How is the text arranged on a Triangle Book?

Text is arranged on Triangle Books in the landscape orientation because the book itself is made in landscape. Text can be arranged in two different ways. The most popular is that used for a back spine design with a Page Holder, in which two pages are viewed simultaneously. In this method, text is arranged as on a wall calendar, thus showing two pages, one above the other. This is the best method for sophisticated books, especially those that require search capability. In such cases, users may need to refer often to back matter, as with textbooks.

When one page is viewed at a time, thus without using a Page Holder, text is arranged in what we call “half-and-half.” That is, the first half of the book’s content is on the frontside of the sheets, and the second half of the book’s content is on the backside of the sheets. When page 1 has been read, the user rotates that sheet to the other side of the propped structure to read page 2 on the frontside of the second sheet. So, in a 300-page book, the frontside of the first sheet is page 1, and the backside of this first sheet is page 300. When the user has read pages 1-150, all of the sheets have been rotated to the other side of the propped structure. The user then turns the structure 180 degrees to begin reading page 151. To help users know better where they are reading in this book design, we suggest the page numbers of the second half of the book be placed in gray-colored squares or the like.

To sum, text is arranged like a wall calendar when a Page Holder is used, and thus two pages are viewed at one time, or text is arranged “half-and-half” when a Page Holder is not used and thus only one page is viewed at a time.

What Is a Back Spine Triangle Book?

There are two types of design of the Triangle Book: back spine design and front spine design. In the evolution of the Triangle Book, the front spine design came first and the back spine design came afterward, which our patents reflect. In this website, when we say Triangle Book without any distinction, we usually mean the back spine Triangle Book because we believe it will be the most popular between the two mostly because its Page Holder provides two pages for viewing, as with traditional books.

A back spine Triangle Book has three covers and a spine that are made as a single unit having fold lines. The material used for this single unit cover can be board or plastic. Its front (first) cover and back (second) cover are joined together with the spine. The second and third covers are joined together with a fold line. The book’s pages/sheets are attached to Wire-O or coil binding, which itself is attached to the third cover.

When the book is closed, it looks like a traditional book. It also is shelved like one, with its back spine facing out for identification purposes, that is, with the book’s title and author’s name printed on it.

When the book is closed, the front (first) cover lies on top of the pages; the pages lie on top of the third (extra) cover and are attached to it, and the third cover lies on top of the back (second) cover. The pages are attached to the third cover with mechanical binding, either metal Wire-O (twin wire) or coil (preferably plastic). The binding is attached to the third cover through punch holes (perforations).

Book manufacturers have two options to enable the propping of a back spine Triangle Book: an extension or a strip. They can add an extension to the outer edge of the front cover, which is connected to it by a fold line. When the book is closed, lying on a desk, its extension hangs down from the front cover, hiding the pages’ outer edges. The extension can be fixed or slightly flexible. If fixed, it should be angled inwardly, (70-75 degrees instead of 90 degrees from the front cover) in order to fit flush against the third cover when the book is propped.

Instead of providing an extension, a strip is formed by making a fold line near the outer edge of the front cover. The width of the extension or the strip is preferably, but not necessarily, the same width as that of the text block. A strip reduces costs; but an extension gives the book a more sophisticated appearance. Also, the strip provides pretty much an equilateral triangle formation when the book is propped, thus a 60 degree reading angle. The extension provides a reading angle of 65-70 degrees.

To prop a back spine Triangle Book, fasteners must be added to the extension or strip and their corresponding part added to the upper back of the third cover. Fasteners can be Velcro, magnets (preferably placed inside board), or snaps. If Velcro is used, the board surface must be able to receive its adhesive. Magnets inside the board are preferable, but they add cost.

A back spine Triangle Book enables a Page Holder to be attached to its third cover. This provides the viewing of two pages simultaneously, as with a traditional book. In this case, one page is positioned above the other rather than side-by-side. The elevated page lies flat against the top bar of the Page Holder. After reading that page, the user can push it through the cavity of the Page Holder, making that page fall to the other side of the propped structure. This Page Holder will not work on a front spine Triangle Book.

Our patent for the back spine Triangle Book with a Page Holder is US 9,895,920. To view patents, go to Enter this patent # in the search bar. To view the figures, click on them, and use the top arrows.

