Issue of mechikas Hashem?

In preparation for restoring a sefer Torah or part thereof, one needs to check if there's loose ink. This is typically done by lightly rubbing over it with a cloth. May one do this over entire amudim or is there a chashash of mechikas Hashem?
If the entire amud can be done with a few swipes of the rag, a complete sefer can be gone over in under an hour. If one may not touch the Shemos it becomes a daunting task.

One might think that mima nafshach, if the ink is attached to the klaf, going over it with a cloth won't do anything and if it lifts it off the klaf, it's because it's already loose and not considered attached to the klaf/pasul. However, based on my initial research, both Harav Elyashiv and Harav Mordechai Eliyahu held there's a problem of mechikas Hashem. According to Piskei Halachos, Harav Elyashiv said to leave the Shemos untouched and if and when the ink falls off on it's own then it must be fixed. (Until then you don't have to assume it's pasul.)

By extension. if using a clear acrylic spray after restoration, while it could be fastening pasul Shemos to the klaf, we don't have to be choshesh that a Shem is pasul.

A rav should be consulted if one see's simanim that leads one to think that ink on a Shem is loose. Must it be fixed and how? What if there's other tikunim to do on the Shem and one is concerned that ink will lift off when touching the quill/pen to it? Can one spray over Shemos in which there's a chashash they're pasul?


  1. See Yerios Shlomo chelek 4 pages 299-300. He is both matir (with sources) going over the entire amud, including shemos with a cloth, if done gently. He also permits gently touching up Shemos even though there's some concern that ink will crumble.


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