Re: The Binder that Ties

Subject: Re: The Binder that Ties
From: Robert Plamondon <robert -at- PLAMONDON -dot- COM>
Date: Sun, 3 Nov 1996 07:40:27 PST

Melissa wonders how to handle binder production. My solution was simple
and effective. Nuke the binders. Binders are already the most expensive
form of binding available (unless you use hand-tooled leather) BEFORE
you count the labor of stuffing pages in them. They are also the
most labor-intensive form of binding. They are also the heaviest form
of binding.

So you're screwed three ways: you pay more for the materials, you pay
more for labor, and you pay more for shipping.

The alleged advantage of binders is that you can dither. You can swap
pages in and out at the last minute, thus making your manuals even more
expensive. You can also foist the same binder on several titles, making
all your manuals too exensive, rather than just one.

Binders should have gone out with button shoes, green eyeshades, and
quill pens. GBC binding does everything binders do, but at a fraction
of the expense and at near-zero weight.

In general, you should also get rid of tabs. They are hideously expensive,
especially in terms of labor. A bound book with running page heads on
the outside margin is easy to flip through. Tabs are used because
it's hard to flip through a BINDER. Lose them both at the same time.

Once you've nuked the binder and the tabs, the whole printing job is
so simple that you can send it out with confidence. Use some other form
of binding (GBC and spiral binding are usually the winners), work with
your printer on a couple of jobs so you're sure they understand what to
do, then have THEM fulfill literature requests from your branch office.
Many printers are happy to do this. Quality will go up, costs will go
down, and you won't be a slave to ther xerox machine.

-- Robert
Robert Plamondon, President/Managing Editor, High-Tech Technical Writing, Inc.
36475 Norton Creek Road * Blodgett * Oregon * 97326
robert -at- plamondon -dot- com * (541) 453-5841 * Fax: (541) 453-4139

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