Another Inside Look: Nelson’s KJV Single-Column Bible

As promised last week, I have page proofs of the second Single-Column Bible slated for release by Nelson early next year — this time it's the venerable KJV. I've said it before and I'll say it again: one of the factors contributing to the "loss" of the KJV by modern readers is its archaic typography. Paragraphed KJVs are rare enough, so the fact that Thomas Nelson is publishing a single column, paragraphed edition set in 10 pt. type is rather thrilling. As you can see, the specs are identical to the NKJV:


For a detailed look, be sure to open the complete PDF: KJV Single-Column Bible Layout PDF (First Proof). Note that this is not an aggressive reformatting of the text. The words supplied by the translators for sense are still set off in italics, quoted speech is not set off in quotation marks or paragraphed as in modern English. It's just the text of the KJV with the carriage returns after each verse removed. The result is quite readable in comparison to most KJV editions.

46 Comments on “Another Inside Look: Nelson’s KJV Single-Column Bible

  1. Alot of things are right (paragraphed, single column, nice margins, etc.), but many things can still be improved, like the earlier NKJV samples (better font, for one). Also, is this the (better) Cambridge KJV text (Nahum 3:16 “flieth”, 1Jo 5:8 “spirit”) or the corrupt Oxford KJV (“fleeth” and “Spirit”) text?

    • What is the difference between flieth and fleet? What is the difference between spirit and Spirit? Division over things that do not matter is all that you are implying. We all believe that Jesus Christ is our LORD and savior, stop focusing on things that matter not. In many countries they are more than happy to have one page of a bible, let alone picking a nice plush cover, typeset, and version. The AKJV, the NASB, ESV, NKJV, and on and on all say the same thing. Jesus Christ is LORD, he died for our sins that we may be redeemed. All bible translations, wether modern or not are based off of the original languages of Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, which cannot be fully translated into english, so please please please focus your thought else where. Every version serves a purpose, and truth be told, if a none believe picked up an NLT, or an NIV, the Holy Spirit can still speak to that persons heart. Sharper than any two edged sword. Going back to “Matthews 7.8 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.” May the LORD Bless you and keep you brother.

  2. You know what I’d like to see done with this? Typeset it in Palatino. There…THAT would make a reader’s edition. I once had a beautiful single-column NIV in 11- or 12-point Palatino, and it was very pleasant to read. I think this one would be pleasant, too. (And sure wish I still had that NIV, in a very nice pebbly leather).

    • I wouldn t have an NIV if you paid me to take one… I don’t believe it is a reliable translation and crude also…. it is the only version I know where in 1st kings 18 at mt Carmel when Elijah is taunting the prophets of BAAL… he asks them if their god is using the toilet… so he cannot hear them… gross!!….

  3. This font is starting to grow on me. And I find its little eccentricities, like the shorty lower-case t’s, more endearing when used with the old KJV than with the NKJV posted a few days ago.
    I still find the verse numbers distracting (wish they were smaller, gray, in the margins, or gone altogether) but this is enough for me to pre-order a black bonded one on Amazon.
    Just hope thin paper bleed-through isn’t an issue.

  4. Hmmmm….now this looks rather interesting although I’m not sure it will replace my Cambridge Paragraph Bible in terms of use. Still though, with the price of book publishing technology plummenting, I’m surprised some entrepreneurial Bible student/scholar just doesn’t take the King James and bring it completely up to date (the way we like it here) in terms of formatting. With the new on demand publishing machine that has come out this is both possible and profitable on a very small scale (albeit only with paperback at this point). Such a move might motivate a large scale publisher to get in on the the act.
    Nutrition and Physical Regeneration

  5. A new edition of the New Cambridge Paragraph Bible is in the works “in anticipation of 2011 developments” (private communication from Christopher Wright, Manager of Cambridge Bibles). He says they’re right now doing the planning, revising files, etc.
    So we have that to look forward to!

