This post shows some of the repair work I do on bindings. Anyone doing book repair will be asked to work on bibles. This bible was printed in Stockholm in 1897. It is about 6 inches tall and is covered in a cloth textured to look like leather. When I received it both boards were separated from the book with the back board hanging by the endsheets that were pulling off the board.
The front endsheet had pulled away from the hinge area and had broken in half. Someone had tried to tape it together, which left a dark stain along the break.
The text block was sewn on tapes but the last two sections had broken away.
More tape had been used to try to hold the spine piece in place. The tape had fallen off long ago leaving the adhesive residue along the spine and both boards.
I began by separating the pieces of the book and surface cleaning everything. The plastic layer of the tape on the front endpaper popped off easily but the adhesive was soaked into the paper, staining it.
I gently pulled of the back board along the cloth inner hinge and then I began working on the spine. I removed the lining of blue paper using methyl cellulose.
The sections were in good shape but the last section of the book needed to be guarded with Japanese tissue. The sewing was also in good shape except where two sections of the book had broken way. I reinforced the sewing by beginning the new thread in the section before the break and then continued sewing on the loose sections.
I began the lining of the spine by pasting on Japanese tissue and then added a muslin layer that hung over the sides to reinforce the hinges later and then finished with a lining of paper. There was no evidence that the book had any end bands so I did not add any.
To clean up the tape residue on the cover I used naptha and with many cotton swaps. With the tape on the endpaper the naptha didn't help. So I went over it with different erasers and was able to lighten it.
To reattach the board to the text block I lifted up the cloth along the spine and also lifted the endpaper along the spine edge. I then took the muslin layer I had added to the spine linings and pasted it under the endsheets. I then pasted on the lifted areas of the endpapers leaving small areas where the new spine cloth would wrap around the board and go under the endpapers.
The original spine piece had a paper lining which I removed with methyl cellulose.
I made a new cloth spine piece to wrap from the boards and across the spine. This was glued in place under the original cloth.The new cloth in place under the old cloth of the cover.
Here one side is pasted under the endpaper.
After the new spine was in place the old spine was glued over it.