4:1 Pitch PVC Spiral Binding Coils

4:1 Pitch Coil Binding MachinesCoil binding looks good. It’s classy, can be used to bind a wide range of documents and is extremely functional. Coil binding (aka Spiral Binding) is available in two different hole patterns. These are 4:1 pitch (four holes per inch) and 5:1 pitch (five holes per inch). Four-to-one pitch coil is the most popular format used. Why is this? I’ll explain.

Let me go into a few more details about specifically what the differences are between 4:1 pitch and 5:1 pitch coil. I’ll start off with 4:1 pitch coil.

4:1 Pitch Coil Supplies4:1 Pitch Coils (0.25″) – When used on 11″ paper, you typically end up with a total of 43 to 44 holes, depending on how the punching die is aligned. Outside the United States, this pattern is referred to as a 6mm hole pattern. Supplies are available in diameters ranging from ¼” (6mm) up to 1 ¼” (32mm). Some larger diameter coils are available, but less common.

5:1 Pitch Coil Hole Pattern5:1 Pitch Coils – This hole pattern produces about 54-55 holes along the 11″ side of a sheet of paper. Outside the United States this is known as a 5mm hole pattern. Supplies are available in diameters ranging from ¼” (6mm) up to 13/16″ (20mm). While some larger diameter coils are available, they are generally not used or recommended due to the tight hole alignment of the 5:1 pitch pattern.

So why is 4:1 pitch more popular?
The 4:1 pitch hole pattern is more widely used because it can be used to bind more paper. The wider gap in the holes makes it possible to bind thicker books without the pages binding together (easier page turns).

Which hole pattern should you use? The hole pattern you use will depend on personal preference and functionality. If you like the tighter hole pattern, and are aware of the 13/16″ diameter limitation, you may want to consider a 5:1 pitch pattern. If you are unsure and don’t have a preference, 4:1 pitch is more versatile and more common.

Oval or Round?
– Akiles, one of the best-known manufacturers of coil binding machines, recently released a 4:1 Plus pitch hole pattern (0.248″). These holes are oval in shape. The advantage to the oval shape is that coil supplies are supposed to more easily spin through the holes. While they may be easier for coil insertion, you probably won’t notice a huge difference.

Metal or PVC? While you can buy spiral notebooks that are bound using metal coils, in-house coil binding is done by using spiral PVC coils. PVC coils are now the most prominent and widely used supply used for coil binding. PVC coils are popular because they are available in a wide range of colors, are extremely durable and are easier for use with a spiral binding machine.

I hope this helps clarify coil binding for you. If you still have questions, please feel free to call one of our book binding specialist at 1-800-658-8788.

You can find our entire selection of coil binding machines here and our entire selection of coil binding supplies here.

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