frequently very hot attic, the soy ink in these issues is still coming off, though not as bad as it is in the most recent issues of PD's magazines.

So PD has definitely used soy ink in the past and then returned to a better quality ink. Hopefully, they will again!

Bernadette



I just found some older issues as well and I noticed they were printed in Canada too. I thought about checking the ink (I'm obsessed!) but I figured sitting as long as they have (early 90s) wouldn't be a good test for that.

Hopefully PP is trying to make a change. I know it will take a while since they are probably stuck with RR Donnelley for at least a year. I hope not much more than that.

8/18/2016 6:20:54 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
It's been several months since I brought the ink issues to the attention of PD, but when I check issues in the store I'm still not noticing a difference. I don't know how far in advance issues are printed, but I hope we will start to see an improvement by the end of the year. Maybe I'll give it until January, but then I'm breaking out the formal letter again and sending a copy to just about everyone at PD who seems to matter in this issue...for all the good it's done so far...

8/20/2016 11:53:18 AM

Bernadette1959
Bernadette1959
Posts: 245
John, I think you'd be wasting your time writing more letters. I mean, no one from PennyDell can even take the time to come here and comment on this thread.

Until such time as the sales of their magazines go down enough to where they become concerned, I don't believe PD will do anything about the quality of their books. I personally am not going to renew either of my magazine subscriptions until I see some improvement. As I mentioned on another thread, my latest issue (Sept) of Variety Puzzles and Word Games came with the edges deckled. That's just plain sloppy publishing.

No one from PennyDell has asked my opinion, but if I were in charge I would reduce the number of magazines I publish instead of lowering the quality, and if they are trying so hard to cut costs that they need to scrimp on ink, why start publishing a line of coloring books for heaven's sake? I can't begin to figure out how some businesses are run. :/
edited by Bernadette1959 on 8/20/2016

10/12/2016 11:51:47 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
Yeah, after that conversation I had with the production person, I got the feeling that they aren't really taking it all that seriously. I do plan to write one more letter as a sort of "final" word on the subject, but after that I will simply ask them to stop sending me mailers. I continue to get mail from PD about new deals and big savings, and I used to love looking at these, but I don't plan to spend any more money on them until this is fixed.

10/13/2016 9:43:30 AM

Amy Lowenstein
Amy Lowenstein
Posts: 1599
John, if it so happens that you like logic puzzles, and want the "colossal" 319-puzzle logic book, that one is not magazine-style but is book-style, and I haven't noticed any problems as I've occasionally erased a grid on a page.

--
Amy

10/14/2016 2:49:35 PM

JohnJSal
JohnJSal
Posts: 135
Amy Lowenstein wrote:
John, if it so happens that you like logic puzzles, and want the "colossal" 319-puzzle logic book, that one is not magazine-style but is book-style, and I haven't noticed any problems as I've occasionally erased a grid on a page.



Unfortunately, my favorites are the variety puzzles issues that all seem to have this problem. I'm still hopeful that maybe after a year has passed, they are able to change contracts with a new printer.

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