The Different Book Binding Types

Book binding may be one of the most boring subjects to most of us. But having an idea about the different book binding types can come in handy when we need to bind important documents and information together.

If you are in bookstores or libraries, you’d notice that books are made differently. They have different sizes, thickness, and binding types. To many of us, all this is unimportant. But for people who need to bind important documents, these are few important information they need to know. Having a firsthand knowledge of the different binding types will help determine what binding type is best for different documents. Book binding is usually used for important business documents, school reports, and books. Learning about them will give you more option in choosing the kind of binding type you’d need.

In the following, you’ll see brief descriptions and pictures of the different book binding types.

3 ring binder

This kind of binding is rarely used. And if used, it’s usually used for binding of notes together.

Case binding

Case binding is used in hardcover books. The spine of the book are sewn, glued, and added with gauze cloth before binding them in the case binding machine.

Perfect binding or Thermal binding

Thermal binding (hot tape binding) is often called perfect binding. It is well suited for thick books and thick magazines. Thermal binding uses heat and glue to bind the book together.

Plastic comb binding or spiral-o binding

It is one of the most common binding forms. Plastic combs are used to hold the adjoining pages together. Similar to a spiral binding, the difference is in the material used. It looks like a notebook with wire binding except that plastic comb is used to hold the pages together. This form of binding allows the pages to be opened flat. The material can be removed and reattached as needed.

Saddle stitching

This kind of binding is usually used in thin comic books and news magazines. The pages are joined together and are stapled in the middle to hold them together. It is the most widely used binding method because of its simplicity and economical method.

Spiral binding

It is sometimes called coil binding or plastic wire binding. It depends on the material used. Spiral binding may use plastic wire, coil, or wire to hold the papers together. It is used in notebooks all of the time. A perfect example of spiral binding is the binding of spiral notebooks. This type of binding allows the document to be opened flat.

Stapled binding

Not a very common binding type. It is also known as side stitch binding. The binding together of the document are not done in the middle or the spine of the book but are stapled at the sides. This kind of binding looks very informal and is more appropriate for unofficial documents.

Tape binding

As the name implies, tape binding uses tape to bind the book together. It is sometimes called cold tape binding. Tape binding places a cloth strip of adhesive tape to hold the pages together.

Twin loop wire

Twin loop wire is similar to spiral binding. Wires are used to bind the book together. This is used in some notebooks to hold the pages together. This type of binding is very durable and allows the pages to be opened flat.

Velo binding

Velo binding looks like a perfect bound book. That is because this type of binding is also perfect. It is usually used by lawyers for their documents. Velo binding uses heat, glue, hot knife, and plastic strips during its binding process.

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Comments 15 comments

quicksand profile image

quicksand 5 years ago

If I intended publishing a book of mine, I would prefer case binding. If I needed to distributing educational material I would use thermal binding.

For advertising purposes, like putting together several sheets of illustrated information, I would go in for spiral binding.

Thanks for telling us all about book binding. Now I am fully prepared! Cheers!

BeatsMe profile image

BeatsMe 5 years ago Author

Hi Quicksand, I'm glad you have found some options to bookbinding and binding of different documents through this hub. :)

Thanks for reading. Cheers.

ar.colton profile image

ar.colton 5 years ago from Vancouver, B.C.

I was just about to write this hub when I found yours :) It's a great one, no need to duplicate. Thanks for all the information! I think book-making is such a fascinating topic!

BeatsMe profile image

BeatsMe 5 years ago Author

Hi ArColton, I agree, book making is a fascinating topic. I guess, though, that it will depend on the person because not everyone will be interested. Some people don't even open up a book. lol!

Thanks for stopping by. :)

Will 4 years ago

Seriously useful! Great article and funny intro.

BeatsMe profile image

BeatsMe 4 years ago Author

Hi Will, thank you so much for dropping by. :)

Sharon 4 years ago

I don't really understand the difference between perfect binding and tape binding. Could you explain it please?

BeatsMe profile image

BeatsMe 4 years ago Author

Hi Sharon, perfect binding uses thermal heat to bind the book. With thermal heating, any documents can be bound perfectly. An example of this kind of binding is the binding that is often used in textbooks.

Tape binding only uses tapes, most likely masking tape to bind thin documents. You could use other kinds of tape like the one described above. An example of this kind of binding is the binding that is used in ledger notebooks or other notebooks that use tape for binding.

Hope this answers your question. Cheers.

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chek101 3 years ago

I do not like the binding I am using for my books. It is the coil type. I designed a craft book that should you pinch the LEFT side of the book pages between your fingers, that left side would then measure at about 1/2 of an inch. If you were to pinch the RIGHT side of the pages between your fingers that side would come out at almost an inch and the reason for this is that there are things glued and/or sewn onto certain pages that protrude in my book.

The first time I had a coil put on my book the coil size chosen (tho I DID like it's fit), when put on made my book pages stay sort've open, not laying flat like pages are supposed to do. And that was because the coil didn't allow for extra room so the pages could relax and lay flat atop each other. So they (Staples) went with the next size which did allow the pages to lay flat BUT I absolutely did not like that next size because it was SO BIG! It just stuck out like a sore thumb to me. I ripped it out and threw it away. What else can I get or do to fix this? Is there a better way?


BeatsMe profile image

BeatsMe 3 years ago Author

Hi Patty, sorry I don't have a solution to your problem. The ones listed here are the only binding types that I know of. I don't even understand why you would have a measurement of 1/2 an inch on one side and then almost an inch on the other side. Couldn't even imagine it without demonstration. Hope you do find help soon within your peers who can see your book.

Anyway, thanks for stopping by and for sharing a type of binding that I still couldn't figure out. :)

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chek101 3 years ago

The coil binding won't work but what about the comb binding? I don't even know where to go to get a comb binding put on my book.

The reason that the pages are thick on the right side and thinner on the left side is because I have items that measure 1/16th of an inch in thickness lined up in a column and GLUED to half the right side pages of the page (9 pages of that btw). There is nothing protruding on the left side of the SAME page. In other words there are 6 columns on one page. Three columns have items glues in the 3 columns on the right side of the page. The left side of this SAME page has 3 columns with just words typed in those 3 columns. This of course will make the left edge (WHEN PINCHED) thinner than the right side. Understand now?

Does this help?


BeatsMe profile image

BeatsMe 3 years ago Author

Sorry Patty, I couldn't be of help to your problem. You look like an expert at this. I guess, you can figure it out yourself, given enough time. Anyway, thanks for introducing a different type of binding. Cheers.

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chek101 3 years ago

Ok then...thanks anyway for your time!


Valentine 3 years ago

hi! thanks a lot for your description about book binding! you have helped me a lot.... may God bless you!

BeatsMe profile image

BeatsMe 3 years ago Author

Hi Valentine, thanks for dropping by and for leaving nice comment. :)

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