With our Scott TEN
THOUSAND®, we're cutting custom tabs of all
sizes and colors with both tab and edge mylar
and hand-punch equipment make every job, large or
small, quick and economical. Now offering 1/4", 1/2"
and 3/8" tabs!
Twenty Mylar Colors
- Minimum sheet size: 5" X 5"
- Maximum sheet size: 13 1/2" X 13 1/2"
To make laying out your tabs easier, we've
provided this downloadable
Tab Layout Guide.
Tabbed dividers are a popular and effective way
of organizing information, and though sometimes
they are considered the "no brainer" elements of a
project, there are many variables in producing and
finishing tabs that require careful forethought.
Index tabs are most commonly used for projects
bound in three-ring binders, but are becoming often
found in Plastic Comb, Plastic Coil, and Double Loop Wire bound books.
In all cases, there are many tab questions and
issues that have to be considered prior to
production, such as:
- Depth of tab
- Size of bank
- Width of tab
- Number of sets
- Mylar reinforcement
- Color of mylar
- Body copy on the tab sheet
- Edge reinforcing
- Special finishing
This is the distance which the tab extends from
the edge of the sheet. The depth is usually 1/2",
though 3/8" is also popular. Other sizes like 1/4"
are available with the appropriate dies.
"Bank" refers to the number of divisions made
along the stretch of the uncut sheet. If the edge
will be divided equally into five parts, then the
tabs will be considered 5-bank tabs. The higher the
bank number, the smaller the tab and the more
collating required to make a complete set.
Width & Inset
The width of the tab can be figured by dividing
the length of the uncut sheet by the size of bank
desired, minus the inset size on each end. The
inset is the distance from the edge of the uncut
sheet to the beginning of the tab arch. Usually
1/4" or 1/2" on each side, the inset can be
adjusted to any size.
Example: The edge of your uncut
sheet is 11". You want 1/2" insets on each end,
and you like the look of 5-bank tabs. After the
insets, the final edge area is 10". Divided by 5
tabs, the width of each tab is 2". This is
important to figure so copy is set within the
proper copy area.
The number of sets is the number of completed
banks of tabs within the book. When ordering, the
job should be described in terms of the number of
sets of X-bank tabs. This tells the bindery exactly
the number of individual tabs to be finished. For
example: 500 sets of 5-bank tabs equals 2,500 total
Uncut tabs may be mylar reinforced for greater
strength and colorful flair. When quoting and
ordering, your bindery will want to know if you
would like mylar reinforcement and in what color or
colors. There are some eighteen or so colors
available, including a customizable "Write-On", so
whether you're trying to compliment a multi-color
project or enhance a single-color job, there is an
appropriate color. If tabs have been pre-cut to run
through a Docutech or other copier, mylar
reinforcement is not an option since it is applied
automatically before tabs are cut.
Copy on the Tab Sheet
Printing additional copy on the body of the tab
sheet is highly discouraged since mylar sealing is
applied with extreme heat which could cause
streaking and smearing of any ink or toner on the
body of the tab sheet. There are heat-resistant
inks and low-heat mylar for jobs that do contain
body copy, but neither of these is a proven method
of eliminating the risk of body copy being smeared.
The only true test for tabs with body copy is to do
a sample, and the only remedy is cutting and
sealing the tabs by hand, which of course drives up
the cost and production time.
Edge reinforcing is a clear strip of mylar that
is applied to the spine of a tab to provide added
strength. There is always the question of which
side the reinforcement should be
applied--the front and be visible, or the
back and be hidden. Its another detail to consider
and ask before placing an order.
This refers to any other treatment to the tabs
such as collating, 3-hole drilling, and shrink
wrapping. These are all considerations that will be
asked by your bindery.
The most important thing to remember about index
tabs is that even though they may not be as tedious
as other processes in our industry, they are
important variables in a successful project. And as
a wise person once said, "Nothing is too simple
that it can't be messed up."
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8648 Glenmont Drive, Suite 100 • Houston, TX 77036
Phone: 800 / 713-785-5750 Fax: 800 / 713-785-5801