What does a Print Binding and Finishing Worker do?

Bind books and other publications or finish printed products by hand or machine. May set up binding and finishing machines.

Jobs Roles

  • Apply color to edges of signatures using brushes, pads, or atomizers.
  • Bind new books, using hand tools such as bone folders, knives, hammers, or brass binding tools.
  • Compress sewed or glued signatures, using hand presses or smashing machines.
  • Cut binder boards to specified dimensions, using board shears, hand cutters, or cutting machines.
  • Cut cover material to specified dimensions, fitting and gluing material to binder boards by hand or machine.
  • Design original or special bindings for limited editions or other custom binding projects.
  • Form book bodies by folding and sewing printed sheets to form signatures and assembling signatures in numerical order.
  • Imprint or emboss lettering, designs, or numbers on book covers, using gold, silver, or colored foil, and stamping machines.
  • Insert book bodies in devices that form back edges of books into convex shapes and produce grooves that facilitate cover attachment.
  • Maintain records, such as daily production records, using specified forms.
  • Meet with clients, printers, or designers to discuss job requirements or binding plans.
  • Monitor machine operations to detect malfunctions or to determine whether adjustments are needed.
  • Perform highly skilled hand finishing binding operations, such as grooving or lettering.
  • Punch holes in and fasten paper sheets, signatures, or other material, using hand or machine punches and staplers.
  • Read work orders to determine instructions and specifications for machine set-up.
  • Repair, restore, or rebind old, rare, or damaged books, using hand tools.
  • Set up or operate bindery machines, such as coil binders, thermal or tape binders, plastic comb binders, or specialty binders.
  • Set up or operate glue machines by filling glue reservoirs, turning switches to activate heating elements, or adjusting glue flow or conveyor speed.
  • Set up or operate machines that perform binding operations, such as pressing, folding, or trimming.
  • Stitch or glue endpapers, bindings, backings, or signatures, using sewing machines, glue machines, or glue and brushes.
  • Trim edges of books to size, using cutting machines, book trimming machines, or hand cutters.
  • Examine stitched, collated, bound, or unbound product samples for defects, such as imperfect bindings, ink spots, torn pages, loose pages, or loose or uncut threads.
  • Install or adjust bindery machine devices, such as knives, guides, rollers, rounding forms, creasing rams, or clamps, to accommodate sheets, signatures, or books of specified sizes.
  • Lubricate, clean, or make minor repairs to machine parts to keep machines in working condition.
  • Prepare finished books for shipping by wrapping or packing books and stacking boxes on pallets.
  • Train workers to set up, operate, and use automatic bindery machines.
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