Bible Repair

As part of my book repair services, I offer repairs on family Bibles and other large family books! I learned how to rebind large, old Bibles from the renowned Sophia Bogle of Save Your Books.

A full repair job usually includes:

  • Deconstruction (carefully separating the parts of the book that are loose, usually involves complete removal of the cover)
  • Restoration of the text block (cleaning, realigning, and strengthening the text block’s spine; sometimes requires complete resewing of the text block)
  • Reconstruction of the text block (rounding, backing, reattaching any loose pages/signatures, and applying initial spine lining)
  • Restoration of the cover and spine (cleaning the leather or fabric and applying consolidants and other treatments to protect and improve the appearance of the cover)
  • Reconstruction of the cover (reassembling the cover so it’s ready to be attached to the book, including multiple liners to strengthen the spine)
  • Final casing in (attaching the cover to the text block and reattaching all loose areas)

It’s a much more involved process than the repair of a typical book, in part because these books are so enormous. They need much more structural reinforcement just to hold themselves together. When I finish a project, the book has been strengthened in multiple places as well as looking much better.

I find the process tremendously rewarding. If you have an old family tome like these that needs work, please get in touch!

Here are a few before and after photos! For detailed information, see the posts Guru Granth Sahib, My Year of Bible Repair, and 2019’s Bible Project.

Project Before After
2019 Bible
2019 Bible
2019 Bible
2018 Bible
Guru Granth Sahib (2016) You can see how badly the middle pages of the book are coming apart, but the cover looks okay. The spine, now with the original decorated covering reapplied.
Guru Granth Sahib (2016) The split is really visible in this shot - it almost looks like two separate volumes. You can see that while the cover looks okay, the structure under the spine covering is badly disintegrated. The real test: it now lies open like a single book!
Guru Granth Sahib (2016) There was a lot of wear on the cover boards, especially along the outside edge. I carefully matched the color of the cover, and painted thin Japanese kozo paper with it, then used that to repair the damage.