for this project, you'll need a few supplies:
- a book thick enough for your gun (not a children's book or anything interesting looking)
- a few razor blades or razor knife (for cutting the pages, they'll get dull)
- Elmer's glue (to glue the edges of the pages)
- water (to mix with the glue)
- bottle cap (or something else to mix the glue in)
- small paint brush (smaller than mine)
- weights (we used a stack of books and old magazines)
- pen or pencil (to mark where you will cut)
- cardboard (i'll explain that later)
there were also some optional items which really made life easier:
- chip clips (binder clips or big paperclips would work well)
- straight edge (we used a CD case)
ok, now onto the good part; doing the project. We did two books, one for each of us. Both of us love small cheap "saturday night special" type of guns, so we cut out books to fit our favorite pocket guns. Since we were going to be concealing the same model gun, we used the same template. I took out my gun, made sure it was unloaded, then put it ontop of a piece of cardboard and traced around it. I made the template a little bit larger than the line I'd traced. Idid this so the book could accomodate a larger gun if needed. Also, if we'd cut out the book the exact same size as the gun, it would have been hard to get the gun out.
While I was making the template, my girlfriend mixed up the glue. She used Elmer's glue and water (about 50/50) and mixed it in a large bottle cap. A bottle cap was great for this project because there was nothing to clean up, just throw it away.
when opening the book, we wanted to have a few regular pages before getting to the gun. We used thin cardboard (from an old package of crackers) to segregate the pages we didn't want to glue together. the easiest way to glue the pages was to just go around the perimeter of the book, gluing the edges together. After gluing, put the book under a weight. In our case, we used a stack of books and magazines. The stack of magazines was surprisingly heavy. After an episode of COPS (my favorite), the glue was dry and we were ready to start cutting.
Chip clips are good to hold the pages back that you didn't glue together. They're not necessary, but they do make things easier. Binder clips or big paperclips would work too.
Using the straight edge (CD case), I made the first cut with a razor blade. The blades for this project were sharp, brand new blades. Its really amazing how cutting paper can dull a blade in just about no time. We used razor blades instead of a pocket knife or something like that because of the thickness of the razor blades. They're so thin that they're great for detail work. No sharpening either, just throw them away when they get dull.
Both of us started cutting on our books using the same method. we each would cut a few pages at a time, then lift them out. The corners were an issue for us. Its hard to cut contours, especially when getting deep in the book. Tweezers helped get the corners right, but aren't a necessity.
To save time, i used a chisel and a hammer to get some of the pesky corners. By cutting several small lines next to eachother, I was then able to go in with the tweezers and pick out pieces of paper. This was a tedious job, taking us over two hours. We watched TV and talked while working on our books.
After cutting enough pages to fit the gun into the book, its important to glue the inside edges. After cutting all those pages, they started to get curled up towards the top. This made the book appear fat, like there was something in it. By gluing the inside edge of the pages in the same way that the outside edge was done, then placing a weight ontop of it, the pages were glued in place nice and flat.
Total cost for this project was very inexpensive. We picked up the books from a "free" box infront of salvation army. The glue and paint brush were about four bucks together. I had the razor blades, but if you had to go out and buy them at the hardware store they'd be a couple of bucks. Its a cheap project and a good crafty thing to do with your significant other.