  6. Thanks for that news, Kevin. Hope they’re not revising it too much. I’d be happy if they just came out with another leather cover model that was a little more affordable on the New Paragraph. I’d even like bonded leather. I know Mark felt it was too big, but I loved the comfortable font size and the notes towards the binding made the text lay flat. I don’t like verse numbers in the text, but the New Paragraph did it a lot less intrusively (small and superscripted)than others.
    Taking the Cambridge guy’s comments even more generally, 1611+400 may see a lot of new designs and layouts of KJV versions coming our way. Probably will be true of other publishers too.

  7. You’re welcome, Bill. I haven’t seen a first edition hardcover or leather, but I suppose the size of the first editions matched that of Norton’s companion volume. That would be pretty big. They’re planning on a smaller edition this time around. I have the paperback, which is quite thick, but manageable. The font is very nice, and not so small.
    It’s really just corrections that they’re doing. The text won’t be changing substantially, just fixes here and there. There were a number of corrections incorporated in the text of the paperback. There will just be more in the new editions.
    So, we’ll see. I hope they’ll go all out and do some very special bindings for the 400th anniversary.

  8. I’m not enamored with this typeface, but I could live with it. My only suggestion would to maybe make the the verse numbers a little bolder. Unless you use this edition for reading only, it would make finding verses a tad easier. Other than that I might be interested in this edition in a quality binding.

  9. Kevin, yes the Cambridge NP in leather and hard-cover is 7″x10″x2″ thick so it’s a large textbook, though certainly not quite encyclopedia size. Mark has posted pictures of it before; he thinks it’s too large but he’s a young whippersnapper with good eyes. The paperback is more my price range (my wife gave me one for Xmas) but I do wish the font was just a point bigger, or maybe just slightly darker such as this one.
    Jeff, it appears our comments sort of canceled each other’s out so next time let’s just go for a coffee instead and save the time of posting.

  10. Mark had mentioned in an earlier post that Nelson is considering offering this setting in sewn bindings. I’d really love to see that happen. It makes for some tough decisions when a good usable text setting is offered with only glued bindings at the low-mid range only full-blown calfskin/goatskins as sewn binding options. Mid-price-range sewn bindings are really important for me. I like to write a lot in a Bible that I’m using, and glued bindings don’t hold up well. However, I don’t need the binding to last for a couple of decades, either, because I’m writing in the book as an iterative process, and I’ll be moving on to a new book in a few years.
    It’s not that I think glued bindings have no place. An inexpensively-bound glued binding can be a good way to try out a text setting to see if it’s going to work for what you need. For instance, I’m glad that I had a chance to try Crossway’s Personal Size Reference in a less expensive edition (as opposed to Allan’s new ESV PSR). The print is a bit small for me and I was getting some eye strain (the numerous footnote and reference markers might have made a difference there, too). Now that I have that Bible, though, I find it a handy size for a Bible to take in a bag as a reference tool that I don’t read for long periods of time, and I just don’t need a high-quality binding for that.
    So, here’s hoping that Nelson offers their single-column KJV in sewn bindings!

  11. Interesting, Tod, that you mentioned the ESV PSR in connection with glued vs. sewn bindings. I believe it’s only the black imit leather PSR that is glued-only and the other half-dozen or so models, many at the same low (<$20 street) price, are sewn. So apparently with the Chinese manufacturing methods Crossways (and Nelson?) is using, sewn signatures are not a whole lot more expensive. It probably comes down to whether a given market "notices" it. I think a fair case can be made that these reader's edition Paragraph Text Bibles attract a little more serious consumer than a "sports-loving male youth" Bible would. In that market, cutting costs is absolutely crucial...each dollar of added cost probably means 10% fewer sales. But for us, a dollar or two extra in final price will turn away hardly anyone, while capturing people like you, the truly informed buyer, which is the very market these editions are aimed at. That said, I wonder if today's glued bindings aren't a lot more robust than yesteryear's. Surely there's been a revolution in adhesives in the last few decades. I just say that because my Peterson Message and my IBS BooksOfTheBible are holding up amazingly well and they're both glued. But I guess one can't say for sure until these bindings are 20+ years old. That seems to be about what it takes for old paperbacks to just fall apart.

