Alkaline Paper Advocate

Volume 5, Number 6
Dec 1992


All of Sweden's Fine Paper Production Now Permanent

Ingmar Fröjd, Project Coordinator of the Swedish National Preservation Project, reports that 100% of the fine paper production in Sweden meets the draft international standard for permanent paper (ISO Draft International Standard 9706). In Finland, he believes 90-95% meets the draft ISO standard.

ANSI/NISO Z39.48 Revision is Approved, and in Press

The ANSI standard for Permanence of Paper for Publications and Documents in Libraries and Archives, which now covers both coated and uncoated papers, is on the verge of publication, and can be ordered from Transaction Publishers, Department NISO Standards, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ 08903 (908/932-2280). It costs $20 + $3 for shipping, prepaid; it can be ordered on Visa, MasterCard or American Express.

The standard was first published in 1984, and has become the most widely used paper permanence standard in the world. The ISO standard was based on it, though it is not identical.

Does Xerox have any Alkaline Copy Papers? Ans: Yes

One of Xerox Corporation's copy papers, formerly called XXV Archival Bond but now called Xerox Image Elite, was specially formulated as an alkaline permanent copy paper and first marketed in May 1975. It has been on the market continuously since then. It is expensive, though.

In addition, several Xerox paper grades in varying price ranges are made by as many as 11 qualified suppliers at any given time, to Xerox's performance standards. Last December, there were two alkaline suppliers, but this number fluctuates. The rumor that Xerox only puts its name on acid paper is not true. George Treier, Principal Engineer and Manager, Paper Design and Quality Group, said April 14 that if alkaline papers are designed and manufactured correctly, they are fully equivalent to acid-sized papers in performance.

A Pencil made of Paper instead of Wood

A mail order office supply house sent a free sample pencil to the Abbey Publications office the other day, which looks just like a normal pencil made of wood, but is made of recycled newspapers and cardboard. The sharpened end is colored like cedar and even smells faintly of cedar. The pencil was made by Eberhard Faber, but can be ordered from Viking, at 800/4211222, for 89¢ per dozen. The order number for #2 (soft) is S0412201, and for #2-1/2 (medium) is S04-12202.

Georgia-Pacific Mill will Make Chlorine-free Pulp After All

Last spring, Georgia-Pacific announced that it had already reduced dioxin emissions by 85%, and did not see as cost-effective the elimination of all chlorine in the kraft bleaching process. It had substituted chlorine dioxide for some of the elemental chlorine, but did not see that it would be cost-effective to reduce chlorine still further. (Story on p. 13b in the May 1992 issue.)

Then last December the company announced that its pulp mill at Woodland, Maine, will produce 100 percent elemental chlorine free (ECF) pulp by March 1993. The December 16 press release strongly implies that the change was made to satisfy foreign markets, many of which demand chlorine-free pulp.

The API is Dead; Long Live the AFPA

The American Paper Institute merged with the American Forest Council and the National Forest Products Association on January 1 to form the American Forest and Paper Association (AFPA). Red Cavaney, former president of API, is now the president of AFPA. The new address is 1250 Connecticut Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20036 (202/463-2700). This used to be the address of the API's Washington office, but the telephone number is new.

An AFPA spokesman said that the organizations were combined in order to have more of an effect on public policies and opinions, and to make it easier to prioritize issues and allocate resources.

A Portable Analyzer for Finding Percent of CaC03

TN Technologies (formerly Texas Nuclear) has an instrument that provides rapid, precise, nondestructive analysis of the concentrations of TiO2, CaC03 and clay in fine papers. Designed for the paper industry, it uses microprocessor technology and radioisotope excited x-ray fluorescence, operates on rechargeable batteries, weighs 13 pounds and gives digital readouts in less than a minute. It has been on the market for 10 years and costs about $20,000. For information call 800/7360801, or write TN Technologies, Inc., PO Box 800, Round Rock, TX 78680-0800.

German Working Group for Paper History

In connection with a "jubilee exhibition on wood paper" this year in Germany, the Deutsche Arbeitskreis für Papiergeschichte wants to get in touch with other study centers and research and exact science institutions working on paper. Write them at Deutsches Buch und Schriftrnuseum der deutschen Bücherei, Deutsches Platz, D7010 Leipzig, Germany.

Printers' Recycled Paper Problems are Up; Alkaline Paper Troubles are Down

The Graphic Arts Technical Foundation (GATF) reports that its Hot Line, manned by Frederick Higgins, handled over 3,000 requests for help in 1992 from every state in the U.S. and 34 countries. The most common problems involved inks and coatings (about 25% of the total). Printing problems and press problems together totaled about 28%. Problems relating to papers and stocks were 12% of the total, up from 10% in 1991. To quote from the report, on p. 11 of GATFWORLD for March/ April, "More and more problems are the results of ink and paper interactions such as ink not drying, ink rubbing off, dirt and dust in sheetfed paper, linting, and problems with recycled paper. Overall, it seems that fewer printers are plagued by conductivity, alkaline papers, and plate blinding problems."

Grays Harbor Mill Closes

The paper industry is cyclic, with booms and busts, because of the long time lags built into this kind of enterprise: trees take decades to grow, machines take years to make, and so on. Although the economic picture is a little better now, one way that paper companies have been cutting their losses is to sell or close down mills that were not profitable. Hammermill's Grays Harbor mill in Hoquiam, Washington, is one of the mills affected by this trend.

Jointly owned since 1929 by ITT Rayonier (a forest products company) and Hammermill (whose interest passed to International Paper when it acquired Hammermill in 1986), the complex consists of a sulphite pulp mill, a related lignin products operation and a vanillin plant, owned by ITT Rayonier; and a paper mill that converted to alkaline papermaking in 1986. About 630 employees, half of whom were employed in the paper mill, were laid off. Their salary and benefits were paid through January 11. They received severance pay and comprehensive job training and job placement services.

Office Supply Store Uses pH Pens to Help Customers

Retail outlets for converted papers like copy paper, stationery and so on have been an obstacle to communication between producers and consumers of alkaline paper, because the box labels tell so little about what is inside, and often do not even give the name of the paper company that made it. They never indicate whether the paper is acid-free, and the clerks do not know either, because nobody tells them.

The pH pen has seemed like an answer to the problem, so for years Editor McCrady has been giving free pens to selected head clerks in office supply stores, to help them when customers come in asking for acid-free paper. Even when the clerks seemed interested, there was no way to tell if they ever used their pen--until a few weeks ago, when a Utah store called to order another pen. They had lost the original pen for a while, and they really missed it. Now it has been found, but they needed the new one for backup. This was a small beginning, but may grow into something.

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