Hinge Mending

Images and text by Garry Harrison,
Head, Circulating Collections Conservation,
Indiana University Libraries

Web design by Jake Nadal,
former Head, Preservation Department,
Indiana University Libraries



(Click on this image to begin slide show.)

Treatment criteria:

The hinge of the book is broken. What this means is that the text block shows separation at the spine edge. This usually occurs at the very outermost pages of the text block (just inside the boards) or within a few leaves in from there, i.e., somewhere in the area(s) of the first few and/or last few pages of the book.

The super may be pulled away from the text block but is fully intact.

This disorder results from the original end sheets' lack of cloth hinges. This insufficiency is often combined with the use of a gauze-type super, which due simply to its lack of surface affords poor adhesion to the spine of the text block. The super pulls away from the text block, and as the end sheets have nothing except paper to offer in the way of support, they tear at the spine edge.

Tools and materials used in this treatment


glass or Plexiglas boards
ruler or straight edge
small brush
weights or standing press
flat press board or scrap binders board


Japanese tissue
wheat starch paste or PVA mixture
mylar or waxed paper
small container of water

Using the Manual

To facilitate convenient navigation and use, the procedural parts of this manual are presented in slide show form. As you can see above, clicking on the image shown on each treatment's front page begins the slide show.

Here are the navigational options within each slide. To view this information in illustrated form see the map image below.

Each slide offers the following capabilities:

* Thumbnail images of the entire treatment procedure are in a vertical column to the left. The progression is downward, beginning at the top and ending at the bottom. By clicking on any of these images, you can go to that point in the procedure.

* Clicking on any page's main image opens a larger version of the image in a separate window.

* Button links are provided to return to this page, to go to the next and previous slides in the series, and to go to the complete table of contents for the entire manual.

* The text is dotted with links to tools, materials, glossary terms, and other treatments. Linked text is gray in color and turns red when the pointer encounters it.

Map Image


Table of