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Armour
 
 
Armour presents certain problems in cleaning and preservation. Rust is the enemy that must at all costs be prevented from gaining a hold. Temperatures need to be watched where valuable armour is kept, with eyes always open to detect signs of damp causing disastrous effect on old iron and steel.
 
 
 
 
Armour 4Care should be taken when cleaning arms and armour. Different metals are often used in one piece and it is easy to splash a cleaning agent appropriate for one metal over another, damaging its patination. To avoid this problem the piece can be taken apart. This is often impossible or impracticable or beyond the abilities of the amateur restorer. Such items have to be cleaned professionally.
 
Alternatively, the surrounding areas can be covered with masking tape and the cleaning agent for the metal being treated, gradually applied on a small piece of cotton wool. This procedure is both time-consuming and labour-intensive, but it will minimise the risk of damage.
 
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Rusted ArmourMetal De-Corroder can be used to dissolve rust patches. Where necessary the complete piece can be washed with a Vulpex Liquid Soap solution and thoroughly dried. The surface can then be treated with Pre-Lim Surface Cleaner and finished with one or more layers of Renaissance microcrystalline wax. This microcrystalline wax has a high resistance to moisture and remains clear with no discolouration of the wax or the underlying layer. When applied thinly and rubbed out to full lustre, the wax gives a dry glass clear finish.
 
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Armour
 
 
 
Rust-free armour should be waxed as soon as it is taken into the home. A protective coating of Vaseline and turpentine or light oiling have previously been used but are no longer recommended.
 
Oiling the surface is generally discouraged since the surface remains wet and attracts both dust and moisture.
 
These methods have been almost universally replaced by using one or more layers of Renaissance microcrystalline wax.
 
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Guns need to be protected from attack from both woodworm and rust. If unblemished when acquired, apply protective coatings immediately.
 
Once again we recommend one or more layers of Renaissance micro-crystalline wax.
 
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Fine sword blades, foreign or British, should be thoroughly cleaned of grease before placing in scabbards. Regular inspection of swords for signs of rust is advisable. Once again we recommend applying one or more layers of Renaissance micro-crystalline wax.
 
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Ivory 01Ivory comes from a number of animals and is not restricted to elephants. Because of their ivory many animals and mammals are now being threatened with extinction and are protected by International laws. If you ever come across real elephant ivory, it must have been crafted before the time period of the ban of illegal elephant tusks. Make sure that your collection has only very old or legal elephant tusks, or the currently legal mammoth ivory.
 
 
Water should be used sparingly when cleaning old bone, horn or ivory, which under adverse conditions warps and cracks. Heat must especially be guarded against, therefore only lukewarm water with a small amount of detergent should be applied, and each piece needs to be dried immediately.
 

Clean with 1 part Vulpex Liquid Soap in 20 parts distilled water. Do not soak the ivory but wipe with cotton wool dipped in the warm, Vulpex Soap solution. Rinse by wiping the piece with cotton wool and clean water and dry with a soft towel.

 

Use a toothbrush with short bristles to get into detail areas and finish by wiping with cotton wool and clean water and dry with a soft towel. If there are stains left, consult a restoration specialist.

 

If the bone, horn or ivory is 'dry' in appearance, revive by gently rubbing almond oil into the surface with a soft cloth or use one or more layers of Renaissance Wax.

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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

 

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.

 
 
Ivory is particularly prone to cracking in heat, sunlight or a dry atmosphere or if it gets wet.
 
Keep away from sunlight and radiators since these will cause the ivory to crack
 
Ivory likes some humidity and is best stored in a closed cabinet with a glass of water. Open the cabinet from time to time to prevent mould from forming
 
Dust with a brush
 
Do not wet ivory with anything but alcohol or methylated spirits on a cotton bud. The resultant white surface can be restored to its former state by rubbing with your hands
Store away in acid free tissue, and not cotton wool
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Yellowing of ivory is a natural process of age with which one should not interfere. A little methylated spirits mixed with water gently applied and quickly dried will sometimes remove stains from ivory, but first ascertain that original staining is not being removed from a valuable old piece. Ancient ivories were often burnt-stained or artificially coloured.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Not everything that looks like ivory is in fact ivory. There are many man made substitutes and it can be very difficult to determine whether an item is made from ivory.
 
To test if it is ivory, wrap a long piece of hair around the ivory. Wrap it tightly so that it is secure around the material. Light a match and put it closely to the hair in contact with the ivory. If the hair burns, then you do not have ivory, probably bone, as bone is porous allowing oxygen to seep through thus burning the hair. If the hair does not burn, then you have ivory, because ivory has no pores and does not allow oxygen through.
 
Alternatively place a hot needle on an unobtrusive part of the piece, usually the underside of the base, and see if the material burns or melts. If it does, it is not ivory. If the needle point makes no impression, then it is ivory.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Can the ivory finial on my coffee pot be replaced?

The answer is both yes and no.

The parts must be made from legal ivory to comply with the CITES regulations. Parts made from legal ivory will be delivered with the necassary documentation validating the ivory source. Whilst these are not original parts, the new items properly made, are unlikely to reduce the value of the piece. There are many types of ivory including elephant ivory, so make sure what type of ivory will be used to make the parts before placing an order.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Both horn and ivory tend to become brittle with age, and exposure to excessive temperatures and immersion in water can split or warp them. After cleaning and drying them, rub a little almond oil and after 8 hrs, wipe it absolutely dry. Finish with one or more layers of Renaissance micro-crystalline wax.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
BooksThe survival of anything made of paper depends on the properties of the paper itself, the materials applied to it, and their effect on each other. In contrast to materials such as textiles, where older pieces are usually more fragile than newer ones, the opposite is often true of paper.
 
 
AcidityAcidity is one of the most important causes of damage in paper because it weakens and eventually destroys the fibres that make up the paper. As a result, paper made from ground wood pulp breaks down rapidly from within. The first sign of this is when the paper becomes yellow, then brown, and increasingly brittle. For example, newspapers are made from ground wood pulp, and the acids in the paper cause it to discolour and become brittle. Breakdown of newspaper from within speeds up with exposure to light and/or high humidity. Wood pulp can be chemically treated to remove acids and impurities. Paper made from purified wood pulp is more expensive but lasts longer than paper made from ground wood pulp. However, in the past, its lifespan was still limited because it was almost always treated with alum-rosin size.
 
Alum-rosin size was introduced in the mid-1800´s, alongside wood pulp. It was made from a mixture of alum, in this case aluminium sulphate, and rosin, the resinous material left over when turpentine is distilled. This type of alum is different from the earlier type and is not chemically stable. Alum-rosin size was cheap, could be added whilst the paper was being made rather than as a separate stage, and produced an excellent surface for printing. Unfortunately, in moist conditions it generates sulphuric acid, which attacks the paper, turning it yellow and making it very brittle.
 
