What does 2:1, 3:1, or 4:1 pitch mean?

These ratios help us determine whether a coil or wire is compatible with the hole pattern punched by a particular binding machine.

Example: 3:1 pitch

  • The “3” means the number of holes
  • The “1” means the number of inches
  • “3:1” means that your machine will punch three holes in every inch of your book’s spine.

How do I figure out which pitch I need?

It’s very easy to measure which wire or coil pitch you need based on sheets punched by your binding machine:

  1. Hold a ruler next to the holes punched in your sheet or book.
  2. Lightly mark with a pencil the upper and lower edge of 1 in. along the spine.
  3. Count the number of holes that comfortably fit within the two drawn lines.

Why don’t my wires or coils match my book?

Wires with a 2:1 pitch will not fit correctly in a book punched with a 3:1 wire binding machine, and vice versa. Similarly, coils with a 4:1 pitch will not wind easily through a book punched with a 3:1 pitch wire binding machine. It is important to have “perfect pitch” when it comes to binding so the loops of your coil or wire will fit through the holes of your book.

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