What Is a Front Spine Triangle Book?

The back spine design is preferred compared to the front spine design because the back spine design can accommodate an attached Page Holder that provides two pages for viewing simultaneously. The front spine design can only provide one page for viewing because a Page Holder cannot be attached to it. However, two advantages of a front spine design are that it does not require fasteners and it does not have a Page Holder, making it less costly to make.

A front spine Triangle Book differs in design from that of a back spine Triangle Book, and it props differently. First, its mechanical binding is visible when the book is closed. Second, its spine is in the front. Third, this front spine joins the back cover and third cover together with fold lines. Fourth, the mechanical binding (Wire-O or coil) is attached to two covers: the front cover and the back (second) cover, with the pages attached to the binding in between them. Fifth, when the book is closed and its front cover faces up, the front cover lies on top of the third cover, this third cover lies on top of the pages, and the pages lie on top of the second (back) cover. Sixth, a tab extends from the third cover, and to prop the book the ends of the tab are inserted in two slots on the front cover. The front spine design has an advantage over the back spine design in that it does not require fasteners to be attached in order to achieve its propped structure.

This front spine design works best with plastic covers, and its components will not wear out. If soft covers are used, they should be laminated due to wear of the tab and punch holes. Also, with either Wire-O or coil the last punch hole on both edges of a front spine Triangle Book in soft cover should not be too close to those edges because doing so could weaken that area due to extended use. We therefore recommend that the last punch hole be no closer to the edge than 1/4 inch.

Publishers of front spine Triangle Books must decide how to place the book’s title and author’s name on this spine. They can put it on so that you read the shelved book by cocking your head slightly to the right, as with traditional books, or they can place it so you cock your head slightly to the left to read it. If the latter method is used, only then will the book’s title and author’s name read right-side-up on the spine when the book is closed and lying on a level surface facing up.

A front spine Triangle Book can also be read with its three covers back-to-back due to the 360 degree rotation capability.

The patent for our front spine Triangle Book is US 8,485,557. To view our patents, go to In the search bar enter a patent #. To view the figures, click on them and use the top arrows.

Which is better, Wire-O or Coil binding?

Wire-O (metal twin wire) or spiral (coil) binding can be used with both back spine and front spine Triangle Books. Coil can be thin metal or thicker plastic, but we prefer plastic.

The business community likes Wire-O due to its elegant look. But it can get crimped in a binding machine, causing poorly rounded circles. And it can be misshaped in handling, shipping, retail, or consumer-use. Well-rounded Wire-O provides smooth rotation of pages. Disfigured Wire-O should be bent back into its original, fully-closed, circular shapes. Users can do this with their fingers. But they should use gloves to avoid sore fingers.

The business community also likes Wire-O since coil produces “step up.” The pages of Wire-O books stay aligned when they are rotated. Called “perfect registration,” it is needed for books that have a map, picture, or photo on the two opposing pages.

Plastic coil can be slightly more functional than Wire-O. The main reason is that it is flexible and has memory. Thus, if plastic coil gets bent or compressed, it instantly regains its original shape.

The binding industry often uses square punch holes for Wire-O. We recommend round holes for both Wire-O and coil. Wire-O can get “hung up” on book covers that have square holes. And when square holes are not punched with a perfect cut, their rough edges can slightly inhibit rotation of pages on all wire-bound books, whereas round holes rarely seem to have rough edges, and even if they do they are not problematic.

Wire-O is painted metal whereas coil is colored plastic. For TB books, it is imperative that Wire-O be painted properly so its pages rotate smoothly. Wire-O can have a rough surface from being painted poorly. Pages often rotate on plastic coil a little more smoothly than they do on Wire-O. This small difference needs to be weighed with the disadvantage of coil’s step-up.

Traditional, wire-bound books when closed can get their pages wedged between the binding and spine, causing damaged pages. This even occurs in storage and transport, thus before the book gets shelved. Some book publishers solve this problem with Wire-O books, but especially 5-ringed cookbooks, by adding between pages and covers (1) cardboard pieces and/or (2) two plastic “lifters.” This problem does not occur with back pages of a back spine Triangle Book due to its added third cover. Damage to its front pages can be prevented by attaching a plastic ruler there to the Wire-O. (See below, “Can We Add a Ruler.”)

