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Old 21-05-2018, 18:26   #1
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Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

We had a bit of a wet passage (see photo), and had some water ingress into a normally dry area due to a combination of factors. 1. The hawsepipe lid popped off. 2. The bow plunged through multiple waves. 3. An excessive heel angle caused the water to not go straight to the bilge. 4. The water found it's way into where all our reference books were stored.

It doesn't rain here on Bonaire, most days are sunny, and it's always blowing, but after 7 days, the books still aren't drying out at an appreciable rate. I also have to be careful about leaving them out on deck, as if the wind catches them from the wrong angle, they blow open, and all the damp pages fold over and make a mess.

Anyone have ideas (other than chucking them overboard and replacing them with new ones)?
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Old 21-05-2018, 18:58   #2
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

try putting kitchen roll sheets between each of the damp pages
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Old 21-05-2018, 19:49   #3
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

Having been doused in salt water, they may never dry out. Salt is hygroscopic and it's now in your books and will continue to attract moisture. You basically have to rinse them in fresh water if you want them to effectively dry out, then interleave them as atoll suggests.
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Old 21-05-2018, 21:07   #4
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

You might try a light spray of Saltaway on the pages. Could be available at the Chandlery in Bonaire.
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Old 22-05-2018, 04:20   #5
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

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Originally Posted by Suijin View Post
Having been doused in salt water, they may never dry out. Salt is hygroscopic and it's now in your books and will continue to attract moisture. You basically have to rinse them in fresh water if you want them to effectively dry out, then interleave them as atoll suggests.
If you try this I'd mix some methylated spirits with the water to get it to evaporate quicker. Try a little bit on a part of the text to ensure it won't effect the print.
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Old 22-05-2018, 05:15   #6
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

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Originally Posted by Suijin View Post
Having been doused in salt water, they may never dry out. Salt is hygroscopic and it's now in your books and will continue to attract moisture. You basically have to rinse them in fresh water if you want them to effectively dry out, then interleave them as atoll suggests.


+1

Get the salt out And then the books will dry
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Old 22-05-2018, 06:47   #7
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

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If you try this I'd mix some methylated spirits with the water to get it to evaporate quicker. Try a little bit on a part of the text to ensure it won't effect the print.
Salt does not dissolve in alcohol so adding it will be problematic. If the salt cannot be rinsed out then no amount of drying aid is going to help. Rinsing with alcohol after water might work, but then there is the impact of the alcohol on the binding, paper, etc. which is unknown to me.
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Old 22-05-2018, 08:56   #8
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

Vacuum bagging..
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Old 22-05-2018, 09:45   #9
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

I've never tried this.
Could you seal the book in a container with silica desiccant crystals?
Or with rice?
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Old 22-05-2018, 09:57   #10
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

Try roasting them slowly on the barbecue.

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Old 22-05-2018, 11:21   #11
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

As a last ditch effort, I'd try heating the oven to about 120 degrees and placing them, opened up, in the oven. Every so often flip through the pages, and re-position them to a new open page for further drying. Opening the oven should release the accumulated humidity. If there is a lot of salt concentration, try gently rubbing them with a clean freshwater cloth.


Upside is, you will always remember this extraordinary trip when you use the books - no problem.
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Old 22-05-2018, 12:02   #12
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

I have only succeeded in this by opening the wet book page by page first and then let dry. Once a wet book is let to dry unopened its ruined.
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Old 22-05-2018, 12:05   #13
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

This will not help you but I was stationed at the US Army Records Center when they had the big fire. They took the records to McDonnell Douglas, now Boeing and put them in their giant freeze drying vacuum chamber they used for spacecraft testing.
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Old 22-05-2018, 13:06   #14
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

Ryban,
Too bad about your books. Unfortunately agree it will be very difficult to save your books after being soaked in saltwater. Even if you can get them "dry" the salt left behind will keep them damp.

You mentioned these were your reference books. Do you have a list of them and possibly have anyway to download digital copies?

While we still have some hard copies onboard, most of ours are now digital.

Possibly provide a list of ruined books (if you can download) and I'm certain someone on CF will have a copy to share.

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Old 22-05-2018, 14:27   #15
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Re: Books got wet on last passage, any drying ideas?

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This will not help you but I was stationed at the US Army Records Center when they had the big fire. They took the records to McDonnell Douglas, now Boeing and put them in their giant freeze drying vacuum chamber they used for spacecraft testing.
Freezing is actually a good tactic for dealing with wet documents as it gradually extracts moisture out, but it requires a constant temp and probably lower than your household freezer, although I don't think absolute zero is required. :P
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