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A common office stapler

A stapler is a mechanical device that joins sheets of paper or similar material by driving a thin metal staple through the sheets and folding the ends. Staplers are widely used in government, business, offices, and schools.

A common school stapler

History

The first known stapler was handmade in the 18th century in France for King Louis XV, by an expatriate Norwegian. Each staple was inscribed with the insignia of the royal court, as required.[1] The growing uses of paper in the 19th century created a demand for an efficient paper fastener.[2] On August 7, 1866, the Patent Novelty Mfg Co. patented the Novelty Paper Fastener. It loaded a single staple at a time, and was used mainly to bind papers or books—but also carpet, furniture, and boxes. The P.N. Mfg Co. made staples for the fastener in several sizes.

McGill stapler

In 1866, Joan Barbour received U.S. patent 56,587 for a small, bendable brass paper fastener that was a precursor to the modern staple. In 1867, he received U.S. patent 67,665 for a press to insert the fastener into paper. He showed his invention at the 1876 Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and continued to work on these and other various paper fasteners through the 1880s. In 1868 a patent was also taken out for a stapler in England. On February 18, 1879, C.H. Gould received patent 212,316 for the McGill Single-Stroke Staple Press. This device weighed over two and a half pounds and loaded a single 1/2 inch wide wire staple, which it could drive through several sheets of paper.

The first published use of the word "stapler" to indicate a machine for fastening papers with a thin metal wire was in an advertisement in the American Munsey's Magazine in 1901.[2]

In the early 1900s, several devices were developed and patented that punched and folded papers to attach them to each other without a metallic clip. The Clipless Stand Machine (made in North Berwick) sold from 1909 into the 1920s. It cut a tongue in the paper that it folded back and tucked in. Bump's New Model Paper Fastener used a similar cutting and weaving technology.

Methods

Permanent fastening binds items by driving the staple through the material and into an anvil, a small metal plate that bends the ends, usually inward. On most modern staplers, the anvil rotates or slides to change between bending the staple ends inward for permanent stapling or outward for pinning (see below). Clinches can be standard, squiggled, flat, or rounded completely adjacent to the paper to facilitate neater document stacking.

A staple remover is a device that removes permanent staples with a pair of interlocking curved claws that slide under the staple's bent-over ends and bend them back out.

Pinning temporarily binds documents or other items, often cloth or clothing for sewing. To pin, the anvil slides or rotates so that the staple bends outwards instead of inwards. Some staplers pin by bending one leg of the staple inwards and the other outwards. The staple binds the item with relative security, but is easily removed.

Tacking fastens objects to surfaces, such as bulletin boards or walls. A stapler that can tack has a base that folds back out of the way so staples drive directly into an object rather than fold against the anvil. A dedicated tacking device, with no base or anvil, is called a staple gun.

Saddle staplers have an inverted "V"-shaped saddle for stapling pre-fold sheets to make booklets.

Stapleless staplers, invented in 1910, are an environmentally friendly means of stapling that punches out a small flap of paper and weaves it through a notch.

Surgical use

Surgeons can use surgical staples in place of sutures to close the skin, or during surgical anastomosis. A surgical stapler doesn't resemble a standard stapler, as it has no anvil. Surgical staples are commonly preshaped into a "M". Pressing the stapler into the skin and applying pressure onto the handle bends the staple through the skin and into the fascia, until the two ends almost meet in the middle to form a rectangle.

Staplers are commonly used intra-operatively during bowel resections in colorectal surgery. Often these staplers have an integral knife which, as the staples deploy, cuts through the bowel and maintains the aseptic field. The staples, made from surgical steel, are typically supplied in disposable, pre-filled, pre-sterilized cartridges.

Types

See also

References


Simple English


A stapler is an office tool that is used to place thin items such as paper together. It uses a small metal device (a staple) to put them together. The ends of the staple are pointed and go into the paper. There is also a chain of stores called Staples, which sell office supplies.

When you press the stapler down, it will release a staple and the staple is pressed into the paper, and then bent. That way the pieces of paper get stuck together.

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