Tab-it Plus

107-215 Stafford Road W
Ottawa ON K2H 9C1


This glossary will help you understand and order tabs wisely. Our staff is always available to assist you and help you identify and select the best products for your business.


Artwork For tabs, artwork is normally supplied for body copy only. We prefer native PC files or an editable PDF. NOTE: We typeset the tabs at no charge, and only require the titles to be supplied in the body of an email.

Bank A single row of tabs running the full length of the sheet, normally along the 11" edge, left to right or top to bottom. A set of tabs might contain one or more banks.
(If you order 10 tabs per set in a 1/5th cut, the first BANK will be tabs 1-5, and the second BANK will be tabs 6-10.).

        Bank of Index Tabs

Binding edge The edge of the sheet that will be drilled or bound in your binder or book.

Blank tabs A tab that has no printing, generally used to run through office copiers and printers. Blank tabs can be ordered, then inventoried at your location for imprinting on your copier on-demand.

Body copy Any printing on the sheet other than the tab text.    Custom Index Tab BodyCopy

Common or Unique Body Copy COMMON body copy is printing that repeats in exactly the same place on the body of each tab. It can be a company logo, a part number or anything that repeats on each tab. UNIQUE body copy varies from tab sheet to tab sheet, such as tab headings reproduced on the main part of the sheet.

OVERALL SIZE The size of the sheet including the the tab extension. Tabs to fit a standard size of 8.5" x 11" are commonly 9 x 11 for side tabs, and 8.5 x 11.5 for hanging or top tabs. Other common sizes include 6 x 8.5 for half-size sheets (5.5 x 8.5), 9 x 14 and 8.5 x 14.5 for legal size sheets, and 17.5 x 11 for ledger size sheets. Metric (A4) tabs are also available.

Collating The process of assembling tabs into complete sets.
   Forward collating - 1,2,3,4,5,1,2,3,4,5 ...
   Reverse collating - 5,4,3,2,1,5,4,3,2,1 ...

Cut The cut is determined by the number of tabs in a bank.
A 5-bank set of tabs would be described as 1/5th cut.

      Index Tab Cut

Die cutting The process of trimming the tab extension out of the overall size tab sheet, to yield a body and a tab extension. This is done on specialized tab machines rather than on a letterpress.

Drilling The process of putting holes in the tab sheets for insertion into a ring binder or Acco clip.

Extension The measurement of how far the tab extends from the body of the sheet.
Standard is 1/2", but we can also cut 3/8".

Indent or Shoulder The distance from the top edge of the sheet to where the first tab starts (or the distance from where the last tab ends to the bottom edge of the sheet).

Printable Tabs Pre-cut tabs that accept ink directly onto the paper or onto special printable mylar.

Mylar A clear or translucent coloured plastic film applied to the tab extension.
It is applied using high temperature and pressure. Ink on the body of the sheet must be completely dry before it can be laminated and a wax-free varnish is strongly recommended to prevent smudging and transfer

Overs Overs are additional sets produced. An allowance for overs is considered normal when ordering tabs that will be drilled or punched later; please include your estimated overs requirement when preparing an order.

Plain tab A blank tab that has no mylar laminated to the tab extension.

Position The location of the tab in the bank. For example, the first tab in the bank would be in position 1; the center cut of a 5-bank set would be position 3.

     Index Tab Position


A faxed or emailed copy of the art to be used in producing your tabs to show layout and typesetting, along with confirmation of specifications for your preferences in production.

Reinforced binding edge A strip of clear mylar placed on the back side of the sheet to add strength to the holes and to help prevent tearing under heavy use. This a 9/16" strip of mylar laminated to the back side of the binding edge of the sheet. The edge must be at least 8.5" long for reinforcement to be applied, and most stock weights over 65lb cover run well. 100lb text weight stock can be reinforced if Tab-it Plus is provided enough overs.

Reversed type Printing tab extension so copy is reversed as shown here.

   Reverse Type Index Tab

Reversed tab copy is white or coloured lettering "reversed out" from a solid PMS or black ink bar on the tab extension. To avoid the bar's inner edge from bleeding onto the body of the sheet, print or trim the sheets such that the bar is 1/16" narrower than the tab cut.

RUSH CHARGES Rush shipment is available on most tab projects at an additional charge. Weekends and holidays are not considered working days. For longer runs, please remember drying time and production windows need to be considered; most of our customers find that ordering the tabs in advance of the rest of a production's elements allow both parties enough time to pull it all together.

Set of tabs The total number of tabs per book or binder. A set can be one bank of tabs, or several banks of tabs in different sizes.

Supplied pre-printed Tab sheet supplied to us pre-printed and we will convert into tabs.

Tab The extended portion of the sheet, sometimes plain (cut only) but usually coated with clear or coloured Mylar.

Tab Extension The measurement of how far the tab extends from the page. The most common size is 1/2", followed by 3/8".

Tab copy The lettering that will print on the tab extension.

     Custom Index Tab Copy

Type style Determines the location of the tab on the sheet and the direction of the tab text.

       Index Tab Style

Turnaround time The time it will take to complete your job. This will be determined by the size of your job and the finishing required. We will always do whatever we can to meet YOUR deadline. Our standard turn around time for most jobs is 3 to 4 working days from final proof approval or receipt of the printed stock, not including the day it arrives.

Typeset The typing of the tab titles in the desired typeface and point size, as well as the arrangement of the tab titles into perfect position for printing and tab cutting.