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PPFA Matboard Standards now available!

Discussion in 'The Grumble' started by Jim Miller, Jan 5, 2014.

  1. Ylva

    Ylva SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I too prefer a PDF file, but how do you protect it from being distributed from one framer to the next. Although, you'd have the same with a booklet, which can be scanned and made into a PDF file.

    Argh! so complicated!

    Bob, in this case, I don't see myself as the consumer, even though I buy from my suppliers, they do not deliver the end product that I deliver to my customer, who is, in my thinking, the consumer.
  2. FramerCat

    FramerCat SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I thought this was a great idea until I saw the words “intellectual property” used. I know from other industries when a legal term like this is mentioned things can get ugly. I understand that the people who put all of the hard work and material cost into making such a product should be compensated for their efforts but now that there is a legal term associated with the product I think there should be more details about how the product can be used. Are educators and more importantly regular framers allowed to quote from the product and if so how much are they allowed to quote? Can the quotation be in writing or only verbally? I am sure that the specific wording is integral to the understanding of the information so if the product cannot be quoted word for word without paying the PPFA every time, it is going to hinder the education process for both framers and consumers.

    I see this as one of the big problems that we have to overcome as an industry. Ultimately we want the consumers of our product as educated as possible about what we do, but the educators need to be paid for their skills and time. This lessens the amount of education available and thus in a small way encourages the ignorant to continue to misinform the public. Fly-by-night sports memorabilia shops, for example, are still telling their customers that the mats are “acid free” so they’re good. Those guys have no incentive whatsoever to seek out and pay for the educational information. Free and easily accessible information would be the best way to improve the industry but I have no idea how that could be at all possible.

    All I know is that I personally am discouraged from taking a look at the new standards because I wouldn’t want to accidentally quote an organization whose representative is already using the legal term “intellectual property” for fear of being sued by said organization. I guess I could have my lawyer look into it for me, but it is easier and less expensive to just avoid the situation. It looks like my current level of ignorance will have to suffice for my customers.

  3. Larry Peterson

    Larry Peterson PFG, Picture Framing God

    At some point will there be a cross reference chart between these 4 ratings and actual mat lines?

    I am confused, especially be the differences between Class II and III. Not having seen the standards yet, are there quantifiable differences between the two?

    I am having a hard time deciding what goes where. OK, paper mats in IV and mats like AlphaRag ArtCare and Crescent RagMat Museum in I. But where do lines like Crescent Select or AlphaMat ArtCare or Artique go?
  4. RParrish

    RParrish PFG, Picture Framing God

    A one page consumer awareness flyer would great for something like this, a PDF, PPFA members could past their logos onto and include with their customer invoices or completed frame jobs.
  5. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    That's an idea that PPFA may embrace, but it is a decision for PPFA, and I'm sure input from members would be welcome. Personally, it makes no difference to me, because one way or the other, I'm going to have a hard-copy booklet in a binder along with the future standards still to come.
  6. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I'll stick my neck out here and predict that PPFA probably will not publish any sort of cross reference with brand names.

    Yes, there are significant differences between Class II and Class III boards.

    When you compare the standards to the published matboard data, the answers to your questions will probably be clear.
  7. stcstc

    stcstc SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    is it really a standard???

