Today I received another big book in the Preservation Lab for repair that has split apart in the back, so that the case is detaching from the textblock. Its treatment will be a recase, with textile hinges to reinforce the case-to-textblock attachment. I see this kind of damage all too often in large books. Publishers put everything they can into one large book instead of breaking the content down into two books of a more manageable size. Thin, cheap, or slick paper, bulky size, too much weight, and too many pages all add to the structure of the book failing.
Next is a post-bound book that one of our student workers, Hannah Isabell, is going to be working on. She will dismantle it and put sections into custom portfolios for easier use and shelving. As you can see, this book measures a whopping 8.25”!
Our next example is Veterinary Medicine: A Textbook of the Diseases of Cattle, Horses, Sheep, Pigs, and Goats by Radostits, Gay, Hinchcliff, and Constable.
This book measures 3.5” thick and suffers from a typical split in the back of the book and wrinkled pages in both the front and back.
Over 2100 pages of excellent veterinary information drew my eye and my hands to repair this book. This book is so big that it must be sitting on my desk and not in my hands to look at, and would be much easier to use had it been made into two volumes. The content could have been split up by species, such as cattle and horses in volume one, and sheep, pigs, and goats in volume two.
While we understand that publishers are trying to save on costs by cramming all of the information into a single volume, it actually ends up costing us more, because we have to spend time and resources repairing these volumes after they have circulated just once, if they even make it that far.