Wire binding is a popular method of binding books and documents and produces stylish results. Pages are punched, and inserted onto a C-shaped spine made of wire, which is then squeezed with a wire closer until it is round and fully closed. Wire binding is similar to plastic comb binding but gives documents a more professional finish and looks smarter. Wire binding machines can be manual or electric.
Compared to plastic comb binding, wire binding is a bit fiddlier and a bit more expensive. You can still add and remove pages as required but the binding wire cannot be reused here as the wire loops encircle the pages.
Documents bound with a wire binder will open out completely flat on a desk and can rotate a full 360 degrees. So unlike plastic comb binders, wire binders are often used for making calendars.
There are two common types of wire binder in terms of pitch (the number of holes per inch). A wire binding machine with a 3:1 pitch punches three holes per inch, while a wire binder with a 2:1 pitch punches two holes per inch.
Smaller offices often select a small manual machine with a built-in wire closer, while larger organizations often prefer an electric wire binding machine with an electric punch and built-in wire closer.
How many loops?
Binding wires come with different numbers of loops, with 21 and 34 loops being common for A4 documents. These will correspond to the pitch - the number of holes punched per inch (usually 2 or 3).
Users need to be aware of which number of loops their machine takes as different wires are not interchangeable.