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
BookBooks are often stained with small brown spots, a condition known as foxing. Along with other stains, foxing can be bleached out, but the leaves have to be removed. If the staining is widespread the book will need to be dismantled and re-sewn. This is best left to a professional, who will bleach out the stains at the same time. To remove single pages, soak a piece of thin, soft string in water, lay it in the hinge of the book next to the page for renewal, and close the book for about a minute. The water softens the page along a straight line so that it pulls out easily. The other half of the leaf left in the binding will probably be secure enough without further attention, but if necessary remove it at the same time.
 
Pages that are ”tipped in”, that is stuck to the adjacent page along the inner edge, can be removed by peeling back the glued joint.
 
Bleach individual pages as for art work but not so much that they look completely different from the rest of the book. After bleaching, put back their original stiffness by sizing the paper with very runny flour and water paste. Apply it to both sides of a page with a small sponge, working outwards from the centre. Leave the page to dry on white blotting paper, and then press it flat.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Boards that have fallen off the sides of books can be temporarily held in place by tying cotton or crepe bandage around the book from top to bottom, which will not be visible when the book is on the shelf with other volumes. Rebinding may devalue a rare book. A skilful craftsman can ease off an old spine, rejoin the original boards and reattach the original spine. But even this process, known as re-backed with spine laid on, may reduce the value. If broken bindings are repaired or renewed, the original pieces should be kept safely as documentary evidence.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Bookends should be as large as the books they confine so that pressure is spread equally over the surface. Volumes should never be packed too tightly on a shelf. To remove a book, reach over the top of it and ease it out from the back of the shelf. Or part it from the volumes either side and grasp it by the sides.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
A broken hinge can be renewed, but if you are prepared to undertake this yourself, you should ask for a generous reduction in price.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
The most common type of binding in the modern home is called 'perfect' binding and is used for magazines and journals, modern paperbacks and some modern hardbacks. Both cover and pages are stuck together at the spine edge by a thick layer of hot melt glue. This is the cheapest type of binding and is intended for the throwaway market. It is often combined with the use of poor quality, acidic paper.
 
Once the adhesive along the spine dries out or breaks, pages begin to drop out. You can put the book into a book box and store it. This will at least keep the parts together and minimise further damage. If the book is of value, a professional conservator could repair and rebind it.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Cloth covers are more easily cleaned than leather, but both benefit from careful attention.
 
Wash grimy cloth covers with a damp sponge. Do not soak the surface, and keep water away from the pages. Be particularly careful if there is gold lettering or decorations on the cover as it can wash away easily. When the surface is quite dry, rub in microcrystalline wax with circular strokes and polish with a soft cloth.
 
A faded spine can often be revived with a coat of wax. More extensive areas of fading are difficult to rectify. Water-based inks applied with a cotton wool pad can be used to blend one area into another, but practise first on worthless books.
 
Scuffed or worn patches of cloth can be disguised by rubbing in coloured starch scraped from new book cloth. Choose a piece that matches the book closely and dampen the surface. Scrape with a knife to form a moist paste. Dab the paste onto the worn area with your finger.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Leather has been chemically processed (tanned) so that it does not putrefy when it gets wet. Alum tawed leather has only been partly tanned by treatment (tawing) with alum. In the right conditions, it is very hard wearing and durable. However, if it gets damp or wet it will deteriorate and be damaged. Untanned skin such as parchment or vellum, which has been limed, stretched and dried, can also be hardwearing and durable. However, if it gets wet it will contract and begin to putrefy.
 
Avoid using leather dressing on books. It doesn't help preserve the leather and can in fact be very damaging, particularly when too much has been applied.
 
Dirty, greasy or grimy leather bindings can be gently washed in a Vulpex liquid soap solution and thoroughly dried. Care being taken to ensure the leather bindings are not soaked in the solution.
 
When cleaning leather (or any water - sensitive material) Vulpex can be used in white spirit as a non-aqueous cleaner. Mix 1 part Vulpex in 20 parts spirit. Although Vulpex can be diluted in IMS, white spirit is recommended for its slower evaporation rate, which enhances the cleaning action especially where heavy materials like solid leather are heavily soiled with grease etc. When dry use several thin layers of Renaissance microcrystalline wax and buff to a shine.
 
Dry cracked leather bookbindings and on desktops can be revitalised with lanolin and Renaissance microcrystalline wax preparation. Spot test the dressing on an inconspicuous area; if it leaves no stain, then apply it sparingly with a soft cloth. Let the dressing absorb for about 24 hours before gently buffing with a clean duster. We recommend using one or more layers of Renaissance wax to finish.
 
The above method is both recommended and used by Rarity4u. However we acknowledge other cleaning methods are also available.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
You can clean paper leaves and endpapers using the methods for art work as described in Book Care & Repair. The erasers, bread, and document cleaner are suitable for removing dirt and finger marks from any part of the book. Pencil notes can be erased in this way too, but ink needs more care. Avoiding printed portions of the page, try gently abraiding the surface with a very fine silicon carbide paper. Used small circular strokes and check constantly against the light that you are not wearing a patch thin.
 
Coating the area with rubber-based adhesive, leaving it to dry, and then rolling the adhesive off with your fingers can lift crayon. Repeat this if some crayon remains. The adhesive sometimes ”plucks” the surface of the paper, so test it before using on printed matter. Rarity4u recommend and use Groom Stick to remove crayon, dirt, finger marks, pencil notes etc.
 
Coloured endpapers can be cleaned with document cleaner, but avoid harsher methods.
 
Coated endpapers that have a slightly powdery texture are very fragile and should not be touched.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information .
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Mould and mildew growth is caused by high relative humidity or dampness, combined with poor air circulation. In terms of caring for your antiques, what matters is relative humidity. Relative humidity measures the amount of moisture that is in the air relative to the maximum amount of moisture that the air could hold at that temperature. If conditions become dryer and relative humidity drops below 70%, the mould will become dormant, but will reactivate again if relative humidity rises.
 
If you have mouldy books, try to locate the source of the dampness, e.g. leaks or books against a cold exterior wall, and address the underlying cause of your problem. Assess whether the mould is active or dormant by testing it carefully with a fine brush. If the mould is dry and powdery it is likely to be dormant, whilst if it is soft and smeary it is probably active. If the mould is active, move the books to a warm dry area until it becomes dormant. At the same time inspect the shelves for woodworm, as these pests will bore through books as well as timber.
 