  12. Hi Bill,
    Thanks for the tip on the ESV PSR. I’ll have to check into the sewn-or-not issue again. When I bought the brown trutone in Mar/Apr of 2008, the binding was glued (my wife’s minty green edition was the same glued binding). I hope that it’s different now. I’m often left to guessing on the sewn-or-glued issue because I usually can’t find a website that includes the information.
    My hunch is that you’re right that adhesives are probably better these days. I just find myself always fighting with glued bindings (in ANY book that I have). I just can’t seem to get glued bindings to stay open well. With a Bible, I get even fussier. I like to have the freedom to think when I’m reading, and for me that means being able to take my hand off of the page or set the book on my open hand without holding it open with my thumb.
    By the way, I want that PSR text setting to succeed well enough that it might even make it to a larger-print version. I hadn’t even considered the possibility until I saw that the ESV Study Bible is being released in a larger-print format next spring; maybe Crossway will offer some of their other successful text settings in different type sizes. Who knows?

  13. I am continually searching for the “perfect” bible which led me to this blog. I really like the Nelson single column layout and have preordered a NKJV.
    For AV Single-Column Bible fans here is another possibility. Penfold sells a Wide Margin Newberry Bible which is a signal column AV. Here is a description from their web site.
    “The Newberry Bible features a unique system of symbols and signs that brings the original Hebrew and Greek text to life on every page. In this edition, each page contains just one column of text and is surrounded by a generous wide margin for notes (Top=18mm, Bottom=22mm, Inner Margin=32mm, Outer Margin=30mm). Two ribbon markers, gold edges, maps and charts, bound in quality black calfskin semi-yapp leather and beautifully boxed. Overall size = 195mm x 245mm x 41mm. The 37gsm paper used in this Bible was specially manufactured in the Czech Republic. It has been coated to prevent bleed through when writing notes (We recommend Pilot G-Tec Pens for writing Bible Notes). The Newberry Wide Margin has been out of print for many years.”
    I bought this bible because I was interested in symbols related to verb tenses. I have found the grammar notes overwhelming since my understanding of Greek and even English grammar terms is limited. I am struggling to understand the terms and significance of the terms, like Infinitive Mood and Emphatic Pronouns.
    I can’t compare to Allen Bibles directly because my exposure to them has been through the internet. I can compare to my Cambridge wide margin bible. The pros of the Penfold bible are 1)I like the dimensions; the pages are thicker and the width is ½” narrower so I find the pages turn firmer in the hand and don’t flop over on themselves, and 2)the line spacing is more generous (my pet bible peeve is no space between lines) so it is easier on the eyes and you can write alternate wording between lines. I would say the Cambridge printing quality is superior and sometimes the Penfold printing is not consistent with some words being fainter than others.
    I think this bible meets a different need than the upcoming Nelson Single Column KJV but it is worth checking out.

  14. This has the same problem as almost all paragraph bibles: a bunch of numbers and footnote symbols embedded in the text. It is just too distracting. Years ago I wanted paragraph bibles like this and hunted all over for them. Then one day I couldn’t stand them anymore. With the other kind of bibles, verse format, the numbers are off to the side where they are mostly out of the way. And I never buy anything with embedded symbols, just pew bibles or Pitt Minion that don’t have symbols.
    I have seen other paragraph bibles which are useful, like the old Jerusalem Bible which is in paragraph format, yet has the verse number symbols off to the side. They use a tiny raised dot to indicate beginning of verse. (There are only a few, very small footnote symbols.) Nowadays no one seems to provide quality like this any more. (ISBN for this is 0-385-49918-3).

  15. The italics in the KJV and other more literal translations are not for emphasis, but to signify which words are not found in the original Hebrew or Greek text. The new Cambridge paragraph Bible does not have them, but this one does, which makes it more attractive to me.

  16. After carefully reading this article again, I see that nobody was saying the italics were for just emphasis. Many apologies!
    I am very excited about this single column King James Version, but seeing as how it will be only offered in bonded leather or “LeatherSoft” (besides paperback) I am wondering which of these two would be the wiser choice. I’ve heard bad things about bonded leather and have no idea what LeatherSoft is like, except that it is the same price as the bonded leather version, so it must have qualities that put it at least on equal footing with bonded leather. I suspect LeatherSoft may be more durable and practical, but this pure speculation. Can anyone enlighten me?

