You are probably aware that the Fastback 20 binding system from Powis Parker can be used to create both hardcover and softcover books using external thermal binding strips, but did you know that it can also create paperback-style books using wraparound covers? With Fastback Perfectback strips, you can create professional-looking paperback books, where the front cover, spine, and back cover are all a single piece of stock.
Perfectback-TA strips are similar to Super Strips in that they are made with thermally-activated adhesive, however the Perfectback-TA strips have a release liner in place of the decorate paper used on Super Strips. After the Perfectback-TA strip is applied to your document, the release liner is removed and the book is placed within a pre-scored cover. From there, the book is run through an additional binding cycle that will melt the adhesive and fuse the pages to the cover.
In addition to the Fastback 20 binding machine and Perfectback binding strips, you will also need a Powis Parker Scorer in order to crease your cover and prepare it for binding. The Powis Parker Scorer is specifically designed to work in conjunction with Fastback binding machines, and allows you to easily and consistently score covers for books up to 1-1/2″ thick.
Below is a step-by-step guide for binding a Perfectback book using the Fastback 20 and Perfectback-TA strips:
- Begin by going into the Settings and selecting “Cover Binding,” then “ON.”
- Arrange the inner pages of your document, then tap them repeatedly against a flat surface in order to align the edges. Place the book into the binding channel, sliding it to the right until it is flush against the side of the machine.
- Ensure that your pages are still aligned, then press the green “BIND” button to activate the book clamp. The machine will then measure the thickness of your book and indicate the proper strip width on the display screen located at the front of the machine.
- Insert the indicated size of Perfectback-TA strip into the guide on the right of the machine. The strip should be inserted with the adhesive side facing up.
- The binding cycle will begin automatically once the binding strip is pulled into the machine. The binding cycle will last approximately 15 – 20 seconds, after which the book clamps will open. Remove your book from the binding channel and place it into the cooling rack for 2 – 3 minutes. Note: The book should be placed directly against the cooling rack. If other books are already in the cooling rack, the new document should be placed at the back of the stack, not in front of it.
- While your book is cooling, prepare your cover. Ensure that it is more than large enough to wrap around your entire document on all sides. Next, you’ll need to score the cover to create creases that will allow it to bend and form the spine. For best results, it is recommended that you score with the image side of your cover facing up. Use the Powis Parker Scorer to score the cover along both edges of the spine, then place a third score near the spine on the front cover to allow it to open more easily.
- After the cover has been scored, make sure that the scores are placed the same distance apart as the width of the spine of your book. Gently fold your cover at the scores.
- Remove your document from the cooling rack, then peel off the release liner, working from one side of the book to the other.
- Place your document into the folded cover, ensuring that the front cover and the spine edge correspond with the front of your document.
- Insert the book into the binding channel, then press the green “BIND” button to close the book clamp.
- As soon as the book clamp opens, remove the book from the machine and tap the spine against a flat surface to ensure that the inner pages are firmly adhered to the cover. Note: If, after cooling, you find the pages of your book have not set straight, use the “EDIT” mode to re-melt the adhesive and then tap the book against a flat surface to straighten the pages.
- Place the finished book into the cooling rack with the spine side down and allow it to cool for 2 – 3 minutes. Note: For best results, the book should be placed directly against the cooling rack while it cools. If there are other books already in the cooling rack, the new book should be placed at the back of the stack.
- Use a stack cutter to trim the edges of the book as desired.