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Water damaged books

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message 1: by Tom (new)

Tom Foolery (tomfoolery) You librarian-y people-- or anybody else for that matter-- have any suggestions for how to restore/repair/salvage water damaged books? Moderately valuable (tho mostly sentimental value). The books were stored outside in a shed in cardboard boxes, and the shed was flooded at one point. Must and mildew on some of the books, some of them have pages stuck together, some just damp, and even the ones in good condition still kind of stink of mildew. Any suggestions? Eight hours in an oven at 100 degrees? Leave 'em out in the sun for a few days? Give 'em up as hopeless? Any suggestions would be appreciated.

*For the record, not my books. Just sayin'.


message 2: by Amanda (new)

Amanda (randymandy) *For the record, not my books. Just sayin'.
This disclaimer automatically makes me disbelieve you. You were reading in the bathtub, weren't you? Full on bubbles and a glass of wine...


message 3: by Tom (new)

Tom Foolery (tomfoolery) Nope, t'werent me. We're talking about a couple dozen boxes of books (not a single book or even a handful, dropped in a bathtub) that were stored in a location that was flooded. The water reached several inches deep. The bottom books in the bottom boxes were immersed, and the pages have stuck together in some and they're musty and mildewy. The books higher up aren't as bad off, but they're also damp and musty as well. We're looking for a way to salvage the most badly damaged ones, where the books were soaked and the pages stuck together. MY books are all on shelves (ok, stacks and piles) around the house because i'm the sort of person who wants his books to be seen, to show them off. My secret shame, revealed.


message 4: by Havocvoodoo (new)

Havocvoodoo (wwwgoodreadscomprofilehavocvoodo) They're my dads and my books, actually. He's got about 2 dozen really old ones that have mildew on the covers and the pages are stuck together. Also, some of the covers are stuck to other covers. Found more today, some from the late 1800's. It's quite depressing and very sad.

And for the record, Mr. Foolery, dad would have loved to have his books nice and dry on shelves in the house. My mother, however, was not the bibliophile that we are. She fussed until he packed all his books away, and that's how they ended up in the shed. Now, get your butt over here so I can go to the store. ;)




message 5: by Havocvoodoo (new)

Havocvoodoo (wwwgoodreadscomprofilehavocvoodo) Ooooh, thanks for the link, BunWat! That helps a bunch! :)


message 6: by Chloe (new)

Chloe (countessofblooms) Reading things like this makes me cry a little and then feel sublimely happy that my OCD ways never permit me to store paper materials in containers that aren't waterproof. I recommend the Rubbermaid Roughneck storage boxes, as I've had several for over a decade now and they've never broken/ripped/distorted. Stick to the 18 gallons and under though. Any bigger and you're liable to kill yourself while moving them.


message 7: by Amanda (new)

Amanda (randymandy) How much does 18 gallons of paper weigh?
(My guess is: a whole fucking lot.)


message 8: by Joe (new)

Joe (joediver50) I think you hit the nail on the head!


message 9: by Dave (new)

Dave Russell 18 gallons of paper is definitely not light reading.


message 10: by [deleted user] (new)

I don't treat my books that nicely. I bend the corners and crack the spines and step on them and leave them in my car and shove them in my purse and drop them in the bathtub and let my tears fall on the pages (and maybe some food that I'm eating). It doesn't mean that I don't love them, though. I do.


message 11: by [deleted user] (new)

And I have a Maira Kalman book that I left on the floor below a box of wine (classy like that). Drip, drip, drip all night (we thought it was all the way closed). It looks kinda pretty, though.


message 12: by Havocvoodoo (new)

Havocvoodoo (wwwgoodreadscomprofilehavocvoodo) Rubbermaid containers are the bomb! That's all I use to store my crap.


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