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Casebound (Hardcover) Binding

This article will teach you about the hardcover and casebound binding project.

Casebinding, commonly referred to as hardcover binding, involves the construction of an exterior case made of cardboard wrapped with paper. Casebinding is a more complicated process compared to other typical types of binding, but your book is safe in PrintNinja’s expert hands.

Case Construction

The first step in casebinding is the construction of the hardcover, also known as the case. First, sheets of cardboard are cut to their proper size to form the rigid skeleton of the cover. From there, printed and finished cover sheets are fed into one end of a case manufacturing machine, while the pre-cut cardboard is fed into the other, and the two are combined through several gluing and folding operations into the final case.

Smyth Sewing

Next, the collated signatures of the book block are sewn together using the smyth sewing technique. Smyth sewing uses thread to first sew through the folds of each signature and then sew the entire group of signatures, (also known as the book block) together, resulting in a durable binding that can be opened very wide.


Next, the sewn book blocks are trimmed down to size. With some softcover books, this happens after the cover is applied, but because the hardcover case is larger than the book block, in casebinding the trimming step happens before the book block is glued into the case.


Finally, the finished book blocks and cases are placed into a hardcover binding machine where they are glued together into a completed casebound book. First, the sewn book block has glue applied to its spine, and a piece of fabric (called the super) is placed on top of the glue. Farther down the line, the hardcover case is wrapped around the book block. At this point, books with 60 pages or more will also have endsheets added to hold the entire book together.

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PrintNinja’s hardcover book calculator makes it easy to take the next step in creating your hardcover book. Our calculator is pre-populated with popular options, but you can customize just about anything. You can also save your quote for 90 days, so it’s no problem if you’re not quite ready to print yet.

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