Page 17 - December 2015
P. 17


compiled some sets with big steel bulldog clips,  coloured gabardine weight cloth from a local
that had gradually rusted and eaten their way     texƟles supplier, having bought or scrounged
through several pages! So now all the leƩers      a range of samples and tested them for gluing
are flaƩened and stored in archival plasƟc         characterisƟcs with PVA paste, and especially
envelopes in foolscap ing binders, where they     for their recepƟvity to hot foil gold blocking
should be safer than in their folded forms. All   (which aŌer all was the only real leƩerpress
have been scanned in colour, and the whole set    part of this whole project!!). Sewn in with the
occupies nearly thirty GigaBytes of memory.       pages of scanned handwriƩen text were pages
                                                  of scanned photographs and postcards, as well
   The second step was to take all the jpeg       as wedding invitaƟons, news clips and other
scans and combine them into uniform page          items found enclosed in the envelopes. My
formats for prinƟng on double-sided folded        teenage daughters were pressed into acƟon as
11x7 sheets. AŌer a few experiments I decided     proof-readers to check especially paginaƟon
to use MS Publisher for this, but although I      and chapter organisaƟon in case of major
completed the task, I would not choose the        errors. However they denied any ability to read
same soŌware again. It is cumbersome, clanky      their grandfather’s handwriƟng, although they
and slow, creaƟng huge files. In order to reduce   enjoyed some of his cartoon-representaƟons
prinƟng Ɵme and make it easier to organise, I     of people he encountered during his day-job!
converted each 16-page signature into Adobe
pdf format, which seemed to maintain the             My previous forays into bookbinding
necessary resoluƟon but also compress the         had led to me approaching a local business
data enough to transfer relaƟvely quickly to      printer, who would graciously accept to
the printer (bearing in mind almost every page    guilloƟne clean edges to my sewn and bound
was a full page image scan, or in some cases      volumes. However, as this project approached
mulƟple scans). This phase of the project took    compleƟon, things were ‘down to the wire’
way longer than planned, and by now I was         and the guilloƟne needed to happen on a
coming close to my deadline of May 2015.          Saturday evening—exactly when the prinƟng
                                                  business was closed for the weekend. So I
   The scanned and formaƩed pages                 imposed on a fellow member of the OƩawa
(organised with page numbers, headers,            Press Gang (and conveniently, a neighbour).
chapter, breaks and contents pages)               Nancy has a big guilloƟne in her basement,
manifested into about 2,700 printed sides,        and kingly agreed to do the chopping for me.
which I divided into 3 volumes of around 900      The three big volumes started to look much
pages each. The actual prinƟng took about two     more professional from that point on. Then
weeks, although I was able to parallel process    I was able to tailor-make the boards and
some of the later stages while I was opƟmising    spines in their navy book cloth and once dry,
the parameters for gold-blocking onto fabric      I gold-blocked the Ɵtles on the overs before
and sewing up to signatures of the first volume.   gliding each volume into its set of boards. Fig 1
My plan was to make two complete sets and         shows the three volumes as well as a couple of
thus have a backup in case of disaster, but       ‘Preview’ volumes that I made for my sister’s
although I printed and punched the holes          sons, which contain just the biography, photos
for sewing two full sets, I ran out of sewing     and a couple of special extras.
Ɵmes, and a week before delivery resolved
to bind only one set in the near term. It took    ›øãك‘ã ・›Ä ¥ÙÊà 㫛 ÖÝ Êò›ÙݛƒÝ ÙƒÄ‘«
about a day to sew each 900-page volume.          ěóݽ›ãã›Ù. ݛÖã›Ã›Ù ϐώϏϓ. òʽ.ϔ ÄÊ.ϐ.
I covered the book boards with a nice navy-
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