A Simple Book Repair Manual: Hinge Tightening

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Suggested Equipment & Supplies

  • Adhesive (PVA)
  • Bone folder
  • Knitting needles
  • Bricks (wrapped in brown paper)
  • Wax paper
  • Pressing boards
  • Damp sponge or paper towels



  1. Place the book on its tail with cover open. Expose the inside of the hinges.
  2. Dip the knitting needle into the adhesive and coat. Insert the needle into the hinge area between the backbone of the book block and the spine of the case, and roll it into the joint. Be careful to put glue only into the hinge area, or the book will not open properly.
  3. Lay the book flat and bone in the hinge on the outside cover of the book. Apply pressure with the bone, but be careful not to tear the bookcloth (cover). Immediately wipe away any glue that oozes through the bookcloth with a damp sponge or paper towels.
  4. Repeat steps for the other hinge.
  5. Place wax paper between the folds of both front and back endsheets. Center the book block between the covers.
  6. Place the book cover down on a hard clean surface. Place a knitting needle on top of each hinge. Place a clean board over the book and a brick on top of the board. The brick should be aligned with the hinge of the repaired book.
  7. Let repair dry for thirty minutes.