  17. I’ve had good luck with Nelson bonded leather so that’s what I’m getting. I actually like the feel (alas no smell) although the high-wear points (e.g. the “half-circuit” at the spine) can sometimes flake off a square mm or so after a couple years, leaving a black synthetic backing. (A good argument to get black bonded leather instead of colors, although we don’t really have a choice with this edition, at least not yet.) The bonded leather itself is amazingly thin, so my habit of putting leather preservative, primarily mink oil, on bonded leather (see my other posts) might not be as crazy as it sounds considering the leather fibers of bonded leather are suspended in a resin binder.
    That black backing that Nelson uses can be a little stiff to some folks’ tastes, but a little firm rolling of the volume over a slightly-rounded counter edge can work wonders in softening it up.

  18. Thanks Bill, I’ll remember to use mink oil if I get the bonded leather. I always use it on my other leather products anyway (Bibles bags, boots, BCPs, and apparently anything that begins with the letter B…). I wonder why the LeatherSoft (which I assume is a synthetic imitation leather) is being offered at the same price as bonded leather. Does it have its own appeal?

  19. @Russ, I have no experience with Nelson LeatherSoft. The Amazon picture looked suede-like which I feared would be a real dirt- and grime-trap so I avoided it but I certainly don’t know for sure. An awful lot of Nelson artificial leathers (granted my experience is with <$30 products) look really junky and feel even worse than they look so I wouldn't recommend buying one without first seeing it. And as I said before, I've had good experiences with Nelson bonded leather products, which usually only cost a few dollars more so that's what I'm choosing this time. As has been mentioned on this site, some of these new sythetic leathers are a delight in every way (and some feel like rubber inner tubes) so perhaps the Nelson LeatherSoft may be one of the good ones. I just caution waiting until one of us actually has experience with one before I'd risk a re-stock charge or paying postage twice.

  20. My only experience with imitation leather has been with Leathertex which the Lockman Foundation puts on their compact Bibles. It’s not bad, but I haven’t had it long enough to comment on durability. I wonder if this LeatherSoft is the same stuff under a different name.

  21. I’ve been searching the web for my new Bible, reflecting my recent “conversion” back to the KJV after 40 years of using other translations, mainly NASB and NIV. (Wow, I just did the math and was surprised to see it was the same as the wandering in the wilderness — how appropriate). Just a strong preference and not a case of KJV only mania. I have my eye on this Nelson single column Bible but also on the Cambridge “KJV Standard Text Edition Black French Morocco leather 43” which is not single column but apparently one of the more readable of double column Bibles out there.
    This single column format looks nice, but I’m wondering if the number of words per line in this particular edition are a bit too many for smooth reading, and if a nice uncluttered double column format would actually prove to be more readable (also, I do prefer a real leather Bible over bonded leather).
    I only want to invest in one Bible, and have not seen either of these Bibles in person, so does anyone have an opinion on this Cambridge Bible?

  22. @Russ,
    Do you mean Cambridge KJ533T, using the Baker US Distributor numbering? (Or KJ533TR in red text, which I wouldn’t like.) Not bad, $40 at Amazon w/ supersaver shipping for a Cambridge leather Bible! (ISBN-13 = 978-0521507813) Based on the LookInside, I agree, the text is highly readable–seems much bigger than 8 points! Those old type-setters knew a thing or two! And they didn’t spare the ink either, ie it’s quite bold, unlike the modern VersaPro in this Nelson. And I like the old-fashioned, unobtrusive headings across the top of the page, and the lack of pronunciation marks that I find highly-distracting in so many classic KJVs. Yes, I’d greatly prefer paragraph formatting, but at least it has pilcrow marks in the text.
    But I’d say your Cambridge is the other extreme from the Nelson single-column, namely too FEW words per line, so it reads choppy to me. Enough so that it would be a deal-breaker, although I guess your mileage may vary. After all, I don’t mind per se the 10-14 words-per-line that Nelson’s using…it’s not unlike a lot of books I read…and a lot less than this blog!
    Have you considered the New Cambridge Paragraph Bible in Norton’s KJV?
    My last comment in that thread noted how they’re coming out with new leather versions of it in June. They’re called “personal size” so the text may be getting shrunk to unreadability, but I’m hoping they’re just the Penquin paperback text layout (VERY readable) but with a nice binding. I’m certainly curious if anyone knows any more about these?

