Binder clip

A binder clip, or a banker's clip, is a simple device for binding a few to many sheets of paper. It leaves the paper intact and can be removed quickly and easily unlike the staple. The term "bulldog clip" is used in the United Kingdom to describe both this invention and an older device with the same function, which is stronger and has rigid rather than folding handles.

Characteristics and methods of use

A binder clip is a strip of stainless sheet steel bent into the shape of an isosceles triangle with loops at the . Tension along the base of the triangle forces the two sides closed, and the loops prevent the sharp steel edges from cutting into the paper. The loops also serve to hold two pieces of stiff wire, which serve as handles and allow the clip to be opened. The two slots cut in each loop are shaped so that the wire handles can be folded down once the clip has been attached, and the spring force of the wire holds them down on the surface of the paper. This holds the clip relatively flat, for easier stacking of paper. One handle can also be folded down while the other remains ups to allow the stack of papers to be hung up. The handles can also be removed altogether by squeezing them sideways and pulling them out, allowing for more permanent binding. As compared to a paper clip, the binder clip is able to bind sheets of paper more securely, and is also resistant to rustcite web |url= |title=What are Binder Clips? |accessdate=2007-06-23 |last=Wallace |first=O. |year=2007 |work=wiseGeek |publisher= |archiveurl= |archivedate= |quote= ] .

There are several sizes of binder clips, ranging from a base size of 9 millimetres (0.35 in) to 50 mm (1.97 in). The sheet steel portion is customarily painted black, with the handles chrome plated, but a variety of decorative color schemes are also available. The sheet steel portion is usually made of stainless steel, but can also be finished in nickel, silver or gold.


The binder clip is commonly used in the modern office. It can hold a few to many sheets of paper, and is usually used in place of the paper clip for large volumes of paper. It can also be used to hold pieces of quilt together and to balance machinery or as a bookmark..


The binder clip was invented by Washingtonian Louis E. Baltzley in 1911. At that time, the method of binding sheets of paper together was to punch holes in them and sew them together, making it tedious to remove a single sheet of paper. Baltzley invented the binder clip to help his father, Edwin Baltzley, a writer and inventor, hold his manuscripts together easily. While the original design has since been changed five times, the basic mechanism has remained the same [cite news |first=Hales |last=Linda |title=A Big Clip Job? Think Washington |url= |work= |publisher=Washington Post |date=2006-05-20 |accessdate=2007-06-23 ] .


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