Saturday, January 29, 2022

Fritz Otto Photographing Buchbinderei

Despite how easy it is to take pictures these days, Fritz Otto prefers black and white film. It's the tones and graininess he likes. Here we took some interior images of Buchbinderei before putting it back on the layout. The black and white images he took using a self-timer, though it was very hard to hold still for those 1-2 seconds.

All images shot on Ilford HP5 400 speed black and white film using a tripod and cable release for these 1-2 second average exposures. And no, I did not forget the Farbfilm. Lighting was provided by the cool white fluorescent in the task light visible in the first image below.

Taking a photo of the little scene.

Here an up-close view.

Holding v-e-r-y still.

An overhead with the roof off.

Putting the roof back on.

And, back to the layout it went...

Friday, January 14, 2022

Bindery Done

There was once a bindery in Berlin that was situated under railroad tracks... Incorporating that into my train layout seemed like a wonderful way to combine interests...

This is the concluding post of my "bindery" thread, wrapping up my big push in the last week or so to outfit the interior of the bindery. Shelves and cabinet fronts downloaded from Scalescenes, a few shelves ordered (3-d printed and laser cut) that still require work, but the heavy lifting of workbench, counter tops, board shear, Pr├Ągnant stamping press, and standing press were all scratch built to 1:87 or thereabouts. As a frame of reference most figures are just under 2cm tall, and "standard" bench height is about 1cm high.

Not sure why I do this to myself as it would have been so much easier to just glue in some photos from a bindery, set back behind the [grimy] window to make it look realish. What I do know is that it wouldn't have been half as much fun. Bonus, Fritz Otto and his smaller hands helped out a lot.

Counters and shelves assembled. That dropped section is
that way for a reason. ­čśë

Bench assembled. It has storage shelves
underneath for board and paper.
The black things are parts for the board shear.

No, that's not a Star Wars TIE fighter... Just board shear parts.

The assembled board shear, really just a massively over-sized
paper/sheet metal cutter. Note the blade...

Bindery staff debating the position of the blade when not in use...
Down like above, ...

..., or up like here. Most colleagues seem to say down.
I have mine up, so it's ready to use...
Yes, the blade moves.

Next piece of equipment, the Pr├Ągnant stamping press.
I loved using this as an apprentice because it was very easy to
adjust and you could see exactly where the type was going...
More here on Instagram.

See where the Pr├Ągnant stamping press goes.
Lower than the counters is the ideal working height.

Last big piece of equipment, a standing press. Still want to make
some hand-/finishing-presses, but yikes...
Note the posters on walls.

The posters for the bindery walls pull together a lot of threads from my bookbinding
related life, from Ernst Collin and W. Collin, to Babette, to Werner Kiessig,
to apprentice journal cartoons and bindery advertising.
Several also reference women binders, and this is a woman run bindery.

The bindery has a copper clad roof, too. And, yes, it is removable
to get the best view of the details, and light it up, sort of. 
Still some details to add like awnings over the side door and windows.

Also going to replace the windows. I liked the griminess,
but when sealing it with mat spray it got too cloudy.
It's good to have clean windows, and this is Germany after all.

Looking in through the new windows.

And more windows you can see through. Also added some window boxes an awning above.

We're closed now, but it looks like someone left their bike outside.
Hopefully, it'll still be there in the morning.

Still to do beyond the things already mentioned, making some Potemkinish stacks of work in progress, and hanging a shingle from the facade. Loving how this looks, and glad to have this model on my train layout, especially as it ties together so many personal experiences and research interests.

Getting the windows washed for the public opening of Buchbinderei.
The bike seems to have made it through the night unscathed.

Buchbinderei at night. Everyone is working late...

Buchbinderei is also no more, the space having become Tipico, a betting salon. As can be expected, the facade was repainted as well. I will imagine that the original Buchbinderi is just hidden beneath the sign... 

Tipico, formerly Buchbinderei, in Berlin.
Photo by
Danke f├╝r die Aufnahme.

Saturday, January 1, 2022

Bindery Interior Progress

It's always wonderful when different parts of our lives and interests can intersect. In addition to bookbinding and conservation, model railroading has long been an interest and big part of my life, also in terms of basement square footage. ­čśĆ

In an earlier post, I described using photographic images to reinterpret an existing structure on my layout. At this stage almost all the structures on my layout are made from cardboard and paper including laser cut kits, but increasingly built from scratch by me using scraps from the bindery. In addition to the raw materials, there are also the skills of a binder that are widely applied, especially box making. After all, what is structure but an overly complicated box. You can read descriptions of some other similar projects on my main model railroad page.

Fritz Otto inspecting the facade so far.

Still a ways to go, but the elements fit on this weird, triangular
building site. Here the new bindery owner Gertrud Jannowitz poses
in front while her picture is taken [for the local paper?].

More images of the bindery exterior construction on the Papphausen blog. Papphausen? Papp[e] = card or cardboard. Makes sense, right?

Still to be determined is the interior, but the space is framed out, walls up, ... Pics of that process here. Now comes the hard work of detailing the interior with shelves, benches, storage, a desk, stools, a board shear, presses... We'll see how I make it work, but in 1:87?!?! I'll figure something out.

Looking in...

Finally, another fun fact is that there are numerous bookbinders and practitioners of allied arts and crafts who are also ferroequinologists. Gary Frost, Bernie Vinzani, and Bob Hanmer come to mind. Know anyone else?