What is American-style binding?

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Anne Murray

Among the many types of bindings that are available, the American-style binding is one of the most famous . Despite its considerable antiquity, it is a practice that is still used today in the world of book publishing and other types of documents. It is used, for example, when binding a doctoral thesis or producing large books or books .The following is a discussion of all aspects of the history and production process of this type of binding.

First of all, it is pertinent to situate it in relation to the history of bookbinding. Generally speaking, two major stages can be distinguished in this history, that of classical or manual binding, and that of bookbinding.The dividing line between the two was established in the 19th century, with the arrival of new technologies that made the production of books and written documents faster, cheaper and more widespread. As a result, the book lost value as an object of worship while old copies progressively gained historical value.

The American-style binding, although it acquiredits heyday during the industrial era , it has many purely handcrafted components.

What exactly is American-style binding?

It is a type of binding characterized by gluing the pages of the document directly onto a spine . From the outset, the glue holds the pages together. As for the spine, it belongs to a cover.It can therefore be said that this is a binding process of low complexity compared to others, such as Japanese binding or Coptic binding, which involve subtle stitching.

To carry out this process, there are certain tools that automate it . One of these would be the gluing machines andThe main problem in the long term, however, is that it is not very durable, which is why it is mainly used for the production of paperbacks and low-cost books.

Different options of glued bindingbound

Although this binding is a no-sew binding, it has several variants. One of them is to distribute the sheets of the document in booklets or not. If you choose the first option, the document is simply distributed in groups of sheets at the time of gluing. If you choose not to use booklets, the document is consolidated as a bundle of sheets.sheets.

This binding is ideal for documents of small volume or occasional consultation .

How American style binding is done step by step

As mentioned above, this type of binding can have a large handmade component .In any case, if the best results are sought, it is important that this type of binding becarried out by a professional company.

Binding of a thesis

As already explained, American binding is usually a very popular option . However, to avoid the fragility and possible long-term expiration of this binding, there is the possibility of converting this process to that of a stitched binding. In this way, the final resultSince it is a doctoral thesis, an object of frequent consultation, this addition is highly recommended.

All in all, the American binding is appropriate for volumes that are not too large or for occasional consultation.

I am Anne Murray and I have been learning the craft of bookbinding since 2006. I have taken classes from several well-known paper and book artists and craftsmen and have also worked on my own to develop my skills. I like to think of my skill development in terms of the language of medieval crafts guilds: I have definitely moved beyond apprentice, but am still in the 'journeyman' stage. I expect one day soon to earn the title of master craftsman.