How do I bind Half-Sized Documents?

posted this on Jul 24, 2015

Working with paper that’s half sized can be tricky and yet many organizations prefer this size for their training manuals and documentation. Well, guess what, you can bind smaller documents using the exact same materials and machines that you use to create regular sized documents. You just need to make sure the materials are the right size and that your binding machine is up to the task. Read on for more details.

1.) First, make sure your binding machine can punch holes on the long side of an half size sheet of paper. You may need to adjust the pins on your machine to do this. This is a vital step because if there are too many (or not enough) dies punching your paper, you will end up with half a hole on the edge of your paper. If your machine lacks releasable punching pins, you may need to seek out a different machine.

2.) Now that you know if your machine is capable of handling this size of paper, you’ll need to get binding spines that are eight and a half inches in length. That is not always as easy. Here are some hints for finding the supplies that you need:Maroon 15 Ring Plastic Binding Comb

  • Twelve-inch color coil elements can be cut to measure nine inches. This is the ideal length for half-letter sized documents. However, you will need to be careful during the crimping process (you will only have an extra 1/2″ to work with instead of the standard 1″). If you don’t want to spend a huge ammount of time cutting coils, you can order them in 9″ lengths to save time and reduce waste.
  • Plastic combs are available in lengths for half letter sized binding. This might be a good choice for your project. These spines have 15-rings instead of the standard nineteen used for eleven inch documents.
  • As with the spiral coil, twin-loop wire spines can be cut down to the needed length. You can use a pair of very small wire cutters to achieve this. However, this can be difficult and you may want to consider ordering spines that are pre-cut to the correct length for your documents.
  • GBC Proclick & Zipbind spines can be cut down for half sized binding. You can also order these spines in half letter lengths to save time.
  • Finally, Velobind strips are available in a 8.5″ length. These strips can be used with Velobind Systems One, Two, and Three.
3.) Next, you’ll need paper and binding coversfor your booklet. Both clear and opaque covers are readily available in the half-letter size, although you may have some trouble finding paper for your project. If you want, you can order paper of this size, but if you want to get binding quickly, you can create your own half-letter size paper using good paper and a high-quality paper cutter. You could also print two of your booklet’s pages on a 8.5 x 11″ sheet of paper and then cut it down. Really, the possibilities are endless.

4.) From here, binding your half-letter sized document is the same as binding any other document. Be sure to follow your machine’s instruction manual and stay safe as you work.

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