With Wire-O and coil, we recommend that the last punch hole on both edges of the covers of Triangle Books be no closer to those edges than 3/16 or 1/4 inch to prevent the two nearby corners from becoming weakened and ragged due to use.

How do you prevent the coil from tearing the outer page?

As stated in “Can We Add a Ruler,” mechanically-bound books can have a problem with sheets falling down when the book is shelved. It occurs mostly with Wire-O and 5-ring mechanisms often used in the better cookbooks. When this happens, front and back pages get pinched between the book’s binding and its covers and/or back spine, causing sheets to be damaged. To prevent this, publishers of cookbooks sometimes attach two, plastic, curved “sheet lifters” to the binding but outside the pages.

This problem does not occur with back sheets of a back spine Triangle Book due to its third (extra) cover. Its front sheets can be prevented from falling down by attaching a plastic ruler or bookmark to its binding on top of the front page. (See Can We Add a Ruler?)

A sophisticated remedy is to punch slits in the front cover, thereby allowing Wire-O  or coil loops to extend into them when the book is closed. It is unnecessary for the loops to extend completely through the slits, thus above the top surface of the cover.

Publishers may not want slits in the front cover of their books even though these slits will be close to the inner edge of the front cover. Yet slits in the front cover cause the covers of a closed, back spine Triangle Book to be “locked” into position, with no space between the pages and the front cover, making the pages remain aligned, thus not loose, and therefore incapable of being damaged.

To prevent wear and tear of the first and last pages, especially the first page, for a back spine Triangle Book we recommend inserting a thin, clear, plastic sheet as sufficient protection of those pages

How do you turn the pages?

All sheets in traditional, trimmed books remain perfectly aligned. This is not so with wire-bound books. Their punch holes (perforations) make the sheets somewhat loose. This looseness can result in users grasping two or more sheets by mistake, instead of one, when rotating it on its binding. The following tips may help solve this.
The best way to grasp the top sheet of a propped, Triangle Book with your fingers and rotate it upwards is to use your forefinger or thumb and push sideways on one side of that top sheet near its bottom corner. Then, on the other side of that sheet, near its bottom corner, push the edge of that top sheet outwards with your other forefinger and slide that hand under the middle of that top sheet. With the back of that hand, push that sheet up. If a Page Holder is used, that sheet will rest against its upper bar in an upright position. If a Page Holder is not used, the user will push that sheet so it falls to the other side of the propped structure. It should only take 1-2 seconds to do this. Practice helps.
If rotated sheets do not lie snugly against each other on the other side of the propped structure, they may get too misaligned and/or too high on the binding. This can inhibit the rotating of sheets. It usually happens only when reading the first few pages of a Triangle Book. To keep rotated sheets better aligned, and so they don’t hang too high on the binding, pick up the propped book and tilt it away from you until its rotated sheets hang down about 1-2 inches from a firm, level surface, such as a desk or table top. In one or two quick moves, lower the book so the bottom of the sheets tap lightly on that surface. This should align rotated sheets and cause them to hang low on the binding, thus providing maximum efficiency in rotating sheets.
An excellent option for rotating sheets on a Triangle Book may be the use of a pencil with an eraser or the like that grips well. The user rotates a sheet upwards by pushing it with the eraser portion of the pencil. But some pencil erasers don’t grab well. Users can use a fingertip moistener or a rubber fingertip that bank tellers use. The best method may be a rubber PaperMate eraser that is inserted onto a pen or pencil, making it grab better. Another method is to move the eraser sideways against the bottom portion of the top sheet, grasp its edge with your other hand, and rotate that sheet upwards with that hand.

How does the page holder work?

The Page Holder provides two pages for viewing simultaneously, and it only works on a back spine Triangle Book. This Page Holder preferably is made of plastic. Its left and right, U-shaped sides are easily and quickly attached to the outside edges of the third cover by sliding them down. It can remain on the book, largely out of sight in its withdrawn position, whether the book is closed or propped. The Page Holder can be quickly attached or detached to the third cover. When the book is propped, the user slides the attached Page Holder upwards to its full, upright position. (Its bottom bar stops against the Velcro attached to the back of the third cover and/or against the extension on the front cover.) A page is then rotated upwards 180 degrees to rest against the top bar of the Page Holder. After the user reads that top page, he or she can push it through the Page Holder’s large cavity. That causes it to fall to the other side of the propped structure to rest against the front cover.

