I'd like to see that prototype, if you're willing to post pics.
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I'd like to see that prototype, if you're willing to post pics.
I'm working on a much improved one, should be able to post some pics in the next couple of days.
Ooh, btw, how wide do you think for the spine?
I would say probably 1-1.25 inches.
Just my twopenneth worth, on Fleabay they sell sheets of inkjet printable fabric, it's really thin and if the boards are being made then if soaked in water based glue it skrinks slightly and can be forced into the tardis pattern on the boards, I reckon on Riversong's book covers itll be ideal. its woven and is very, very strong and could be distressed to any degree and wont rip altogether. I'm new here and not sure if i can post the link, but if its OK then I will
I just want to say that as a Doctor Who fan, a retired librarian, and a book lover in general I absolutely love this thread. I would be very interested in getting on a list for replica if anybody decides to do a run of them.
On and off in the back of my mind I've been thinking about the embossing of the River journal covers and it occurred to me today in my garage I have my brother's hydraulic press. I was watching a rerun of American Choppers I recorded at some point on the DVR and those guys have much larger press stamping out fenders and gas tanks and I thought "HEY!"
I could almost hear K9's voice going "YOU HAVE A PRESS." "Yeah, but I need..." "YOU HAVE A PRESS."
If I could get a welder friend to help me say weld a form so the emboss bits where whatever fraction of in inch poking up, then I could just cover a book with a little extra thickness of board, glue on the leather and stamp it in under pressure.
I'm pretty certain this will be some trial and error, I'm trying to find anywhere locally that even has some vinyl leather grained stuff that I could try out on the glue up version I have.
I have to catch up with my friend later today or tomorrow to even find out if it's possible to weld little bits, say triangular rods so a flat side goes down to the form and the vee sides do the embossing. I may not even have to make it out of metal perhaps. I'm totally spit-balling here since I've never tried to emboss something.
If this would work though, River song notebooks, or indeed any embossed design for everyone!
It would sure beat trying to emboss them by hand and then the bookblock and endsheets to attach the rest are glue to the embossed cover and instant River journal.
I guess Risu this is aimed mostly at you, but I'd love any feedback. What do you think?
Last edited by elvisgump; Sep 3, 2010 at 3:43 PM. Reason: Speeling
I think using a machine to emboss them would be a bit needlessly expensive, time consuming, and difficult. I've been doing leather work for a few years now and the actual embossing step is one of the shortest in the overall process. It's pretty much just a few minutes. There's a seller on Etsy that makes generic journals that look kind of like River's, but they're not made the correct way and in my opinion that's the most important thing about the book. It's a nice book with a full binding that's been made completely by hand.
Bless you, Nick!!
For the River Song book I think I agree with Risu, a hand made look it a little more appropriate... That said there are many books you could make quite handily with a press like that!I guess Risu this is aimed mostly at you, but I'd love any feedback. What do you think?
Here's some pics my first 'serious' attempt. I was rushing to get this done by the end of the weekend, as I'm off to Turkey on hols tomorrow.
Definite room for improvement, but I think I'm starting to get the hang of it
Yeah, it's vegetable tanned leather hide, which is used specifically for tooling.
The patterns are are hand stamped using Tandy tools. I'm pretty sure the original is pressed, which is the route Risu is taking, but I've no clue how to do that
I need to get a narrower bevelling tool for the panels, as the outer square indentations are currently too wide.
The colouring process is a pain, too. All of the dyes I've tried have been too dark. In order to get the colour above, I had to paint the covers with white acrylic first, then apply Tandy arylic Ecoflow dye. What is really tricky, is that all the indented parts need to be left unpainted, or you lose the natural darkening of all the embossed parts, that results when the dye hits the leather (if that makes sense?)
Next time, I'm gonna try hitting it with Tandy Sky Blue Hi-Lite, rather than dye, as Risu thinks that's probably the way to go.
The final stage is applying Fiebing wax finish, which seals it all and gives it a subtle but nice sheen.
Glad you like it
Looks good, I like the cracked spine and the pages. How did you age them?
The hi-lite is definitely the way to go. There are multiple ways of applying it, and I think I've figured out the exact way to do it properly.
Probably the only tiniest suggestions I'd make is that the joint isn't large enough the flex in and the tears look a little too on purpose. The one on the prop is very thin, I think no more than leather and fabric hot ironed with something akin to photo mount sheets. I'm not sure if we all are going to have to try to get more of a inward flex in that joint area. I couldn't really get this to work with mine because it's all cardboard, not leather.
Did you cut those 'tears'? I'm wondering if weakening the areas with a Dremel grinder disk from the back and then after try ripping the tear more might make it more organic looking? Or maybe using say like a Dremel engraving tool? I keep imagining ways to do it in my head and I'm thinking like if I ever get around to leather, maybe pre-perforating the area the 'tear' will be in with a needle till it's like a zigging/zagging perforation like between postage stamps. Honestly never having tried to do it these are just wild ideas.
The area on yours probably can be improved with a little sanding along the tear to make it even more realistic, that area between the cover and spine. Maybe pick at the tear with a razor or craft knife Xacto to chip away at the grain and make the edges more frayed? It's hard to tell detail in the picture here.
More overall sanding in some more distress with a variety of sand paper grits will make it more aged I suspect. I think the square indents are really just fine, but yeah slightly smaller would be even better. I'd pick at the outer corners maybe too, make it look like it's been handled, dropped, rattled around in the rucksack or bag. If I had a paint mixer I'd put mine in a can with a couple of dollars in change and let 'em mix!
Suggestions aside, I think it's awesome if I were you I'd carry it everywhere on holiday and see how many people recognize you as a fellow Whovian! I mean mine is crummy next to yours and in a coffee shop this last week I got comments from two 20-something Whovians that made me grin. I imagine yours will cause flocks of people to want to handle it.
Happy holiday too BTW
One word: teabags!How did you age them?
Elvisgump, the tears were actually done by dremelling the joint from the front with a sanding drum to distress the whole area, then doing the same from the back until the tears appear. It looks better than just cutting it, which I did on my first (unpictured) attempt, but yeah, I think some more experimenting on that area is called for.
So did you age the pages before or after binding them into the block?
Before. Its a lot quicker to do full sheets than to have to keep turning pages, which are probably gonna stick together.
Yea, I made a grail diary for a customer once and he decided after it was finished that he wanted it distressed. 3 weeks and a spray bottle of coffee later and the job was done. It's been 2 years, but sometimes when I smell coffee I still cringe.
Hi ive been working on this for about 3 months ive made 6 versions so far as im creating the content as an on going thing the lastest version now has over 50 pages... most is digitally created then hand finished inked painted ; )
Wow, I love the pages you made! The distressing looks good as well. Any chance you'll be selling or distributing a PDF of the pages at some point?
Very nice pages indeed! Only problem is until the entire series is over you'll never know what the proper order is for the book!