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Print Process - It’s everywhere!

It’s on your coffee table; in your freezer; on the

bumper of your car. It can be found on your walls, your doorstep, and on your clothes.
It’s on your mail, in your wallet, and most often in your hands." The commercial printing
industry is one of the largest industries in the United States. According to 2009 data
from the Printing Industry of America, the printing industry employs 909,179 people
among 33,565 establishments with annual sales totaling over $140.7 billion in annual

While the industry accounts for a significant portion of the nations' total volume of goods
and services, it also represents the largest conglomeration of small businesses in the
domestic manufacturing sector. Seventy nine percent of the plants in the industry
employ 19 people or less (PIA 1999 Report to Congress). Most firms in the industry
serve local or regional markets, though some printers and many publishers reach
national and international markets (USIO 1992).

The industry is dominated by five separate and distinct processes, lithography,

letterpress, flexography, gravure, and screen printing. However some of the newer
plate-less technologies are beginning to take hold in the market. Based on 1997 sales
figures lithography accounted 68.5% of the market; screen 9.0%; flexographic 6.4%;
quick printing 5.7%; gravure 5.4%; letterpress 4.5%, and digital printing 0.6%. The
market share is drastically changing as indicated by comparing 1990 sales figures with
these current figures. In 1990 the market share was broken down to lithography 47%,
gravure 19%; flexography 17%; letterpress 11%; and screen printing 3%. (1999 US
Economic Census Repo

