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Re: [BKARTS] Efficiencies


You do not specify how you plan to stab sew, but I learned a system for
side sewing from Sandy Tilcock, a master edition binder and letterpress
printer in my city, and it works very, very well.

Cut binders board to fit top and bottom of the book block.  Square up
the sandwiched block at the edge of the bench with the spine toward
you and lay a pressboard over the top cardboard with a weight.  Apply
a layer of pva to the spine edge, coating the edges of the binders
boards as well.  Let dry (10-15 minutes will usually do).  Remove the
weight and pressboard.

On one of the binders boards, mark sewing holes along the length of
the spine edge with straight-edge and pencil.  I usually set my holes
along a pencilled line about 3/16-inch from the spine edge, spacing
each hole anywhere from 1/2-inch to 1-inch apart.  The thicker the
book block, the closer I place my holes.  Drill the holes with hand
drill or bench drill.  I use a bench drill because it makes them
straighter.  Remove the cardboards.  Using the binders board gives the
block more rigidity, making it easier to raise the bit after making
the hole.

Sew the block.  I was taught to use two needles at the ends of one
thread (cut 3x the length of the spine), passing each in turn through
each hole and pulling the thread tightly after each pass.  In
cross-section the sewing is a "figure-8" up the spine.  At the second
hole I pass one needle through, around the thread of the second
needle, and return it through the same hole.  This creates a loop
inside that locks the stitch in place and makes it easier to finish
the sewing without the thread moving back and forth in the holes.

Finish the stitching up the side and tie off with a square knot.  The
knot can be maneuvered into one of the holes, or it can be flattened
with a folder.  Dot it with pva to secure.  Place the block between
press boards and press for several minutes to press the thread into
the paper of the block.

Select compatible paper (the book paper, if you have it) and glue the
long edge.  Apply to barely cover the stitches.  Trim the paper from
the edge, cut a fresh straight edge on the sheet of paper, and repeat
on the other side.  Press again.  When dry, lightly sand off some of
the paper, taking care to not sand off the sewing threads.  Repeat
with another layer of paper, if the threads are still obvious.

Apply endpapers as usual and prepare case.

This procedure sounds complex, but it can be done in an assembly line system very easily and efficiently. The results are very strong, open well, and are attractive. The stitching is almost completely hidden. Although I have not tried it with Japanese or Chinese stab bindings, it might work to glue up the corners only, then cover them with a sewn-on cloth corner. Or try a paste finish on the spine edge and try to wipe it off with a damp cloth after sewing.

Carol Pratt
Eugene, OR

On Sunday, May 16, 2004, at 08:59 AM, Yasmin Wagner wrote:

I need to bind a large quantity of books at once (stab binding) and
wondered if anyone could recommend some efficiencies,
e.g. faster adhesive methods, etc. Thank you.



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