Repair-Binding, Caring and Maintenance of Books

Graphic artists need to learn how to repair old books that are worn out. Sometimes, the covers have to be replaced or some pages need to be repaired. If a single leaf or folio is inserted to replace a damaged leaf it is referred to as tipping-in. Steps in repairing single section and multi-section books that are widely used by students and offices will be outlined.

A. Repair-binding of a single section book

These are suggested steps that may be followed when repairing a single-section bound book. it is not mandatory to follow the steps strictly. the graphic artist may employ other efficient means of repairing the book.

1. Dismantle book- this is the first step that must be followed. it involves the cutting of the stitches and removal of the threads to free the folios.

2. Repair damaged pages- the damaged pages or folios are removed and replaced with new ones.

3. Collate section- the entire section is collated or re-arranged by jogging it lightly on a table to align the various folios in order.

4. Measure and mark stitching points- a pencil is used to create the marks for the stitching by accurately measuring the spaces for the holes. The holes are then pierced using a bodkin.

5. Stitch with new thread or staple- a threaded needle is used to stitch the book following the stitching technique for single-section stitching.

6. Trimming knife is used to trim the excess papers at the head, tail, and fore-edge of the book.

B. Procedure for repair – binding a multi-section book

1. Dismantle book- this is the first step that must be followed. It involves the cutting of the various stitches and removal of the sewn threads to free the individual sections.

2. Repair damaged pages- remove and replace all the damaged pages in each of the sections.

3. Collate sections- re-arrange the various sections together as a unified whole.

4. Measure and mark stitching points- the stitching holes are marked and created. The stitching or sewing method for multi-section binding is followed.

5. Trim- the excess paper material is trimmed off by the use of a metal ruler and a trimming knife.

6. Round and line book- This is carried out by using a backing hammer to round the back of the book and the back bone of the book is lined using a piece of binder’s cloth.

7. Glue sections- The various sections of the book are glued together after placing fresh endpapers that is if the old endpapers are damaged.

8. Prepare a new case- A new case is prepared if the old one is worn out or damaged. The procedure for preparing the case and fixing of the book in the case is followed.

9. Put under weight- The case-bound book is placed under weight for it to thoroughly dry.

Books have to be cared and maintained. This would make them last for a longer period. It would also increase their workability and effectiveness. Some of the tips for caring and maintaining books are outlined below:

1. Books should be protected against heat and moisture. All forms of books should not be brought near a fire source or any liquor such as water, drinks etc.

2. Books must be protected from stains and dirt. The books should not be exposed to dust, inks etc.

3. Books must be kept upright on a shelf when not in use. However, they must be dusted periodically and re-arranged to free them from all forms of dirt.

4. The books packed on the shelf should fit closely with each other to prevent leaning. This is because leaning can cause the big books to fall on small books with slender spines to warp and get damaged.

5. To prolong the lifespan of books, one must avoid folding the covers back against each other.

6. To avoid weakening the covers and stitches of books, they must not be rolled.

7. School bags should not be forced to contain books beyond their loading capacity, etc.