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#2225413 - 02/03/14 09:01 PM Breaking In The Book
Cinnamonbear Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 4085
Loc: Rockford, IL
It's been a while since we've had a good physical score binding question. Now, I have one.

Who knows the best way to break in a binding?

Did you know that there is an actual method to break in a hardbound book binding? (The librarian in me knows the answer to this procedure.)

But, what about trade paperbacks? I am thinking about glued paperback bindings, of the type where there are, say, 175+ pages, and the glossy cover cardboard shows scoring (of the book-binding variety, as in: a nice, long, physical divot (or two)) near the spine. I have recently (within the year) bought several Hal Leonard trade paperbacks, and they seem to be designed to lay open with use, but I am wondering if anyone knows the best way to "break them in" from new. Is it the same method as breaking in a hardbound book?

Thanks!
--Andy
_________________________
I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.

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#2225420 - 02/03/14 09:06 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: Cinnamonbear]
hreichgott Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/13
Posts: 1388
Loc: western MA, USA
I'm usually pretty violent with paperback scores, and they still don't stay open, so I will be attentive to this thread in hopes of learning something smile
_________________________
Heather W. Reichgott, piano http://heatherwreichgott.blogspot.com
Working on:
How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying
Schumann/Kinderszenen
I love Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and new music

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#2225424 - 02/03/14 09:16 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: Cinnamonbear]
TwoSnowflakes Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/12
Posts: 1524
I want to treat my scores nicely but I get unreasonably upset when they begin to close on me and often smack them back open, or violently over-open them to keep them there, as if they're doing it on purpose.

I don't know why I take it so insultingly when one dares to close, but I do.

On the flip side, I can report that my Henle and Wiener scores have survived well anything I've thrown at them. Or being thrown. (jk, I haven't actually thrown one)

My Boosey and Hawkes cracked under the pressure.

So I, too, will hope to learn something here.
_________________________
Currently:
Scales. Scales and arpeggios. Scales, arpeggios and chords.
Chopin, Fantaisie-Impromptu Op. post. 66
Tchaikovsky, Avril: Perce-neige Op. 37a No. 4
Dvorak, Piano Quintet No. 2, Op. 81

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#2225429 - 02/03/14 09:30 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: Cinnamonbear]
gooddog Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/08/08
Posts: 4889
Loc: Seattle area, WA
For scores, I was taught to fold back the last page, fold back the front page, fold back the next to last page, fold back the next to front page, etc. This way the binding doesn't break and it should lay open unless the score is Dover's. Nothing will keep a Dover score open short of sitting on it.

Keeping scores open: I found some soft leather map weights that are filled with lead shot. They are about 3.5" X 2". They don't scratch the piano and do a good job of keeping the music open. Unfortunately, they are no longer available from the supplier I used in the past and I could only find fairly large ones online. You can try looking through picture frame supply websites too. The weights are often used to hold rolled prints open.

My favorite solution is to photocopy my scores and keep them in a 3 ring binder. This way I can scribble all over them, start with a fresh copy, scribble all over it, thereby keeping my expensive score pristine. It also gives me a record of my learning process.
_________________________
Best regards,

Deborah

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#2225437 - 02/03/14 09:35 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: Cinnamonbear]
boo1234 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/06/09
Posts: 533
I break the spine in half across the horizontal axis, which works for most books. I know it's terrible, but it's the best way I have found to get them to lay flat quickly.

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#2225442 - 02/03/14 09:41 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: Cinnamonbear]
malkin Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/09
Posts: 2919
Loc: *sigh* Salt Lake City
Take them to the copy store and have them spiral bound.
_________________________
Ladies and Gentlemen: This is not a competition, merely an exhibition. No wagering please.

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#2225445 - 02/03/14 09:48 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: Cinnamonbear]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7439
Loc: Rochester MN
"Perfect Bindings," as Andy is describing, are a royal pain in the pa-toot. I have never been able to keep them open or found any way to 'break them in.' When they start to stay open, they merrily fall apart.
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#2225447 - 02/03/14 09:51 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: Cinnamonbear]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7439
Loc: Rochester MN
Having it spiral bound, as Malkin suggests, works well. It's not expensive either.

Or, you could take it to a copy shop and have them slice off the binding and have it punched for a 3-ring binder.
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#2225449 - 02/03/14 09:53 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: gooddog]
BruceD Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 18533
Loc: Victoria, BC
Originally Posted By: gooddog
[]...]and it should lay lie open [...]


Originally Posted By: boo1234
but it's the best way I have found to get them to lay lie flat quickly.


Please, folks!

shocked

_________________________
BruceD
- - - - -
Estonia 190

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#2225454 - 02/03/14 10:04 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: Cinnamonbear]
BruceD Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 18533
Loc: Victoria, BC
Place the book with the spine against a horizontal, hard surface, such as a desk or a countertop, supporting it with your hands.

Starting with the front and back covers, press them down against the counter top and run your finger firmly down the gutter to encourage the cover to lie flat against the countertop.

Open the book, page by page alternately from the front and from the back; with each page, run your finger firmly down the gutter, until you "meet" (working front to back, back to front) in the middle.

This works extremely well with well-bound books (sewed binding), and it can work with glued books, depending upon how pliable or how brittle the glue is.

This will not work with Dover - nothing works with Dover publications.

Regards,
_________________________
BruceD
- - - - -
Estonia 190

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#2225456 - 02/03/14 10:07 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: gooddog]
wr Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8138
Originally Posted By: gooddog
Nothing will keep a Dover score open short of sitting on it.


The majority of my Dover scores stay open quite nicely. I use quite a few of them regularly.

But I do "break" them pretty hard when I get them. The method I use is to open in the middle (or very close to it) and fold WAY back to crack the spine, torquing if necessary. Then I work my way through the book from that initial spot, folding back few pages at a time, left alternating with right, and pressing down the pages by running a finger down the inside crease with a good deal of pressure, until I get to the outer pages. It works for me and doesn't seem to damage the book.

Some of the newer Dover editions have a little graphic on the cover with the words "Lay Flat / Sewn-Binding". Maybe they should also include the instructions for how to get them to do that, since it seems to be a bugaboo for some.

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#2225457 - 02/03/14 10:10 PM Re: Breaking In The Book [Re: BruceD]
Dwscamel Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/22/13
Posts: 604
Originally Posted By: BruceD
This will not work with Dover - nothing works with Dover publications.


ha.
_________________________
Currently: Czerny's 5th exercise from the School of Velocity, Bach's fourth two-part invention, Beethoven's sonata op.49 no.1, and assorted popular songs/tunes.

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