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Perfect Binding Tips

Graphic Finishing Services has a list of perfect binding tips that can help you with the Dos and Don’ts of your Perfect Binding projects.

Making mistakes in the planning process can be a nightmare for you and your perfect binding vendor. Below is a list of the most common mistakes made in the planning process.

  1.  Covers are the wrong grain

    The grain of your cover stock should run parallel to the spine. Covers that are wrong grain tend to crack on the backbone scores and do not have a square-looking spine.

  2. Signatures or pages on the wrong grain

    Books that are wrong grain can have many problems. Books that are bound with Hot Melt adhesives are difficult to open or lay properly and have a lack of durability. Users push the book open to read the copy in the spine area, in turn this weakens the book even more: pages fall out or weak page pulls occur. PUR Adhesive will bond to cross grain stocks. Graphic Finishing Services binds all books with cross grain stocks with PUR Adhesive for durability and peace of mind.

  3. Stepping the covers in the prep department

    The covers should be 1/16” longer for the head trim and 1/8” longer for the foot trim. The covers when stripped should be stepped ¼” longer than the longest signature to eliminate backbone glue adhering to the nipper station and transferring spine glue to the next book.

  4. Determining spine thickness

    It is best to create a dummy using the same paper stock to be printed. Hot Melt glues do not adhere well to inks or coated surfaces but PUR Adhesive does.

  5. Page layout is very important

    Books with 2 or 4 pages in the layout should be placed in the middle of the book. If the 2 or 4 page signature falls in the front or back of the book it will cause problems. The weight of the book traveling down the gathering line causes the signature to collapse and wrinkle, creating excess spoilage and extra machine time to complete the project. Place your 16-page or larger signatures to the outside of the book.

  6. In the Planning stage

    Photos or solid ink coverage that runs to the gutter of the book should be knocked out. Ink does not adhere to the spine of Hot Melt Adhesive, causing a poor page pull or even the pages to fall out. PUR Adhesive can save a company from costly reprints because it adheres to solid ink coverage if the knock out was missed.

  7. When folding

    It is best if you perforate the backbone of each signature. This allows the book to lay flat when entering the binder and the milling station. Make sure you use the correct perf to eliminate the backbones from breaking open.

  8. Planning for the percentage of allowable overs

    It is best to run a few more covers than signatures. You can always rebind books to make count.

  9. Reply cards, tabs, maps, foldouts, cover flap or any other special requirements

    These options should be discussed with your Graphic Finishing Services Representative in the planning stage to avoid costly mistakes. The benefits of partnering with your GFS team before the project is printed makes everyone’s life a little easier.