Any office superstore doing "classic" 7 hole punching?

I have a Newbie dilemma.

Some background: I couldn't find a "Classic" weekly 2 up here so I Used the calendar in my "Outlook" email and created a 2 page a week calendar. I didn't explore all of the "Outlook" setting options so I may have lost an opportunity to fully utilize the reverse side of the page. As it was I thought I was clever in using a Note/To Do list template I found here and ran the calendar pages through the copy machine so I can at least make use of the reverse side.

Additionally, I printed off a bunch of "Classic" 2 up Organization & Planning forms, with the intention of playing around with them and seeing what works for me.

I made a four extra calendars and four extra sets of planning forms with the intention of going to Staples and having them cut and punched as well. (The extras are for siblings and friends.) However, I called the Staples and Office Max copy centers near me; they can obviously do the cutting I need and they can do a 3 punch, but they can't do a 7 punch.

Am I really going to have to 7 hole punch approximately one ream of paper? (2 really since it's being cut in half). Do I need to find a more sophisticated copy center?

Aside from the inconvenience, if I have to punch the holes myself I'm not sure that even the metal 7 hole punch that Franklin sells is up to a job like this. I could invest in a heavy duty punch and buy the extra punches to make it a 7 punch but would the holes be too big then?

I think I have seen what I would consider a medium duty 7 hole punch intended for Day Planner type pages, so I assume the holes would be smaller. I can't remember the exact cost, probably $30.00, give or take. Which would be worth the investment since I got a pretty good deal on the binders themselves through Ebay. However, I'd rather not spend all that time punching unless I have to.

BTW, I think I finally figured out why Franklin uses 7 holes and other systems use 6 (as opposed to 3), do you suppose it's so if one of the holes in a page gets torn up that there are that many extra holes holding the page in place? Or am I being naive, is this purely "designed dependence".

I'd appreciate any feedback. Especially if anyone can think of an Office Superstore that generally has copy centers equipped for a 7 hole "Classic" punching job. I'm in the greater Boston area if it makes a difference.

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You've got a couple of choices when it comes to hole-punching.

1) punch it yourself using the durable metal punch of your choice, 5 or possibly 10 sheets at a time.

2) buy paper that's pre-punched, then figure out how to line up your print with the holes so it works out right.

3) call all the print shops in your area and see if they have the ability to drill your holes.

4) buy the standard page sets from one of the various planner companies, then just print out whatever extras you might require, punching your own holes for that.

That's basically it. I think it's probably 50-50 around here between #1 and #2 for folks who use the standard paper sizes. Occasionally someone mentions #4. Folks who use non-standard bindings (like Rolla) or non-standard page sizes (like quarter-letter) don't get #2 as an option at all.

Personally, I print out a month's pages at a time. That way the punch stack isn't quite so huge. The first time you set everything up is the longest it will take.


Punching follow up

Do I have reason to hope that if call around I'll get lucky? The first place I called was a Staples copy center near down town Boston. I figured if they don't do it, who will. Then again, you'd think someone would, but I'd rather not waste time on the phone if the odds are slim at best.

Print house, not copy shop


Call print houses, not copy shops. They might have the ability to drill in more ways than just the standard 3-hole arrangement. Example: I had a print shop make some business cards for me with a 1/4" hole in one corner. I would guess this to be pretty non-standard for business cards. I don't know what you have to do to get a hole in a pile of business cards, but they did it. They might have more flexible machinery than a copy shop.

I don't know if they could drill 7-holes, but the only way to find out is to ask. I don't know if the *would* drill your pre-printed pages, but again, you get no joy at all unless you ask.

Calling around is definitely better than driving all over creation with samples.


Calling around

Well, I started with a Staples in Boston yesterday, but after replying to you today I started calling some print shops in the surrounding area with no luck. However, I just got off the phone with a Staples copy center local to where I live and I got ahold of some young kid that seems willing to take a Franklin Planner off the shelf and see if he can do something for me. If nothing else that's a huge improvement over the customer service (for lack of a better term) I've gotten from some of the other Office Super Stores I've called.

Wish me luck.

I'm intrigued by the hole punch in your business card, what purpose does that serve?

Business card


Well, this was for a small business where I made small boxes out of paper. Think favor boxes for weddings and parties.

I planned to do a wedding show--one of those big conventions with lots of vendors all in one spot. So I made up like 700 sample boxes, little tiny ones with one hershey kiss inside each. I tied my business card to the box with a ribbon and handed them out to the attendees.

It was a great giveaway, but not a great business model. My boxes were beautiful but a little too expensive because they were cut by me here in the states. Competitors used plain colors cut en masse by machines overseas, and they are much cheaper. I made mine from exotic papers in all sorts of really interesting shapes. Those papers can't go through the big machinery at speed.

Anyway, I still have about a hundred business cards for that (defunct) business. :) I use them for toys for my kids.



The copy/print shop I work at drills holes in stuff. :D

Try places that do blueprint reproductions. We have a drill press type setup so we can post-bind huge sets of blueprints.
my artwork

I give up, for now.

It turns out the Staples copy center near me does not have the necessary heavy duty equipment. However, the kid I spoke with was willing to use a regular 3 hole punch and move the punches as necessary. Because of the way the punches are set up that required setting the punches three separate times and punching the paper three separate times.

I got there late Saturday and left him about one third of the way through the job. I meant to pick everything up yesterday but I got back too late from a day trip. I'll follow up today but I'm not too optimistic since the three hole punch he started with turned out to be slightly off center. And it wasn't until I got home that I realized some of the pages would need to be punched on the right side and it's unrealistic to hope he would have figured that out.

