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Why waxed thread?

This is the Forum for the art of Bookbinding, post your questions and answers about bookbinding here.

Moderator: denis

Why waxed thread?

Postby Swede on Fri Jun 29, 2012 2:57 am

Hello!

I'm new to the art of bookbinding and have a small simple question: Why should I use waxed thread? What is the reason for it? After what I understand it's easier to keep the thread tight if it is waxed, but is this the only reason?

/Swede
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Re: Why waxed thread?

Postby DanielCoffey on Mon Jul 02, 2012 7:41 am

It helps prevent the thread from tangling when you sew the signatures too.
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Re: Why waxed thread?

Postby edenworkshops on Fri Aug 17, 2012 5:22 am

The wax also prevents adhesive from penetrating the fibres of the sewing thread.

Richard


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Re: Why waxed thread?

Postby Shea_M on Mon Aug 20, 2012 10:53 am

Waxed thread is also handy for sewing endbands which you intend to age with a little dust from your work area.
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Re: Why waxed thread?

Postby bookbum on Fri Aug 24, 2012 8:18 am

All of the above are true but, in my experience, it depends on the type of wax you're talking about:

For bee's wax - a little sticky
It helps prevent the thread from tangling during sewing.
It helps prevent adhesive from penetrating the thread.
Another important feature is that waxed thread helps 'lock' the thread in place during sewing, keeping the previous stitches tight while you move on.

Paraffin based wax - slippery
Used as a lubricant to make the awl produce holes easier
On endbands, it helps keep them clean and makes them easier to clean.
Dan
One of the Bookbums @
Ish Kabibble Books

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Re: Why waxed thread?

Postby Jer on Fri Sep 05, 2014 8:27 pm

Not sure but I was told the wax helps keep the thread from tearing through the pages as the book is used over time.
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