Monday, May 15, 2017

Book Shelving And My Book Collection

My first love has always been books, my hobby workshop interests started with books. I will never forget discovering the 1955 "Popular Mechanics DIY Encyclopedia" at the library when I was 10. I have collected books ever since. Less now than when I was younger mainly because I am running out of room to display them. The collection of 7 or 8 thousand plus volumes is about half woodworking, metalworking and mechanical engineering books, some very old most newer and a large collection of shop project manuals. The other half is a mix of my other interests mostly general science and history. Add to that a couple thousand magazines , Model Engineering, Fine Woodworking, Shop Notes, Wood etc. etc.and the paper tonnage starts to add up.

Below is an example of a very old set of shop practice "cyclopedia's" The bodies were in very good shape but the covers were tattered, so I spent the money to have them recovered.


My bookshelves are not fine wood or high design, they are "built in" floor to ceiling, to maximize wall space and very solid to support the weighty books. I still have a few walls to exploit, so my collecting will continue, just at a slower pace.


Following are some pictures of the rest of my shelving layout and some of my favorite sets of old and newer engineering book collections.



The very rough sketches above and below are some of the shop cutting plans I used when building the shelves. As each piece was completed it got checked off. Rough as the sketches are, I had no problems. When all the pieces were cut and/or dadoed, it all went together like a construction set.





Below is a copy of Joshua Rose's "Modern Workshop Practice". A classic from the late 1800's, The body was excellent but the covers were falling off. I spent the money to have it recovered. The set is huge at over 20 lb's for the 2 volumes. It is full of beautiful woodcut illustrations of every piece of machinery you could hope to find in a late 1800's machine and engineering shop. Nothing short of fantastic.


 Following are some of my other favorites from old to more recent.










Above is 26 volumes of Popular Mechanics Shop Notes from 1905 to 1930 reprinted by Algrove Publishing, a division  of Lee Valley Tools.
Hope someone liked this, I have been accused of grand standing with my book collection, not the case, book collecting is not everyones cup of tea, but it is something I have enjoyed over the course of a lifetime.  

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