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Subject: Lab design

Lab design

From: Sara R. Williams <williams_s>
Date: Tuesday, June 23, 1992
With regard to James Mason's question about lab design in
Distlist 5:63:

>Kansas State University recently received the ok and, more importantly,
>the funds to build an addition to and renovate the library.... Because
>we'll be reallocating space, I may have a chance of getting a quality,
>well planned room for book repair and minimal, basic conservation
>work.... Further advice from people on building a library materials
>repair room is welcome.

First, congratulations--you must be very excited about this. (For those
who don't know, I was Jim's predecessor at Kansas State and I have vivid
memories of the space he is now working in.)  What you appear to have in
mind is a unit for doing basic collections maintenance repairs, nothing
involving high level item conservation work and/or chemical treatments.
I have a few suggestions, none of which is prohibitively expensive.

    1.  Resist any efforts to locate the collections maintenance unit in
    the basement.  In addition to the corrosive effect on staff morale,
    basic collections maintenance repairs are much easier to do if you
    have some natural light.  The ideal location would be the first
    floor, not too far from an elevator, to simplify moving book trucks
    in and out of the unit.

    2.  The floor should be able to bear the weight of a board shear,
    flat storage files, a guillotine cutter, and any other heavy
    equipment you might want to acquire in the future.

    3.  There is a joke I've heard at several preservation-related
    meetings of the American Library Association, to the effect that the
    first challenge a new preservation librarian faces is getting a
    board shear through a 36" door.  Insist that the collections
    maintenance unit be designed with double doors to avoid being later
    tempted to knock out a wall.

    4.  A sink is something you cannot do without.  Try, if you can, to
    get a laboratory sink installed, something wide and flat, preferably
    divided.  If at all possible, arrange the floor space so that wet
    and dirty jobs can be confined to one end or corner of the room.

    5.  Nobody ever has too much storage and counter space.  Make sure
    you have room to store full sized sheets of book board, and enough
    shelving to keep work in progress arranged in some kind of logical

    6.  Likewise, nobody ever has access to too much electrical power.
    Be sure to include space and appropriate wiring for a PAC terminal
    [public access catalog].  You don't say whether your office will
    also be in this space, but if so, make sure the wiring will be
    adequate for your pc and printer.

Sara R. Williams
Preservation Librarian

                   Conservation DistList Instance 6:6
                   Distributed: Sunday, June 28, 1992
                        Message Id: cdl-6-6-002
Received on Tuesday, 23 June, 1992

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