    the definition is

    noun: standard; plural noun: standards

    a level of quality or attainment.
    "their restaurant offers a high standard of service"
    synonyms: quality, level, grade, degree, worth, calibre, merit, excellence More
    "the standard of work is very good"
    a required or agreed level of quality or attainment.
    "half of the beaches fail to comply with European standards"
    synonyms: guideline, norm, yardstick, benchmark, gauge, measure, criterion, guide, touchstone, model, pattern, example, exemplar, paradigm, ideal, archetype, specification, requirement, rule, principle, law, canon More
    "half the beaches fail to comply with European standards"
    (in elementary schools) a grade of proficiency tested by examination or the form or class preparing pupils for such a grade.
    "she was still in boarding school and had twice repeated the same standard"
    something used as a measure, norm, or model in comparative evaluations.
    "the wages are low by today's standards"
    principles of conduct informed by notions of honour and decency.
    "a decline in moral standards"
    synonyms: principle, rule of living; More
    code of behaviour, code of honour, morals, scruples, ethics, ideals
    "offenders against society's standards are punished"
    the prescribed weight of fine metal in gold or silver coins.
    "the sterling standard for silver"
    a system by which the value of a currency is defined in terms of gold or silver or both.
    a measure for timber, equivalent to 165 cu. ft (4.67 cubic metres).
    (especially with reference to jazz or blues) a tune or song of established popularity.
    a military or ceremonial flag carried on a pole or hoisted on a rope.
    synonyms: flag, banner, pennant, pennon, streamer, ensign, colour(s), banderole; More
    raregonfalon, guidon, labarum
    "the raising of the regiment's standard will be a particularly poignant moment"
    used in names of newspapers.
    noun: Standard
    "a report in the Evening Standard"
    a tree or shrub that grows on an erect stem of full height.
    a shrub grafted on an erect stem and trained in tree form.
    "a standard rose"
    the large, frequently erect uppermost petal of a papilionaceous flower.
    one of the inner petals of an iris flower, frequently erect.
    an upright water or gas pipe.

    adjective: standard

    used or accepted as normal or average.
    "the standard rate of income tax"
    synonyms: normal, usual, typical, stock, common, ordinary, customary, conventional, habitual, accustomed, expected, wonted, everyday, regular, routine, day-to-day, daily, established, settled, set, fixed, traditional, quotidian, prevailing More
    "the standard rate of income tax"
    antonyms: unusual, special
    (of a size, measure, design, etc.) regularly used or produced; not special or exceptional.
    "all these doors come in a range of standard sizes"
    (of a work, repertoire, or writer) viewed as authoritative or of permanent value and so widely read or performed.
    "his essays on the interpretation of reality became a standard text"
    synonyms: definitive, established, classic, recognized, approved, accepted, authoritative, most reliable, most complete, exhaustive, official More
    "this book will certainly become the standard work on the subject"
    denoting or relating to the form of a language widely accepted as the usual correct form.
    "speakers of standard English"
    (of a tree or shrub) growing on an erect stem of full height.
    "standard trees are useful for situations where immediate height is needed"

    from what i have read of your explanation its more a discussion document, there is NO system for manufacturers etc to attain the standard etc?

    is that not correct???
  8. RoboFramer

    RoboFramer PFG, Picture Framing God

  9. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God


  10. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Are we still talking across purposes, John? We really do agree on this.

    1. Cotton fibers and purified wood pulp fibers are different.

    2. Boards made of cotton and boards made of virgin alpha cellulose are interchangeable for most framing applications.
  11. RoboFramer

    RoboFramer PFG, Picture Framing God

    We do - and that above is nice and simple.
  12. Grey Owl

    Grey Owl SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I expect my personal standards won't change either.

    I also like cotton rag mats and the artcare alpharags, and use the alpharags as my standard mounting boards.

    But I'm not a scientist, and some of the people on the list of participants are, so they are more knowledgeable.

    But I still have reservations about the so called high quality wood alpha cellulose being as good as cotton because I researched the standards for paper mills several years ago. [Maybe they have changed in the last few years]. At that time they said that to be called alpha-cellulose, you had to remove at least 95% of the lignin. So mats with 4.9% lignin can still be called alpha-cellulose.

    So 100% pure alpha cellulose is not the same as 100% lignin free. Kind of like the US standard that says 100% beef hot dogs must contain at least 55% beef (or some similar % - maybe 60%),
  13. Susan May

    Susan May Gone.

    You know, I've been following this thread, and I am confused about the whole argument.

    1) Why argue, until you have the book in your hands and have the chance to actually read it? Any other argument is being done through ignorance, as most of your answers are right there in print.

    2) Why argue about paying for it? You buy the books to study for the CPF exam, right? Same thing. You buy the book to learn what the standards are. No argument.

    (I'm also a little confused as to how a group of adults can speak without listening to each other, since I see answers being quoted just to answer the same question over and over.)

    Jim, I am glad that PPFA made the book, but after reading this thread, I'm not so sure how many people will actually be able to read it and understand it, since many of them don't seem to be able to read this thread. (*My apologies to those of you who can and do read.)
  14. hangupsgallery

    hangupsgallery MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    Not sure there an "argument" happening here....seems like a discussion among colleagues. I'm getting as much or more out of this discussion than I probably will out of the book.

