A brief history of the 3-Ring Binder

Fascinating 3 ring binder information

You can use this information to rule the world of presentation material Trivial Pursuit and destroy at office supply Cranium!

Interesting facts about 3 Ring Binder - Corporate Image

When was the 3 ring binder invented?

That depends on where you are and who you ask.

the history of the 3 ring binderLoose-leaf paper was patented in 1854. Also in 1854, patents were filed for both the 2-ring and 3-ring binders by Henry T. Sisson of Providence, Rhode Island. Sisson recognized the need to be able to protect pages, although he was not yet exactly sure how to fix the problem.  No loose-leaf binders were available on the market at that time.

Fast forward a few years and go to Germany where Friedrich Soennecken is said to have invented ring binders in 1886 in Bonn, Germany. He also registered a patent on November 14, 1886, for his Papierlocher für Sammelmappen (“paper hole maker for folders”, or hole punch).

In the US, the Chicago Binder and File Company was one of the 1st companies to offer a binder for sale in 1899.

How are binders made and has that changed much? Yes and no…

Originally, 3 ring binders were made like hardcover books – three pieces of board (binders board – a heavy paperboard) held together with book cloth covers and end sheets. As plastics got invented, vinyl binders appeared – again three pieces of board but with two sheets of thin vinyl heat sealed at the edges and hinges. Not as strong, but easier to make.

Of course, people realized vinyl is toxic.

So now, with US binder manufacturers like Corporate Image, who are concerned with the long life of the binder as well as the health of the person using it, the best 3 ring binders are made from one sheet of binders board, cased and lined with printed sheets ( or in Naked Binder‘s case recycled papers or bare board) with a hinge pressed directly into the board. No weak spots and no vinyls, these 3 ring binders are 100% recyclable and non-toxic. It is also the strongest 3 ring binder hinge and allows for round spine binders.

How many 3-ring binders are made every year?

We have wondered the same thing, but there is no good count.  In the US, our best guess is that between 40 and 60 million 3 ring binders are sold every year – mostly cheap, vinyl, disposable imported ones. That is a lot of landfill.

For fascinating binder information and history to come!

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