Three-ring binders are used to store and organize paper documents. They have three round or D-shaped clamps equally spaced along the spine to hold papers by the side. Common sizes are 8 ½ x 11 inches for legal size paper, and 5 ½ x 11 inches for half-sheets and cards. They usually have leather or vinyl covers and metal clamps. Most 3-ring binders open from the left and can hold one to two inches of paper.
Types of 3-ring Binders
Kinds of 3-ring Binders include the following:
Open 3-ring binders
Open 3-ring binders have straight, flat edges and are not sealed at the side. They are commonly used for thicker stacks and multiple-page documents. Some have small flaps that connect the two covers to keep them from flapping.
Zippered 3-ring binders
These 3-ring binders can be closed with zippers along the sides. They are ideal for organizing documents and holding different paper sizes. They usually have thick padded covers and may include handles and side pockets.
Choosing 3-ring Binders (Buying tips)
Ring size. Choose a 3-ring binder with large rings to hold a wider range of thicknesses. Look for hollow adjustable rings if you want a tighter hold for smaller stacks of paper. Round rings usually take up more space, so choose D-rings if you will be storing large paper sizes.
Cover. Choose a 3-ring binder with a light but durable cover. Make sure the cover is water-resistant to protect your documents when you carry the binder outdoors. Napa leather covers work best for zippered 3-ring binders because they are soft, light, and durable.