Presentation on theme: "Preserving Columbia’s Library Materials Part 4. What this presentation covers Part 1: Why materials deteriorate. Part 2: Shelving materials carefully."— Presentation transcript:
Preserving Columbia’s Library Materials Part 4
What this presentation covers Part 1: Why materials deteriorate. Part 2: Shelving materials carefully. Part 3: Handling materials carefully. Part 4: Identifying and preventing damage.
Identifying damaged books for treatment
Damaged books Even with good shelving and handling, materials may get damaged. Library staff should set damaged volumes aside for treatment. Learn where your unit puts damaged items, and what the procedures are.
Books need repair or rebinding when They have loose or torn covers.
Books need repair or rebinding when The spine is torn or broken.
Books need repair or rebinding when They are broken at the hinge where the cover folds back.
Books need repair or rebinding when Pages are loose or torn.
Tape is a problem Making repairs with tape is a big mistake. Send damaged books to be rebound or repaired by Preservation.
Tape turns brown and stains paper.
Don’t fix them yourself! Putting tape or glue on books only makes them worse.
Paper fold test Damaged books are processed differently depending on whether the paper is flexible or brittle.
Paper fold test To test for brittleness: –Fold a small corner flat in the middle of the book (but not an illustration). This is fold 1.
Paper fold test To test for brittleness: –Straighten the corner and fold it flat the other way. This is fold 2. –Repeat for folds 3 and 4. –Straighten it out and give a gentle pull.
Paper fold test If the paper breaks at one or two folds, it’s brittle.
Paper fold test If the paper breaks at three or four folds, it may be possible to repair the book. If it doesn’t break at all, the paper is fully flexible and the book can be bound, or rebound.
Damaged pamphlet bindings ("gaylords") should be sent for rebinding if the paper is flexible.
Unbound items tied between boards should be bound if flexible, or put in boxes if brittle.
Binding Slips Fill in binding slips and send books to Binding and Shelf Prep for rebinding.
Books that have been rebound
Conservation Lab Send books to the Conservation Lab in 109 Butler for hand binding and repair if –pages are torn –the binding or endsheets are special –the book was printed before 1850 The same binding slips are used for Conservation repairs.
Book repair in Conservation Conservation staff may be able to save the book’s original cover. Conservation staff can repair torn pages with special tissue, not tape.
Repairing covers Before After
Mending torn pages
Books with brittle paper cannot be repaired or rebound because the paper keeps breaking.
Brittle paper Handle all brittle items with care. Set them aside after Circulation or processing in the location used in your unit.
Reviewing books to decide on a treatment –encapsulation –acid-free photocopy –custom-made box –replacement –microfilm –digital copy
Encapsulation Conservation Lab can encapsulate brittle maps or pages of heavily illustrated books between two sheets of polyester (mylar). The sealed mylar envelopes can be bound together into a book that can be handled safely.
Photocopies Photocopies can be made on acid-free paper to replace the brittle book.
Brittle book Photocopy
Custom-made boxes can protect a brittle book.
Replacements Most brittle books are replaced by a new edition, a reprint, or a microfilm. If no replacement can be found, then the book will be prepared by Preservation and sent for microfilming by a commercial vendor.
Inspection The film is carefully inspected for quality by Preservation before it is added to the Libraries' collections.
Digital images Sometimes we create digital images in addition to or instead of microfilm. This volume was filmed and then the film was scanned for online use.
Disaster prevention Every year Columbia has cases of leaks and other disasters in one or another of the libraries around campus. Every year these disasters damage and destroy library materials. Your library could be next. BE PREPARED
Stay alert for Dripping radiators Leaking pipes Open windows on rainy days.
Stay alert for Overloaded outlets Smoldering cigarettes and matches Anything else that looks suspicious.
Report problems immediately.
Know the Disaster Plan Every department has a copy of the Disaster Plan and it is also on Swift. Know where your Plan is and the phone list of people to call for help. Every unit has supplies to use if disaster strikes -- do you know where to find yours?
The Disaster Plan is available on Swift under Health and Safety.
Preserving our collections is everyone’s responsibility. Please help!
If you have questions, send to and check the Preservation Division page on Swift: inside/units/preservation/