A book damp enough to develop mould may have warped boards and cocked leaves with heavy staining. This will require professional attention. But if mildew has barely taken hold, stand the book on end with the boards open and the leaves fanned out. Leave it like this in a dry, airy environment, separating the leaves from time to time. Once the mildew has become powdery, you can then take the book outside and use a soft brush to remove the dried deposits.
 
To remove mould itself, take the book/s outdoors on a warm, dry day. Hold each book so that it remains firmly closed, to prevent contamination of the text block, and clean as previously described. Clean the shelf area thoroughly with a commercial fungicide or a solution of 5–10% bleach, wipe/rinse the shelf with water to ensure all bleach residues are removed and allow them to dry before replacing the books.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Books invariably collect dust on the head. Holding the book tightly closed; blow the dust off the head. Use an artist’s brush to clean dust off the headband and inner edges of the covers. If absolutely necessary, use a barely moistened ball of cotton wool to wipe the head clean from spine to edge. You should not use water on gilded edges, but you can rub them with dry cotton wool.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
This may be due to a condition known as “red rot”. In such a case seek the advise of a professional.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Opening a book flat on a tabletop concentrates the strain onto the weakest point of the binding, the joint between the spine and the front and back boards. Once these joints are broken, the covers and spine can break off, sewing can break, the text block may split and pages start falling out. If left untreated, the book will eventually be destroyed.
 
Normal photocopiers require books to be pressed flat on the glass bed. This damages the sewing, spine and joints. Libraries usually have special photocopiers that allow a page to be photocopied without forcing the book flat: if you have to photocopy, use one of these.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Books are often found with corners folded as bookmarks. Such creasing can be difficult, if not impossible to remove. Rub it down with a folder and put the book in a press. If this is unsuccessful, put several sheets of blotting paper under the leaf, damp the crease, and then cover it with more blotting paper before pressing it with a warm iron.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
This describes leather that appears powdery, orange-red and brittle. This is caused by a combination of the original tanning method (vegetable tanning) and pollution. Sulphur dioxide pollution reacts to form sulphuric acid that attacks the leather from within. Once the damage has occurred, the only thing you can do is try to limit the damage caused by handling.
 
You may wish to box or wrap the book with materials that absorb any acids that the deteriorated leather gives off. Using leather dressing or other materials such as Vaseline will not help, and may cause more damage, because the problem is not on the surface but deep within the leather itself.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Unless you are prepared to take lessons in book binding, avoid books in which the sewing needs renewing.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
In the past, works of art on paper were sometimes cut down to fit a frame, mount or album. However, it is important not to cut down documents or works of art because you may remove important historical evidence by accident, such as signatures, margins and plate marks, which add to the provenance and value of the piece.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Lamination is used to reinforce paper by sealing it between sheets of plastic, using heat and pressure. Whilst it is fine for disposable papers that are handled a lot, it is not appropriate for historic or valued paper. Unfortunately, the plastics used are chemically unstable and become yellow and brittle in time, producing acids that attack the paper, ink and pigments. Lamination is irreversible because the heat and pressure mean the plastic is thoroughly stuck to the paper, so if you value your paper, don't laminate it.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
This is a technique used to mount photos, papers and posters, particularly if they need to be flattened as well. Dry mounting uses thin paper that has been impregnated with adhesive. The tissue is placed between the back of the paper that is to be mounted and its supporting paper or card. Heat and pressure are used to melt the adhesive in the tissue, sticking the paper to the mount. As always, problems and damage are likely as the adhesive ages; dry mounting is a process very hard to reverse.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
These are all intended for use on disposable office paperwork. They are not suitable for either temporary or permanent use on valued paper or works of art. Metal clips and staples will corrode, leaving rust stains on the paper. Paper clips often tear paper when they are removed, and can leave a permanent distortion behind in the paper. Self-adhesive notes leave a residue behind. Coloured folders or ribbons can stain paper in damp conditions, whilst rubber bands cut into paper when they are new, then become sticky as they age and perish.
 
If you find any of these on your antique papers, carefully remove them. If you think they are of interest, keep them separately, for example you could take a photograph of a document bound with coloured ribbon and then keep a coloured ribbon in a page protector next to the original letters.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
One of the worst things you can do to paper is to try repair tears with pressure-sensitive tape such as sticky tape, sticky-backed plastic or masking tape. These are usually made from a thin, flexible backing, combined with an adhesive that is tacky at room temperature.
 
In the short term, removing pressure-sensitive tape can remove the top layer of paper fibres. In the medium term, the backing drops off, whilst the adhesive left behind on the paper attracts dirt and can stick to and damage other papers stored against it. In the long term, the adhesive can seep into paper, leaving irreversible yellow or brown discolouration. If the adhesive becomes acidic as it ages, it will also attack the paper.
 
Avoid using tape on the back of paper, for example when making home-made mounts. In the long term, the adhesive from the tape may creep through the paper and produce irreversible patches of discoloration on the front.
 
Modern pressure-sensitive tapes use an acrylic adhesive. These do not discolour too much and do not soak through the paper as they age, although they can soak in a little way depending on the porosity of the paper. However, they cannot be dissolved in water or solvents and often cannot be removed without damaging the paper.
 
'Archival quality' pressure-sensitive tapes are also available. They may be described as chemically stable, non-yellowing, acid-free or removable using solvents or water. Just because they are 'archival' does not mean you can use them on your valued art works or documents. Residues of adhesive can be difficult or impossible to remove. Also, it may not be possible to use water or solvent without damaging the paper. Reversibility is not just about a material, but about what it is applied to as well. Tapes that use a water soluble starch adhesive are available and are a better alternative.
 
It is best not to use any kind of pressure-sensitive tape.
 
Modern domestic adhesives, such as UHU, Superglue, Blutack, Copydex, Pritstick and rubber cement glues are all unsuitable for valued paper. The adhesive will fail in the long term and as the products break down they will stain, damaging the paper itself. It can be difficult to remove glue that has dried up, and become dark and brittle.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Encapsulation is sometimes recommended as an alternative to heat sealed lamination. The paper is placed between two sheets of chemically inert plastic, which are held together with double-sided tape around the edges, but not in contact with, the paper. The paper is held in place by the electrostatic charge of the plastic.
 
The main problem with this is the use of double sided tape, which usually has a very strong adhesive. If you accidentally touch the paper with the tape, there is no 'forgiveness'. If it is pulled off, the tape will take the top layer of paper, ink or paint with it. Accidental contact can happen if there is slight movement of the paper when encapsulated, or when separating the plastic sheets to take the paper out. Enclosing paper between proprietary sleeves that are heat welded on two or three sides is a good alternative.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Bread is a traditional dry cleaning material used to remove dirt from paper. If you rub a piece of fresh white bread between your fingers, you will see that it is quite effective in picking up dirt. The slight stickiness of bread is the reason why it works and also why it can be a problem. It can leave a sticky residue behind that will attract more dirt. Oily residues or small crumbs trapped in the paper fibres will support mould growth and encourage pest attack.
 
