PDA

View Full Version : How To: Clean soiled page edges



Randall Flagg
02-17-2008, 10:35 AM
I have achieved moderate to very good success cleaning soiled page edges using sandpaper. Here is what worked best for me:


Practice on a book of little value before attempting on an expensive book!
Remove dustjacket from book.
Cover book boards in construction or printer paper. You don’t want to accidentally sand and damage the board. I use bull clips to hold the paper in place on the boards.
Cut a piece of 220 grit sandpaper to the width of the page block. 6” in length for each piece is about right.
Holding the pages tightly, sand the soil/stain in one continuous stroke in one direction. You can reverse and do a stroke the other way, just don’t sand back and forth. Even stokes with pressure the full width of the page block works best. Most books a thumb is best, but larger books-The Stand, etc, require 2-3 fingers on the sandpaper.


This works really well on dust accumulation, spot soil, finger grease and light edge stains. It does not work well on liquid stains-they usually are far into the page, nor does it work very well on mold, mildew or speckles. It also can’t be used on books with rough page edges (Pet Sematary).

Here are a couple of examples:




http://www.thedarktower.org/custom/images/1418830242-BEFORE%20&%20after%20Firestarter.jpg


http://www.thedarktower.org/custom/images/1418830261-W&G%20page%20cleaning%20pic.jpg

Patrick
02-17-2008, 11:08 AM
What a difference!

The edges of the pages aren't roughed up afterward?

Randall Flagg
02-17-2008, 11:20 AM
No. The 220 grit sandpaper is rough enough to get the stain without damaging the page edges. Kind of like wood work. When you clear coat wood after staining, you use a fine grit to "polish" the coat.

Patrick
02-17-2008, 11:24 AM
That makes sense. Thanks. :)

alinda
02-17-2008, 12:58 PM
remarkable, er ah I mean wow those look great ! I have some books that need help thanks for the tip! Beautiful.:thumbsup:

Cutter
02-18-2008, 11:06 AM
Yea, Iíve always heard about this practice, but Iíve never tried it. I really need to give it a try. I just noticed by UK book club Wizard & Glass looks pretty crappy on the top edge pages. It could use some work.

thanks for the post RF!

Brice
02-19-2008, 06:37 AM
Thanks for the advice Jerome. Personally I'd be terrified of hurting my books though. :( I don't know if I could bring myself to try it. You did an amazing job with yours. :)

LadyHitchhiker
02-19-2008, 09:37 AM
Does this only work on hardcover books?

Chooch
02-26-2008, 06:51 PM
WOW..what a difference...think it would work on a "Marker" remainder?? But any ways great tip. Thanks

Randall Flagg
02-26-2008, 07:36 PM
...think it would work on a "Marker" remainder??
Yes, but only to the top of the page. "felt markers" tend to seep beyond the top of the pages and in most cases (in my experience) can not be removed; only diminished.
I could put forth a long diatribe regarding remainder marks, but alas tonight I am too tired to do so.

Chooch
03-01-2008, 12:41 PM
I tried this on a old book that I took a marker to..it works, but you will do alot of "excavating" meaning you will create a dip where the mark was removed. I didn't try to blend it in but I think you would be able to see the dip by looking down the pages with book closed

Randall Flagg
03-02-2008, 07:36 AM
Ink, like a remainder felt pen mark tends to leech into the page. The sanding works best on oil and dirt from fingers and accumulated dust-stuff that is really on the very outermost edge of the paper.

pixiedark76
01-02-2011, 01:09 PM
Does this work on foxing? I have a Skeleton Crew that has brow spots on the page edges.

Randall Flagg
01-02-2011, 03:21 PM
Not very well.

Citizen of Lud
04-03-2014, 11:15 PM
I have found that P600 sand paper which is usually used as a primary steep in polishing paint layers when painting a car or polishing plastic works the best. It does not change the outer texture or of the page ends and slowly removes material (harder to accidentally over do it).

Lurker
02-05-2016, 09:24 PM
I'm not sure if this is where this should go, but it's the best match I could find.

As I've been cleaning, Demco-ing and packing books I've found several with this problem:

http://i885.photobucket.com/albums/ac54/ICONfan/WTF_zpsvegvwzdo.jpg

They are from different bookcases, different rooms etc. Any ideas on what it is or how to get rid of?

