The first pages at the front and back of the text block are called the endpapers. The main function of the endpapers is to protect the text block from dirt and damage, but endpapers can also be decorative or informative.
Most endsheets consist of two to four leaves – the pastedown which is glued to the cover board and the leaves that turn freely called the fly leaves. Most commercially bound volumes use two page endpapers that are sewn or glued to the text block.
The way to handle endpapers depends on the condition of the endpapers and on the information they contain.
If the fly leaf and pastedown are in good condition they can be reused. In some instances, such as recasing, the two parts of the endpapers may be split. Slide the new crash under the pastedown and cover any gap between the fly leaf and the pastedown with Japanese repair tissue.
If the endpapers are torn and need repair, follow the instructions for
repairing tears in an earlier post.
If the endpapers are replaced, clean as much of the old pastedown off the book board as possible. The inside of the cover boards can be lightly sanded to remove or smooth down any pastedown paper left on them.
In the next few posts, I will cover some methods of more complex repairs for endpapers.