US 3685857 A
A stack of printed sheets, ready for binding, is formed with a plurality of grooves across the edge thereof to be bound. An elastic member, formed with a like plurality of projecting ridges, is subjected to a force which contracts the ridges to a size sufficient to enable them to be fitted within the grooves. Upon removal of the force from the elastic member, the ridges revert toward their original configuration causing them to be lodged within the grooves thereby securing the stack of sheets as an assemblage.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Schlieben [451 Aug. 22, 1972 BOOKBINDING  Inventor: Ernest William Schlieben, Morrisville, Pa.
 Assignee: RCA Corporation  Filed: Sept. 19, 1969  App]. No.: 859,508
 US. Cl. ..281/26, 402/8, 402/19, 402/80 R, 402/501  Int. Cl. ..B42b 5/00  Field of Search ..281/26, 23, 28, 36, 17, 16; 402/8, 9,10,l1,13,l5,l9, 80,12,14, 501
 References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 268,407 12/1882 Hughes ..24/l30 UX 1,778,490 10/1930 Grammer ..281/26 2,258,874 10/1941 Williams ..281/26 2,297,958 10/1942 Hauel ..402/8 FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 752,929 7/1933 France ..402/15 285,306 2/ 1928 Great Britain ..281/26 Primary Examiner-Jerome Schnall Alt0rney-Edward J. Norton ABSTRACT A stack of printed sheets, ready for binding, is formed with a plurality of grooves across the edge thereof to be bound. An elastic member, formed with a like plurality of projecting ridges, is subjected to a force which contracts the ridges to a size sufficient to enable them to be fitted within the grooves. Upon removal of the force from the elastic member, the ridges revert toward their original configuration causing them to be lodged within the grooves thereby securing the stack of sheets as an assemblage.
2 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures PATENTED 1922 1972 3.685, 857
g4 E RNEST W5 555,
- QQZW ArrorLuEY BOOKBINDING This invention relates to techniques for binding, in book form, stacked sheets of paper or the like.
The art of bookbinding has made little progress from the time of its inception to the present. Traditionally, bookbinding techniques have included time consuming sewing steps, as well as messy gluing operations, to bind together a stack of printed sheets between a pair of book covers. The rising cost of labor, coupled with the desirability of efficient high speed production, has dictated the necessity for the development of more modern techniques.
Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide an economical and efiicient method for binding books and the like.
A further object is to provide a novel article of manufacture suitable for use in conjunction with the method of the present invention.
A method of binding an edge of a stack of paper sheets or the like into book form, in accordance with the present invention, comprises the steps of forming said edge with a plurality of grooves; aligning said grooves with a member formed with a like plurality of ridges, said member being made of an elastic material, the cross sectional area of said ridges being normally greater than the cross sectional area of said grooves when said elastic member is in a relaxed state; applying a force to said elastic member to cause contraction of the cross sectional area of said ridges; inserting the contracted ridges of said member into the grooves formed within said stack; and removing the force from said elastic member to permit said ridges to expand and lodge within said grooves thereby securing said member to said stack.
An article of manufacture suitable for use in conjunction with the method of the present invention, for example the method as set forth supra, comprises a sheet of material formed with a like plurality of protruding ridges, the cross sectional configuration of said ridges being normally larger than the cross sectional configuration of said grooves, said material having a coefiicient of elasticity which responds to the application of a force in a direction parallel with the longitudinal axes of said ridges to cause the cross sectional configuration thereof to decrease and permit its insertion within said grooves and which, upon the removal of said force, will permit the cross sectional configuration thereof to increase and lodge said ridges within said grooves.
The present invention, as well as additional objects and advantages thereof, will be best understood upon reading the following description in conjunction with the accompanying drawing wherein:
FIG. 1 is illustrative of a stack of paper sheets prepared for binding in accordance with the present invention;
FIGS. la and lb are enlarged views of the inserts depicted in FIG. 1 and illustrate groove configurations in accordance with preferred embodiments of the present invention; FIG. 2 is illustrative of an elastic member suitable for use in accordance with the method of the present invention and depicts an embodiment of the article of manufacture in accordance therewith;
FIG. 3a is an isometric sectional view of the ridges shown in FIG. 2 in the absence of the applied force F as shown therein;
FIG. 3b is an isometric sectional view of the ridges shown in FIG. 2 when said elastic member is subjected to the applied force F as shown therein; and
FIG. 4 is a sectional view of the elastic member as shown in FIG. 2 and includes an exterior cover as well as a backing strip for the bound edge.