We recommend the use of Groom Stick
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Oversize family bibles are particularly vulnerable to damage from reading, handling and poor storage. Often the structure is not strong enough to carry the weight of the text block and boards. Also, the older the volume the more likely the binding will be damaged and brittle, so it is important to support the whole structure and weight of the book when you pick it up and as you read. Foam wedges are the best solution.
 
Family Bible
 
 
 
Delaminated and broken block of photo album
 
 
 
 
 
Family Bible
 
 
 
 
Snakes in use
 
 
 
 
 
Family Bible
 
 
 
 
 
Supporting a book using clean rolled towels
 
 
 
 
 
Family Bible
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Book shoe
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
The method for filling insect holes is fully discussed in Book Care & Repair. Several leaves could be involved, making this a laborious task. Lay waxed paper under the affected leaves, and then fill the holes with pulped paper. After you have filled a hole, paste a small patch of tissue paper over it.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
FoxingThe term 'foxing' describes disfiguring small yellow brown spots or blotches on paper. Two main causes are mould and iron contaminants in the paper. Moulds feed on the paper itself as well as any dirt or organic material on it e.g. finger marks, food stains and squashed insects. Tiny metal impurities can be found in paper as a result of the original manufacturing process or from dirt and pollution. Damp conditions encourage mould growth, and will cause iron contaminants to rust. In some cases a conservator may be able to reduce the disfiguring effect of foxing, but in many cases you simply have to accept this old damage.
 
Today, newly printed books are intended to be short-lived and the way we use them reflects this. People often force open the pages of a new paperback and press down hard on the inside of the spine to keep the book open. This is sometimes accompanied by a cracking noise as the binding breaks. While this is fine for a throwaway bestseller, you will need to take more care if you want to pass your special books on to the next generation.
 
First decide if your paper and books have historical, aesthetic or sentimental value. If you think they have significant monetary value, consider having them valued, insured and professionally conserved.

The cost of neglect and poor quality repairs is high. Because books are not usually decorative objects in their own right, and thus not displayed, there is often a resistance to the cost of professional conservation. You should balance this against the monetary and sentimental value of your books.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Never take a book off a shelf by putting your finger on the top of the spine and pulling the book towards you – this damages the head-cap, which will eventually break off. Try and remove a book by either passing your hand over the top and gently pushing from the fore-edge or by pushing the flanking books further forward so that you are able to wrap your hand around the spine of the book and firmly grasp each side. Ensure you support heavy books with the other hand underneath.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
A corner torn from a leaf can be replaced using methods similar to those previously described in Books Care & Repair. If printed matter is missing however it is debatable whether the repair is of any value. Reinforce the joint with tissue paper.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Display books on a shelf that has been painted or varnished, and ideally lined with acid-free card. Do not forget that strong light will fade the spines. If the shelves are within a cabinet, make sure there is adequate ventilation.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Paper must be protected from becoming damp, which encourages mildew and fungi to develop, or becoming too dry, which causes dangerous brittleness. Humidity must be watched in the preservation of old books and manuscripts. The brown spots known as foxing, which appear on old paper and often spread alarmingly through pages is caused by excessive dampness. If foxing develops on the pages of an old book or manuscript, it immediately requires the attention of a specialist to prevent further rapid deterioration. Do not expose old books and manuscripts to strong light, which turns pages yellowish or even brown over a lengthy period of exposure.
 
Renaissance micro-crystalline wax is pH neutral and free from acids and will not damage even sensitive materials. When thinly applied and rubbed out to full lustre, the wax film is and remains glass-clear, with no discolouration either of the wax or the underlying surface. For example, photographs for exhibition or of historic value to protect the image from the natural acidity of hand or environmental pollutants. The wax does not stain or darken even white paper.
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If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Ink
 
Ink Iron gall ink, diffusion of ink through to verso and corrosion of paper by ink.
 
Another problem that can damage paper (usually in books, drawings and letters) is caused by the type of ink that was used. Iron gall ink, manufactured from tannin (galls), vitriol (iron sulphate) gum arabic and water, was used in Europe from around the late 1100´s. Depending on how the ink was originally made, iron gall ink can 'burn' holes right through it. A similar problem occurs with verdigris, a green pigment made from copper, which was often used in older Islamic books as a green border around the text.
 
The first indication of iron gall damage is a brown halo around the ink lines. It is made worse by damp conditions and while dry conditions will slow the process down, they cannot prevent it.
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These can be glued back or “tipped in” very easily, but if several appear to be loose make sure that a whole section is not about to drop out.
 
Align the leaf with the book, and then press the glued edge flat. Lay waxed paper into the hinge.
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These are not difficult to replace.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Missing pages cannot be replaced, so unless the book is rare, do not do it.
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If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Avoid storing books in attics and basements and keep boxes slightly off the floor and away from the walls. This prevents damage from minor flooding and the airflow will help avoid insect damage and mould.

When packing books in storage boxes, make sure the spine is supported otherwise the boards, spine and text block can come apart from each other. Lay books flat with alternate spines with largest book at the bottom and smallest at the top. Ensure not too many books are in a pile, or pack books spine down with similar sized books together. Do not pack books on top in any left over space.
 
Phase Box
 
Phase box

Individual, archive quality, permanent boxes are the best option for medium to long term storage of valued books, rare items, parchment text blocks and parchment covered books, leather bound volumes and books with fittings. Though expensive, the box should be an exact fit for the book and help protect it from damage caused by light, heat, humidity and pollution. Phase boxes are individually tailor-made from archive quality boxboard. They are the cheapest way to keep books you value in good condition. They can be good for books that have fittings such as metal clasps or decoration that would otherwise rub or catch on neighbouring books.

Die cut boxes are commercially produced, come in standard sizes (which may not fit your book exactly) and are delivered flat packed. They are made from archival quality folding boxboard and can be useful for magazines and comics. However, some sizes can only be purchased in large quantities.
 
Four Flap Enclosure
 
Four flap enclosure
 

Four flap enclosures are a cheaper and simpler method of protecting smaller books, paper pamphlets and brochures etc that are vulnerable or have loose pages. These can be simply made from an archive quality Manila or Kraft paper or thin card as for the wrappers below.

Wrapping is the cheapest option; it acts like a dust jacket and is a good choice for damaged books, e.g. if the covers or pages are loose or if the bookcase is in direct sunlight. Wrap a book in a sheet of heavy weight archival quality paper or thin card, for example Kraft (120gsm), Manila (225 gsm) or Cover (300gsm) paper, depending on the size of the book. Choose paper that is lignin free, acid-free, buffered, and with a pH of 7–8.5.

