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Cover and book spine width specifications

Engaged ,
Nov 05, 2022 Nov 05, 2022

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Hello everyone,

I need to prepare the cover for a music book (score) that will be staple bound.

The format is 232x305mm. 

Should the cover be slightly wider than 464mm or generally not? The printer didn't specify, so I'm asking in practice. The cover will be printed on 240gsm while the music will use 100gsm music paper.

 

On the same topic: when creating a cover for a book that will be glue-bound because of its page count for example, I will need to design the spine. How to know how wide will it be? For sure the printer would say, but is there a formula based on page number and paper weight etc.?

 

Thank you so much!

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correct answers 1 Correct answer

Community Expert , Nov 05, 2022 Nov 05, 2022

For the staple bound book, 464mm plus 6mm bleed (3mm on each side x 305mm plus 6mm (3mm top and bottom).

Re the other book ask your printer for the spine width.

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Community Expert ,
Nov 05, 2022 Nov 05, 2022

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For the staple bound book, 464mm plus 6mm bleed (3mm on each side x 305mm plus 6mm (3mm top and bottom).

Re the other book ask your printer for the spine width.

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Community Expert ,
Nov 05, 2022 Nov 05, 2022

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As per @Derek Cross 

The Staple Bound book does not need any additional size changes - the size of the document you are designing should be the size it's cut at - that's called the trim size - and have bleed as requested by your printers.

 

A book with a spine will depend on the paper type, weight of paper, and the amount of pages. And your printer will advise you on that size. If your printer doesn't know that's worry.

 

Most of the time I would request a dummy book supplied - which would be a finished size book with blank pages, cover applied, spine width done, and blank pages inside - just plain white.

Then you can measure and see issues that you might not be aware of.

 

One thing to be aware with in a Spine book is where the cover is glued to the front and the back could leave a crease mark.

 

You certainly don't want elements of legibility to go over the crease.

 

 

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Engaged ,
Nov 06, 2022 Nov 06, 2022

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Thanks!

What is a "crease mark"?

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Community Expert ,
Nov 06, 2022 Nov 06, 2022

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Pick up a few books at home with a spine on them where it's glued to the book on the front and back cover there is usually a line where it's creased so it opens easy.

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Community Expert ,
Nov 06, 2022 Nov 06, 2022

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LATEST

Usually called — amusingly enough in this discussion — a "score." Printers and binders do it with a thin wheel that would cut through the stock if it wasn't smooth.

 


| Word & InDesign to Kindle & EPUB: a Pro Guide (Amazon)

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Community Expert ,
Nov 05, 2022 Nov 05, 2022

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As Derek said, you should get the spine width for a glue/perfect bound book from your printer and binder. They often have online calculators or at least formulas (e.g. KDP's white paper is 0.002244 times the number of pages).

 

It's always best to design the spine wrap to be a little flexible. Making a color break right on the corner fold is... iffy unless you have very precise numbers from your printer and they can hold the binding alignment to within a millimeter or two.

 

For staple-bound, keep in mind that the spine edge of the cover will round somewhat unless the book is very thin, and leave plenty of trim bleed at the outer cover edges. Quality staple-bound books are stitched using oversize covers if not oversize pages, and then trimmed — sometime only on the outer edge, but more commonly on all three sides to get a clean, square finish.

 


| Word & InDesign to Kindle & EPUB: a Pro Guide (Amazon)

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