Collated refers to the process of gathering loose sheets of paper into one book. Collation in book publishing refers to assembling individual printed and cut sheets into a book through sewn or glued signatures; covers can be attached once assembled.
Collating is typically carried out using machines; however, collation by hand may also be accomplished. When performed this way, sheets are gathered into piles, typically eight at a time, and then pages are trimmed and glued together. After signatures are assembled, the cover is added.
There may be several reasons for collating books manually. One is when they are too small for machine collation; another might be when rebounding the book and needing the pages removed from their old binding before being collated in their new one.
Binding books requires various techniques, but using a binding machine is one of the easiest and most cost-effective. A binding machine features a large needle that sews all signatures at once before clamping them together and trimming off excess paper.
One common method for binding books with glue involves collating pages into signatures and applying glue between them before adhering to the cover. Once dry, this method also supports removable covers.
PVA glue is one of the most frequently used glues. This white, inexpensive glue dries clear and can even bend without cracking the spine of a book as it sets.
Once a book is bound, it can be sent off to be printed by a printer. They’ll print large sheets of paper before cutting them up into individual pages that can be collated into signatures before sewn or glued back together.