A looseleaf is a piece of paper that is not bound in place, but typically punched so as to beorganized in a ring binder.Loose leaves may be sold as free sheets, or made up into notepads, whereperforations allow them to be removed easily.
Typically loose leaf paper has straightblue lines with pink margin lines. This type of paper isnormally sold in packs of 100 or 200 sheets and are not necessarily sold loosewhich means they can be torn out of notebooks with perforations. Loose leafgenerally has three holes so that the piece of paper can fit into a three-ringedbinder.
There are two commontypes of loose leaf paper: wide ruled and college ruled.College ruled paper has less space between the blue lines, allowing for morerows of writing. Wide ruled paper is intended for use by grade school childrenand those with larger handwriting.
The chief advantage ofloose-leaf paper is its flexibility and economy in use. A punched sheet ofpaper can be inserted into a ring binder, removed for separateuse, and then returned to the binder. Different sheets can be organized into adifferent order in a binder, or removed entirely and refilled in anotherbinder, or disposed of as needed. This ability to rearrange and update thecontents of binders is convenient for students and other workers, who can carryonly the papers they are likely to need on a given day, while leaving theremainder elsewhere. The ability to add or remove an arbitrary number of pageshas been useful for reference works that are frequently updated, such ascomputer software manuals, parts catalogs, and legal indexes.
The chief disadvantageof loose-leaf paper is that individual pages can be easily removed or lost dueto tearing or wear of the punched holes. Adhesive hole reinforcementsor sheet protectors areavailable to make pages more durable, and ring binders are often equipped with sheet lifters orother features to reduce wear and damage to their paper contents. Ring bindersare sometimes banned from use for written journals, logs, or registers, whichmay even have pre-numbered permanently-bound pages to discourage removal ofpages, or at least allow a removal to be detected.