MyBinding Knowledge Base
How to Use a Wire Binding Machine
Not every wire binding machine is the same, and there may be some extra features to your specific machine. This article covers the absolute basic steps on how to use a wire binding machine. The video also explains some of these different features, and it gives some great visuals to help walk you through the process. If you still need help, give our customer service a call and they will help answer any other questions.
1. Determine what size wire you will need for your project using our sizing guide. Take the wire and insert it into the fence. This is usually in the front of the machine and looks like several small metal post sticking up. On the video it is seen at the 1:30 mark.
2. It's recommended to use a scratch paper and align your project properly. Adjust the edge guide for the correct paper length and make a punch. Next fold the page in half to see if your holes line up--if not, then adjust the edge guide until it all looks good (this is not shown in the video).
3. Take your front and back cover and make sure they are oriented correctly and punch them. If you are using oversized covers, you'll have to change the edge guide, otherwise punch them both at the same time.
4. Before you insert the covers into the wire binding, take the back cover and flip it around in front of the front cover. This way it will later hide the opening of the binding when your project is complete. Then thread the two covers into the wire that is hanging on the fence, with the back cover facing down. All pages from here will be threaded in facing down.
5. Continue to punch your pages in order. Punch an amount that is comfortable for you and does not exceed the maximum amount of pages for your machine. As stated above, thread the pages into the binding face down until they are all in place.
6. Adjust the clamp/closer on your machine to the size wire binding that you are using. This is important for the binding to look good with it is closed together. Often this is done by a small knob on the side of the machine.
7. Remove the project from the fence(holder). The wire should remain threaded in the pages. Place the wire, with the opening facing down, into the clamp. Hold the opposite side of the pages to keep it in place.
8. Clamp the binding together. Most machines have a lever on the side to do this. If you set the clamp to the correct size, you will not be able to over do this--it will stop when it reaches the correct position.
9. Remove the book and flip the back cover around. You will see that this hides the opening of the binding between the last page and the back cover.
Keep in mind that this does not cover disengageable die pins or the depth of margin. If your machine has the pins, and your test page has punches through the side of the page, then you can pull out specific pins and they will not work. This allows you to align your holes properly, and gives you the ability to punch any custom size. The depth of margin controls the distance from the edge of the page to the punched holes. You will want a smaller depth for thinner books, this way the pages turn well. Use a thicker depth of margin for thicker books where there is more room within the wire binding. This will help provide a stronger hold for those larger books.
< Over the years, a number of customers have asked me whether they can use twin loop wire with their plastic comb binding machine. These customers often don’t want to have to buy a brand new machine but like the look and feel of twin loop wire binding. However, the answer to their question isn’t as simple as it seems. You see, they actually do make twin loop wire that is designed to work with the plastic comb binding hole pattern. With that said, if you want to use these wires you are going to need a way to close the wires. What is Spiral-O Wire?Let me explain a little bit more…There is a product that we carry called Spiral-O Wire. This wire has 19 loops and is designed to work with the hole pattern from a plastic comb binding machine. Spiral-O Wire is sometimes called Wire Combs or Ibico Wire and was originally designed for use with some of the older Ibico binding machines. A number of the older Ibico plastic comb binding machines also included a twin loop wire closer on the front of them to allow users to use both plastic combs and wire. This 19 loop wire was designed for this purpose.What Equipment is Needed? As the Ibico brand has been phased out by GBC and all of the older Ibico plastic binding machines have been replaced with new models, they no longer have the twin loop wire closer on the front of them. This presents a problem in trying to use these spiral-o wires since you can’t use the wires without a way to close them.One of the only options left is to purchase a Twin Loop wire closer. However, since twin loop wire closers are not incredibly cheap this option usually only appeals to users who have larger electric plastic comb binding machines. Otherwise, it is often advisable to simply buy a low end 3:1 pitch twin loop wire binding machine (the supplies are cheaper). This being said, if you have one of the older Ibico binding machines that has a wire closer included you are in luck. The Spiral-O binding supplies that we carry will work perfectly with your machine and you will be able to use both plastic combs and wire depending on your needs. These Spiral-O binding supplies are available in Black, Silver, White, Blue and Red and in sizes up to 1″ in diameter.If you aren’t sure what type of wire binding supplies that you need to work with your machine simply give us a call. Our trained sales representatives will be glad to help you find the correct supplies for use with your machine.(Read More)