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what can I do with lots of old books?

 
Posts: 281
Location: North East Scotland
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goat forest garden trees
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Sorry if this is in the wrong forum but I couldn't see where it would obviously fit. I have loads (a few hundred) books that I need to get rid of. I can't take them to the recycling centre as they only take newspaper, office paper and thin card. They are no use for a charity shop so does anyone have any ideas what I can do with them. My other half has suggested a giant bonfire but that wouldn't be very environmentally friendly with all the smoke they would produce. Please give me some other options.
 
Posts: 143
Location: Oakland, CA
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during the depression they took pages, crumpled them 'til soft, and used them as toilet paper!
 
gardener
Posts: 1948
Location: PNW Oregon
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hugelkultur forest garden duck trees books chicken food preservation
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You could sell them, or give them to people who want them.

Or take them to a second hand book store for credit toward books you want (that 's what I do).
 
Katy Whitby-last
Posts: 281
Location: North East Scotland
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As I mentioned the are no good for a charity shop or second hand store. They are out of date copies of legal texts so they are no use to anyone as books.
 
Posts: 7051
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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Katy Whitby-last wrote:As I mentioned the are no good for a charity shop or second hand store. They are out of date copies of legal texts so they are no use to anyone as books.



I guess that I would be tempted to mulch with them...burning paper releases dioxins...maybe mulch non food landscape plants. You didn't say if they were just text or if there were glossy colored pages or how recent (soy ink?). and what are the covers?
 
Posts: 151
Location: Madison, AL
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I'm with Judith. If the paper is printed with soy ink, I'd cut out the pages with a razor blade and compost them.
 
Jami McBride
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Posts: 1948
Location: PNW Oregon
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hugelkultur forest garden duck trees books chicken food preservation
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Sorry Katy, I missed that.

In that case, yes mulch with them.
 
Posts: 148
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After reading that most magazine paper is toxic I went looking for ways to use it and found some genius girls who were weaving papers into boxes. Since then I have made a few with things I didn't want to throw away. They are by no means perfect, but when people see them they think they are cool, and I like the alchemy of turning garbage into art.

This one I would like to figure out how to do without all the clear tape, but it was my first and I followed the directions I found on youtube


These are just a cracker box that i sealed the ends of and cut in half, glued some old shopping ads onto


with the boxes I have seen people also glue or tape in dividers made of cardboard so they can use them to organize anything from makeup in the bathroom to spices in the kitchen. Any box can be used, from a small nasal spray box to a cereal box, I have also seen people make what I would call a puzzle of many sizes of boxes that all sit inside one big box like a cereal box on its side, they were very cool.
 
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Go to Pinterest and put in repurpose old books for lots of cool ideas.
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 7051
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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I like the woven paper idea...being a weaver...I remember making paper beads along time ago. We are lucky in that our recycling center takes all kinds of paper including glossy magazines and catalogs...even books. I think a lot of it goes for kitty litter... maybe not such good news for cats.. Cardboard (except waxed and fumagated) and pasteboard cracker boxes, etc. and cardboard packaging all are accepted by our recycling center.
It took a lot of us a long time to convence our city/county government how important it was to recycle and then it was really just financial savings that caught their attention in the end and excellent community support.
 
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Katy,Hi
Here's an idea for using them to build a counter.

Are they leather bound books? I've always wanted to use the covers to 'cover/paper' a wall with. Then the inside papers could be shredded and composted or used as bedding for worms,ect.
All the best.
Kate
brunswickbound.jpg
[Thumbnail for brunswickbound.jpg]
 
Katy Whitby-last
Posts: 281
Location: North East Scotland
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Wow, some fantastic ideas - thanks.

I don't know what sort of ink it is - some of them are 25 years old. There is a mix of glossy covers and hardbacks but only a couple of leather bound ones.
 
LaLena MaeRee
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I love the book counter! I originally had a thought of building furniture with them but I couldn't think of how or what to make, this is awesome
Edit: I had never heard of Pinterest, OH EM GEE thank you!!! now I am gonna go find some new fun projects
 
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