Things to know about Book Binding Screws
Binding screws (also known as Chicago screws or interscrews) are a popular choice to bind paper, cardboard, thin wood and plastic or even leather and fabrics and many other materials. Popular in fabric and leather processing, book screws are often also known as screw rivets or belt screws.
Binding Screws are easily removable
Book screws are very easy to remove and to re-attach and therefore a very economical option for any book binding project. You don’t even need special tools: a simple flat screwdriver is enough to fit most binding screws.
If you want to swap or remove any sheets, you can simply unscrew the binding and replace the contents. This makes book screws ideal for restaurant menus, colour or fabric swatches, photo books or loose-leaf collections. The flexibility of screw binding also has advantages in leather processing.
Book Screws are available in many sizes and finishes
Metal book screws are available in different heights (usually from 2 mm) and different finishing and colour variations:
- Silver (mostly nickel-plated steel)
- Matt silver (usually made of stainless steel)
- Black / silver (mostly lacquered or painted, nickel-plated steel)
- Rose gold / copper (often made of copper-plated steel)
- Gold / brass (often made of brass plated steel)
Plastic Binding Screws - a cheaper alternative
In addition to book screws made of metal, there are also book screws made of plastic. Plastic screws unfortunately lack the high-quality finish and stability of metal binding screws. Depending on the quality they often can’t be reused.
What are the parts of a binding screw?
Book screws consist of two parts - the screw itself and the matching post, which can easily be screwed together with a screwdriver or carefully by hand.
The dimensions of book screws can be broken down into the following features:
The height indicates the space available between the two heads and therefore the maximum capacity the screw binding will be able to accommodate. If necessary, the height can be adjusted using binding screw washers or post extensions.
The diameter indicates the diameter of the hole or perforation that is necessary for the screw and post to fit into the binding. In the UK and Europe, the post diameter of book screws usually corresponds to the diameter of a hole made with a standard hole punch, which is 5mm according to ISO 838.
The head diameter of the screw and post influences the stability of the binding. For sensitive materials and heavily loaded bindings, we usually recommend using washers to increase the stability of the binding.