I guess slipcases would prevent it, but you can't slipcase thousands of books...

Joe315
02-05-2016, 09:35 PM
Looks like dirt from rubbing on the shelf. I've noticed it on larger books where the text block starts to sag. You could try a magic eraser. I've used that on a couple books and worked nicely. But if it's a deeper then surface staining try what RF suggests in post 1.

Lurker
02-06-2016, 11:50 AM
Thanks. I'll have to pick some up. I just don't think I can get myself to sand a book block...
I'll let you know how it works.

Joe315
02-06-2016, 12:27 PM
Thanks. I'll have to pick some up. I just don't think I can get myself to sand a book block...
I'll let you know how it works.

Good luck. Hopefully it's just dirt and not stain from the wood.

Room 217 Caretaker
02-10-2016, 11:06 AM
Anyone have suggestions on what eraser to use on a name and price (in pencil) in a limited edition? Should I leave it alone or try to erase it?

Mulleins

WeDealInLead
02-14-2016, 07:01 PM
This and nothing else:
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61rxQmu-BaL._SX522_.jpg

Three bucks at Staples. I can't even tell there was a price there and I know where to look for.

Room 217 Caretaker
02-15-2016, 05:44 PM
This and nothing else:
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61rxQmu-BaL._SX522_.jpg

Three bucks at Staples. I can't even tell there was a price there and I know where to look for.

That's amazing. One of our campus art professors said the same thing. Picked it up, used it, and can't even tell it was there.

Thanks

Ralph

Lurker
02-17-2016, 03:06 PM
So - I picked up some magic erasers (Mr. Clean). Do you really wet it first? Or is there some other magic eraser?

Joe315
02-17-2016, 03:45 PM
I didn't wet it. (Didn't know you were supposed to, not that I would have with a book). Mine just had light soiling and the magic eraser worked nicely for me.

Lurker
02-23-2016, 08:43 AM
OK. I rubbed it gently with the first one and it just crumbled. So, tried the second eraser. It stayed together but really didn't do anything. I guess it must be something different, but thanks for the idea.
They do work really well on the stove...

ajw2910
02-22-2021, 11:27 AM
What can be done, if anything, for light mildew in the top edges of books? I have some that show staining and not sure the best way to remove it. It is in some older books with little value so I wanted to try to clean them and see how it works. Any advice is appreciated!

Br!an
02-22-2021, 03:46 PM
What can be done, if anything, for light mildew in the top edges of books? I have some that show staining and not sure the best way to remove it. It is in some older books with little value so I wanted to try to clean them and see how it works. Any advice is appreciated!

I'm assuming it is the top of the page block?

Always start by cleaning with dry methods before moving on to wet methods. Brush and vacuum the area. Use an eraser if that is indicated (Perhaps not with mildew.)

Isopropyl alcohol will kill live mildew and also help release soiling from the surface. Get the high alcohol content stuff which is over 90% alcohol. It evaporates quickly and minimizes the possibility of oversaturation. Use a clean white cloth to wet the area and then absorb the soiling. Work on small areas at a time. The alcohol will kill any live mildew and the white cloth will pick up the loosened soiling. Keep using a new dry area of the cloth to absorb the soiling released by the alcohol.

Another method, which should be practiced on inexpensive books first, (or perhaps exclusively) is to sand the edge of the page block. Use this as the method of last resort. If it comes to this, let me know and I'll help with more instructions.

ajw2910
02-22-2021, 04:38 PM
Thanks Brian, I will try that and let you know.

Molly H.
03-25-2021, 08:41 AM
Newbie here, and this is my first comment!!!!
Wow! Thank you so much for sharing this! I would have never known what to do. I have a few books (BCE's) to start out with. Thank you for sharing your insight!

ajw2910
03-25-2021, 11:50 AM
Welcome!! Lots of good info all over this site!

Br!an
03-25-2021, 12:26 PM
Newbie here, and this is my first comment!!!!
Wow! Thank you so much for sharing this! I would have never known what to do. I have a few books (BCE's) to start out with. Thank you for sharing your insight!

You're welcome. And welcome to the site!