albums with single or double guards
Bookbinding By Hand by Laurence Town, Pgs. 259-63
Corp., New York, (1950)
begins with this exercise. Simple small albums can be made
from cartridge paper in order to teach the method. The same
procedure is used for better materials such as manilla and
cards of various thicknesses. For thinner sheets single
guards are used; card sheets require double guards.
with single guards
12 to 16 pages of good cartridge paper or thin manilla a
little larger than the intended finished size. Knock them
square on one short edge and trim a little off in the plough.
From the same material cut guards 1" wide and the same length
as the edges just trimmed. The number of guards required
is one fewer than the number of pages, and they must all
be creased in the centre down the whole length.
Take a guard,
flatten it on a sheet of waste paper and glue it evenly
and thinly. Lay it on the bench, and place the straight
edge of a page up to the crease in the guard. Turn it round
and add another page to the remaining half of the guard.
Rub it down thoroughly under a sheet of clean paper and
fold back the pages, leaving the guard inside. Insert a
slip of clean paper inside the guard to prevent the pages
sticking together as there is always a slight squeezing
out of the glue at the edges.
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guard and place the whole of the completed pages half-way
on it; add another page to the other half, rub down, and
bend over again with the guard inside. Continue this prooess
until all the pages have been added, keeping the back as
square as possible throughout the whole operation. Two cloth
joints as long as the back and 1-1/2" wide are cut out of
the material intended for the outer cover, and these are
creased, right side inside, a third of the way across the
width. This 1/2" is glued and the joints fixed on the book,
the crease lying flush with the back edge of the pages.
Four single sheets of thin patterned endpaper are required,
each the same size as the book, and a straight edge must
be trimmed on each sheet. Two of these must be put away
safely, as they are not required until the book is nearly
finished. The other two are pasted and laid on the outer
leaves of the book, the straight edges coming within 1/4"
of the crease in the cloth joint. These are left to dry,
the book standing on its edge, and when they begin to curl
drying must be completed between boards under a light weight.
edges are cut, the book must be packed with wastepaper.
Sheets of newspaper are cut a little larger than the pages
and inserted between them, up to, but not past, the edges
of the guards. Sufficient sheets should be added to make
the general thickness of the book throughout equal to that
of the back to compensate for the presence of the guards.
Mark a point
X to denote the width of the book after it has been cut.
This should be only as far inside the edge as will trim
all the pages. Transfer this measurement to X1, taking it
from the back of the book, and join X and X1. Place a try-square
on the back, and square a line at the head (as at A), allowing
enough inside the edge to trim all the pages. Turn the book
over and repeat this for the tail. The book is then ploughed
along these lines, having a cutting board behind the line
in each case. It is most essential that the book be square
in the press before any cutting is done.
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are now cut out and squared, the book being used as a template.
To do this the boards are roughly cut a little larger than
the book, fastened together by two tiny spots of glue, and
trimmed along the edge intended for the back of the book.
Place the boards on the book so that the straight edge is
within 1/4" of the back. In this position, run a pencil
line round the head, tail, and fore-edge; add outside these
lines three more lines 1/8" away, but parallel to the first
lines; cut the boards along these outer lines. If the boards
are thick, they should be bevelled slightly all round. This
may be done by wrapping sandpaper round a bandstick or ruler
and rubbing down the edges, keeping the angle as constant
spots of glue are then put on the cloth joints, and the
boards placed in position, being sighted all round to check
the 'squares', i.e. the amount or board (1/8" in this case)
which projects beyond the book at the head, tail, and fore-edge.
A light weight is placed over the book until this glue has
set. Very little glue must be used--just two small smears
on each joint--for it must not be forgotten that this is
only a temporary fixing of the boards.
may be in full, half, or quarter cloth. Cut out a piece
of cloth, allowing 3/4" for turning in, and the instructions
for case-binding are followed in the covering. These are
found at the beginning of Chapter 20.
When the case
has been made the book must be placed on one side of it,
and a piece of waste placed under the cloth joint, which
is then glued. It is usual to mitre the ends of the joints
before gluing, and if the book is a thick one and appears
to need strengthening, it can be lined with thick brown
paper. After gluing the joint, replace the waste piece of
paper by a clean piece to prevent any possibility of soiling
the endpapers. Bring over the case, keeping it tight over
the joint, and rub well down when closed. When both sides
have been done the back should be attended to down the edges
of the boards, using a bone-folder until the glue has set.
of thicker card having double guards
The two sheets
of patterned endpaper which were put aside are now trimmed
to fit the insides of the boards. If the straight edge of
the paper is put down within 1/4" of the joint, and the
paper held firmly whilst it is creased round the edges of
the board, then 1/8" is marked inside these creases
and trimmed off. They are then pasted and placed in position
to form the 'board papers'. Leave the book standing open
until the drying is nearly complete, and then leave in the
press. Any lettering or decoration should be done before
taking out the waste paper used as packing between the leaves.
should have a strip cut off the back edge. The width of
this strip varies with the size of the album. A small book
would only need 1/8" whereas a large album would have strips
up to 1" wide. Guards of white linen, or thin cloth, are
prepared, and the width of these also varies with the width
of the strips. Roughly speaking, they should be 1" plus
twice the width of the card strips, e.g. if the strips are
1/2" wide then the guards will be 1" plus 1", i.e. 2" wide.
These guards are folded down the middle as in the previous
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When a guard
has been glued, a strip is placed on each side of the centre
crease, and a page added at each side, leaving a small gap
of 1/16" between the strip and the page to form a hinged
joint. They are folded with the guards inside, and strips
and pages are added until the book is complete.
point the procedure is the same as that for albums with
single guards. Heavier books of this nature must be strengthened
down the spine with a liner of brown paper or thin linen,
glued on and well rubbed down. A hollow back may be added
to stiffen the covering cloth if it is thought necessary.