So, next time I'll know and I'll start with Sara's suggestion to look for a print shop that does blue prints.

In the meanwhile I should be able to use the miscellaneous DIY forms I printed up but I've taken this whole experience as a sign that I should probably start on a smaller scale. So, I re-did the Outlook calendar for a Classic one page a day and I will simply two hole punch the top and give it a cover made from a manilla folder, or perhaps a Tyvex envelope.

That will significantly reduce the bulk and increase the likelihood that I will carry it around. The biggest disadvantage is that it will make it harder to add and removing pages but for now I will simply keep a miscellaneous set of forms on the back/reverse (as opposed to the bottom).

I imagine this is about as unsophisticated and low tech as it can get, short of resorting to a pad of Post Its. I'd be interested in hearing from anyone that tried something similar.

I don't think I'll immediately trash the calendars I get back from Staples. I might hang onto them and try again later, depending upon how things go with the crude system described above. Of course, that would require investing in a 7 hole punch and living with an extra set of holes on half the pages. We'll see.

Thanks for the input.

I tried a similar thing

I ended up using my FranklinCovey 7-hole punch for my D*I*Y forms, and I still use it now -- even though I've moved to a 3-ring binder in "classic" size.

I keep a bunch of unpunched forms stored away, and punch them when I put them in my planner. Usually this means I punch 5 pages once or twice a week. It's not an enormous amount of work or trouble...

Do you procrastinate?


I agree that once you have it up and running it wouldn't be difficult to maintain. My problem was being overly ambitious in creating duplicate set ups for friends and family.

It may be just as well since I need to get my pocketbook under control before I can easily fit something of the magnitude I had in mind. I'm starting to think of what I will be working on as a "starter" organizer. I can always 7 hole punch the pages I am working with and add them to virtually any 8.5" x 5.5" planner.

Have a punch-Party !!

If you are going to be so generous to friends and family, they should be willing to contribute a smidgen of labor to the effort.

Besides, it sound like a great excuse for a get-together :)
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

How about a new binder instead?

If you can get them 3-hole punched rather easily, why not move to a 3-ring binder?

I like the quality of the

I like the quality of the Franklin and I have managed to convince myself there is an advantage to more holes. As I mentioned above, my past experience with loose leaf notebooks in general suggests that when one hole gets torn the other holes keep the page in place. My pocketbook tends to be overcrowded and I think the organizer will take a beating and the pages and holes are likely to get chewed up, so the extra holes are a little bit of insurance.

The good news is that I went back to Staples and overall everything looks pretty good and they are willing to punch an additional set of holes on the right hand side of the left page. We'll see what it looks like tomorrow.

Although I kind of like the stripped down version I came up with. The only disadvantage is the inability to add and remove pages quickly and easily.

Thanks for the feedback.

possible solution to ripping paper problem

I've got a possible solution to your problem of paper getting beat up and ripped when you're carrying it. I recently bought a fairly nice Classic size Franklin planner from Target for about $23. It is a zippered binder, so if you zip it up before you put it in your pocketbook, that should protect the pages inside fairly well.

Wal-Mart and Target both carry their own lines of FC products. They aren't quite the same quality as the regular FC products, but they are quite a bit nicer than most of the budget planners you normally find in places like that. If you're still tweaking your system, I'd buy some of the less expensive products and upgrade as you find out what works for you.


Thanks for the practical suggestion

I've seen negative comments upon the planners at Walmart. I don't know if they were referring to their version of Franklin Covey or not. I should check it out since oddly enough my ideal planner would be "cheap" in the sense that I don't want the bulk of a padded leather or imitation leather. Unfortunately I have never seen any sort of loose leaf planner --let alone a ziparound-- in the thin pleatherette material I am thinking of. As far as I know only the "bound" ones come in that and I want the flexibity of being able to add and remove pages.

Which is why I got the 3 ring Day Runner Pocketbook and the 7 ring Franklin Covey. I did get a great deal for each of them on Ebay but I had no idea how bulky they would be.

I think that's the other reason I want to be able to 7 hole punch the pages since it would be nice to transfer to another organizer if I were to find something closer to my ideal.

Target zipper binders

I don't know about the quality of the planners at Wal-Mart, but from the sounds of it you'll be wanting to check out the ones at Target. The binder I bought was a Classic size fake leather binder with a zipper to close the whole thing up. At least for that price I'm sure it was fake leather. And the main reason I wanted it was because it was nearly half as thin as the previous planner I had - which had a PDA clip and I found myself hardly ever using the PDA.

My big complaint about the FC planners at Target: the format of most of their pages wasn't as nice as most of the stuff FC makes, and most of the calendars available were undated. If you've already got the pages (like I did) or have some printed out (like you do) they'd definitely be worth checking out. Or you could give in to Circa ;-)


No Targets near me, unfortunately.

Thanks for the suggestion but there aren't any Targets near me.

I did check Walmart last night and I was once again surprised at just how unnecessarily bulky the usual fake leather is. Sure "pleather" or "leatherette" doesn't look as much like leather but it's attractive enough and way more user friendly.

I did check Ebay for Circa and Rolla but I didn't see much.

Also, I stopped in at Staples last night but they hadn't finished the job yet. It looks like he made a small mess out of some of the punches but I won't be complaining if the whole thing winds up costing the quoted price $7.00 or so, or maybe a little more. I think I'll call ahead today.


not available online

I just checked and they don't have any FC planners listed for sale there. :-(