positive Printing Press

In order to better understand how technology today impacts society we may look at how
printing press technology impacted literacy and society five hundred years ago. Just as today
another technology, the Internet, is democratizing knowledge and empowering the public by
providing greater access to information. Five hundred years ago when the printing press was
invented there was a shift from laborious manuscript making to a print technology allowing
large numbers of copies of written work to be created quickly, giving greater access to
information and setting the stage for a slow but important transformation of
societal literacy.
The creation of the printing press is a remediation of numerous previous print
technology shifts. Pertaining to writing technology, Bolter defines remediation
when a, newer medium takes place of an older one, borrowing and reorganizing
the characteristics of writing in the older medium and reforming its cultural
space. (Bolter, 2001, p.23) Prior to 1450, before Guttenberg created his version
of a moveable type printing press, there were many examples of writing
remediation where technology shifts were improving on and often eventually
replacing the previous technology. Clay tablets in Mesopotamia gave way to
papyrus scrolls and then to the manuscript codex on parchment or paper. All of
these print technology developments kept improving print, often resulting in the
obsolescence of the prior technology. Guttenberg combined the technologies of
paper, oil based ink and the wine press to create a hybridized technology: the
printing press, allowing mass production of printed books. (Jones, 2000) This then
eventually replaced the need for the hand-scribed manuscript codex.
The printing press gave writing a consistent look and feel. Prior to the invention
of the printing press individual scribes would hand write the text leading to
inconsistent writing and grammar. However, the mechanization of the printing
press achieved more regular spacing and hyphenation of the print. (Bolter,
2001) Also the printing press led to consistent spelling, grammar and
punctuation. (McLuhan, 1962) This consistency of language rules enabled
readers to more easily interpret the authors writing and intentions. Moreover,
this consistency enhanced the overall reading experience. As Rosenblatt writes,
The reader reacts to the words on the page one way rather than another because
he operates according to the same set of rules that the author used to generate
them (Rosenblatt, 1964, p.17)
Over the long term the printing press increased literacy by making print available
to the general public. Prior to the printing press books were very expensive
because it was such a laborious task to hand-scribe a book. This created a
situation where only the elite were able to afford books and thus only a small
percentage of the population knew how to read and write. With the invention of
the printing press, better quality of books were published and since they were
able to be mass produced, the expense was reduced, making books more
affordable to the general public. It is estimated that by 1500 there werefifteen to
twenty million copies of 30,000 to 35,000 separate publications. (McLuhan, 1962,
The printing press had a positive impact on educational practices. McLuhan
stated that the printed book was a new visual aid available to all students and it
rendered the older education obsolete. The book was literally a teaching machine
where the manuscript was a crude teaching tool only. (McLuhan, 1962, p.145)
Referring to what a 16th century skeptical school administrator would have said
regarding the transformation of education to the printed book McLuhan states,
Could a portable, private instrument like the new book take the place of the book
one made by hand and memorized as one made it? Could a book which could be
read quickly and even silently take the place of a book read slowly? Could
students trained by such printed books measure up to the skilled orators and
disputants produced by manuscript means?" (McLuhan, 1962, p.145)
The printing press transformed learning. It transformed the relationship between
teacher and student and the way research was undertaken. Previous relations
between masters and disciples were altered. Students who took full advantage of
technical texts which served as silent instructors. Young minds provided with
updated editions, especially of mathematical texts began to surpass not only their
own elders but the wisdom of ancients as well." (Eisenstein, 1979, p. 689). There
was also a change in the way students researched and wrote. In the new print
era, scholarly writing came to be viewed as authorship of original material, and
scholarly reading came to mean the gathering, comprehending, and making use of
information from a variety of sources, thus laying the basis for modern
scholarship. (Eisenstein, 1979)
Many writers credit the printing press as a catalyst for the profound societal and
cultural transformations that began to occur in the 16th century. The printing
press provided people with a new communication medium thus allowing political
and religious views to be disseminated widely. According to McLuhan the printing
press was responsible for the Industrial revolution, the rise of nationalism in
Europe, and the use of perspectivity in art. (McLuhan, 1962) Eisenstein regards
the printing press as an agent for the development of the Renaissance, the
Protestant Reformation, and the rise of modern scientific thought. (Jensen, 2001)
The technology shift from the manuscript to the printing press increased literacy
by reducing the expense of publishing books and making the process less time
and labour intensive. Printing press technology altered education by making
available books that
plate making
The basic principle of lithography, otherwise known as offset printing, is based on the
fact that ink and water don't mix. Early lithographers etched
images onto a plate or flat stone, applied ink and transferred
the image. Although there are different types (e.g., sheetfed and webfed) and sizes of
offset presses, the basic configuration remains the same. When the printing plate is
exposed, an ink-receptive coating is activated, creating theimage area. On the press,
the plate is dampened, first by dampening rollers, then by ink rollers. Ink adheres to
the image area and fountain solution sticks to the non-image area. As the cylinders
rotate, the image is transferred to the blanket. Paper or another substrate is then
placed in contact with the blanket and the image is transferred.

While there are significant variations in the process, this etool attempts to simplify the
overall operation into three broad categories. First, pre-press will include everything
needed to develop an image from the idea stage to a plate that can be used in a
printing press. Second, the press stage will include both sheetfed and webfed processes
and will include all tasks from loading raw substrate (usually paper) into the press to
the finished product being removed from the press. Finally, finishing and binding will
include those processes used to further process the printed material into a finished

Potential hazards and possible solutions for the following tasks are covered below.

plate pros sing

ANDRITZ Filter press, side-bar and overhead design
Machine design
The basic components of a filter press are the frame, filter plate pack, closing device, and
optional additional features. The filter press frame structure is available in two versions: the
side-bar and the overhead beam designs. The size of
the filter press is defined by the dimensions of the filter
plate. We manufacture filter presses in sizes 250 x 250
to 2,600 x 2,600 mm and filtration pressures up to 60

Side-bar design
 from simple manual to fully automated equipment
 maximum degree of automation, also with extremely
sticky filter cake
 comparatively low structure weight

Overhead beam design

 free access to the plate pack
 special design for the chemical industry (maximum corrosion protection), also suitable for very
aggressive media
 solid structure for severe operating conditions
 Filter press types
Chamber filter presses
Chamber filter presses are reliable and robust in many different applications. The plate pack
consists of uniform chamber plates with a recess of 15-50 mm to receive the filter cake. The
standard material for chamber plates is polypropylene. Possible operating pressures: 6 bar, 15
bar and 30 bar.

