Binding Books III

Lani binds her first book [Weekend Challenge].

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Binding Books III

Postby Lani Stranger on December 17th, 2018, 7:14 am

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22nd of Winter, 518AV
Continued from this thread


[justify]Once Hirro caught up with Lani, he was quick to instruct the next set of steps. They had been working for bells now, but because book binding required a multitude of skills, Lani was kept on her toes, and felt not fatigue by the work. She understood now why the Avora had said that he liked it earlier, as it was fulfilling to craft something from scratch by one’s self. She was beginning to be grateful that he was such a laid back and hands off teacher as her book came together. It wasn’t the best thing, but so far she had done all the work for it, and some of the work for his books. By the time this day was done she would have made a whole book by herself, and the prospect satisfied the scribe more than she thought it would.

”Now for the leather.” Hirro, the bookbinding Avora, moved towards the high quality and thin leather pieces at the end of the table. They were oddly shaped, having been parts of animals, and were not pressed or cut like the wood or paper. Hirro selected the top piece of leather and moved over to the grid pattern cutting board, that Lani now realized this might be for.

”Each grid on the cutting board here is an inch.” Hirro shared as Lani moved around the table beside him, she could see what he was talking about and so she nodded silently. ”And we are going to want about an inch and a quarter more leather than wood, so that it folds over.” He spoke slowly for her to understand, showing her what he meant with his hands while he spoke, and Lani nodded, grasping the Nari easy enough.

”Thirteen by ten inches?” She did the quick math in her head, and Hirro nodded at her calculations. He started by spreading out the leather onto the cutting board and pulling his razor from the table. The Avora placed the wood on top of the leather and with his fingers felt to make sure the wood lined up with the cutting board. With quick practiced hands, and without making any markings, Hirro sliced the thin leather and turned the whole ordeal to slice it again. While watching him Lani realized she would definitely have to make markings because she did not trust her measurements as quickly as he did. Still, by the time he was done, there was still a significant amount of the leather left, and so he stepped aside to let Lani try.

A little more hesitant than he, Lani stepped over to the cutting table, accepting the razor from him and adjusting the leather underneath the demo board so she could cut. It was then that she realized why he hadn’t marked anything, he really didn’t need to. Lani could feel the inverted ridges of the wood underneath the thick leather, and using her common sense knew that if each ridge was an inch in length, than the wood would fit loosely between the twelve inches or ridges, and then she merely had to count one ridge out. When she positioned her razor over the thing, she could feel the sharp utensil fall easily within the ridges, and glide through the thin leather with ease. Lani grinned at the ease of it, and although she was not nearly as quick as he, she was not tediously slow in cutting out her piece of leather.
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Lani Stranger
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Binding Books III

Postby Lani Stranger on December 17th, 2018, 7:15 am

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When she looked over at Hirro, he was already doing something with the resin, so Lani decided to make the process quicker by cutting the rest of the leather for him. The piece that they had used for the two books would not fit another, so Lani selected another swatch of leather, finding it to be a bit smaller than the last one, but still large enough to fit at least one book. Placing the wood on top of the lather for measurement, she felt the inverted ridged beneath the cutting board for the proper measurements and then adjusted the leather so that she could leave as small margins as possible. Once she was satisfied with it, she cut alone the ridges, using their easy guidance to create another book cover. Stacking it on top of the first, she moved the leather around trying to fit the wood on with enough room for a proper cover again. She had to change the direction of the leather, but she eventually fit it in as well, feeling the edges with her finger tips and then cutting along the grooves that the cutting table provided.

When Lani turned to stack the last piece of leather atop the other two, she could see that Hirro was just starting on the second book. ”Wait,” She requested, now that she was done with cutting the leather she shuffled over to her work space with her single book and got read to watch. Hirro had been so caught up in his work he seemed to have forgotten his assistant was still learning, and so he paused, patiently waiting for her to prepare to watch from a better angle.

”Now we just want to coat the leather and outside of the book with the resin, so that they can bind together.” He said, and she saw that he had a different resin mixture set up, and far more of it. He used a brush this time, coating it in resin and then coating the inside of the leather piece she had cut. He then brushed the resin over the outside of the book and placed it onto the book, pressing it into place. He put a vice on either side of the actual paper, holding it up from the cover as he centered it on the leather. Working quickly he began to fold the leather over the sides of the book, letting the resin secure it into place. Hirro used the boning knife to stuff the edges of the leather underneath the spine, and then trimmed the edges with his razor so that it would fold over itself easily. Although he worked quickly, Lani was understanding what he was doing no problem, and when he removed the vices, slipping some waxed parchment between the pages and the still drying resin, he began using the bone knife to press the leather into the ridges of the spine and smooth it across the cover, returning to the inside to smooth out any bubbles and wipe away any resin that stayed. When He finished, he slid it back into the vice jig from when they secured the stitching and Lani realized it was a book press. He locked the book into place and set it aside with the other one.
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Binding Books III

Postby Lani Stranger on December 17th, 2018, 7:16 am

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”Any questions?” He asked, after watched continued to watch him. She shook her head and grabbed her own book and leather covering. It seemed easy enough; again it took a while but being able to watch it before doing it made the task at hand far less complicated than it could have been otherwise.

Lani positioned the wood over the leather, and this time she used the cutting table, making use of the grid-lines. Unlike Hirro, she used the grid-lines to mark out where the book should be placed with charcoal, so she would have at least a rough idea. Once that was done the mixed blood began applying an even coat of the new resin, pushing it across the inside of the leather with her brush until it was smooth and even. Then she did the same for the wood binding of the book, and pressed it into her leather. The glue had blurred the charcoal a bit but she could still see where she was supposed to lay it and pressed it into the leather.

