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Re: [BKARTS] paste starch, cold water paste etc

Starch (or flour) solution does require cooking to release the adhesive
properties of the material (check the archives for more detailed discussion
of starch paste.)

However, it is not necessary to worry about any heavy film forming over
the cooked paste if the hot, cooked paste is poured into a container of

The excess water prevents a film from forming.  It is also a guide to
complete cooking.  If the paste dissolves in the water as it is poured
in, the cooking was incomplete.  It should cool down into lumps/ribbons
and leave the water clear.

In summer, such paste should last at least a week; in winter, I've kept
paste (without spoiling) for upwards of a month in the lab.

>The starch solution does need to be cooked, in order to move it along the
>adhesive chain.  While the proportion of starch to water varies, depending
>on what you are doing at the time, as a starter, try adding enough starch to
>2 oz. of cold water to reach a consistency of light-to-heavy cream, again
>depending on what you are doing at the time; add that solution to 4 ounces
>of water that has just begun to boil; stir gently, but constantly, until the
>milky solution takes on a translucency.  By adding a few drops of cold water
>to the paste and stirring it in, it will prevent a heavy film from
>developing over the paste.  It usually will stay good for only a couple of
>days (that's why small batches work best).  When not in use, cover the
>container with a piece of wax paper, held in place with a rubber band.  Do
>not refrigerate the paste, because it only hastens its demise; wrap it in
>wax paper and keep it at room temperature.
>A highly recommended volume: Ikegami, Kojiro. Japanese Book-Binding. New
>York: Weatherhill, 1988.  ISBN 0-8348-0196-5.
>Good luck!
>Paul Martin

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Chaucer  _Parlement of Foules_ 1386

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