The tail is cut in the same way as the top edge.
To cut a book properly requires great Care. Always lay a book down one way and take it up another, and in cutting always work with the back of the book towards you, and cut from you. Give the turn to the screw of the plough as it is thrust from you, or you will pull away a part of the back instead of cutting it.
In cutting the foredge, always have the head of the book towards you, so that if not cut straight you know exactly where the fault lies. The foredge is marked at both back and front of the book by placing a cutting-board under the first 2 or 3 leaves as a support; the millboard la then pressed firmly into the groove, and a line is drawn or a hole is pierced at head and tail, using the foredge of the board as a guide. The book is now knocked with its back on the press quite fiat, and "trindles" flat pieces of steel in the shape of an elongated J, about 1 1/2 in. wide and 3-4 in. long, with a slot nearly the whole length), are placed between the boards and book by letting the boards fall back from the book, and then passing one trindle at the head, the other at the tail, allowing the top and bottom slip to go in the grooves of the trindles. The object of this is to force the back up quite flat; by holding the book when the cut-against and runner are on it, supported by the other hand under the boards, it can be seen if the book is straight. The cut-against must be put quite flush with the holes on the left of the book, and the runner the distance under the holes that the amount of square is intended to be.
The book being lowered into the press, the runner is put flush with the cheek of the press, and the cut-against just the same distance above the press as the runner is below the holes. The trindles are taken out from the book when the cutting boards are in their proper place; the millboards will then fall down. The book and cutting-boards must be held very tightly, or the book will slip. If the book has been lowered into the press accurately, everything will be quite square. The press is screwed up tightly, and the foredge is ploughed; when the book is taken out of the press, it will resume its original rounding, the foredge will have the name carve as the back, and it cut truly there will be a proper square all round the edges. This method is known as "cutting in "boards."
If the workman has a set of some good work which be wishes to bind uniformly, but which has already been cut to different sizes, and he does not wish to cut the large ones down to the smaller size, he must not draw the small ones in, as he may possibly not be able to pull his boards down the required depth to cut the book, so he must leave the boards loose, cat the head and tail, then draw the boards in, and tarn up and cat the foredge.
"Cutting out of boards" is by a different method. The foredge is cut before glueing up, taking the size from the case, if for casing, from the hack to the edge of the beard in the foredge. The book is glued up, rounded, and put into the press for 1/4 hour, just to set it. The size is again taken from the case, allowing for squares at head and tail. The book, having been marked, is out, and then backed. Cloth cases are made for most periodicals, and may be procured from their publishers at a trifling cost, which varies according to the size of the book and the amount of blocking that is upon them.
Fig. 187 illustrates the cutting-press, a being the knife. Fig. 188 shows the knocking-down iron: the flange a is secured between the cheeks of the press; the sides b rest on the press; and the boards are hammered on the smooth face c. Fig. 189 is an ideal section of the cutting-press, representing the cat-:
Co/ouring the Edges. - The edges of a book should be in keeping with the binding. A half roan book should not have an expensive edge, nor a whole bound morocco book a sprinkled edge. Taste is the only guide.
Most shops hare a colour, usually a reddish-brown, which they use for all sprinkled edge books; it can be purchased at any oil shop. A mixture of burnt umber and red-ochre is generally used; the 2 powders are well mixed in a mortar with paste, a few drops of sweet oil, and water. The colour may be tested by sprinkling some on a piece of white paper, allowing to dry, and burnishing. If the colour powders or rubs, it is either too thick or has not enough paste in it. If the former, some water must be added; if the latter, more paste. It will be better if the whole is passed through a cloth to rid it of any coarse particles.
Books mar be sprinkled so as to resemble a kind of marble by using 2 or 3 different colours. For instance, the book is put in the laying press and a little sand is strewn upon the edge in small mounds. Then with a. green colour a moderate sprinkle is given. After allowing it to dry, more sand is put on in various places, a dark sprinkle of brawn is put on, and the whole is allowed to dry. When the sand is shaken off, the edge will be white where the first sand was dropped, green where the second, and the rest brown.
A colour of 2 shades may be made by using sand, then a moderately dark brown sprinkled, then more sand, and lastly a deeper shade of same colour.
A few still use the "finger-brush," a small brush about the site of a shaving brush, made of stiff bristles cut squarely. They dip it into the colour, and then by drawing the finger across it jerk the colour over the edge. Another method is to use a larger brush, which, being dipped in the colour, is beaten on a stick or press-pin until the desired amount of sprinkle is obtained. But the best plan for an amateur is to use a nail-brush and a common wire cinder-sifter. Dip the brush in the colour and rub it in a circular direction over the cinder-sifter. This mode has the satisfactory result of doing the work quicker, finer, and more uniformly. The head, foredge and tail must be of exactly the same shade, and one; end must not have more sprinkle on it than the other, and a set of books must have their edges precisely alike in tone and character.