The binding process is certainly a fine art if one gets to witness any binding techniques. The advancement of technology has led to specialized methods that are used today for the binding process. In ancient days, the binding process was mostly a handcrafted system. But today, there are industries which are capable of delivering thousands of bound books using heavy weight equipment. Some of the best binding companies in the world have a systematic streamlined process which works very efficiently in producing high quality books in a limited time frame.
These companies, having survived in this business for a long period of time, are arriving at perfecting the arts of bookbinding and printing. There are several forms of bookbinding and printing that are available today. Each of them is classified according to the process that is used. There are unique binding processes such as the Saddle stitching and case binding. The perfect binding printing process follows a series of procedure in order to finish the binding process.
The perfect binding printing line is a six step process that is followed to arrive at a finished product. The first step of this process is called the gathering. Once all the content of a book is printed in the required format it then has to be placed in sequential order. The gatherer is a pocket like equipment that holds the papers of the book in the required sequential order. In case of any additional inserts it is stored separately and later inserted in appropriate order. Once all the signature paper is put together this book pile it is said to be on the book block.
The next step in the process of perfect binding printing is using the Backbone Cutter. The book block that was gathered in to one by the gatherer now has to be cut on the edges squarely in order for proper alignment and to apply adhesive on the spine of the book block. During most times the edges of the book block is roughened so that the adhesive is applied effectively to the surface. Generally in binding mill knives, saw or shredders are used for cutting away the edges of the book block. There are other methods to follow where certain G shaped grooves are cut on the surface for binding purpose.
Once the spine has been cut and the book block is gathered it is now time to apply glue to the surface of the book. The clamped book is now carried over to the gluing station which has stationed applicator wheels that force the glue content onto the surface of the book block. Sometimes multiple glue pots are used on a surface by surface method. The thicker the publication is the more number of adhesive layers is used. In the perfect binding printing process hot melt adhesives are used such as the forms of resins and polymers which are a fluid content when applied on the book surface and later tend to become solid as the temperature cools down.
Once the adhesive has been applied to the book block surface the Cover Feeder comes into act wherein the cover is applied to the book block. The cover is pressed well enough on the backbone so that it becomes durable. The clamps are used to press the surface of the book in all sides so that it is bound well to the cover and itself. Immediately after this is the trimming process wherein a Trimmer is used to cut on the edges of the book to make it squarely even and make sure that the book comes out in good shape.
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