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I don't know whether this has been mentioned yet, but there is a form of binding called 'half-canadian'. This gives you a spiral bound manual with a cover around the outside -- you get all the benefits of spiral binding (lays flat, can be folded around etc) with the professional look of perfect binding (spines for bookshelves etc).
I've used it recently for a suite of manuals, and I was delighted with the result.
Mike Bygrave (bygravem -at- intuitive -dot- co -dot- uk)
"1966 was a great year for English football
- Cantona was born"
"I like deadlines. I like the whooshing sound
they make as they fly by." - Douglas Adams