The user has the option of rotating one sheet at a time to rest against the top bar of the Page Holder or many sheets in that elevated position before pushing it or them through the cavity to rest on the other side of the structure against the front cover and thus out of sight. A Triangle Book works quite well with many elevated sheets resting against the Page Holder’s top bar.

When the user is finished reading and desires to close the book, she or he returns those pages to their original position by lifting and pushing the pages back through the Page Holder’s cavity to their original position, thus resting against the third cover. The user then slides the Page Holder down, detaches the fasteners, and closes the book by resting the third cover and its attached pages on top of the back (second) cover and rotating the front cover to lie on top of the pages.

Can we add a ruler to the book?

Wire-bound books can have the problem of some sheets falling down and getting wedged between the wire and the covers, resulting in damaged sheets. Although this cannot occur in the back of a Triangle Book, and rarely in its front, an excellent solution that prevents this from happening is to add a 6″-9″ long, 1″-wide plastic ruler or bookmark that clips unto the wire binding on top of the first sheet. This plastic piece serves the same purpose that lifters do in five-ring cookbooks.

In order to attach this object to the book’s mechanical binding, it must have the same punch holes as the book’s sheets do. And it must have slots that extend from these holes to its nearest edge that allow it to easily slide on and off the binding.

This plastic ruler or bookmark can provide other benefits. Readers of sophisticated, nonfiction books can get annoyed by having to refer to back matter, such as endnotes. That is why readers of such books prefer footnotes. A plastic bookmark can be inserted on the book’s binding in the endnotes area. It can be placed so that one end barely hangs out beyond the sheets so that the reader will not have to search for the endnote.

This ruler or bookmark can easily be removed and used for underlining text, as students often must do with textbooks. And this piece can be attached to the wire binding where the reader last read, thus serving as a bookmark that stays firmly in place when the book is closed. Plus, book publishers can advertise on such a bookmark.

How much does it cost to make a Triangle Book?

Triangle Books cost a little more to make than traditional books do. But we believe that if book publishers provide an additional benefit that readers really want which is not available with traditional books, and it makes reading more comfortable, many readers will pay the extra price. We think this is especially true of certain book genres, such as cookbooks, manuals, and expensive books, such as those in law and health/medicine.

Cost will vary according to the requirements of your project, but we can give you a basic idea. If back spine Triangle Books are manufactured in mass quantities with hard covers about 1/8 inch thick, they should cost less than $1 more to make compared to other wire-bound, hard cover books.

The Page Holder is an additional cost, but we have options. Publishers or their book manufacturers who purchase a license from us may not want to pursue the production of Page Holders, which preferably are made of plastic. In this case, they can purchase them from us.

Front spine Triangle Books with card stock covers may cost less than 50 cents more to make compared to other wire-bound, soft cover books. These books need to have a little heavier card stock and double-sided lamination is preferred compared to regular, soft-cover books. The lamination will keep the covers from turning up, which is a common problem with softcover books. Using plastic covers for the front spine design works quite well. Either way, if Velcro is used for fasteners, cover surfaces such as lamination or a plastic cover must enable the sticky side of Velcro to be attached solidly.

How is a Triangle Book better than easel book or table tent?

The only printed book that compares to a Triangle Book is the easel book format. That is because it also has a built-in book stand due to three covers and wire binding that prop into a triangle formation, which is a steep A-frame, by means of a substrate cover. It, too, can have Wire-O or coil binding and be made to prop and be read in landscape or portrait. This easel book format should not be confused with an “easel book stand,” which is separate from a book.

The easel book format often is called “table tent easel.” It is used sometimes in hardcover, children’s books and books with few pages. Easel format has not been that popular since its propped position is rather unstable for two reasons: its substrate (foundation) usually is small and has a fold line that pulls up when the book is propped. The result is a very, vertical, triangle shape, often called an “A-frame,” that is susceptible to tipping over. And its folded base prevents the book from fully closing. So, an easel book neither stays fully open nor fully closed. Applications that benefit most from its steep A-frame are displays.

