Post by jeffgeorge on Jan 22, 2017 19:16:49 GMT -9
If memory serves, bookbinders normally use a different formulation of PVA than what you get with craft glue, and that violated my "must be something you can source at your local Walmart" rule, so I went with the other alternative that some bookbinders use (the contact cement). The binder clips and rulers are another bookbinder trick for when you don't have an actual book press handy, and those are readily available at office supply stores and Walmart. I've built my own book press out of wood and bolts, but that's a bit much to ask of the end user, so I went with the simpler and more accessible rulers-binder-clips-contact cement method.
Another thing I'm a fan of when I'm in a hurry are ZipBind spines--I had a little Proclick machine that punched out the holes, and I'd snip the spines flush to fit smaller pages. They're great for things you want to lay flat and don't look too chintzy.
Thanks for the response, Chris (Christopher?)
After I got done posting last night, I was too jazzed from the book binding videos to sleep until I tried it myself, so I printed out the Guncrawl rule book and gave it a go with glue that I had on hand. My choices were Elmer's Glue-All and Aleene's Tacky, and I picked Aleene's, thinking it would dry quicker and warp or wrinkle less. The book basically worked, but in retrospect I should have gone with the Elmer's. The Aleene's is so tacky and starts to set so quickly, it began to set and lump up before I could get a smooth, even coat on the spine. So, my finished book is strong, and the pages are easy to turn and read, but the spine isn't perfectly smooth. I think if I'd used two or three coats of Elmers--which is 'looser,' wetter, and slower to dry--I'd have had more time to smooth out the glue before it started to set. That way, though my drying times might have been longer, the spine probably would have been smoother.
I didn't have two metal rulers, so I used a pair of thin CD jewelcases to make my press. It looked funny, but because the book is so small it worked.
Despite all the compromises and improvisations I made, I'm pretty amazed with the result. I'll post a pick next time I have my camera out at the desk.
I totally understand making local sourcing a priority for one-off hobby projects. Personally, I can tell that book binding is something I'm going to fiddle with more going forward, though, so I'm going to experiment with various glue options, including contact cement and Elmers, as well as try to track down the book binder's PVA you refer to. I'm also going to make myself a couple of book presses. That's an easy project with applications in papercraft far beyond book binding.
Regarding spiral binders, I've had one for more than 20 years, but it finally broke on my a year or so ago, and I haven't replaced it. I used it in the 90s to bind player's handbooks and rules summaries for campaigns I ran, among other things. Spiral binding is fast and durable, and once you've bought the equipment, very inexpensive...but a new spriral binding set-up isn't my top wish at the moment.
I mean, as cheesy and imperfect as this Guncrawl rulebook that I bound last night is, it's still really cool, and I want to do more of this and get better at it. I'll start a new thread for my bookbinding adventures once I get going, tho, and stop high-jacking yours. Thanks for inspiring me to get started on this!