Membrane filter presses

Membrane filter plates are designed just like the chamber plates described above. A flexible
membrane is fixed to the support body. Materials for the membranes include polypropylene,
synthetic rubber (e.g. NBR, EPDM), or thermoplastic elastomer (TPE). Special materials are
also available, such as PVDF. The membrane is impermeable and compresses the cake within
the chamber after the filtration process is complete. Liquid or gas (compressed air) can be used
as membrane inflation media. In order to guarantee maximum protection for the membrane filter
press, we use special safety systems for the various membrane inflation media. Inflation
pressures up to 30 bar are possible, and in special cases even higher.

Plate & frame filter presses - sheet filters

The chambers of this type of filter press are formed by combining polypropylene filter plates and
frames. This creates chambers of 5-40 mm, depending on frame thickness. Plate and frame
type filter presses are suitable for pre-coating filtration, which in the beverage industry is used
for clear filtration. ANDRITZ supplies plate and frame type filter presses for operating pressures
up to 6 bar.

Accessories - modular system

Due to the multiple requirements for both industrial and municipal applications, ANDRITZ
produces modular design filter presses with a large variety of equipment components. Modular
systems for semi-automatic and fully automatic filter presses:

Plant design/engineering

Filter presses provide a volume reduction of statically pre-thickened slurries of industrial or

municipal origin that is both efficient and also makes sense economically. In addition to filter
presses, ANDRITZ supplies a wide range of plant components or designs complete customized
systems. Stationary and mobile plants:

Maintaining a clean environment, production of food and beverages, and development of
essential medicines require filters that separate solids from liquids. ANDRITZ offers filter
presses for a wide variety of applications and industries, ranging from treatment of wastewater
sludge and drinking water, the food and beverage industry, the chemical industry, pharmacy
and mining, to paper production. Applications include:
 chemicals and pigments
 metallurgical products and ores
 minerals and inorganic products/mining

 pasting
Have you ever received a financial statement in the mail, perhaps a short (8- to 16-
page) prospectus for a mutual fund, and noticed that it was not saddle stitched,
perfect bound, or bound in any other usual way? The nested pages just stuck
together and didn’t fall apart. This is called paste-binding, and for the
right commercial printing jobs it’s a wonderful way to save money and time.
The Usual Binding Methods
Usually, when you’re producing a short publication, you will saddle stitch the
printed product. That is, you will bind it with staples through the fold, and all the
pages will stay together. This is good for printed products up to about 80 or 96
pages (depending on the weight of the press sheet). In some cases (usually
magazines printed on relatively light text stock), you may even see saddle stitching
done on much longer printed products, although there’s always the possibility that
pages will fall out if you try to saddle stitch too long a print book, magazine, or
catalog. (Your printer can provide you with guidelines pertaining to his specific
binding equipment.)
Another way you might bind a short publication is to side stitch the printed product.
Like saddle stitching, this uses lengths of binding wire (that look like staples), but
these are inserted down through the pages rather than sideways through the fold.
When to Request Paste Binding
If your printed product fits the following requirements, consider the alternative of
paste binding instead:

1. Your booklet is very short (say 8, 12, or 16 pages)

2. It is printed on a thin paper stock (like 50# or 60# text–or an even thinner
3. Your press run is long enough to require a web press (a roll-fed press instead
of a sheetfed press)

What Is Paste Binding?

