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Re: Advice sought concerning aged paper (long)

  Two points are now in play about the questions asked about this stash
of old paper on the list:
   1) good quality vs archival -- these terms are not synonyms. There
have been several postings on this, so I only offer the observation that
the original text block of an old book is very liable to be more acidic
(but not brittle) than a modern archival paper; a good quality modern
paper might fall somewhere between the two.
   2) grain in handmade and machine papers -- this is where it gets

   Today's little test:

  I took a piece of permalife ( a thin modern machine made archival
paper) and made it into four pieces, 11.3 cm x 9.9 cm. with the grain
running parallel to the long side. I numbered the pieces 1 to 4 in the
lower left corner.  I took two laid hand mades I have used, and made two
pieces each, four in all, measuring 6.4 cm x5.7 cm, the chain lines
running parallel to the longer side.
 1) Conservation laid, made by MacGregor and Vinzani, Whiting, Maine USA
     a thin but very dense paper
 2)Old Cleeve, medieval laid, made by Griffen Mills, England (formerly,
believe it has moved??) a thin paper, 55 gsm.

  The two handmades come in the same sheet size.  Both have a grain very
difficult to discern from tactile characteristics alone.  I think I can
feel a difference in the crease, but that may be subjective.  I note
that according to the Turner book on fine papers, the Griffen Mill
papers are described by the maker as having "no grain". The Old Cleeve,
as a medieval laid, has chain lines 1.9 cm. apart.  The conservation
laid has chain lines 2.9 cm. apart.

   I pasted the pieces of handmade paper to the machine paper with
straight wheat paste, applied to the back of the handmades.
    piece 1  cons. laid, chain line parallel to permalife grain
          2  cons. laid, chain line across permalife grain
          3  old c., chain line across permalife grain
          4  old c.  chain line parallel to permalife grain

  Four hours later
    piece 1 has dried warped, but flattish, the paper arches away from
the table surface in a pronounced ridge two thirds along the short side
of the permalife support, the arching parallel to the parallel grain and
chain direction
    piece 2 has dried warped, but flatter than the other three. The
diagonal corners at the lower right and upper left are flat to the table
surface, the lower left and upper right corners are lifted above it
    piece 3 has dried with a tremendous warp, all four corners are high
off the table surface, the lower right and upper left less so than the
other diagonal
    piece 4  looks like a dead dog in a cartoon, all four corners stick
straight up forming the piece of laminated paper into a U shape that is
almost a tube

  My PERSONAL conclusion: these two hand made papers might be described
as having "no grain" by persons judging the whole, dry sheets by tactile
perception alone.  A bookbinder using them would be an idiot not to pay
careful attention to the chain line direction of these two papers.

  I have a three day weekend ahead of me, but I would be happy to hear,
on or off list, from others trying experiments with hand and machine
paper grains/direction.

     Dorothy A.

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