As discussed supra, bookbinding techniques have traditionally included many separate manufacturing operations and required many different kinds of materials; e.g. leather, cloth, thread, glue, sizing, etc. Furthermore the quality of the resulting product has proven to be of varying durability, particularly in the case of low cost books and catalogues where only gluing techniques are relied upon to maintain the integrity of the binding.
The present invention recognizes the antiquity of traditional bookbinding techniques and, in place of costly sewing and gluing operations, proposes the use of a novel binding technique which incorporates a preformed member made of an elastic material.
The applicability of plastics technology to bookbinding techniques has been recognized, to some degree, by the prior art; see for example U.S. Pat. Nos. 2,258,874, 2,355,737 and 2,579,488. Generally, in the prior art techniques, the edge of a stack of sheets of paper to be bound is disposed within the cavity of a mold in which liquid plastic is inserted, under heat and pressure. Upon cooling, the solidified plastic provides a substantially rigid backbone configuration for the bound edge. Such techniques, though operable, have proven to be costly to institute and maintain, and impractical in operation since the molding takes place in direct contact with the printed sheets and often causes damage thereto by virtue of paper burning or plastic smearing thereon. Furthermore, those skilled in the art of bookbinding generally have little if any knowledge in the art of handling liquid plastic.
As shown in FIG. 1, the present invention requires that the printed sheets 10 be stacked and aligned, and a plurality of grooves 12 formed in the edge 14 thereof to be bound. As shown in FIGS. la and 1b, the cross section of the grooves 12 may vary in shape and, in accordance with a preferred embodiment of the present invention, the grooves are formed with a restricted entrance at their upper surface 13. A preformed member 20 formed with protruding ridges 22, as shown in FIG. 2, is then brought into relative proximity with the grooved edge 14 of the assembled stack 10; the ridges 22 upon the member 20 correspond in number to the grooves within said edge. The cover member 20 may be formed of an elastomer or high polymer plastic material having a relatively high coefficient of elasticity; for example, polurethane or polyvinyl butyrate. Although it may prove desirable to configure the ridges 22 to conform to the shape of the grooves 12, e.g. as shown in FIGS. la and 1b, such conformation is not necessary. The ridges are configured, however, such that they are denied access to the grooves 12, when in a relaxed state.
FIG. 3a depicts, in cross sectional isometric view, the configuration of ridges 22 which may be used in conjunction with the grooves 12 shown in FIG. 10. When a force F is exerted transverse to the cross sectional area of the ridges 22, as shown in FIG. 2, they are caused to contract in cross section, while increasing in length and height, as shown in FIG. 3b. While in a contracted state they may be fitted within the grooves 12, readily entering the restricted access portions 13. Upon release of the transverse force F the ridges 22 revert toward their original configuration due to the elasticity of the material used, causing them to lodge within the grooves 12 in a substantially rigid manner, thereby preventing the individual sheets from separating from the stacked assembly. a
In the embodiment represented by FIGS. 2 and 4, the member 20 is depicted as a unitary sheet having ridges 22 formed in a middle portion thereof. In this embodiment, the portions 24 of the sheet not containing ridges 22 may be folded over (not shown) to form the cover portions of the book. Moreover, if desired, a rigid and/or ornamental cover 40 may be afiixed to said folded portion 24 of the member 20. The outer cover 40, for example, may be ofcloth or leather to provide a more decorative effect. A backing strip 42 containing the title and/or author, etc. could then be affixed to the bound edge.
Alternatively, it may be desirable to form the member 20 with a width substantially equal to the length of the ridges 22. In such event, the member would thereafter be affixed to a cover member which would subsequently be folded about the bound pages.
What is claimed is:
l. A method of interconnecting a stack of sheets at an edge thereof comprising the steps of:
a. forming said edge with a plurality of elongated recesses, each recess being shaped to interlock with a complementary projection inserted therein,
b. aligning said recesses with a plurality of interlocking projections which are like in number and complementary in shape to said recesses and which are formed from and integral with an elastic member said elastic member having portions extending beyond opposite ends of said projections, each projection corresponding to a separate different recess, the shape of each of said projections tending to prevent the insertion thereof into the corresponding recess,
applying said force to said member in a direction different than said normal direction. 2. The method of claim 1 wherein a cross sectional area of each projection is normally reater than the complementary cross sectional area 0 the corresponding recess when said member is in a relaxed state, said a force applying step including the step of applying a force to said elastic member to resiliently reduce said cross sectional area of each of said projections to a value less than the value of said complementary cross sectional area of said corresponding recesses, said inserted projections being resiliently compressed against said stack when said reducing force is removedto thereby closely secure said member to said stack.
. applying a force to said extending portions of said