Thursday, 3 November 2016

Postbound / Three-Ring Album Comparison

I've always used post-bound alums, and I have no plans to change that. I like the fact that a finished album feels like a book, with all its page bound together at the spine. Double pages work well in them, with only a tiny gap between the two halves. As my pages have got bulkier, I've had to move from one album per year to two albums per year, and I discussed that in this postThe alternative of three-ring albums has never appealed to me. They feel temporary, as if the pages could be removed and discarded on a whim. Double pages either need to be firmly attached to each other, or have an ugly gap in the middle. 

However those rings do have one major advantage over posts - the ease of rearranging the pages of an album-in-progress or of adding in an extra page part way through. I don't scrap chronologically, though I do keep my albums that way, and I often have to leave gaps for pages yet to be made or move pages around to keep them in order. I realised that one three-ring album might be a useful thing to have. I can file the pages in order as I make them, and then transfer them to my usual post-bound albums once they are nearing completion, instead of having them pile up on a shelf because I can't be bothered to rearrange the album again.

So I ordered a three-ring album online, and when it arrived I was shocked at the size of it. I knew that three-ring albums were thicker than post-bound albums, but I wasn't prepared for the extra space that those rings take up. Both my current post-bound albums and this new three-ring album are from Pioneer, so I thought that I would compare the two types. 

Both empty albums - Post-bound on top

Empty, looking at the front cover, the three-ring album measures 15" wide, 12.5" tall and 3" deep at the rings; the post-bound is much smaller at 13" wide, 12.5" tall and only 1.25" deep. This means that when sitting on a shelf the three-ring album will always stick out further than the post-bound.

I've recently finished all my 2015 pages, and the 28 page protectors fit in the three-ring album quite comfortably with no real increase in size. 

2015 in the Three-Ring Album
In contrast, I actually used two post-bound albums to permanently house these pages and I used post extenders in one of them (as they didn't split evenly) to give total dimensions of 12.5" tall, 13" wide and the same 3" depth for the two combined.

2015 in two Post-Bound Albums

Overall the single three-ring album is slightly bigger than the pair of post-bound albums and it is much more unwieldy. The front cover moves slightly and the pages sometimes snag on the rings as you turn them. Since there are two post-bound albums, each one is lighter and the pages turn easily (plus those doubles do look better).

I'm really pleased that I've done this comparison because it has reinforced my love for the post-bound album. The three-ring will be useful for albums in progress (it now houses my 2016 pages so far) but I still won't be switching.

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