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96 of 97 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent introduction to hand bookbinding., 11 July 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction (Paperback)
The author covers the basic skills of hand bookbinding using clear, concise language and illustrations. He shows you how to build your own equipment using elementary woodworking skills for a small fraction of the cost of commercially made equipment. I have built all of my own equipment based on his plans and have successfully used it to bind books. Several example bookbinding projects are covered step by step. I found the chapter on binding manuscripts particularly useful for binding some academic work. The headbanding chapter is quite interesting as it explains how to add to the aesthetic appeal of your book as well as its structural integrity. I think that this is one of the best how-to manuals that I have read on any subject. I highly recommend this book for those wanting to get started in bookbinding with a small investment. Building your own equipment and binding books with it is quite a rewarding experience.
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83 of 84 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book, 14 Mar 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction (Paperback)
Excellent, one of the best 'how-to' books I have ever read, and certainly the best bookbinding instruction book. Clear, detailed instructions that all make sense; it is easy to understand and illustrated with precise, unambiguous diagrams. All the instructions work, and I have gone from being a complete novice to a fairly accomplished bookbinder, always returning to this book alone for help and advice. Beats the other bookbinding manuals out there hands down.
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62 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Clear and Helpful, 24 May 2005
This review is from: Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction (Paperback)
This is a great how-to book. It steps through the process of producing a hard-back book binding, assuming nothing about what you know or your skill level.
The start of the book introduces the techniques and tools. The main part of the book steps through each stage in detail. The book is written to assume that you are going to take unlimited care of the book. The writer asks you to have lots of extra paper, waxed paper, and so on to make sure glue doesn't transfer to the wrong bit of the book and everything stays neat. I worked through with a little less care and got very good results.
The penultimate part of the book suggests projects to get you into binding. They start of simple and work up to full books. The how-to section at the start actually covers the most complex book project, so if you find the main bit of the book too complex you can skip forward and try something easier.
The final part of the book shows you how to create your own bookbinding equipment. This is a great section, and with a little bit of woodworking skill, you can save lots of money and avoid the difficult job of tracking down specialist tools.
I enjoyed this book, and would recommend it wholeheartedly. It helped me get good results with no prior experience and only a minimum of tools. My only concern is that it shows only one binding style, and could have done with a good section on the vast variety of different bindings that can be created. But that is just nitpicking when there's so much good content here!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful Book, 2 Oct 2009
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This review is from: Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction (Paperback)
This is a very good book if you're just starting to learn bookbinding, like I am. Sometimes American textbooks can be a nightmare for we Brits, but this one is an exception. Good, straightforward information and instructions combine with very clear diagrams. I would highly recommend this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Clear explanation of an old art, 26 Aug 2009
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Paul G. Brewer "Ticktock" (Rutland UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction (Paperback)
A very clear and thorough explanation not only of the craft of book binding but detailed drawings of the simple tools used. Enough in this book to enable me to start bookbinding.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars book making bliss, 12 May 2012
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This review is from: Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction (Paperback)
This is a serious book making book; very easy to follow and quite detailed. I love it. The only thing that dates it is that it shows you how to make the different implements needed, whereas now I'm sure they can all be sourced online. If you like book making, or want to have a go, this is a brilliant book. Buy it!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Helpful, 16 Mar 2014
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Clear with plenty of diagrams, good explanations given possibly a bit too meticulous in some areas for the amateur binder. Based around paste adhesive, no explanation or use of pva
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4.0 out of 5 stars Hand Bookbinding, a Manual of Instruction, 18 Sep 2013
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Revd P. Taylor "PeterT" (Devon, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction (Paperback)
I was looking for information on how to rebind a paperback book which was badly falling apart, with many pages completely detached. This manual was well reviewed so I bought it. It has very little on repairing paperback books, especially the "perfect bound" type that is now so common (where there is no stitching to hold parts together, but every page is simply held by a common glue backbone); in fact it said paperbacks like this were not really repairable. But after reading what there was, I decided it was worth a go on my ancient but well-loved paperback. I realised I needed a glue that would dry or set in a flexible state, so bought some Copydex - it worked a treat. I completely dismantled the paperback, separated all the pages, and cleaned off remaining old backing glue, including from the inside of the cover. Then after carefully stacking the pages square and tight I clamped them in a "workmate" so that the spine of the pages was a few mm above the clamping edges, and spread a layer of Copydex, worked it in, and let it dry overnight. I added a second good layer the next day. After that was dry I took it out, and all looked well. So I added a third layer of Copydex and inserted the pages into the cover, pressed it all very firmly down, and reclamped it up. Next day - good as new - nearly. Book opens flat and easily, pages are secure, and I have my book back. Happy!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Most informative, 22 May 2013
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This review is from: Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction (Paperback)
The author explains in detail how book binding by hand works, and even has information on how one may create the tools used in this art. As I have been trying to restore books, it was great to read how they are put together, so that one could change a badly worn hard cover. Once you understand the principles and methods used, you can adapt it to your own tools at hand.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Comprehensive guide., 6 May 2013
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A. J. Watson "Bones" (Newcastle-on-Tyne, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction (Paperback)
Crystal-clear line drawings illustrate each step in the process of creating a book, re-binding a distressed volume or making a slipcase. Simply written with little jargon, it is packed with tips, techniques and a section on making your own tools, I love it!
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Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction
Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction by Aldren A. Watson (Paperback - 22 Nov 1996)
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