How to mount pages from a 1611 King James Bible


Mar 11, 2005
Midland, Michigan
Can someone help with ideas on how to float a page from a 1611 version of a King James Bible. I am bidding on a project done by a framer in another state last year. They have emailed me photos of the sample and the page is froating on a window mat so that the back side can be seen also. I don't want to attach this valuable piece to the mat but somehow they have the front side of the page floating on a rag mat. Any suggestions?
It is probably/should be encapsulated between two sheets of Mylar clear film and then sandwiched between two mats.

The glazing on the front should be UV filtering. On the back it could be Acrylic to keep the weight down.

Don't put a dust cover on it.
Welcome, hangupsinc!

It sounds like you have a rare & valuable page to frame. So, it's important to not change its condition, and to protect it from anticipated hazards, such as light, and temperature & humidity changes.

Ron beat me to it -- a clear polyester film "encapsulation" mount is the way to go.

But here are a couple of additional thoughts:

1. Use Tru-Vue's new Optium Museum Acrylic on both sides. This is Cyro Acrylite OP3, UV-filtering acrylic with the anti-reflective Museum coatings. It is of course more expensive than other glazing choices, but in relatively small size jobs like this one, the added cost is far outweighed by the visual enhancement it provides. And it's lightweight, too.

2. Use at least a double mat on both front & back, to provide at least 1/8" air gap between the glazing and the mount.

3. When you create the mount, use only Melinex 516 or its predecessor, Mylar-D. Be sure to avoid substitutes, because no other clear film is equal to these -- except Hostaphan 43-SM, in Europe.

4. To attach the two sheets of clear film together with 3M #889 double sided tape. This is the thinnest polyester tape I've seen, and it has a good acrylic adhesive; non-migrating & inert.

5. Place the tape strips only on the film, no more than 1/4" away from the the perimeter of the document, and no closer than 1/8". Make sure no tape touches the document, and sandwich the sheets of clear film together carefully.

6. Cut your mat opening so that the edges of the document show, and the tape lines are covered.
I like to do this kind of treatment, where the back is visible, by encapsulating the piece with mylar-D on the front and reg plexi for the "float board". Attach the mylar to the plexi as Jim has just explained then space another piece of plexi for the back glazing (regular plexi is ok assuming it will not be viewed very often from the back).

I like this treatment because it gives more ridgidity to the document and more support to the mat. It does, however, add some weight and thickness.
Thanks for the suggestions. I have done mylar encapsilations with glass on both sides before. The pictures sent to me show the page floating (without mylar) on top of the window mat and an 1/8 spacer was used. I am afraid the framer who previously framed these may have actually attached these to the made because it is definately not an encapsilation. I thought maybe there was another method of floating that I wasn't aware of.
Perhaps it is mounted in what I call the passepartout method?

A window that is just slightly smaller than the bible page is cut into a sheet of good quality paper. The edges of the window can be bevelled with a sharp knife, or sanded.

The edges of the window are pasted with wheat starch paste and then the Bible page lain onto the window, face up, and pressed into place using a paper interleaf between fingers and page.

This method is used in Europe a lot. If you do decide to use it, I'd recommend practicing first to get the technique down.

I've never seen the method you describe, however I have had some older customers who have immigrated from Europe and speak broken English ask for a "passepartout" when they are referring to a mat.
The passepartout I'm familiar with refers to taping a package with glass, mat, art and backing in lieu of using a frame.

For some reason, this process has never really caught on with most framers. I wonder why.

I am curious about, and having difficulty visualizing, the procedure Rebecca is describing. I'll bet she just made that up.
Thanks Ron, I wish I were smart enough to make it up!

It's an inset. Like a paper window mat, that the reverse edges of the art are pasted to. The idea behind museums using it is that the art can be handled without handling the art - one picks it up by secondary sheet (window mat) of paper that the art is set into. I'm sure Hugh knows the real name.

My ex-intern friend was taught the technique in a Dutch museum, although I've encountered it before. She was given a special skiving knife used to bevel the edges of the secondary sheet as a going away present.

Perhaps it's called a false margin?