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Fixing a Damaged Book

Hi. Today on Repairs101, I’ve got a damaged book that needs fixing. And I’m going to show you how I do it. A pair of scissors, some fabric tape and an ordinary ruler.

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Well there you have it, our problem is plain enough to see. The cover has become detached from the body of paper. And so what I aim to do here is simply. I’m going to run a line of fabric tape inside-out along this edge. When I say inside out I’ll show you what I mean. We’ll reattach it there and then we’ll run another line of tape on the inside here.

Measure twice

So what I need to do of course is to just get my tape and my scissors out and take a measurement. So the tape we’re going to be using is a product called Durapore from 3M. It’s the kind of tape you’ll find — or you’ll hope to find. In a first aid kit when you crack into it and you need something really good to hold your bandage in place. I use a lot on other projects like this book repair. I use it to put dust covers on the back of artwork, paintings, photographs that I’m framing. Things like that. It’s just a great all around product.

OK so I’ve cut a piece that measures looks like eight and three quarter inches. I’m just going to apply it to the inside edge here. Now, what I want you to see… Whoops — see if I can keep you in frame … Is that I’m putting it on the backside here and leaving about half of it to stand up over the edge. And I’ll fold that edge over and apply it to this inside edge here of the cover. Make sure it’s got a really nice bond, it goes almost to the end on both ends of course.

The tricky part

And then we’re ready to fold. And this may be the hard part. Getting it to stay folded long enough for you to apply the other side. That’s why you want to leave a big edge. Not just a little curly off the end. Now you see you can pull some tension into it like that and then fold it down into the cover like that.

Now I’m not going to move it. I’m going to make sure it makes a good bond, push down hard on it. Push down. Push down on it. And then I’m going to keep it up like this and apply my second piece. Again, I want about eight and three quarter inches. OK now in this case I’m going to go on the book edge. Turn the rough edges in on it so I don’t have to try and bond to them. And I don’t want to have to cut it at all, either. I’m just going to line it up on the outside there, make sure it’s got a good bond. And then affix it to the inside here. And then I’m done.

That’s all there is to it. Two pieces of tape, run along the inside. A little bit of patience, and… There we are. As you can see it’s got a nice hold on it and it seems to work just dandy. OK so there you have it. In just a couple of minutes, a little bit of high quality tape: book looks fantastic.

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