  23. The ISBN is the same. Yeah, I can see that now (too few words per line) and 8 point type may be a challenge for my eyes. I have also been looking at that Cambridge paragraph Bible. It’s a bit expensive for a hard bound Bible, and I don’t really want a paperback Bible like the Penguin version.
    I printed out the PDF page samples of both this single column Nelson and the Cambridge paragraph Bible to compare them side by side and discovered the Cambridge much easier on the eyes because it had much more leading between the lines of text, something I hadn’t noticed before I printed them out. It also proved me wrong; the lines in both single column versions are not too long after all.
    The only two obstacles I see to the Cambridge (for me personally) besides the price is the absence of italics and the fact that the text represents the original 1611 edition (apparently there were a few mistakes in that first edition which were later corrected). But I could probably live with both.
    So I’m going round in circles over this. I have time to make up my mind since I still have an old tattered KJV my grandmother gave me for Christmas in 1967. I’m finally using that one after all these years. Even took it to church yesterday and got kind of choked up when I realized that this may have been the first time that old Bible has gone with me to church.
    I do wish I knew what else is coming out next year for the 400 year anniversary…

  24. I had a chance to see the Penguin paragraph Bible in person yesterday and realized that I still personally prefer a double column Bible after all. My eyes didn’t like traveling so far from left to right and then back again. I ended up ordering a completely different Bible that I discovered on this blog, the Trinitarian Bible Society Windsor in black Calfskin:
    I’ve added my comments about it over there. Still interested to read what everyone thinks about their Nelson single column Bibles when they come in!

  25. That’s great, Russ! We’ll keep you posted here. For a 2-column KJV, I can’t think of a better choice than the TBS Windsor. If cost is no object, some may prefer an Allen or other premier binding, but I don’t think you can beat the Windsor’s typeface for sheer beauty at any price. Please report back about your experience with ghosting, metrical psalms, etc, in the other thread once you’ve built up some experience with it.

  26. Well, this Bible’s scheduled release was over a week ago, and I’m eagerly waiting to see some reviews! Was the release delayed, or are you (traditional plural you) so enamored with this Bible that you can’t tear yourselves away from it to type your impressions? 🙂

  27. Sorry Russ, Amazon is showing all 3 bindings pushed out to May 18. That’s probably the best estimate at this point.
    These dates seem to be pretty fluid. Note the “real new” Cambridge New Paragraph KJV was initially June, then next February, and now has been brought in to Jan 1.

  28. They do seem pretty fluid, don’t they? Just a few moments ago I went to Amazon and saw that the message had suddenly changed for the bonded leather version only. Yesterday it said “This title has not yet been released” but today it says “In stock but may require an extra 1-2 days to process.”

  29. There’s been some complaints here on the NKJV post ( as well as JMB’s facebook blog that the covers on these are less than ideal. (I’m personally pleased enough with my NKJV; I just find the color unique!) It appears Nelson has heard your cries and is preparing a true leather binding for ~$12 more, presumably in true black:
    No dimensions given yet, but the description of “trim size” makes me worry the text block may get reduced in size, which I’d find disappointing, particularly for this font. Would love to hear any clarification about that…Kimberly Stephens, are you still following this blog???

