Hardcover Book Printing FAQ

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Level: basic
Hardcover books with a white spine stacked on top of hardcover books with a black spine.

Have a question about printing custom Hardcover Books? Check out these hardcover book printing FAQ and learn about how to arrange your pages for printing, our paper stocks, printing on your book spine and more.

How do I arrange pages for online printing?

For Hardcover Books, please provide two files: a cover file and an interior page file. The cover file should be twice the size of the final page dimensions, plus the spine size and bleed (i.e. a 6”W page with a .1” spine would have a 12.35”W cover file, including bleed). We recommend a 3/4″ bleed on all sides of the cover to allow for the cover art to wrap the book board. Learn more: Bleeds & Borders

It’s important to provide the interior page file in the order the pages will be read. In this file, page one is the first right-hand body page, page two is the back of page one, page three is the front of the second body page, etc.

What’s the difference between pages and sheets? Do I include the cover when calculating them?

A page is one side or face of a piece of paper. A sheet is two pages. For example:

  • Page one is the front cover
  • Page two is the inside of the front cover
  • Page three is the first interior page, etc. 

Our hardcover book printing process requires the sheet count plus two for the cover. To calculate the number of sheets, divide the number of pages by two. Learn more: How to Count Pages and Sheets

Should I submit my PDF in spreads or individual pages? 

Please provide two files: a cover spread file and an interior pages file. The cover file should be a printer’s spread. The interior file should be single pages in the order they’ll be read. Learn more: Reader’s Spread vs. Printer’s Spread, Print-Ready Files, How to Save Your PDF

What is the minimum and maximum number of pages my books can have?

Your books must have a minimum of three pages and can have a maximum of 56 pages (54 interior pages plus two for the cover, which equals 27 sheets plus two for the cover). Learn more: How to Count Pages and Sheets, Booklet Printing

How many books can I order?

You can order anywhere from 10-250 Hardcover Books. 

What paper stocks and weights are available?

The interior pages of your book are printed on coated matte – white paper stock with a 100# text weight. Your book cover is printed on 88 pt. book board, which is sturdy and rigid, giving your book a traditional hardcover feel. Learn more: Small Format Paper Stocks, Coated Paper Stocks vs. Uncoated Paper Stocks, Text Weight vs. Cover Weight

Can you print on the inside of my book cover? What about the spine?

No and yes. You can print on the front and back cover but not on the inside of the cover. Our online printing services allow you to print on the spine of your book, as well as the front and back of your interior pages with black or full-color ink. Learn more: Black vs. Full-Color Printing

Can I add coating or laminate to my book?

No. Our books are automatically printed with Soft Touch laminate, which provides a velvety soft feel, as well as protection from wear and moisture. Learn more: Soft Touch Laminate

Do you print paperback books, too?

Yes. As a premium online printer, we offer many custom book printing options. For paperback printing, we recommend our Perfect Bound Booklets, which feature a seamless square spine just like your favorite novel.

Is pricing affected if only one page of my book is in full-color?

If the interior pages of your book have a mix of black-only ink and full-color ink, the full-color ink price will be charged. Our printing process reads all interior pages as a whole, and therefore cannot distinguish between one page being full-color and the rest being black-only. Learn more: Online Printing Pricing, Black vs. Full-Color Printing

If you have questions about any of these hardcover book printing FAQ or other printing services, please contact customer service.