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Re: [BKARTS] Double-fan binding - Spine exposed by notching

I have been spending a lot of time on editing and preparing camera ready copy
for a great book, "Peace Corps Pioneer," by Pauline Birky-Kreutzer. It needed
to be finished before we moved to Arizona for the winter. But I've been
    I haven't seen a Planatrol binding machine recently, but an earlier model
did not do notching.
    Notches every 5 mm seem to me to be overkill. That means about 5 notches
per inch. With notches 1/8 inches wide, you are cutting away more than you are
    In my experience, those who buy machines which have a notching attachment
tend to use notching, while those who don't have such machines tend not to use
notching. Pete Jermann has been doing bindings for libraries for more than 20
years, and his wonderful double-fan gluing machine does not use notching.
    My personal view is that the pull strength which is added as a result of
notching does not make up for the added stiffness (lack of openability) which
it entails. If you must notch, use very shallow notches, 1/16" or so.
    Perfect binding on a production basis almost always uses milling to remove
the folds from sheets which have been printed 16 or 32 up. This milling
exposes fibers which add to pull strength. This clearly lessens the need for
notching, but a few binderies do both.
    Notching without a binding machine which has a notching attachment is a
lot of work. Every text block has to be clamped close to the spine, where you
attack it with a saw. Then you have to re-clamp it farther away from the spine
in order to fan the block for gluing. The saw throws up fibers which make it
very difficult to re-jog the text block when you move it in the clamp. If I am
using typical text or copy paper stock I don't notch.

>===== Original Message From "Book_Arts-L: READ THE FAQ at
http://www.philobiblon.com"              <BOOK_ARTS-L@LISTSERV.SYR.EDU> =====
>It's good to finally see the name Rupert Evans appear on this list again. I
should have said that my calculation of 1.33 x the area for spine notching vs
none was a hypothetical calculation only. It assumed that spine notching would
result in three times the area as suggested by someone else on the outside
surface of the spine. It might if the notches were like a very narrow v-groove
pinking scissor type cut. It is not likely that the notches are that numerous
or narrow and so I agree with your calculation of much less.
>I wish you or others could comment even more on the controversy about
notching with double-fan gluing. There appears to be different camps
developing on this list. There are the NOTCHERS AND THE NON-NOTCHERS with some
people being in-between. I think some people even within companies are not
agreeing on this issue. There seem to be few facts and so people are going by
the Library Binding Institute recommendation to notch. Has anyone seen the
tests they have done and the results?
>As I mentioned previously, I have seen quite a few high volume production
cold emulsion double-fan glued lay-flat books that did not have any notches.
They open very flat. Other people on this list and myself have made such non
notched books and they are very strong. From what I can tell, double-fan
gluing without notching was used for many years since about 1930 in Europe
with good results mostly with hand binding. It appears that Mekanotch came
along and suggested that their notching resulted in higher page pull
strengths. The Planatol machines came along and also use notching.
>I would like to hear some more history on double-fan gluing. I would like to
see some more facts.
>I also think that the needs of the library may in some cases be different
than for production books. If huge thick volumes are being bound for libraries
containing glossy stock, maybe some form of roughening at least needs to be
done. If a 5.5 x 8.5 inch RepKover or Hardcover book of 0.5 inches thick is
double-fan glued, absolute strength is not as important as flexibility and
most of these books don't really need roughening which always introduces at
least some stiffness in the binding. Am I right?
>Ben Wiens...applied energy scientist
>Ben Wiens Energy Science Inc.
>8-1200 Brunette Ave. Coquitlam BC V3K1G3 Canada
>E-mail: ben@benwiens.com
>Energy Website: http://www.benwiens.com
>Read my popular web-booklet "The Future of Fuel Cells"
>-----Original Message-----
>I agree that the 3X figure is far too high for a double-fan-glued binding.
>However, what am I missing from the calulations below? It seems to me that 3
>notches, each .125 inches deep simply adds 3/4 of an inch to the length of
>spine. (.125"x6) The sides of the notch are glued, with the same or less
>penetration of adhesive than the spine receives. The bottom of the notch
>simply replaces the adhesion that would have occurred without the notches.
>Thus the increase in glued area would be, at most 7 percent on a book with an
>11 inch spine (.75/11), and 8 percent on a book with a 9 inch spine (.75/9).
>    Of course the notches expose fibers to the adhesive, which should result
>in a measurable increase in page pull strength, but the loss in openability
>-----Original Message-----
>When double-fan gluing, isn't it the total glue area that is important? A
simple sample calculation shows the following:
>   1. Non notched spine side area of page exposed to adhesive = 0.004 x 11
>inches = 0.044 sq inches
>   2. Notched spine side area of page exposed to adhesive = 0.044 x 3 =
>0.132 sq inches
>   3. Paper sides exposed to adhesive = 0.010 adhesive penetration x 2 sides
>x 11 inches = 0.22 sq inches
>   4. Total area non notched per page = 0.264 sq inches
>   5. Total area notched per page = 0.352 sq inches
>So it seems that notching only increases the total glue area slightly, it
>has 1.33 x the area and not 3 x the area as is often thought. One could
>increase the glue penetration only slightly on the side of each page and
>achieve the same total glue area. This would result in greater spine
>flexibility? Maybe notching is desirable in practice because it roughens up
>the paper fibers, but wouldn't just exposing the fibers be better?
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Rupert N. Evans
May 1-October 31: 101 W Windsor Rd. #4107, Urbana, IL 61802-6697;
November 1-April 30: 501-391 S LaPosada Circle, Green Valley, AZ 85614; 520-648-8365
Author of Book-On-Demand Publishing
I love to print and bind books

            BOOK_ARTS-L: The listserv for all the book arts.
      For subscription information, the Archive, and other related
            resources and links go to the Book_Arts-L FAQ at:

        Archive maintained and suppported by Conservation OnLine

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