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Subject: Bookbinding terminology

Bookbinding terminology

From: Paul A. Parisi <paul>
Date: Friday, October 4, 1996
Sue Dunlap <sdunlap [at] acs__wooster__edu> writes

>My acquisitions manager asked me what the term "otabind" means.

Otobind is the name of a patented/licensed process for perfect
binding paperback books so that they will have the openability and
layflat characteristics of sewn hardcover bindings.  The Otobind
process involves adhesive binding the spine with (usually) a
two-shot PVA adhesive application, followed by a joint gluing
process (usually with animal glue) of approximately 1/4" of the
binding margin on both the front and back outermost pages of the
text block.  Next a cap of flexible paper is applied over the spine
of the text block and onto the front and back pages of the book,
covering roughly half the width of the joint glue.  Finally the
cover is applied.

Unlike most perfect bound paperbacks, it is adhered only by the edge
glue and not to the spine.  This enables the paperback book to open
much the way that a case bound book does. Since the spine is not
adhered, the text block is free to open flexibly while the paper
cover moves in the opposite direction away from the text.

This style of binding is very popular for computer manuals and other
books that must open flat.  In my opinion it is not as strong as a
regular paperback because the cover is only tipped on to the front
and back joints.

In some cases PUR (polyurethane) and even hotmelt (EVA) adhesives
are used in place of PVA for the adhesive binding. In all cases the
adhesives are rolled into the notched spines of folded signatures or
onto milled and roughened spines rather than double-fanned as is
required for library bound books.  A similar result is achieved with
a process called Repkover.  While it is done in a different way the
finished product is nearly identical.

                                  ***
                  Conservation DistList Instance 10:35
                 Distributed: Saturday, October 5, 1996
                       Message Id: cdl-10-35-005
                                  ***
Received on Friday, 4 October, 1996

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