  30. Nov. 22, 2010- I just bought a KJV one of these on Saturday at a discount outfit called Ollies. $44.95 for $16.00. I think it may be a ‘second’ since it has a couple of minor flaws. After reading it a fair bit over the weekend here’s what I think: 1 Cover: Horrible, horendous, humiliatingly awful cover. It is hands down the absolute worst cover I have ever felt. I don’t even know what it is. Maybe some reject from the bonded leather family. They yaps are so stiff they feel like knives on your fingers. 2. Paper- Not so great. A fair amount of bleed through. 3. Readability- Surprise … awesome! I’m really digging this thing. I like the large 10 point print. I love the format, especially for poetry. I find it very, very conducive to just reading and concentrating on the content. It’s as if Nelson is trying to hide the verse numbers, they fade in with the words.
    Overall, pleasantly surprised despite some huge flaws. I can’t wait for the Cambridge new Paragraph Single column!

  31. I got to handle one of these in a sort of rubbery TruTone-esque cover a couple of weeks ago, and I’m happy to report that it was much nicer than the awful weapons-grade covers offered initially. (Admittedly, that’s a little like saying that cheap hot dogs are much nicer than pickled pig’s feet, but I’m trying to be positive.) The text itself is better than the outside, though I still prefer the New Paragraph Bible’s layout, and would rather buy the Penguin paperback of that one than Nelson’s efforts.
    I think they’re listening, and making incremental improvements, but this is still Thomas Nelson, after all. I’ve pretty much resigned myself to never finding a product of theirs that I’ll like.

  32. Interesting what’s going on at Amazon with these Nelsons…
    First, of all, I assumed that the paper, binding, and covers were the same for both KJV & NKJV editions in the “better” bonded leather bindings. (Can anyone confirm that?) I have the NKJV (an early order from Amazon) and have found the covers soften a lot with treatment and use and the olive green coloration has grown on me. The paper’s fine by today’s standards, with a very nice feel to it. I only regret the lack of a Smyth-sewn binding, although I think these are side-sewn (not just glued) because they are remarkably rugged, even though they don’t open flat.
    However, interestingly, Amazon has raised the price of my NKJV by 20% and has slashed the price of the KJV to $6 with free Prime shipping. (At that price I’ve ordered one and suggest any other KJV lover do the same–these are not bad Bibles!) The genuine leather version of the KJV I referenced in my 7/21 post above is still given a March release date so even if the idea is that it replaces the bonded, it seems kind of early to me to be “dumping” the bondeds. (Anyone know what’s going on?)
    Also, they’re now listing a new imitation leather version of the KJV due next May at the old price of the bonded:
    It’s a berry red color with a design of either trees, chevrons, or mushroom clouds, I’m not sure which. Pretty wild, to my eyes, which seems a surprising design choice on Nelson’s part based on the market’s aesthetic reaction to their first offering, at least from what’s been posted here and on the FB blog.
    And now I see Nelson has a black genuine leather version of the NKJV coming in March as well:
    and a light tan imitation leather version of it coming in May, again with the mushroom clouds like its red-headed KJV brother:
    Seriously, I feel bad there’s been so much carping about these editions. They really are great readers, even if they don’t open flat and come with some “unique” cover choices. Nelson went out on a limb to bring these to us so let’s welcome/support them and put our money where our mouth is. The genuine leather covers coming in March should quell most people’s aesthetic concerns so I hope they sell like hot-cakes. If someone can confirm they’ll be Smyth-sewn, I’d be ready to pre-order a replacement to my NKJV. In the meantime, stuff those Christmas stockings with nice $6 bonded leather KJVs just in time for the 400th Anniversary.
    Finally, I wanted to make note of one last unique (no quotes this time!) feature of these editions that I’ve found a surprisingly positive feature and which I don’t recall getting mentioned elsewhere. That’s the section headings. They’re inserted strictly at chapter breaks. Granted, this won’t give as much detail as the typical modern bible headings that get sprinkled in at a rate of 3-4 per chapter, but they’re also thankfully less intrusive that way.
    Yeah, yeah, I know the chapter breaks are a later edition to the text but a chapter’s a convenient unit or “chunk” of text and a chapter’s end is a natural place to pause and reflect on what you’ve read. I’ve found the chapter summary headings to be a useful construct to mentally categorize just where stuff is. As opposed to verse numbering, which I think causes more harm than good, chapter numbering is a useful addition to help mentally order the text. So even if one wants to argue they’re practically arbitrary, I’d still say they’re as good a place as any to put a section heading. A hat-tip to Nelson for taking this approach.

