Paper Folding MachinesPaper folding machines make letter folding extremely. Most folding machines can create over a half dozen different folds. While operating, running and maintaining a paper folding machine isn’t difficult, there are a few simple things you can do that will help avert a lot of issues. This article will cover some of the most common issues.

While I haven’t used every paper folder out there, I have years of experience with machines from Martin Yale, Duplo, Dynafold, Intelli-Fold, Intimus, Dahle, Formax and Standard. While each manufacturer has their own unique manufacturing process, they all utilize a similar design. These tips should be able to help you out, even if you don’t own a machine by the above mentioned brands.

Common Folding & Paper Jam Issues

Constant Jams –  Manual setup paper folding machines often require the removal and adjustments of folding plates. These plates typically rest on a couple of points in the machine. If the folding machine isn’t properly seated, paper can become quickly jammed. If you continue to have paper jams, and have a manual setup machine, be sure to double check the folding plate.

Occasional Jams – If your machine sometimes works, sometimes doesn’t, you may have one of several potential issues. If the machine has been used for some time, you may have dirty or worn rollers. As paper runs its course through a paper folding machine, dust and ink begin to accumulate on the rollers. This dust and ink can cause the rollers to begin slipping on the paper, resulting in occasional jamming issues. I recommend using some roller cleaner and rejuvenator (found here). This will clean the rollers and moisturize them in the same process.

Another common problem is folding paper after it has come off a printer or copy machine. This paper is often statically-charged. Simply put, static electricity and paper folding machines don’t mix. There are a couple of things you can do to eliminate static electricity. The first thing you can do is jog the paper using a paper jogger (found here). Paper joggers quickly eliminate static and help to square up paper. Another way to get rid of static electricity is by using static eliminator spray (found here).

Feeding Issues – Feeding issues can be caused by a couple of sources. The most common source is glossy or coated paper. Friction-feed folders use friction grabbing rollers. When they try to grab glossy paper, they can often slip, resulting in a misfeed. If you are experiencing issues due to glossy or coated paper, you may need to upgrade to an air-feed (suction feed) folding machine.

Another issue that causes feeding issues is how paper is placed in the feed tray. While most modern paper folding machines don’t require fanning, some older paper folder designs (along with a few new designs) require the paper to be fanned prior to placement in the feed tray. If your paper folding machine has a retarder wheel, the paper probably needs to be pre fanned.

Crooked Folds
– Crooked folds can be annoying, and in most cases, the fix is simple. The primary cause for crooked folds is an improperly set folding plate. Most folding plates (manual setup machines) need to be locked down in 2 points. If these points are not even, a crooked fold may occur. Another thing you can do, if so equipped, is you can use the skew adjustment to align paper as it runs through the machine, which fixes a lot of crooked folds.

Hopefully these tips have helped you out. With over 10 years of personal paper folding machine experience, I suspect this should help resolve about 90% of the problems out there. If you are still having issues, contact Office Zone’s Service Department at 1-800-543-5454 x129.

If for any reason you need a new machine, you can find our entire line of paper folding machines here.

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