It always bothers me when the binding on a good paperback reference book is broken. It happened to these two books when I lent them to people. I want to keep and use the books for a while without them falling apart, yet. You can see the white line marking the break in the binding on each. The top book has already received the repair this Instructable will describe.
Step 1: Check the Center Margins
The plan is to stitch the book together with thin wire. Check the center margins to see how much room is available.
Step 2: Drill Holes Through the Book
I could have used a handheld electric drill, but also had a drill press available. I chucked up a 1/16 inch drill (my smallest) and clamped a fence to guide the drilling and make it uniform. The front cover on this book is also creased. The wire stitching will reinforce it, too.
Step 3: Thread the Wire
I drilled three sets of two holes each. I am using some fine stainless steel wire someone gave to me. Thread it through two of the holes. (This process will be repeated for each set of holes.)
Step 4: Pull Tight on the Underside
Press the wire flat on the underside and make the bends in the wire's corners as sharp as possible.
Step 5: Cut and Twist
Cut the wire so there is about half of an inch extra on each end after the loop through the two holes is closed. Twist with a plier, but gently. You do not want to twist the wire off or weaken it by nearly twisting it off.
Step 6: Trim the Twisted Wire
Trim the twist in the wire. I made the twist near to one of the holes. I bent the twisted wire over in a loop and tried to point the twisted ends into the hole.
Step 7: Drive the Ends Into the Hole
You do not want the sharp ends sticking up. After pointing the ends into the hole as much as is possible, use a hammer and maybe a punch to attempt to drive them the rest of the way into the hole. However well that turns out or not, tap on the twisted wire with a hammer to drive it down as much as possible. The twisted wire may not be smooth enough for sliding the book around on a fine wooden table, it will be smooth enough for use on most desks. Cover the wire with bookbinding repair tape, if you wish.
Step 8: Tighten the Wire
If the wire loops are a little loose, crimp the backside of the loop in a zig zag pattern with a needle nose plier to take up some slack.
Step 9: That Center Margin
Here you can see the center margin after the repair. It is narrower than before, but still adequate for reading, if not completely adequate for placing on the glass stage of a photo copier. I could have consumed less of the center margins of this book, but I wanted to include the crease in the front cover under the wire stitching, too. The book will now last much longer than before.