Where boards have become detached and none of the above is feasible, you can use linen tapes to tie the boards back on and prevent damage to the text block.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Removing books from shelves once or twice a year to dust them will keep them clean and is a good way of noticing problems with mould or insects before too much damage is caused. Set up a table with some clean paper on it, outside if it is a warm, dry day. Take each book in turn, hold it firmly closed by the fore edge and using a soft bristled brush, for example an old-style bristle shaving brush, lightly brush off the dust.
 
Work from the spine edge to the fore edge, otherwise you will end up pushing the dust down the spine. Avoid using a vacuum cleaner because of the risk of sucking off any loose fragments. This method isn't appropriate if the pages are badly distorted, cockled or damaged because dust can get into the pages. Vacuum or wipe down the shelves before replacing the books.
 
If the paper is in good condition, it may be possible to remove dust and dirt from the margins of the pages using a Chemsponge, also known as a chemical or smoke sponge (suppliers: Conservation By Design or Preservation Equipment). These are made from vulcanised rubber and should be used dry – no liquid is required. They work by trapping dirt in the surface of the sponge. When this happens, simply cut off the dirty surface to expose clean sponge. A Chemsponge will not remove mould damage, foxing or stains and is not a good idea if the paper is brittle or torn, or if the surface of the paper looks 'fluffy'.
 
Clean only the margins, and take care not to clean printed areas or illustrations because you may smudge or remove the ink. Leave annotations, notes and doodles in the margin as they may be historical evidence that adds monetary value and interest to your book. It is important to wash and dry your hands regularly whilst cleaning otherwise you will transfer more dirt than you remove. Cut off a small piece of the Chemsponge, about 25 x 25 x 10mm. Stroke this over the dirty area of the margin very lightly.
 
Alternatively Groom Stick can be used.
 
If a Chemsponge or Groom Stick does not remove the dirt, you could consult a conservator. If fragments of paper are removed, stop immediately. If you find pieces of paper in the book, they should be stored in an envelope with a note saying where the fragment was found within the book.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Only remove a stamp from its envelope or card if you are sure its postmark is of no value. Never steam, but float stamps off in luke warm water and then dry between layers of blotting paper. Any mounting material that touches the stamps must be acid-free. Chemically inert PVC sleeves are useful for mounting complete envelopes or cards, but make sure they do not seal completely as condensation may form.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
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You will often find that a single leaf in book has become loose. Glue it back with a little PVA adhesive. If necessary, from the inner edge, so that the other edges of the leaf align with the other pages. Lay a piece of paper on the leaf as a mask, leaving a 3 mm wide strip of the inner edge projecting from the mask. Paint glue thinly across the strip, from the mask outwards.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
If the spine cover is torn away, a book can be re-backed, but retain as much as possible of the original binding as you can, including the spine cover itself. Again, a book in this condition should cost very little.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
These can usually be renovated. However, a book that is stained extensively may have to be dismantled and re-sewn professionally.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
If the spine cover is torn away, a book can be re-backed, but retain as much as possible of the original binding as you can, including the spine cover itself. Again, a book in this condition should cost very little.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Most tears can be repaired easily as long as care is taken.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Although a torn leaf can be glued like a damaged print, it should be reinforced to cope with the extra strain it will be subjected to. Use document repair tape, applied on one side only. Rub it down with a folder to exclude the air and make it almost invisible. Never use ordinary adhesive tape.
 
Alternatively, use the flour and water mix, paste a strip of tissue paper over the damage. Tear a strip of tissue so that the frayed edge will be less noticeable. Place waxed paper beneath the leaf, then brush paste along the torn edge. Paste the tissue and use the brush to lay the strip in place. Brush the edges down carefully, place waxed paper on top and close the book. When you remove the waxed paper, peel it with care from the leaf. Printed matter will be visible through the tissue patch.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
A book damp enough to develop mould may have warped boards and cocked leaves with heavy staining. This will require professional attention. But if mildew has barely taken hold, stand the book on end with the boards open and the leaves fanned out. Leave it like this in a dry, airy environment, separating the leaves from time to time. Once the mildew has become powdery, you can then take the book outside and use a soft brush to remove the dried deposits.
 
If damp conditions are affecting your books, take action immediately to ensure the problem does not worsen. Locate and treat the source of damp, examine all your books for signs of deterioration, and thoroughly clean the shelves. At the same time inspect the shelves for woodworm, as these pests will bore through books as well as timber.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Many early books have leaves with ragged edges. It is intentional on the part of the binder and the leaves should not be trimmed.
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Foam wedges fully support the boards right up to the joint with the spine. This means that the foam wedges, not the spine and the joints, take almost all the weight of the book. They also restrict how far the book is opened and prevent you from accidentally breaking the spine by forcing the pages too flat. Snakes (curtain weights: a small chain of lead weights sewn in to a tube of fabric) can be rested on the pages to keep the pages open without damaging the spine.
 
How the foam wedges are used depends on whether you're at the beginning, middle or end of the book because the shape of the spine changes as you read. Use additional flat foam blocks to support the book in its natural shape if it is opened towards the beginning or end. Alternatively, you can roll up clean, dry hand towels to support a book without foam wedges.
 
On modern hardbacks and older books, particularly large books, the boards are bigger than the text block. When they are stored upright on a bookshelf, the text block is unsupported and will slowly 'drop' down to the shelf. In the beginning, this process distorts the spine: the top of the spine flattens, the bottom of the spine is pushed outwards and eventually the joints between the boards and spine begin to tear. This damage can be prevented by storing the book horizontally or, if vertically, within a book 'shoe'.
 
Book shoes are tailor made by conservators to fit an individual book. They are made from archival material and incorporate a text block support to compensate for the gap between the text block and the shelf. Slipcases, which are like a book shoe but enclosed on the top, are not recommended because they make it difficult to remove the book without pulling on the joint and don't support the text block.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
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As paper ages it often becomes yellowed or greyed. Sometimes this is a result of exposure to light, but even a print that is carefully stored in the best conditions can appear a different colour from when it was new.

Paper discolouration is generally caused by acid.  The paper manufacturing process is often to blame.  Since the mid 1800´s the largest source of acid is the wood pulp used to mass-produce paper.  However there are additional sources of acid as well because chemicals are added to make paper look brighter or whiter.  Sizings are also applied to make paper less absorbent to water and inks and other materials make paper more rigid.  Sizings, brighteners and other additives can break down with time and produce acids that discolour paper.  The technology to manufacture paper with fewer acid-producing chemicals has only been adopted by paper companies in the last twenty years.  It is a more expensive process therefore we pay a premium for "acid-free" paper. 
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Worn patches on covers can be touched in and damaged corners can be replaced.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Ceramics 1In a typical home there are likely to be more objects made of ceramics – earthenware, stoneware and porcelain – than any other single category of material. Most will be 1900¨s and 2000´s, a fair proportion will be late Victorian and perhaps a few pieces will be earlier.

