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When paperclips won't do, binding methods for books, booklets, reports


Binding Methods

Try a variety of binding methods

© J. Bear

If you are printing a booklet, book, or multi-page report you need to plan how you will put together the finished product before you set up your document in your page layout program. You can choose from several binding methods, each with its own pros and cons depending on the purpose of the document, need for durability and best appearance, and cost.

Design and Printing Considerations for Binding
For some types of binding it might simply be a matter of ensuring that the margins are wide enough to accommodate the holes for a three ring binder or spiral binding. For saddle-stitching, you may need to compensate for creep. Some bindings provide more durability, others allow your book to lay flat when open. You will also want to weigh the cost of special equipment if you want to do-it-yourself rather than using a local copy shop or printer for your binding and finishing.

On the next several pages we'll run down some of the most common ways that you can bind your books or other documents.


  • Ring Binding - This is a good binding option for some types of manuals where page revisions may need to be inserted periodically.


  • Comb, Coil, Wire Binding - Writing notebooks, notepads, steno pads, cookbooks, booklets, manuals, reference materials, workbooks, and calendars often utilize comb, coil, or double loop wire binding methods.


  • Thermal Binding - It provides a very sturdy binding with a neat appearance and allows documents to open flat. Use with or without covers.


  • Stitched Binding - Saddle stapling or "bookletmaking" is common for small booklets, calendars, pocket-size address books, and some magazines. When the document is too large for saddle-stitching it may be side-stitched or side stapled.


  • Perfect Binding - Paperback novels are one example of perfect bound books. Booklets, telephone directories, and some magazines use perfect binding.


  • Case Binding - Case or edition binding is the most common type of binding for hardcover books.

See Page 2 for Binding Tips to Save Time and Money.


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