Typewriter File Storage (How to Bind a Book)

About: I'm a mechanical engineer. I'm a bit odd and I like makin' stuff!

I write all the entries for my blog, www.awkwardengineer.com , on a typewriter, then I scan the files and post them.  At the end of year's worth of typing, I bind all they typewritten files up into a book.  Here's how to do it.

Step 1: Many Signatures = 1 Book

A "signature" is nothing more than some pages folded in half and tucked inside each other.  I stack 2 pieces of paper together for a total of four pages to make each signature.  Of course, I also type on them in a particular order so the pages turn appropriately.

Step 2: Preparing a Signature for Hole Punching

The book will eventually be made by threading signatures together, but first you need to prepare a pattern, so all the thread holes are punched in the right place.  By laying the signature into a large book, such as a phonebook, it's possible to neatly guide needle into the crease of the signature to get a consistent punch.

See the next step for more details on the pattern.

Step 3: Threading

The signatures can then be sewn together with a needle and thread.  The sewing pattern is such there are four main loops that fit neatly into the crease of the signature.  The outer loops pass over the three external strips, as shown.  The external strips help to keep the spines of all the signatures aligned and help prevent the thread from crushing the paper.

Be sure to pull the thread tight as you go along.  Also note that the starting and stopping positions when running into each signature make it possible to neatly add new ones.

Step 4: Adding Supports and Covers

The next step is to add a support strip for the spine.  I just cut out a piece of paper to size and glued it down.  Then I folded some card stop and glued those on to make faceplates.

After that, I cut chip board to size, just a little larger than the book itself.  I glue to chipboard to the cover material, then lay glue the faceplates to the covers.

Step 5: Ta Da!

The finished product, representing a whole year of typing.  Be sure the scanned entries on www.awkwardengineer.com !



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    3 Discussions


    Question 8 months ago on Step 1

    What order do you type your pages in so that they read correctly in the signature? Do you use both sides of each page or only one? I am starting to use a typewriter to journal and I want to bind all the pages from one year in chronological order. Thanks for your help.

    Kaptain Kool

    7 years ago on Introduction

    This is really cool and I think its awesome that you write your blog entries on a typewriter. Total awesome sauce!

    1 reply