If you are printing press signatures on a heatset or coldset web press that will later
be saddle stitched, this process requires two separate operations. The web press
delivers folded signatures, but these must then be transported to the finishing
department. Here they can be saddle stitched and trimmed into your final product
on equipment separate from the printing press.
In contrast, if your printed product is short enough for paste binding, a pasting unit
on the web press itself will apply a bead of glue to the fold of your printed product
and then seat the successive pages of the print job on this glue. This can be done
for products with 8, 12, or 16 pages. Beyond this number, the glued pages won’t
stay together and might fall apart.
So you can visualize this paste-binding process, on a heatset web press there are
four or more inking units through which the roll of commercial printing paper
travels. These inking units are followed by an oven that flash-dries the solvent and
binders in the ink so the pigment of the ink will sit up on the surface of the paper.
After this, the paper travels through the chill rollers, which reduce the temperature
of the heated paper and complete the ink-setting process. It is at this point (just
before the delivery end of the press) that the folding, pasting, and trimming
processes occur, delivering stacks of complete printed and bound booklets for the
press operators to carton pack.
The bottom line is that the printed products coming off the web press are collated,
paste-bound, folded, and trimmed into finished products ready for use. And all of
this happens in a single pass through the web offset press.
The substantial cost savings and time savings make this process especially
attractive. Obviously, the actual savings will depend on the length of your press
run, the number of pages comprising your booklet, and such, but you won’t be
paying for a separate finishing operation. This will save you makeready costs on the
binding equipment (perhaps $500 or more, plus the run length cost—the price per
M—which might be several hundred dollars or more). This could add up to a
material savings. And bypassing the finishing department will shorten the
production schedule.
The Main Determining Factor
Remember, this is not a panacea. Not all jobs will qualify. Your job has to fit on a
heatset or coldset web press (i.e., it has to have a long press run). It has to
comprise only a few pages (8, 12, 16). And the paper must be relatively thin.

One of the most important functions in the printing process
is prepress production. This stage makes sure that all files are correctly
processed in preparation for printing. This includes converting to the
proper CMYK color model, finalizing the files, and creating plates for each
color of the job to be run on the press.
Offset lithography is one of the most common ways of creating printed
materials. A few of its common applications include: newspapers,
magazines, brochures, stationery, and books. Compared to other printing
methods, offset printing is best suited for economically producing large
volumes of high quality prints in a manner that requires little
maintenance.[7] Many modern offset presses use computer-to-plate systems
as opposed to the older computer-to-film work flows, which further
increases their quality.
Advantages of offset printing compared to other printing methods include:
 consistent high image quality. Offset printing produces sharp and clean
images and type more easily than, for example, letterpress printing; this
is because the rubber blanket conforms to the texture of the printing
 quick and easy production of printing plates;
 longer printing plate life than on direct litho presses because there is no
direct contact between the plate and the printing surface. Properly
developed plates used with optimized inks and fountain solution may
achieve run lengths of more than a million impressions;
 cost. Offset printing is the cheapest method for producing high quality
prints in commercial printing quantities;
 ability to adjust the amount of ink on the fountain roller with screw keys.
Most commonly, a metal blade controls the amount of ink transferred
from the ink trough to the fountain roller. By adjusting the screws, the
operator alters the gap between the blade and the fountain roller,
increasing or decreasing the amount of ink applied to the roller in certain
areas. This consequently modifies the density of the colour in the
respective area of the image. On older machines one adjusts the screws
manually, but on modern machines the screw keys are operated
electronically by the printer controlling the machine, enabling a much
more precise result.[8]
Disadvantages of offset printing compared to other printing methods

 slightly inferior image quality compared

to rotogravure or photogravure printing;
 propensity for anodized aluminum printing plates to become sensitive
(due to chemical oxidation) and print in non-image–background areas
when developed plates are not cared for properly;
 time and cost associated with producing plates and printing press setup.
As a result, very small quantity printing jobs may now use digital offset
Every printing technology has its own identifying marks, as does offset
printing. In text reproduction, the type edges are sharp and have clear
outlines. The paper surrounding the ink dots is usually unprinted. The
halftone dots are always hexagonal though there are different screening

Offset printing process[edit]

Side view of the offset printing process. Multiple ink rollers are used to distribute and
homogenize the ink.[10]

