Here’s a little book binding project I finished recently that I thought I’d share.  Back in August I picked up a couple B/X books at the GenCon auction for about $4 a piece.  The covers were in pretty bad shape, but the pages were in good condition and certainly usable.  My idea was to pull off the covers and then bind the two text blocks together as a single volume.  Finally, here is the result.

The pages are stitched together as two very large signatures.  I thought about breaking the pages apart and inter-mixing each section as the book suggest, but to do so I’d have to cut up the pages and then I wouldn’t be able to stitch the binding.  I could have gone with a perfect binding, but I’ve never tried that and from what I read such bindings are pretty crappy.  I’d rather have a book with a good solid saddle stitch that I know will last.

For the cover, I tried something new.  I cut up some pieces from the red book’s cover, which was in better shape than the blue, pasted them to the binder board, and then cut holes in the binding cloth to let the title and picture show through.  I’d say the end effect is OK, but not great.  You may notice this resulted in some air bubbles in the glue in the bottom right corner.  Also, I had to cut the pieces pretty close to the edge to get anything usable (those covers were really beat up), and as such I think the overall look is a little cramped.

Still, the book serves well, and I quite enjoy having a single volume to reference while playing rather than flipping back and forth between two books.  I’m starting to memorize where certain sections are too, making it easy to quickly flip to the right area during play, which really is the most important bit.  I find I’ve even stopped using the MM in favor of looking up the monsters in this book, which is good as we saw from the gray ooze article yesterday there are certainly some differences between the two editions.  I was previously using the MM before simply because it was easier to locate the right stats quickly than juggle the two books, but apparently just having them bound in a single volume makes it easy enough to not want to switch to the other book.  One less thing to have in my stack of books is only a good thing in my mind.