Working The K-118 Binding Structure

Mid way through working on a commissioned set of books for a carpenter friend of mine I came across a binding style referred to as the K-118 by Bruce Levy who wrote about and bench tested the structure.

The K-118 structure piqued my interest immediately due to its remarkable flexibility and full access to the gutter. I originally tested the structure on a collection of books, articles and transcribed lectures on bookbinding that I digitally compiled into a single document and printed in signatures. The basics of the structure are a text block sewn on velum strips, tapes or cords in a manor to keep swelling to a minimum. The block is rounded but not backed and covers are shaped on the spine edge to continue the arch of the round of the block. Covers are attached and the spine is lined with velum cut to fit in between the supports and three times longer than the width of the spine. The excess velum on ether side of the book is cut into thirds and the outer two sections are attached to front of the covers while the middle section is fed to the inside of the book and attached to the inside of the cover. 
The strengths of the K-118 structure were immediately apparent, the book opened beautifully and was extremely flexible without feeling dangerous or 'slide-y'. The way this structure is put together it doesn't rely on the covering material for strength as the sewing supports and spine liners both attach to the covers and can keep the book intact even if the the covering material cracks or rips. Although the structure was going well I had a couple of fundamental questions about the style as well as some small specific questions on the process as well. Through a bit of digging I was able to come up with the contact information of Bruce Levy and sent him an email not expecting to ever hear back. He in fact did get back to me and couldn't have been more generous with his time. So shout out to Bruce Levy for being awesome.  

I have been practicing the K-118 method since and I want to see if it could become a structure I could rely on for a series of sketchbooks I have been making that I will be selling at the next Bushwick Open Studios.  Here is just a taste:


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  2. Dear Sir, when i google about the K118 binding , then its is just your bindery and the bindery of Toon VanCamp from Belgium that works around this type of binding. Can you explane me where that binding is developed? I can find no futher information on the internet. Please advise me. You will find me on instagram as "digeruma" bookbinding.


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