Encapsulation

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 image of choice to begin slide show.)


Treatment criteria:

This treatment is used to protect single-sheet flat materials. Materials thus treated are normally stored flat, but encapsulated items can be hinged and bound as leaves into an adhesive binding or hinged together into folios and bound into a sewn binding structure. Encapsulation is also a good solution for flat materials which need protection and also need to be viewed on both sides.

There are at least two approaches to mylar encapsulation, both of which are covered within this manual; one using an ultrasonic welder, the other using double-sided tape. The ultrasonic welder is an expensive piece of equipment, and not everyone can justify or afford the purchase of one. The tape method of encapsulation does pose a risk of damage to encapsulated items due to contact with the tape's adhesive, while the welder method offers absolute safety in this regard. However, being as this risk is minimal and can be all but eliminated by careful handling and storage, the tape method is regarded as a satisfactory alternative.

Type D Mylar (DuPont) was the material originally used for encapsulation, but its production was discontinued as of September, 2001. However, two other polyester films, Melinex Type 516 and Type 456 remain available from DuPont, and both are acceptable replacements for Type D Mylar. Throughout the manual, the term "mylar" is used (yes, incorrectly) as a generic abbreviation for "polyester film" and in reference to any of the polyester films mentioned above.


Tools and materials used in this treatment

(tape encapsulation)

Tools:

knife
ruler or straight edge

Materials:

mylar
double-sided tape


(welder encapsulation)

Tools:

ultrasonic welder
knife
ruler or straight edge

Materials:

mylar


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. There are a few examples in the "Treatment criteria" paragraph above.


Map Image

 


Table of
Contents