What kind of binding do you need for your print project? Consider durability, costs, and aesthetics.
The binding of your print project can often be overlooked, but it is undoubtedly crucial. The right binding does more than hold your print project together; it can completely change how people experience your product. Your binding options will vary by durability, cost, and aesthetic appeal, so it’s up to you to weigh which factors are most important. Explore the different types of binding available and plan ahead to ensure your print project is finished the way you envisioned.
Among binding options, saddle stitching is the most affordable. Often seen in brochures, handouts, calendars, and small catalogs, it involves stapling your printed sheets together at two or three points on the fold. It’s a quick, yet effective solution for projects without a spine.
Perfect binding sits at the cornerstone of durability and cost. It outperforms most types of binding for projects with a large page count or heavier pages. If your project has over 60 pages (considered to be 30 sheets), perfect binding makes an excellent choice and gives your piece a high-end look and feel. A strong adhesive binds the book block to the spine, and the residual glue holds the pages together. Ideal candidates for perfect binding include large books, instruction manuals, catalogs, and magazines.
Square-back binding blends two types of binding: saddle stitching and perfect binding, at a similar cost to the former. After the sheets are stapled together at the fold, they are then pressed to achieve the square look of perfect binding. Medium-length catalogs, magazines, and books are often bound this way.
One shortfall of perfect binding is that the books cannot lie flat and stay opened due to the coverage of the adhesive. As it name suggests, lay-flat binding bypasses this issue by using an expanding glue that only adheres to the edges of the spine. This can save your customers a lot of time and frustration, especially for instructional print projects such as software manuals, building guides, or cookbooks. Lay-flat binding usually costs more and takes longer than perfect binding, but the payoff is worth it.
Wire-O and Spiral Binding
Traditionally used with notebooks and agendas, these wire bindings provide the greatest flexibility in terms of page-turning. Although Wire-O and spiral binding may appear similar, the difference lies in the number of loops. Wire-O uses many loops that run parallel along a single wire. Spiral binding uses only one plastic or metal loop that spirals through pre-positioned holes in the covers and pages.
Both bindings allow the book to lie flat without curvature. However, wire bindings generally cannot hold too many pages, and new pages cannot be added. But if you are looking for a quick, professional binding option for a business meeting, trade show, or other venue to showcase your brand, wire binding makes an excellent choice. Additionally, plastic coil bindings come in various colors to match your organization’s brand image.
If your project calls for durability, flexibility, and adjustability, consider plastic comb binding or GBC binding. Like wire binding, the pages are first pre-punched to accommodate the plastic comb. The cylindrical comb can hold many pages, and allows for removals or additions as necessary. You can also print on the GBC spine, adding to your project’s professional appeal. Comb bindings also come in a variety of colors to match your company’s brand identity.
Arkansas Graphics provides comprehensive printing and digital imaging services for your marketing needs. Contact us to learn more about your binding options at 877.918.4847 and ensure that your next print project is a success.