  33. I’m thinking that I may have found the true utility of these little editions as great (inexpensive) options for a blank bible rebound with spiral binding or 3 ring.
    The cost (around 6 bucks for the KJV) would make me not feel too bad about failed experiments.
    The single column theoretically works better for a blank page opposite for notes.
    The size, if broken into several volumes would be pretty handy.
    The pages (if I’m guestimating Amazon’s sizing) is about 1/2 of a standard 8.5 x 11 sheet of note paper…making it fit perfectly in a 1/2 size 3 ring binder.
    The mediocre binding (glued) and cover (paper or bonded) would be a non-issue.
    So I have 2 questions for those who happen to have one of these (KJV or NKJV).
    Does the paperback have the squared-off pages with no gold on the edges?
    Does the inside margin seem deep enough to do a spiral or 3-ring binding?

  34. Ryan, I don’t have the paperback but the Amazon pictures are pretty good and they show the paperbacks have squared off edges. Almost certainly they are simply trimmed, no gilding. The inner gutter margin is about 5/8″ as I recall, but Nelson’s proof page (linked at very top of this thread) shows them more like 3/4″, although the way they notch and/or side-stitch the inner margin is what’s using up that last 1/8″. Either way a standard 3-hole punch would cut into the text but I’ve seen punches with smaller holes and adjustable to closer to the edge. But certainly “comb binding”, or metal spiral binding, would work fine. Comb or spiral works better with thinner units so making this a multi-volume project is a good idea.
    Remember “standard paper” is ~3x thicker than bible paper so you’d end up with a final product 4X as thick as the 1-1/4″ published volume. You’d probably want to get some of the actual bible paper sheets referenced in the recent print-on-demand thread, but that will double your price.
    Good luck and let us know how it goes.

  35. Amazing Amazon. Got my $6 KJV 24 hours after order! Yes, the binding is the same. Stiff out of the box, but responds well to working with soup can, then rolling pin, then pieces of pipe of decreasing sizes. It’s doing the Yoga now. I broke this one in without any chemicals, so need to correct a statement I made earlier. The flexibility really is just a function of the curvature radius of the tools you use, the neetsfoot or mink oil really doesn’t soak past the bonded leather to the boards. However, tooling alone still leaves the cover with “memory”, the cover “sticks up” after yoga, and of course feels very artificial. The leather treatments are needed to make the hinge self-relax, like on fine bibles, and feel (and look) like a decent bonded leather.
    That said, I’ve found no way to change the olive green look. It goes great with burgundy bibles and hymnals, but looks like a cheesy holiday decoration with crimson red!

  36. Just wanted to thank you, Bill, for your excellent blog. I was nearly going to purchase the Clarion KJV, but it is a little expensive for me and I know I would be too obssessed about keeping it in pristine condition to read it. I’ve just received through the mail, the Nelson single column KJV in black genuine leather (whatever that means)! It looks and feels great, though I haven’t done any extensive reading yet, since it’s been less than an hour that I received it. The pages look to be glued instead of sewn, but I’m not sure how to verify that.
    I like that the Nelson has section headings too, which I find helpful in reminding me of the flow of the “storyline”. If only more bibles are published in single column, as it certainly does make reading and studying the bible a lot more enjoyable. For someone who’s sensitive to language and layout and just a tad ADD (self diagnosis!), having extensive text set in two columns just makes me want to give up after a short while.

  37. Good choice, Ruby. I think you’ll like the black leather a lot more than the olive green bonded covers that don’t have many fans. I’m pretty sure your Bible is glued, not sewn, so it may fall apart in a decade, even with careful treatment, but unless you’re putting notes in it that you just can’t afford to lose, it’s not a big deal to get a new bible every 10 years, right? Glued books never quite lay flat, but these Nelsons have a fairly generous inner (“gutter”) margin so I doubt that will trouble you. I agree, section headings that align with the chapter divisions is “just right”.
    Kimberly S at Nelson, if you’re still following the blog, some of us really enjoy these Bibles and appreciate your role in them.

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