    ......and it's FREE!
    Can't wait for the movie....:popc::popc::popc:
  15. stcstc

    stcstc SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    i would suspect lots of people in the thread have seen the document being discussed

    i have seen it for example, dermot said he had, robo said he had, jim well he along wiht other wrote it :))
  16. RoboFramer

    RoboFramer PFG, Picture Framing God

    .... and up until then we were talking about inanimate objects too :)
  17. Cornered One

    Cornered One CGF, Certified Grumble Framer

    Since Dermot has a copy maybe he can tell us what the key differences are in the standards between FATG Museum and Conservation vs. Class I and II from PPFA.
  18. Kev@Frames

    Kev@Frames CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    it would be if the baboons in the factory could put the right logo stickers on the packs half the time.

    its just another fund-raising excecise for the FATG to charge license fees to the manufacturers who have a big say in what standards are in the first place
  19. stcstc

    stcstc SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    well who would be the people to try and set standards? not suggesting manufacturers should have control of the standard but are they not the experts on the products?

    havent had issues with stickers, lots of the boards i use have stuff printed on them, like blue wool scale numbers etc

    the fact that there is a license etc means manufacturers aspire to meet the standard
  20. The Village Framer

    The Village Framer CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    They sure as heck oughta be. I got a mislabeled board (labeled Alphamat on a reg. paper core) a couple months ago from Bainbridge and not a single person, not the company (at a couple different levels) and neither of my two distributors cared at all about it other than to get me done harping and off the phone. Which wouldn't be a huge issue if it happened rarely but the person I spoke to at Bainbridge said that fairly often when they switch the machines over from a paper board to an Alphamat run that several of the first boards are paper core that's labeled as Alphamat. I know for a fact that between my two distributors that at least 27 of those mislabeled boards went out to framers on the east coast. Who knows how many others in the country received boards out of that run. That seems like kind of a big problem to me. I can know all there is to know about the different types of matboard materials and the standards still won't do me much good if the mat manufacturer is not actively following them.
  21. stcstc

    stcstc SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    27 duff boards although its a PITA for the framers that get them, it is such a small number compared to how many will have been produced

    for example i had 100 sheets delivered today, and supplier had 4000 in stock on the website!!!

    but you poit about manufacturers not activley following them, is exactly my point. it this new "standard" has been set and no promotion and reason for manufactuers to actually follow them then whats the point
  22. The Village Framer

    The Village Framer CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    I agree with you stcstc. And while 27 is a puny number compared to the numbers of boards they churn out, that's still at least 27 pieces of artwork out there that could potentially be harmed by a board that's standardized as Class I or II.
  23. stcstc

    stcstc SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    oh yes i do agree, didnt mean to imply different

    i just ment i can understand how easy that it could happen on such a small number
  24. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Your question seems to suggest that the matboard manufacturers should follow the dictates of the trade associations, but that's not how it works. All three of the matboard standards now existing were written around existing matboard specifications provided by the manufacturers. Matboard products are produced to satisfy the needs of the industry, and the trade associations share the same purpose in their respective markets. But if for some strange reason a trade association would expect manufacturers to change their production specifications to something other than what the market demands, then the makers surely would respond negatively.

    PPFA is not trying to influence the production specifications of matboards from any manufacturer. That is not the point. The point is to help framing practitioners understand the differences among the board types that are available. These are descriptive standards, not prescriptive standards. They are to compare specifications, not to dictate specifications.
  25. mbboston

    mbboston CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    More information is always a good thing. Kudos to all who help develop the brochure. My concern is not spending $5 on a booklet developed by the people with life time of experience in the industry, I am concern with false claims and no official way to verify information. Maybe one day we will have an independent testing body evaluating framing materials. For example car safety ratings and many more similar products evaluated in testing labs rate each manufacturer and all their products. Another issue are frame shops completely disinterested in exerting any effort in learning or keeping in touch with news in the industry. Many don't get PFM and never attend WCAF.