A Triangle Book has none of these problems presented with the easel format. Plus, due to an easel book’s folded substrate, when the book is closed it results in the equivalent of five covers, thus adding considerable thickness.

Some publishers try to solve the problem of an easel book not fully closing by inserting it in a slip case. But that adds to cost and further thickness. Another solution, seen in flip charts, is to have only two covers and a substrate having no fold line which folds inwardly against one cover and adheres to it with Velcro. But it is complicated and cumbersome to use.

A Triangle Book is very superior to a table tent easel book, and it may cost less to produce, for these additional reasons:

  • More stable foundation. A Triangle Book (TB) has a much more stable foundation than an easel book (EB) does since a propped TB’s foundation is larger. This enables a propped TB to work better while sitting on a reader’s lap.
  • Less cover material. A hard cover TB with an extension has about 10% less cover material than that of a hard cover EB of the same size.
  • Spine for identification. Back spine TBs have a spine for identifying it on a bookshelf, but EBs do not. The only way to identify an EB on a bookshelf is to insert it into a slip case having the book’s title and author’s name on its back spine. Not only does this add to costs, it can be difficult to insert a book into a slip case.
  • Easier to prop. A TB is easier and faster to prop than is an EB in a slip case.
  • Fewer punch holes. A back spine TB has only one cover attached to its wire binding, whereas an EB has three covers attached to its wire binding.
  • Smaller wire binding. An EB having three covers attached to its wire binding, rather than TB’s one, requires it to have wire with a larger diameter.
  • One cover unit, not two. The covers of a back spine TB are made as one unit, whereas EB covers have two units.
  • Better reading angle. Authorities recommend that reading material be placed at about a 60-70 degree angle and that a reader’s line of sight be perpendicular to the material. A propped TB provides about a 60-70 degree angle, whereas an EB typically provides a more vertical, 75 degree angle.
  • Less shipping weight and volume. Both weight and volume of a box of back spine TBs is less than that of a box of an equal number of EBs having the same number of pages and the same size books even with no slip case.

How do I get permission to make Triangle Books?

Kermit Zarley Enterprises LLC is offering U.S. book publishers, book manufacturers, and others a non-exclusive license to publish any of their books in our patented, Triangle Book formats. Our licensing agreement for clients requires a $2,000 initial fee. Our royalty rate for each unit is 5% of the amount manufacturers charge publishers for making each book that is sold. Royalty payments to Kermit Zarley Enterprises LLC are only required at year’s end. The $2,000 fee is not deducted from royalty payments. Those interested in making their own books in our Triangle Book format can purchase a license from us to do so by contacting and asking that our licensing agreement be emailed to you. Right now, we are allowing publishers to test the market, at no charge to them, by publishing and selling up to 1,000 units in one of their book titles in our Triangle Book formats by signing a small contract to that effect.

Will I need to display the Triangle Book brand/trademark on my products?

Our ultimate goal is to develop the Triangle Book trademark as a brand by creating other reading products associated with it. Therefore, we ask clients who purchase a license from us to include our trademark logo on the back cover of their books.

How do I promote the Triangle Book format once I have a license?

Bookstore retailers may want to promote the Triangle Book due to its built-in bookstand. They can interest customers in them by setting up a stack of a particular book made in this format in a prominent location in their store and propping one of those books into its triangle formation on top of that stack. This eliminates the need to display a book by typically setting it on an acrylic book stand. A propped Triangle Book then becomes its own advertisement, drawing customer attention. Retailers also might want to place alongside this stack a screen showing our video of how a Triangle Book operates as well as a placard listing its selling points such as the following:

  • Built-in book stand provides hands-free operation without fatigue
  • Proper reading angle enables good posture with no neck ache
  • Flat pages stay open and are easier and faster to read
  • Write, type on a computer, or eat while you read
  • Copying text onto a computer is easier, faster, and with less error
  • Works perfectly on a drop-down tray while seated on an airplane
  • Easier to highlight and write notes on
  • Leave the book propped and return without using a bookmark