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Subject: Repair of circulating collections

Repair of circulating collections

From: Jan Merrill-Oldham <hbladm18>
Date: Tuesday, February 12, 1991
Responding to Miranda Martin's questions regarding the repair of cloth
case bindings:  she describes a volume with "endsheets intact, super
intact," and the case intact except for tears at the head and/or tail,
or along the joint. Current practice at the University of Connecticut is
to mount a new spine, as described in the Morrow/Dyal manual.  Old super
and glue are left intact.  Our work is based on the premise that
intervention should be appropriate to the problem--that in general, less
is better.

I'm somewhat uncomfortable commenting on the process described, that of
"remov(ing) the super and completely clean(ing) the spine, put(ting) a
new muslin lining across and onto the outside of the boards."  It's
difficult to verbalize the nature of treatments, and easy to
misinterpret details.  That said, at CT we clean spines only when lining
and/or adhesive have failed. Rather than "put new muslin lining across
and onto the outside of the boards," we disassemble volumes, replace
endpapers, and apply spine lining in the traditional way (i.e., onto the
endpapers), mimicking the original book structure.

Regarding selection of the appropriate level of treatment for general
collections materials, we decide whether to mount a new spine, or to
disassemble a volume and replace endpapers and spine lining, based
almost exclusively on the nature and extent of the damage to the book.
There are legitimate 15-minute repairs and, unfortunately, 40-minute

Jan Merrill-Oldham/Carole Dyal

                  Conservation DistList Instance 4:44
                Distributed: Saturday, February 16, 1991
                        Message Id: cdl-4-44-002
Received on Tuesday, 12 February, 1991

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