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Glossary

Glossary of Common Print Finishing Terms

Basis Weight/Substance/Stock weight
Weight of a material, usually defined in gsm (grams per square metre).
Bleed Printed
Printed area which goes past the finished size of the document.
The bleed (usually 3mm) is the amount by which the print extends beyond the trim size.
Blocked/Impressed
An area foil blocked or embossed.
Case Bound
Standard ‘Hard Back’ book finish for documents or books.
Coil Binding
Binding system using plastic spiral binders inserted through punched holes in the document.
Comb Binding
Binding system using round plastic combs with teeth to hold document together.
The combs can be reopened after binding and pages added.
Collate
Sorting printed material to ensure correct order for binding or finishing document.
Can be done by hand or using collating towers.
Crease
To push a crease into paper or card to enable smooth folding,
can be done by hand using a folding bone or mechanically using creasing machines.
Cut
Cutting/trimming flat printed or unprinted paper on a guillotine.
Debossed
Area of paper or card that is depressed or punched down from the main area, contrast with Embossed.
Die Cut
Paper/board cut by a special shape die to achieve desired shape for printed material.
Drilling
Drilling holes in paper/board for display, insertion into folders or for filing purposes.
Embossed
Area of paper or card that is raised from the main surface.
Encapsulation
A plastic film of up to 250 microns applied to both faces of printed material to enhance appearance and increase durability.
The material is fully sealed often with a plastic margin left on.
Eyelet
A small metal ring put into paper or card to protect the edges of a punched hole.
Foil Blocked
An area of type or image printed in a solid (usually metallic) foil to stand out from the rest of the paper.
Folding
Mechanically folding documents in a variety of different ways to produce desired size.
Fold Out/Throw Out
Folded insert in the text body that can extend beyond the normal pages.
Full Canadian
Binding with a square spine cover concealing the binding method.
Half-Canadian
Binding with a square spine cover partially concealing the binding method.
Kiss cut
Something cut partially through, used for labels and stickers.
Laminating
A matt or gloss layer of plastic applied to one or both sides of a printed sheet to enhance and protect the print.
Landscape
The orientation of paper or a document so that its width is greater than its height.
Leaf
A page of a book or document containing two printed surfaces, one on each side.
Loop Stitching
Wire stitching with a raised loop on the spine of the document for binding or filing.
Mechanical Binding
Binding utilising wire binding, spiral, plastic comb, plastic slide etc.
Microns
Thousandths of a millimetre to indicate the thickness of plastic film or paper as against grammage which measures weight only.
Pattern Perf
A series of tiny cuts made for easy tear out of coupons, as below but with more than one line of cuts.
Perforated/Perf
Line of tiny cuts made in paper for easy tear off on leaflets or other documents.
Platen creased
A channel stamped on the fold line to ensure card does not crack when folded.
Perfect Bound/Perfect Binding
Paper/text block glued into a wrap around cover as a standard ‘Paperback’ book.
Plasticoil Binding
Binding system using plastic spiral binders inserted through punched holes in the document.
Plastic Comb Binding
Binding system using round plastic combs with teeth to hold document together. The combs can be reopened after binding and pages added.
Portrait
The orientation of paper or a document so that its height is greater than its width.
Punching
The punching of holes into paper for filing or binding purposes. Usually mechanically done.
PUR Bound
Paper/text block glued into a wrap around cover using an extra strength glue.
Saddle Stitching
Binding pages or sections by inserting wire staples through the centrefold.
Score
To make a deep crease or partially cut with a rule into heavy paper or board to enable a fold line.
Self Cover
A booklet cover of the same material as the inside leaves.
Sew
Binding a document together by stitching thread through the centrefold of individual sections to secure the pages within that section and join into the next section.
Slide Binding
Binding documents with a narrow hard plastic sleeve which runs down the spine and secures the paper.
Spine
The bound edge of a book.
Spiral Binding
Binding system using plastic spiral binders inserted through punched holes in the document.
Spot UV Varnished
An area/areas on print picked out in high gloss.
Stabbing
Stitch wire through the side of a document at the binding edge, as opposed to saddle stitch through the centrefold.
Stringing
Insert strings on documents or cards for hanging or other purposes.
Stitching
Adding stitches, usually metal wire, to a document. Done with a stitching machine and rolls of stitching wire.
Tabbing/Tab Cutting
Adding tabbed sections to a document or cutting tabs into paper for sections or an index.
UV Varnishing
Adding a machine printed varnish, hardened by ultra-violet light. Can be used as an alternative to laminating or in partial areas as a spot UV coating for effect.
Wire Bound/Wire-O Binding
A type of mechanical binding using a series of double wire loops in a strip inserted through punched holes on the binding edge and closed. Cannot be reopened after binding.