The most common kind of offset printing is derived from the photo offset
process, which involves using light-sensitive chemicals
andphotographic techniques to transfer images and type from original
materials to printing plates. In current use, original materials may be an
actual photographic print and typeset text. However, it is more common—
with the prevalence of computers and digital images—that the source
material exists only as data in a digital publishing system.
Offset printing process consists of several parts:

 the inking system (ink fountain and ink rollers);

 the dampening system (water fountain and water rollers);
 the plate cylinder;
 the offset cylinder (or blanket cylinder);
 the impression cylinder.
In this process, ink is transferred from the ink fountain to the paper in
several steps:
1. The inking and dampening systems deliver ink and water onto the
offset plate covering the plate cylinder.
2. The plate cylinder transfers the ink onto the blanket covering the
offset cylinder.
3. The paper is then pressed against the offset cylinder by the
impression cylinder, transferring the ink onto the paper to form the
printed image.

Final print
igital printing refers to methods of printing from a digital-based image
directly to a variety of media.[1] It usually refers to professional printing
where small-run jobs from desktop publishing and other digital sources
are printed using large-format and/or high-volume laser or inkjet printers.
Digital printing has a higher cost per page than more traditional offset
printing methods, but this price is usually offset by avoiding the cost of all
the technical steps required to make printing plates. It also allows for on-
demand printing, short turnaround time, and even a modification of the
image (variable data) used for each impression.[2] The savings in labor
and the ever-increasing capability of digital presses means that digital
printing is reaching the point where it can match or supersede offset
printing technology's ability to produce larger print runs of several
thousand sheets at a low price.[3]

Large format digital printer.

The greatest difference between digital

printing and traditional methods such
as lithography, flexography,gravure,
or letterpress is that there is no need to replace printing plates in digital
printing, whereas in analog printing the plates are repeatedly replaced.
This results in quicker turnaround time and lower cost when using digital
printing, but typically a loss of some fine-image detail by most
commercial digital printing processes. The most popular methods
include inkjet or laser printers that deposit pigment or toner onto a wide
variety of substrates including paper, photo paper, canvas, glass, metal,
marble, and other substances.

In many of the processes, the ink or toner does not permeate the
substrate, as does conventional ink, but forms a thin layer on the surface
that may be additionally adhered to the substrate by using a fuser fluid
with heat process (toner) or UV curing process (ink).
Digital printing methods of note[edit]
Fine art inkjet printing

Fine art digital inkjet printing is printing from a computer image file
directly to an inkjet printer as a final output. It evolved from digital
proofing technology from Kodak, 3M, and other major manufacturers,
with artists and other printers trying to adapt these dedicated prepress
proofing machines to fine-art printing. There was experimentation with
many of these types of printers, the most notable being the IRIS printer,
initially adapted to fine-art printing by programmer David Coons, and
adopted for fine-art work by Graham Nash at his Nash Editions printing
company in 1991.[4] Initially, these printers were limited to glossy papers,
but the IRIS Graphics printer allowed the use of a variety of papers that
included traditional and non-traditional media. The IRIS printer was the
standard for fine art digital printmaking for many years, and is still in use
today, but has been superseded by large-format printers from other
manufacturers such as Epson and HP that use fade-resistant, archival
inks (pigment-based, as well as newer solvent-based inks), and archival
substrates specifically designed for fine-art printing.[5][6]

Substrates in fine art inkjet printmaking include traditional fine-art papers

such as Rives BFK, Arches watercolor paper, treated and untreated
canvas, experimental substrates (such as metal and plastic), and fabric.

Digital Printing Press

For artists making reproductions of their original work, inkjet printing is

more expensive on a per-print basis than the traditional four-coloroffset
lithography, but with inkjet printing the artist does not have to pay for the
expensive printing-plate setup or the marketing and storage needed for
large four-color offset print runs. Inkjet reproductions can be printed and
sold individually in accordance with demand. Inkjet printing has the
added advantage of allowing artists to take total control of the production
of their images, including the final color correction and the substrates
being used, with some artists owning and operating their own printers.

Digital inkjet printing also allows for the output of digital art of all types as
finished pieces or as an element in a further art piece. Experimental
artists often add texture or other media to the surface of a final print, or
use it as part of a mixed-media work. Many terms for the process have
been used over the years, including "digigraph" and "giclée". Thousands
of print shops and digital printmakers now offer services to painters,
photographers, and digital artists around the world.
Digital laser exposure onto traditional photographic paper[edit]

Digital images are exposed onto true, light sensitive photographic

paper with lasers and processed in photographic developers and fixers.
These prints are true photographs and have continuous tone in the
image detail. The archival quality of the print is as high as the

For magazines, books,… large press sheets need to be folded into
signatures. This involves a series of right-angle folds in which the sheet is
folded multiple times. Folding a sheet once makes four pages, two right-
angle folds make eight pages,…
Other types of work require parallel folds in which two or more folds which
are oriented in the same direction are made in a sheet. This is typically
done for leaflets or brochures. Some common types of folds are:

 the half fold

 the accordion fold
 the gatefold
 the French fold
 the letter fold

There are two common types of folding machines: the knife folder, also
known as a right-angle folder, and the buckle folder. In general knife folders
are used for heavier stocks, while buckle folders are used for lighter paper

Folding largely completes postpress operations for certain products such

as simple folded pamphlets. Other products are folded into bunches, known
as signatures, of from 16 to 32 pages. Multiple signatures are then
assembled and bound into books and magazines. Though folding is
generally considered a postpress operation, most lithographic and gravure
web presses are equipped with folders.

Three different folders are used in modern print shops. They range in
complexity from the bone folder to the buckle folder. Bone folders have
been used for centuries and are made of either bone or plastic. These
folders are simple shaped pieces of bone or plastic that are passed over
the fold to form a sharp crease. Today, they continue to be used, but only
for small, very high quality jobs.

Knife folders use a thin knife to force the paper between two rollers that are
counter-rotating. This forces the paper to be folded at the point where the
knife contacts it. A fold gauge and a moveable side bar are used to position
the paper in the machine before the knife forces the paper between the
rollers. The rollers have knurled surfaces that grip the paper and crease it.
The paper then passes out of the folder and on to a gathering station.
Several paper paths, knives and roller sets can be stacked to create
several folds on the same sheet as it passes from one folding station to

Buckle folders differ from knife folders in that the sheet is made to buckle
and pass between the two rotating rollers of its own accord. In a buckle
folder, drive rollers cause the sheet to pass between a set of closely
spaced folding plates. When the sheet comes in contact with the sheet
gauge, the drive rollers continue to drive the paper causing it to buckle over
and then pass between the folding rollers.

Self-covers are made from the same
material as the body of the printed
product. Newspapers are the most
common example of a printed product
that uses self-covers. Soft covers are
made from paper or paper fiber material
that is somewhat heavier or more
substantial than the paper used for the
body of the publication. This type of cover
provides only slight protection for the
contents. Unlike self-cover, soft covers
almost never contain part of the message
or text of the publication. A typical example of the soft cover is found on
paper-back books. These covers are usually cut flush with the inside pages
and attached to the signatures by glue, though they can also be sewn in

Casebound covers are the rigid covers generally associated with high-
quality bound books. This method of covering is considerably more
complicated than any of the other methods. Signatures are trimmed by a
three-knife trimming machine to produce three different lengths of
signature. This forms a rounded front (open) edge to give the finished book
an attractive appearance and provides a back edge shape that is
compatible with that of the cover. A backing is applied by clamping the
book in place and splaying or mushrooming out the fastened edges of the
signatures. This makes the rounding operation permanent and produces a
ridge for the casebound cover.

Gauze and strips of paper are then glued to the back edge in a process
called lining-up. The gauze is known as "crash" and the paper strips are
called "backing paper." These parts are eventually glued to the case for
improved strength and stability. Headbands are applied to the head and tail
of the book for decorative purposes. The case is made of two pieces of
thick board, called binder's board, that is glued to the covering cloth or
leather. The covering material can be printed either before or after gluing
by hot-stamping or screen methods. The final step in case binding consists
of applying end sheets to attach the case to the body of the book.

The machine typically used for cutting large web-type
substrates into individual pages or sheets is called a
guillotine cutter or "paper cutter". These machines are
built in many sizes, capacities, and configurations. In
general, however, the cutter consists of a flat bed or
table that holds the stack of paper to be cut. At the rear of the cutter the
stack of paper rests against the fence or back guide which is adjustable.
The fence allows the operator to accurately position the paper for the
specified cut. The side guides or walls of the cutter are at exact right angles
to the bed. A clamp is lowered into contact with the top of the paper stack
to hold the stack in place while it is cut. The cutting blade itself is normally
powered by an electric engine operating a hydraulic pump. However,
manual lever cutters are also still in use.

To assist the operator in handling large reams of paper which can weigh as
much as 200 pounds, some tables are designed to blow air through small
openings in the bed of the table. The air lifts the stack of paper slightly
providing a near frictionless surface on which to move the paper stack.

The cutter operator uses a cutting layout to guide the cutting operation.
Typically, the layout is one sheet from the printing job that has been ruled
to show the location and order of the cuts to be made. Though cutting is
generally considered a postpress operation, most lithographic and gravure
web presses have integrated cutters as well as equipment to perform
related operations such as slicing and perforating.

Adhesive binding, also known as padding, is the simplest form of binding. It
is used for note pads and paperback books, among other products. In the
adhesive binding process, a pile of paper is clamped securely together in a
press. A liquid glue is then applied with a brush to the binding edge. The
glue most commonly used in binding is a water-soluble latex that becomes
impervious to water when it dries.

For note pads, the glue used is flexible and will easily release an individual
sheet of paper when the sheet is pulled away from the binding. Adhesive
bindings are also used for paperback books, but these bindings must be
strong enough to prevent pages from pulling out during normal use. For
paperback book binding, a hot-melt glue with much greater adhesive
strength than a water-soluble latex is applied. A piece of gauze-like
material is inserted into the glue to provide added strength.

In side binding, a fastening device is passed at a right angle through a pile

of paper. Stapling is an example of a simple form of side binding. The three
other types of side binding are mechanical, loose-leaf, and side-sewn

A common example of a form of mechanical binding is the metal spiral

notebook. In this method of binding, a series of holes are punched or drilled
through the pages and cover and then a wire is then run through the holes.
Mechanical binding is generally considered as permanent; however, plastic
spiral bindings are available that can be removed without either tearing the
pages or destroying the binding material. Mechanical binding generally
requires some manual labor.

Looseleaf bindings generally allow for the removal and addition of pages.
This type of binding includes the well known three-ring binder.

Side-sewn binding involves drilling an odd number of holes in the binding

edge of the unit and then clamping the unit to prevent it from moving. A
needle and thread is then passed through each hole proceeding from one
end of the book to the other and then back again to the beginning point.
This type of stitch is called a buck-stitch. The thread is tied off to finish the
process. Both semiautomatic and automatic machines are widely used to
perform side-stitching. The main disadvantage of this type of binding is that
the book will not lie flat when opened.

In saddle binding one or more signatures are fastened along their folded
edge of the unit. The term saddle binding comes from an open signature's
resemblance to an inverted riding saddle. Saddle binding is used
extensively for news magazines where wire stitches are placed in the fold
of the signatures. Most saddle stitching is performed automatically in-line
during the postpress operations. Large manually operated staplers are
used for small printing jobs.
Another saddle binding process called Smythe sewing is a center sewing
process. It is considered to be the highest quality fastening method used
today and will produce a book that will lie almost flat.

1. ^ Jump up to:a b c d Letterpress Printing. Encyclopædia Britannica.
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