Binding a book that lays flat

Having trouble getting a book bound to lay flat. 70# text, approx 180 pages, 100lb cover both Cougar Natural. It’s smyth sewn text and perfect bound cover and am wondering what the best production methods would be to create a high quality flexible book that is able to stay open when laid on a table. It is 8.5 x 11.

What you describe if done right should lie open flat.
That begs the question why does it need to lie flat on a table? That might suggest a different production method

Needs to lie flat on table because client needs it to lie flat. Quantity is 25 which is why this option was went with vs other binding methods most places couldn’t touch this quantity. I thought it would lie flat but the glue on the smyth sewn seems a bit thick not sure.

I’m guessing a wire, spiral binding is out. I’m sure you could get that done for 25 books.

There’s a modified perfect binding called, if I remember right, an ota binding. It’s glued, like any perfect binding, but the binding floats free from the piece that covers the spine to make it more flexible. My guess is that the pages will eventually come loose, though. Anyway, there’s no bindery that would touch it for only 25 copies, unless you paid them a few hundred dollars per book.


Just looked it up. Here’s a photo of one.

We call it lay-flat binding around here. It’s pretty simple to do. But 25 copies… eek.

On a long shot - is there a printing college/university nearby? Sometimes they have binding equipment (I know ours did) - and they are always looking for odd projects for students.

Just a long shot. But would be interesting for them and cheaper for you.

In the photo I posted, in addition to the glued backing, it appears as though the signatures might be sewn. If so, the pages wouldn’t come loose. I’ve never had any experience with this kind of lay-flat or OTA binding. I remember seeing it here and there, a time or two, but that’s about it.

You could also do a ring binding called a Candian Binding

https://www.google.com/search?q=canadian+binding&safe=strict&rlz=1C5CHFA_enIE923IE924&tbm=isch&source=iu&ictx=1&fir=AhQASxbImECN1M%2CdgSW3PkhTXRVjM%2C_&vet=1&usg=AI4_-kQsoPfQgcqwn3bw7M46n1Y3FlGCYw&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwisn-DEhd_vAhUqQxUIHYslDG4Q9QF6BAgREAE&biw=1595&bih=665#imgrc=AhQASxbImECN1M

Cheaper option

The only reason I asked why the book had to lie flat is we make flipbooks all the time for educational exhibits. But they are beefy things, the pages usually made from solid 1/8" phenolic for abusive handling (though there are a few other options) and fastened to the table with U-bolts. But they do indeed lay flat, LOL.

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