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Book Binding Methods: Which Type of Bookbinding is Best for You?

March 02, 2021 (Last Updated May 25, 2023)

Marcy G.

There are a lot of decisions to make when printing your self-published book. The book size, paper type, and cover design all play important roles, but so does the bookbinding. When you see your masterpiece up on a shelf in all its glory, you want to make sure you’ve considered the best book binding methods for your story.

What Are the Four Types of Binding?

48 Hour Books offers a variety of binding options. Each option has a unique design and is suitable for specific needs. We do all of our binding in-house which means we can process orders quickly and control the quality of products used.

Perfect Binding

Perfect binding or soft cover binding, is our most popular book binding method. Soft cover books are lighter and more flexible than a hardcover book. They are perfect for reading on the go and can easily fit in your carry-on, backpack, or beach tote, without weighing it down.

Case Binding

When you want to create a professional and classic look, case binding, also called hardcover bookbinding, is a stellar option. Made of beautiful leather, cloth, or leatherette, and wrapped around heavy board, case bound books are incredibly sturdy.

Spiral Coil Binding

Spiral coil binding is a great option for books that need to lay flat when open. Our durable plastic coil comes in a variety of colors to match your book cover design.

Saddle Stitched Binding

For slim, stackable books, we recommend saddle stitching. Saddle stitch binding is created by folding the pages and stapling along the spine. This is a cost-effective method for flexible, portable books and pamphlets.


Which Type of Binding is Best?

The best type of bookbinding is dependent on the size of the book, number of pages you have written, and the functionality expected for usage. Let’s outline a couple of common scenarios and explain the best book binding options for each use case.

When to Choose Soft Cover Binding

When you have a minimum of 16 pages and maximum of 1,025 pages, you can use the perfect bound binding method. These perfect bound books are assembled with the strongest adhesive available, making them flexible, durable, and easy to transport.

This cost-effective solution is perfect for fiction and non-fiction books. With a variety of custom covers available, you can enhance the front of your book with texture, clear, spot gloss, or our Diamond 3D foil option.

The Right Time to Use Hardcover Binding

If you want your creation to stand the test of time, choose a hardcover option. These hardcover books use PUR adhesive and can range from a minimum of 40 pages to a maximum of 1,052 pages. Smaller page counts (16-40 pages) can be printed but are not recommended. We recommend adding a printed proof to your order if you plan to print a hardcover book with a low page count.

Available in a variety of different cover materials, case bound books can be paired with a beautifully designed dust jacket, if that fits your style or needs. Create a colorful coffee table book or share your story with a long-lasting, durable case bound option.

When to Pick Saddle Stitching

Ideal for handouts and magazines, saddle stitched binding must be 36 pages or less. This binding option can even be used for short stories and children’s books. Just be sure your final draft is at least seven inches tall and no wider than nine inches.

Who Should Choose Spiral Binding

Looking to print a cookbook, workbook, or reference book? Then coil binding is the right call for you! Spiral bound books range from a minimum of two pages to 350 pages. We can even accommodate up to 500 pages, in some cases, with a special-ordered coil.

Easily designate sections for quick reference, with tabs or dividers. Tabs and divider pages are not available in other book binding types, which makes spiral bound books a unique option.

Book Binding Options Designed for Your Needs

When you’re ready to print your story, select the best book binding type based on your page count, how you plan on using the book, and price range. No matter which option you select, trust 48 Hour Books to turn your story into a beautifully bound masterpiece.

Select your binding type and print your story today!

Follow us on Instagram (@48hrbooks) to view recently printed books in all binding types! 


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