More on Disc-bound notebooks

This is a followup to my post about configuring two disc bound books.  One is my writing journal and one is a sketchbook.  I’ve used both for 2.5 weeks.

I really liked using the sketchbook.  I could sketch either with the paper in the book or take one sheet out and sketch using my coroplast board.  What I did not like was the paper with which I filled it.  I stopped using it in favor of the Strathmore Series 500 Mixed Media paper.  I’ve done a complete 180 about paper…. from watercolor to the smooth texture of Mixed Media.  I’m using a Stillman and Birn Zeta for the NaNoDrawMo and liking it.  Maybe I should try hot-press watercolor, as it’s a smooth texture.

Not the disc bound sketchbook, but the coroplast support board in action.


For the journal, I made a clear plastic cover before I left on my trip to Michigan.  It’s really more of a Common Place Book than an introspective diary.

Clear cover, Arc pen holder, book mark and strap, black card stock as first page, covered in stickers I mainly picked up on the Michigan trip.

The Lamy Vista fountain pen and the Qua Vadis bookmark strap both obtained from Goulet Pens

Open to the first page, which is the black cardstock with stickers.  The clear cover can almost be seen to the left with the pen holder flipped over.

I use plain paper to print images, both my sketches and photos.  Then I punch the page and add in the right location by date.  Here, I’ve also added in a post card and a card-receipt for a raffle.  Both are souvenirs from my trip.  They are over top another plain paper page to which a news article is glued.

My writing paper is HP 32# Premium Choice Laser paper, as recommended by Brian Goulet.  It takes fountain pen like a dream.  I’ve printed a dot grid, cut the paper in half and punched with the Arc paper punch.   I got it from the kind blog author here.  More are available from Amanda at ArcIt.

Another example page from today, with a news article glued to ordinary paper and some writing on the good paper.

Looking for more discs.   Here’s what I found after about an hour of web surfing this morning…….   I’ve been looking for a source of additional discs.  I have paper and I have material to make covers, as above.  I just need discs.

From this blog   I found my way to Atoma .  They are a Belgian company that seems to have been the inventor of the disc binding system 60 years ago  but they did not extend the patent, allowing competitors to offer similar systems.  Here in the USA that is Levinger’s Circa and Staples’ Arc system (do not buy from Rollabind… they are not fulfilling orders or responding to emails).

I found the US distributor for Atoma is Myndology    (They have a newly updated website that still needs some work…. lots of red code showing on pages).

Anyway… Myndology seems to be a good source of inexpensive discs in quantity.  A 25 pack of 5/8″ translucent discs in a choice of colors is $6.  A 100 pack is $22. Staples doesn’t sell discs in quantity. Levinger only sells in quantities of 1000 and only in black (1000 3/4″ for $129).  If I needed 1000 discs, Levinger would be cheaper.

The only issue with which I’m not satisfied with this system is storage.  If I get extra discs and store each book as a disc-bound version, it takes up more room than a simple hard bound journal like Moleskine.


About redharparts

Born in Michigan. Attended undergrad and graduate universities there. I've lived in England, Germany, Southern California and now Washington (state). I'm a retired Medical Social Worker with a past specialty in Oncology. I've enjoyed exploring historical re-creation through the SCA. I costume in several fandoms. Lately I've returned to Art and have taken up Urban Sketching, a version of en plein air painting.
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3 Responses to More on Disc-bound notebooks

  1. miatagrrl says:

    I love learning about your new system! I’m not a fan of looseleaf myself, but it seems to be suiting your needs well. So all the extra discs are just for storage? Instead of that, how about getting each completed volume bound with that plastic strip (I don’t know what it’s called) that slides on? It probably comes in a standard 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 length. Or a similar binding from a place like Kinko’s.

    – Tina

    • miatagrrl says:

      I also really like the look of your journal/commonplace book — looks similar to mine, with all kinds of stuff stuck into it.

    • redharparts says:

      Yes, the extra discs would be for storage. I’m not picturing what you mean by a strip with a slide. It would have to accommodate at least an inch thick. But it did occur to me this morning that I could just use a binder clip or two. I want to be able to go back and leaf through the pages. I like to re-read my books from the year before. I’d thought about just putting it in a large envelope but not binding the pages in some way would make it difficult to read later. Until I think of something else, I think I’ll use the clips.

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