  26. stcstc

    stcstc SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    jim wasnt trying to suggest we should prescribe to manufacturers at all

    what i am trying to say it that like the pack sticker system in the fatg standard, that manufactuers should be encouraged to promote board x is of y standard.

    just collating a descriptive standard doesnt go far enough i think. thats what i was saying

    it is a step in the right direction but i dont belive a big enough step
  27. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    This concern has been expressed by others in the past, about the data published for other framing products. It is essential to understand that all of our suppliers have competitors, and they routinely monitor competitive products. If any manufacturer attempted to publish false data, their competitors would know, and take action. So, it would be almost impossible for a seller to get away with false claims in the marketplace.

    Yes, this is an ongoing issue in our industry, but it is less of a problem than it has been in the past, mostly because framers now have free and convenient access to forums of communication, such as the PPFA Framers' Corner, The Grumble, Facebook, Youtube and other social media.

    Still, some framers believe that what they learned in their first year of framing is all they need to know. And perhaps it is, if their framing is simple and preservation is never involved. Trouble is, consumers want their personal valuables to be framed for display, and a lack of knowledge can lead to framing that is destructive, or at best, unprotective. Many items of personal value (if not monetary value) have been damaged by framers who have no idea how much they do not know.

    The first step toward learning is recognizing the benefit of knowledge. Once a thirst for knowledge is established, the quest for new information continues, as every answer brings up new questions.
  28. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Yes, of course the manufacturers are being encouraged to identify their matboard products with the applicable standards. However, framers who understand the specifications will be able to figure out which matboard is in which class almost immediately.
  29. Cornered One

    Cornered One CGF, Certified Grumble Framer

    Can anyone who has read the new PPFA standards tell us what is different about them? PPFA vs. FATG?
  30. Keith L Hewitt

    Keith L Hewitt SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Cornered One - that's the right question.

    14 hours and no reply :shrug:

    I can tell you the difference, but I don't think it's my job. :rolleyes:

    It should come from one of the 14 contributors who put the Standards together, and my guess is they are busy deciding who gets the task ;)
  31. osgood

    osgood SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    ....or getting themselves to Vegas for the convention, Keith???
    ....or they are waiting for the release of the document???
  32. Joe B

    Joe B SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I agree with Keith, it should come from 1 of the 14 contributors. I've seen 1 but will keep my comments, concerns, and thoughts to myself until it is officially released. I'll have plenty of time after release to state my opinions - after all it is only 2 more days. I will say I do like page 3. Joe B
  33. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Greeting from the airport, awaiting flight west...
    Since both standards were developed from manufacturers' data, there are only a few variations. From post #6 of this thread a week ago:
    I'll defer to Keith Hewitt for further details, since he is a former matboard manufacturer and probably more familiar with the FATG standards than anyone else here.
  34. Cornered One

    Cornered One CGF, Certified Grumble Framer

    Jim thanks for pointing out the 2 big differences. It seems like they are both major steps forward in quality assurance. Our shop frames a lot of very expensive art for collectors and other galleries. The cost of a matboard has never been an issue with these customers but the quality of what we use on their pieces is not up for debate. Seems to me that all this back an forth on the Grumble is silly since most of us have not seen the standards and since they appear to be written by experts in every aspect of paper making and its use we should pay attention and not think we know as much as they do. I can't tell you how many times in my 40 plus years of framing that I have heard framers make ridiculous statements as if they were an expert on something they knew nothing about. Sorry to be so harsh but I think we need to listen to the people who know not the ones who think they know.
  35. shayla

    shayla WOW Framer

  36. Cornered One

    Cornered One CGF, Certified Grumble Framer

    I am off to Vegas in the AM and will not stop until I have a copy of the new standards in hand. With any luck I may even get a few minutes to discuss with Jim Miller although I suspect he will be very busy. Anyone know where the Elvis Chapel is? Just a thought.
  37. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    We figured the WCAF Expo and PPFA Convention would provide a good "acid test" for the new PPFA Comparative Standards for Matboard, and it worked out really well. Hundreds of booklets were distributed and there were plenty of questions and answers going around. The consensus certainly was positive.

    If you would like to have a booklet, but didn't get one at the show, ask your favorite matboard suppliers. At least two of them have a supply already, and we hope they will all soon have the booklets for their customers.
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