How to Thermal Bind Books

Written by charles clay
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How to Thermal Bind Books
You can thermally bind printed manuscripts to enhance their appearance and durability. (PhotoObjects.net/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images)

Thermal book binding is a simple method of attaching a cover to a loose-leaf manuscript. You can use it to bind printed manuscripts, to attach a new cover to a damaged book or to rebind a paperback book in a more durable cover. Using a thermal binding machine allows you to quickly create a sturdy bound book from a stack of loose leaf.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Thermal glue strip
  • Scissors
  • Thermal binding cover
  • Thermal binding machine

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Align the pages of the manuscript to form crisp, straight edges on all four sides.

  2. 2

    Trim a thermal glue strip to match the spine of your manuscript using scissors. The strip should fully cover the spine of the manuscript without overlapping the edges.

  3. 3

    Place the manuscript into a thermal binding cover, sandwiching the thermal glue strip between the spine of the manuscript and the inner spine of the cover.

  4. 4

    Insert the spine of the manuscript into the slot of the thermal binding machine, pressing the spine against the heating element. Secure the manuscript with the book clamp, if one is available.

  5. 5

    Press the "start" or "bind" button and allow the cycle to complete. Remove the book from the thermal binding machine and firmly tap the book spine-first on a solid surface to set the pages in the glue.

  6. 6

    Allow the book to cool for at least five minutes before opening.

Tips and warnings

  • To create a stronger bond between the pages and the glue, roughen the spine of the manuscript with coarse sandpaper.
  • If you are using a cover with a clear plastic front, make sure the first page of the manuscript isn't clinging to the front cover. This can prevent the first page from coming into contact with the glue.

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