Oriental ceramics have a far richer history than those in the west. Fine porcelain was made in China from at least the 800´s and started to reach Europe around 1600´s.

Despite their inherent fragility, many early Chinese pieces survive and are keenly collected
 
 
Provided ceramic pieces are un-restored, glazed ceramics can safely be washed in warm water with a little washing-up liquid, using a soft brush to coax dirt from crevices, but never use abrasive cleaners or put antique pieces in the dishwasher.
 
Unglazed pottery, being porous, will absorb water and any impurities it contains may result in staining.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
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Yes provided the part that holds the rim of the plate is not made from metal because metal can cause chipping.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
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Glazed CeramicsBefore washing any glazed ceramics, inspect them for signs of damage. If a piece has been repaired with adhesives, if there are any chips or cracks present, or if the glaze has worn away in places, use the cleaning technique recommended for unglazed ceramics.
 
If the piece is in good condition, proceed as follows:

Line the bottom of a plastic bowl with a sheet of foam about 2.5cm thick and fill the bowl with hand-hot water and mix in a few drops of mild liquid soap or Vulpex liquid soap.
 
Take the first piece and thoroughly dust it before proceeding. To minimize the risk of breakage, wash only one piece at a time and if a piece has more than one component, wash each separately.
Lower the piece into the soapy water and gently wipe it with a soft, lint- free rag. To loosen dirt from crevices, use the bristles of a dusting brush. Wipe and brush until all the dirt is removed.
 
Line the bottom of a second plastic bowl with a 2.5cm thick sheet of foam and fill it with hand-hot water. Transfer the piece from the soapy water to the clean water, and gently move it around to rinse off the soap and remnants of the dirt.
 
Remove the piece from the rinsing bowl and dry it carefully with terry towelling. 
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Partly Glazed CeramicsPartly glazed ceramics include various types of tin or lead glazed pottery and earthenware. The glaze covers the sides top or rim of the outside of the body, but not the outside of the base or the inside of the body. Because of the porosity of the unglazed areas, do not immerse such pieces in water for any length of time. The safest way to clean such pieces is to treat them as though they were entirely unglazed.
 
Try to remove accumulations of dirt in crevices by working a little whiting into them with the tips of the bristles of a dusting or make-up brush. Then brush out the whiting and the dirt with another brush.

If the dirt proves very stubborn, and the above method is not strong enough to remove it, wipe the surface with cotton wool moistened with lukewarm water. Work lukewarm water into the crevices with a brush. Then, using terry towelling, pat the piece completely dry as quickly as possible.

If the piece is still dirty, add a little mild liquid soap to the water before applying. Immediately follow this by ‘rinsing’ several times using cotton wool moistened with clean, lukewarm water. Finish by patting the surface completely dry with terry towelling.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Un Glazed CeramicsBisque or unglazed Porcelain and various types of unglazed pottery and earthenware, notably unglazed terracotta, are highly porous and so can be damaged by regular or lengthy immersion in water. You may have to immerse them in water to remove certain types of stain, but do not use this method for general cleaning. Instead, proceed as follows:

When possible, restrict surface cleaning to dusting with an artist’s dusting brush or make-up brush.

Try to remove accumulations of dirt in crevices by working a little whiting into them with the tips of the bristles of a dusting or make-up brush. Then brush out the whiting and the dirt with another brush.
If the dirt proves very stubborn, and the above method is not strong enough to remove it, wipe the surface with cotton wool moistened with lukewarm water. Work lukewarm water into the crevices with a brush, then, using terry towelling, pat the piece completely dry as quickly as possible.

If the piece is still dirty, add a little mild liquid soap to the water before applying. Immediately follow this by ‘rinsing’ several times using cotton wool moistened with clean, lukewarm water. Finish by patting the surface completely dry with terry towelling.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Ceramics can usually tolerate a wide range of environmental conditions without being damaged. There are some notable exceptions such as ceramics in which salts are dormant but where problems will be initiated by fluctuating relative humidity.
 
In rare cases, there may be a manufacturing fault that can cause cracks to develop in the body or crazing in the glaze, particularly where there are sudden changes in temperatures, for example from direct sunlight or spotlights.
 
Lastly, old restorations or repairs may be more vulnerable to the environment. For example, some restoration materials used to fill or retouch a loss may discolour if exposed to strong light or if stored in the dark.
 
The main cause of damage to ceramics is impact damage so try to avoid displaying ceramics in areas where there is passing traffic or where you may need access behind them, for example window sills in front of an opening window.

Display cabinets are a good option. If several pieces are displayed together, make sure they are not too crowded and are not touching each other. Avoid hanging pieces by their handles, as these are often a weak point, particularly if they have been damaged or repaired in the past.
 
Vibration can be a problem when displaying ceramics. A busy road outside or foot falls on a springy floor inside a home can cause ceramics to 'creep' and they may bump into other pieces or fall from the shelf. Creep can be prevented by placing a piece of chamois leather under the ceramic. This can also stop ceramics with an uneven base from wobbling. Avoid rough surfaces as they can scratch the base.
 
Commercially available display or mounting waxes can also prevent creep, but take care to ensure that it does not stain your piece. Take a small amount and make it into 3-4 balls, place at regular intervals underneath the ceramic and press down gently. To remove the ceramic, hold it firmly by its base and turn gently. Residues can be removed with a cotton swab barely dampened with white spirit. Too much liquid can draw residues into a porous body such as earthenware.
 
Mounts
Mounts are often used to show decorative ceramics that are in good condition but they are not always suitable for cracked or restored pieces. Mounts need to be the right size for the piece - if they are too tight they can chip the edges, whilst if they are too large they will not hold the piece securely.
 
Inert plastic or Perspex for mounts, are often used but there are many other safe options. Proprietary adjustable plastic hangers, called wall plate stands, wooden display stands and grooved shelves in display cupboards are all suitable. Plastic coated metal sprung plate hangers should only be used if the dish is in good condition. Bare metal hangers can cause scratches or chips and will stain the ceramic if it corrodes. Avoid mounts with hard sharp edges or using metal pins to stop plates sliding forward, as they can chip or scratch unless they are padded.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Clocks 1
 
Clocks, watches and barometers are delicate instruments and should be treated accordingly, and these guidelines will help to keep your instrument in good condition.
 
