How Case Bound books are made

What happens in the case binding process?

Case binding, often referred to as hardcover binding, is the ultimate binding style for books requiring longevity & class. The process is very different in comparison to softcover books, like a PUR bound book. We know a thing or two about book binding, having been in the industry for over 40 years!

The elements of a case bound book:

  1. Thread sewn or PUR book block
  2. Greyboard
  3. Printed Paper Case or other material for cover
  4. End papers
  5. Head & Tail bands*
  6. Ribbon marker*
  7. Foiling, embossing or debossing*
  8. Dust jacket*
  9. Slip cases*


Without further ado, let me tell you how UK Book Binders make your case bound books!

Step 1 – The process will begin with cutting and then folding the sections and end papers.

Step 2 – We take the front section and the back section, and via a thin lick of glue near to the hinge, we glue on the front and back end papers. We now have end papers attached to the front and back sections, ready to thread sew to form a book block.

Step 3 – Thread sewing the sections together to form a sturdy Thread Sewn book block.

Step 4 – We apply Anti-scuff laminate to your PPC covers (or at this stage you can foil, emboss or deboss if a cloth or leather material is being used as the cover)

Step 5 – We cut greyboard to perfectly fit around the size of the book blocks.

Step 6 – The book blocks now need to be Back lined, this is the process of affixing material around the spine of the book block, to increase its integrity and durability.

Step 7 – Now that we have an end papered and back lined book block – we trim the book blocks to size. These go through a three knife trimmer to trim to the finished size.

Step 8 – Now that the PPC’s have been laminated and folded, and the greyboard has been cut to size to fit perfectly around the thread sewn book blocks, we are ready to make the cases. This is the process of attaching the PPC’s to the greyboard, this finished element will look like the below:

Step 9 – Now that we have the cases ready, and the book block completed, it’s time for the Casing in!

On our machine, the book block is loaded onto a wing, glue is applied onto the front and back pages (of the end papers), and the Cases are affixed around the book block, held together with glue.

Step 10 – Now we have a case bound book in all its glory, the last step is to form the joint. To do this, we place the case bound book in the mouth of a Joint Forming clamp, which presses down a short distance away from the spine, to form a joint.

I hope you have found this case binding process guide useful!

This process is for a case bound project with a PPC cover. We have very strong lead times at UK Book Binders for these projects – get in touch with us for more advice or just a quote!