Binding books, catalogues and brochures | Quality Printing London

21 March 2013

Solways offer specialist finishing processes associated with quality book production  such as;  foil blocking, embossing, die-cutting, duplexing and bespoke watermarked paper.

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This week we have been discussing the merits of the various binding processes specifically; perfect binding,PUR binding and thread sewing as combinations.

These three processes bind the text pages to the cover.

Perfect binding uses a glue called ethylene vinyl adhesive (EVA). PUR binding uses a glue called polyurethane glue hence the initials PUR in the description. The key differences between the two glues are ones of adhesion, with PUR being the stronger of the two by 50% and price with the PUR glue being more expensive by approximately 33%.

Lastly the thread sewing process can be added so that the text page sections are effectively sewen together prior to the binding process. This when combined with the PUR binding makes for the most robust publication providing longevity and resistant to reader book abuse!

For both EVA and PUR gluing processes that do not use thread sewing, the page spine edges are scored to allow for the glue to penetrate the text pages thus adding strength to the spine and text during the bonding process.

The problems that one encounters with these types of binding are ones of page fallout and a lack of lay flat characteristics. PUR, as well as being stronger, has better properties to reduce the likelihood of page fall out and being a softer and thinner glue has improved lay flat properties over EVA.

The key to deciding which processes to use is to look at print specification and combine this with the type of use for each publication. For example a monthly price catalogue printed on uncoated material, that is accessed only a handful of times, would be fine using the cheaper of the option, EVA glue. However if this price catalogue is to be accessed 50 times during each working day then stronger glue would be needed, PUR glue would tolerate the increased handling. If the price catalogue would then become part of a back-issue library that would be retained for occasional use over the next twenty years then the thread sewing option would be recommended. It should be noted that the minimum book thickness for this process is 4mm to retain the correct format with good edging and solid spine. Our team of skilled craftsmen at Solways Printers are on hand to respond to your top quality printing enquiries.

I hope that this has been helpful. Posted by Tim Solway

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