 
No faqs found in this category
FurnitureOne of the delights of antique furniture, as with all practical antiques, is that it is a tangible link with the past. Sitting at a 1700´s desk, it is easy to imagine an earlier owner leaning on the same surface, struggling with an important letter. An ink stain on a well-rubbed draw edge adds to the sense of continuity.

The way antique furniture carries the mantle of age is one of its most appealing characteristics. Whilst ceramics and glass are little altered by the years, a piece of furniture changes in subtle ways. Its timbers gradually shrink and mellow through handling, polishing and exposure. This slow maturing gives it a unique patina that cannot be matched – or reproduced – by the finest new pieces
 
Dust the furniture regularly and every month or so, re-oil or re-wax furniture depending on the finish. Apply the oil or wax very sparingly with a clean, soft cloth. With another clean, soft cloth, buff the oil or wax to a shine. Depending on how dusty or dirty the location is where the furniture is kept, repeat annually or every two years.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Furniture Before cleaning, remove all dust from the surface of the piece, using a soft-bristled dusting brush. Make sure you work the bristles into all recessed sections and mouldings.

Method 1
Rarity4u recommend using Vulpex Liquid Soap. This is a museum quality restoration product and further details for specific applications can be found in our article
Vulpex Liquid Soap Applications

Finish by applying several thin layers of Renaissance micro crystalline wax.
 
Method 2
If your piece is simply dull and dirty without being covered in sticky dirt and grime, the slightly cloudy surface will need to be cleaned. Use a 500ml container to mix 250ml of cleaning and reviving solution: 4 parts white spirit to 1 part boiled linseed oil. This will remove any dirt and cloudiness and revive colour and patina. Make a pad of coarse, lint-free cotton rag, dampen it with the solution, and work the rag vigorously, in a circular motion, over the piece. The dirt will begin to dissolve and collect on the rag. Turn and recharge the rag when it gets dirty, and replace it when necessary.

Finish by wiping the surface with a new cotton pad dampened with white spirit.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
FurnitureMany pieces of furniture have metal fittings, such as hinges, locks, finger plates, and corner brackets. These are made from a range of metals and alloys, with brass, copper and iron the most common. Clean this hardware after cleaning and reviving the wood of your furniture, taking care not to get any of the cleaning solutions on to the surrounding wood. Apply the the cleaning solution with caution using a piece of cotton wool. For extra protection, cover the surrounding area with masking tape cut to the required shape with scissors.
 
Different metals require different cleaning solutions so it is important to use the correct solution for the metal you are treating.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
FurnitureIf the silver backing of an antique mirror has badly deteriorated, do not attempt to repair it because any such restoration will substantially devalue the piece. Three traditional methods are used to clean the fronts of mirrors, and all are effective. Whichever one you choose, make sure that you do not allow any moisture to creep behind the glass, which will cause further deterioration of the silvering.



Cleaning With Methylated Spirits
Wipe the glass with a lint-free linen cloth moistened with methylated spirits.
 
Washing With Water And Ammonia
Immerse a lint-free linen cloth in a bowl of lukewarm water to which you have added a few drops of ammonia. Wring out the cloth until it is just moist, then wipe the surface of the glass.
 
Cleaning With Paraffin
Lightly moisten a lint-free rag with paraffin and wipe the glass. (Note: Although this method works very well, it leaves a smell of paraffin in the air for some time afterwards.)
 
Cleaning With Vulpex Soap
The Rarity4u preferred method is to use a diluted Vulpex liquid soap solution. Moisten a lint-free linen cloth with some of the soap solution and gently wipe the surface of the glass or mirror.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Groups of small holes in wooden furniture are the result of an infestation by insects, mainly woodworm. This must be treated before you fill the holes.
 
Fine cracks most often appear when wood swells and shrinks in response to changes in humidity. Treat small holes and shallow cracks in the same way. Large cracks require a different remedy and possibly professional repair.
 
Purchase a set of wax crayons specifically designed for retouching furniture. One of the crayons may be a good match for the colour of the finish. If not, combine two or more colours to achieve a match. In either case, place a small piece of a crayon, or pieces of more than one crayon in the upturned metal lid of a small glass jar. Play a naked flame from a candle or cigarette lighter over the crayon until it starts to melt. To blend colours, mix the molten pieces with a small wooden stick. When the wax cools, but before it sets, pick up a little on the blunt edge of a knife and press it firmly into the hole or crack. When the wax has set hard, carefully rub it smooth with the back of a sheet of sandpaper. Do not use the abrasive side. Re-polish both the treated area and the surrounding area with a suitably tinted wax furniture polish.
 
Note
Before repairing surface damage, such as small holes caused by insect infestation or fine cracks, keep in mind that a rare and valuable piece displaying such damage is usually considered ‘honest’ by most collectors and so tends to be more sought-after than its repaired equivalent. We strongly advise you to consult an antique furniture specialist about what you should and should not do with a fine piece of furniture, particularly if intend to sell the piece. With a lesser piece you can make the repair if you find the damage unsightly and are not concerned about its value, because the difference in price between the repaired and un-repaired piece will probably be marginal.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
The finish applied to antique furniture when it was made was to rub it down with fine abrasives until it was as smooth as possible, apply linseed oil or a mixture of beeswax and turpentine and continue to rub until the desired gloss was produced. This made a hard-wearing surface, especially when the process was continued occasionally in the home. About 1820, came the process known as 'French polishing', in which a shellac varnish is applied to the furniture by means of a 'rubber' made of linen wrapped round cotton-wool. A French-polished surface is not as hard-wearing as the original method, it is damaged easily, but is much easier to apply and quickly came into general use. In the course of time, most old furniture has been re-polished by this more modern method, and it is very rare indeed to find an untouched piece with its original surface.

Apply a new coat of the original finish with a soft, lint-free rag and then buff it to a shine with another soft, lint-free rag. On antique furniture the finish will be either oil, wax or French polish, the latter often overlaid with wax. French polish is extremely difficult to apply and should be handled by a professional restorer.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Furniture The drawer bottoms on antique furniture are made from thin sheets of solid wood. These sheets are secured in grooves in the drawer sides and a groove across the inside of the front of the drawer. Over time the wooden sheets tend to contract, leaving a gap, usually at the front of the drawer, and in some cases at the back. Traditionally, the sheets were cut to extend slightly from the back of the drawer, so if shrinkage occurred, a sheet could then be pushed forward to close the gap. This technique should be used whenever possible, but if the drawer bottom is not big enough to allow this, or if it is badly split or cracked, the bottom should be replaced.