Working quickly, like Hirro had, she folded the leather over the sides of the binding, using her bone knife to press it into place. When she addressed the leather that pressed up against the spine, she struggled to shove it underneath the paper without ruining the paper. Her spine was not as even as Hirro’s and so it took some effort and readjusting the folding of the leather across the wood binding, but within a few tries Lani got it under, and repeated the correct method with the top of the spine. Eventually she got all the sides of the leather folded down and slipped the waxed paper between the pages and the covering so the glue did not get on them again. Then she flipped the book closed and began pressing the leather into the spine and sides of the book smoothing it out like Hirro had.

While the Chiet did this, she heard the Avora finish, and sighed. She was having a harder time getting all the air pockets out and smoothing the leather down into creases, and it looked sloppy. Twice her bone knife had scratched the leather, while not breaking it the dull edge had left clear marks where she had pressed too hard. Hirro saw her struggle and offered his help.

”Here, let me.” Two hands hovered on her peripheral vision, and she grunted but shook her head. She wanted to be the one to complete the book, and it felt like cheating to let Hirro even touch her work. ”Okay, sure.” He seemed fine with not pressing her, instead moving his three finished books over on the counter and began straightening.

Once Lani was satisfied that the leather would be as smooth as it could possibly be, she opened the book again, trimming the triangular folds on the edges of the cover like Hirro had, and smoothing those down. The other steps to the book making had been mediocre, but this part very much showed her where her flaws where and that the craft took more detail and work than she knew how to do. It looked kind of pitiful. Lani tried not to think about it while she set the book inside of the press, setting it beside the other books.

”They need about a bell to dry,” Hirro informed her, and she began helping him straighten the table. They cleaned and put away all the things they were no longer using, but Hirro would make her leave out some tools and items for whatever crafting was to come next. There were eight pieces of parchment, a resin mixture, bone knives, and a few other things.
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Binding Books III

Postby Lani Stranger on December 17th, 2018, 7:16 am

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By the time they were done Lani fully expected to wait out the last half a bell, but Hirro was already testing each book, trying to see if they were dry or not. She had faith that he knew that particular resin mixture better than she, and so when he pulled his first book from the vice, opening it and poking at the letter seams, she watched and waited. He seemed content with how dry it was and so he pulled the rest of his books, and Lani did the same. As she opened hers she realized it was not completely dry, but it was not wet enough that the resin would allow the leather to slip. Hirro seemed fine with this, so Lani didn’t question it.

”Now we make cover pages.” He informed her, pulling two parchment pieces from the pile. Taking the ruler he measured and cut them, not telling her the dimensions.

”Eleven by sixteen?” She asked, seeing that the paper was about the same size as the other papers. Hirro simply nodded.

”The last thing we do is use the resin to attach this paper to the first page, or last page, and the cover, to cover up this mess.” He motioned towards the wood where she could see the shotty sand job, frayed twine, and leather folds as well as some drying glue marks. She nodded, understanding the necessity of this piece. ”Now watch.”

Hirro pulled the waxed parchment so it was in between the first and second page and another between the last and second to last pages. Then, he began mixing the resin once again, using a scrap cloth to brush it onto the wood and the first page, before lining up the new page of parchment and pressing it in with the bone knife. After Lani watched, she grabbed her own book and two pieces of parchment. She cut them to shape and then unlike Hirro again she used the charcoal to mark where she should place them, not wanting to mess it up. Her book was fairly sloppy as it was, but she was still going to try and make it as nice as Hirro’s practiced skill, even if it wasn’t going to happen. After using the lightest touch of charcoal, and a little inside from where the paper would place so that it could cover up the black mark, Lani began coating the wood and first page with glue. She worked quickly, and then took her time to steady the page over, shifting it slightly into place once she had done so. Carefully, since the resin was still wet, Lani pressed the bone knife into the seam where the wood and parchment met, and then into the seams around the leather, where it folded over, just as Hirro had. When she was done with one side, she carefully placed another waxed paper between the cover and the first page and did the same on the last end of the book. Lani worked as quickly as she had to in order to keep the resin from drying on her, but of course she was still much slower than Hirro. By the time she had finished her singular book, all of his were done and back into their clamps.

Once she had finished she adjusted the books into her book press, securing the vices and pressing it into place to let it dry. Hirro informed her it would be ready by morning, but while Lani helped him clean, she could not help but continue to glance over at her work. She had not made very many physical things with her own two hands, and there was a certain satisfaction to it. Of course her finished item looked less impressive than Hirro’s it functioned and at least she was proud of that. And it was a tangible result of her work, something that the academic mage didn’t get enough of and found the satisfaction of completing it almost addicting. She had made a book, it was not the best book, but she was proud.

Word Count: 2,425
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Lani Stranger
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Binding Books III

Postby Ssezzkero on December 26th, 2018, 11:05 pm

Bookbinding +4, Mathematics +2, Leatherworking +3, Planning +2, Bookbinding: Includes sewing, Bookbinding: Included carpentry, Bookbinding: Includes leatherworking, Mathematics: Use of a grid board, How to measure leather for books, Leatherworking: How to cut leather, Planning: Working in tandem, Leatherworking: Using resin to attach leather to wood, Bookbinding: Use of leather, Bookbinding: Use of press, Leatherworking: Use of bone knife, Bookbinding: Creating cover pages
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