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SPIRAL WIRE & PLASTIC COIL BINDING -- Better Than Perfect?

March 2002
BY CHRIS BAUER


Just ask a manufacturer of spiral wire or plastic coil binding equipment the advantages that their products have over other finishing techniques, and you will get a laundry list of answers. Sure, some of the benefits they will give you will be self-promoting marketing speak, but this kind of horn tooting has to be expected. But, on the other hand, some of the attributes spiral wire and plastic coil binding gear give to a finishing specialist certainly are practical for some applications.

"Undoubtedly, the greatest advantage of spiral binding is that when opened, the book lays flat," explains David Spiel of Long Island City, NY-based Spiel Associates. "Lay-flat perfect binding was supposed to put an end to mechanical binding, but it hasn't because it doesn't really lay flat. Books bound with plastic coil, spiral and double-loop wire can also be folded over for easier use."

Many Uses

Books that need to lay flat such as cookbooks, manuals and maps are perfect applications for spiral binding, says Spiel. "It is also ideal to use double-loop wire when facing pages need to correspond to each other either with graphics or charts. Mechanically bound books, especially plastic coil, are very durable."

Spiel Associates offers the Sterling Coilmaster II, an in-line, plastic coil binding system. According to Spiel, it is the only automatic plastic coil inserter that will bind books with round or oval holes. It allows the user to punch normal margins from the head and foot of the book. One operator can create coil and bind books at speeds up to 700 books per hour.

Bill Francis, national sales manager at James Burn International in Poughkeepsie, NY, reports the Wire-O and UniCoil plastic spiral products that his company offers both provide "lay-flat" capabilities in that they can be opened to a specific page and will stay open. This binding method also allows for 360-degree page turning and, for presentation documents, "they offer an upscale look that enhances the presentation," he notes.

The BB500 semi-automatic Wire-O binder features speeds of up to 1,200 books per hour. Most settings are variable and controllable through a PLC keypad. It will bind flush cut, overhanging and wraparound covers, as well as extended index tabs.

On the plastic side, James Burn offers the UniCoil CB30 automatic coil inserter, which automatically inserts, cuts and crimps both ends of UniCoil plastic coil elements. It is a floor model with foot pedal operation, variable speed coil feed and quick loading coil. The CB30 can bind up to 500 books per hour.
 

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