 
Pull out the original drawer bottom and measure its length, width and thickness. If the bottom has shrunk, add the width of the gap that has opened up at the front of the drawer. Purchase a thin sheet of wood to match the original bottom or, if none is available, use Plywood of the same thickness. Mark the measurements of the original bottom on the new sheet, and cut it to size with a panel saw. To ease fitting, slightly Bevel the front and sides of the new sheet with a plane, and smooth them with medium- or fine-grade sandpaper. Position the front of the new sheet in the grooves in the sides of the drawers, and slide the sheet forwards to sit in the groove on the drawer front.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
FurnitureThe majority of antique Case furniture has thin wooden dustboards fitted between the drawers. These sit in grooves cut into the drawer rails and runners, and their main purpose is to prevent dust from entering the drawers and soiling the contents. In addition, dustboards help to secure the drawer runners in position. If a dustboard is badly damaged or missing, it can be replace it as follows:
 
If the back of the cabinet is pinned or nailed in position, prise it off with a large screwdriver. If it is secured with screws, unscrew them and lift out the back. If the original dustboard to be replaced is still in position, slide it out of the retaining grooves. Measure the width, depth and thickness of the board. To determine the dimensions of a missing dustboard, first measure the distance between the side runners, including the depth of the grooves. Next, measure the distance between the back of the front rail and the back, including the depth of the groove in the front rail. Finally, measure the height of the grooves to find the thickness of the board. Originally the dustboard would have been made from a thin sheet of solid wood. If this proves difficult to find, use Plywood. Cut the plywood to size with a panel saw and slightly Bevel the front and sides of the new panel with a wood plane, then sand them smooth with medium- or fine-grade sandpaper. From the back of the case, slide the new panel into the grooves in the drawer runners and push it forwards until it sits in the groove in the drawer rail. Re-secure the back of the cabinet.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Bad polishing can result in a piece of furniture being seriously devalued. It can take over 200 years for a piece to develop a good patina but only a few minutes to strip away its history. Only undertake restoration after seeking advice from a specialist. Never attempt repairs yourself, unless replacing knocked off slips of veneer which should be done quickly since a fragment of cross banding is easily lost and cannot be replaced. A heavily restored piece will be worth considerably less than one in good original condition and the price should reflect any significant alterations. Skilled repolishing is acceptable as are minor repairs to bandings and mouldings, reupholstery and the replacement of stylistically incorrect handles with ones in keeping with the period. The tightening of joints, drawer linings and backs can be part of a sensible programme of conservation.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
If a piece is structurally weakened by woodworm infestation, seek professional advice.
 
If the damage is superficial, purchase a commercial woodworm-killing fluid, the type contained in an injector can or bottle. Insert the nozzle into a flight hole and squirt the liquid into the tunnels and chambers. Repeat in other holes, spaced approximately 5 cm apart, until you have treated the entire affected area. Immediately after injecting the fluid, brush a liberal quantity of it over all the unfinished surfaces of the piece, and leave it to dry for 48 hours. Any excess fluid that is not absorbed by the wood will evaporated within this period.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Glass 1
 
 
Glass has a magical quality born of its transition from sand and other minerals to vessels of transparent delicacy. Barring breakage, scouring pads and dishwashers, glass is wonderfully resistant to age, neither warping like furniture, nor tarnishing like metal. It can look the same after 200 years as it did when as new, the shape and style reflecting the customs and habits of the time.
 
 
Glass ChandelierBefore dismantling a cut glass chandelier for a major clean, photograph the pieces intact, and work out a system of identifying the lustre’s so you know where to put them back. Turn off any electrical connection and do not let water creep into the hollow branches of the chandelier. Wash the lustres in a detergent solution, checking that the metal hooks are sound, rinse thoroughly and dry immediately to prevent corrosion of the metal. Polish with a soft lint-free cloth.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Coloured GlassTo avoid breakages always wash one piece at a time using the following method:

Line the bottom of a plastic bowl with three or four layers of thick terry towelling. Fill the bowl with warm water and mix in some washing-up liquid. If the glass is particularly dirty or greasy, add a few drops of ammonia.

Wearing rubber gloves, immerse the glass and wash it by hand. You will find a soft-bristled toothbrush is ideal for cleaning crevices and engraved areas. If it proves necessary, remove stubborn dirt and grime in these areas by dipping the toothbrush in a little methylated spirits. (Note: Never use methylated spirits on the inside of decanters and containers for potable liquids.) Rinse the glass thoroughly under lukewarm water, then dry thoroughly.

The best way to dry all types of glass is to wipe it gently with either a chamois leather or a soft, lint-free linen cloth. (You should not use a cotton or woollen cloth as these can deposit small flecks of material that will spoil the appearance of the glass.) If you cannot pass a cloth through the neck of a vessel such as a decanter, direct a hair-drier, on a low or medium heat setting, into the opening for two or three minutes. Do not overheat the glass or you risk cracking it.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
The following method should be used to clean enamelled or gilt glass.
 
  1. Gently wipe away dirt and grime with a soft chamois leather moistened with methylated spirits.
  2. Gently buff the piece with a dry chamois.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Stained Glass TulipsOld and valuable stained glass that has deteriorated badly, usually from long exposure to pollution, should be entrusted to a professional restorer.
 
Gently clean lesser pieces with a soft-bristled scrubbing brush, warm water, washing-up liquid, and a few drops of ammonia. Rarity4u recommend the use of Vulpex Liquid Soap in preference to washing up liquid and ammonia.
 
Then rinse and dry thoroughly.

The best way to dry all types of glass is to wipe it gently with either a chamois leather or a soft, lint-free linen cloth. (You should not use a cotton or woollen cloth as these can deposit small flecks of material that will spoil the appearance of the glass.) If you can’t pass a cloth through the neck of a vessel such as a decanter, direct a hair-drier, on a low or medium heat setting, into the opening for two or three minutes. Do not overheat the glass or you risk cracking it.
 
Never use commercial glass cleaners for mirrors, stained or leaded glass, as the chemicals in them can act as a solvent on glass that is stained with a coloured varnish, on a gilt or varnished frame, and on lead or putty. Remove as much dirt as possible from indoor glass with a soft chamois leather. For more stubborn stains wipe with a cloth moistened in warm water with a few drops of methylated spirits and some mild household detergent, then rinse with clean water using a well wrung out chamois leather.
 
Protect the frame with a piece of thin card. Where grime has built up on stained or leaded window glass, brush it off gently with a soft bristled brush and as long as the surface is stable, clean with cotton wool just dampened with the same solution used for mirrors.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Crizzled Glass'Crizzling' is the appearance of very fine cracks on the surface of deteriorating glass. The cracks become deeper and more pronounced, the glass begins to flake and eventually the object disintegrates.
 
The condition is aggravated by moisture, so glass that has become ