This announcement from Printing Impressions caught my eye. Lay-flat has long been a bit of a bugaboo in the book world. Readers are alleged to want it, though most of us have actually failed to hear the voices and wonder how much extra people might be willing to pay to get it. You can see how something like a lab manual might need to lie open without the pages flipping back in the middle of your experiment so you have to dive for it and spill your beaker of acid all over the book and yourself. We used to deal with this demand by spiral binding or plastic comb binding the things.

Ota-Bind provided a methodology for lay-flat binding. Peleman Industries now introduces a machine, the V Twister Lay-Flat Paper Converter, which by bending a double fold back and forth allegedly breaks down the bonds between fibers in the paper at the fold allowing it to relax in the open position. Sounds good — the proof of course will only be known after someone serves up the pudding. It is an extra step, and unless you can integrate it into your binding line, would interrupt the binding process.

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