After talking about soft and hard cover books and coffee table books, I want to look into wiro binding and spiral binding and their pros and cons today. First, what is this type of binding usually used for? Wiro and spiral binding is used for books like atlases, notebooks, diaries, map books, note pads, desk calendars, documents, booklets and dissertations, and even for some types of brochures or catalogs – basically any publication which requires it to be opened and even folded on itself without having to contend with a stiff spine.
Wiro binding is the most popular kind of commercial binding for books. It is also known as Wire-o, double loop, twin loop wire, double-o, wirebrand and ring wire binding. Wiro binding uses separate loops made of wire that are looped through individual holes punched along the edge of the book. Each spine is then squeezed together with a wire closer so that the ends meet to form a ring.
- Great for note books and easel-type products like desk calendars.
- The pages and cover can be folded back on each other through 360 degrees without the spine getting damaged.
- Pages turn easily, and lie flat when book is opened.
- Different types and thicknesses of paper can be added.
- Wiro biding eats into margins, so margins of 1-1.5 cm are required for the spine so art work has to be complete before publication.
- Generally not viable for books that are over 2.5cm thick
- Finished product may not look as sophisticated as it would if other binding was used.
- The spine can be damaged if something heavy falls is kept on it.
Spiral binding, also known as coil binding, coilbind, spiral coil, colorcoil, color coil, plastic coil, plastikoil and ez-coil is generally used for reports, documents, proposals and presentations. Spiral binding uses mostly plastic coil, but sometimes metal is also used. Spiral binding uses an unbroken piece of wire coil that is locked at the ends after being passed through holes punched in the book.
- The pages can be opened 180 degrees, and can also be folded over.
- Can be produced manually for small orders and by machine for bigger ones.
- Coils come in a variety of colors and sizes to accommodate the smallest or largest item.
- Can contain as large or low a number of pages as required.
- Excellent for products that use tabbed dividers, like organizers.
- Spiralbinding is more economical.
- Is durable as coil tends to spring back into original shape even if pulled or crushed.
- Pages can get caught in the coil and tear easily.
- Because the spirals are set diagonally, the pages tend not to align properly.
- Unlike wiro binding, pages are hard to add or remove once the coil is inserted.
Wiro is versatile and has been around for many years, yet doesn’t looked old and dated. I find wiro bound products like diaries, notebooks and calendars very hardy. Spiral binding is safer for children however, so I get storybooks and notebook that spiral binding.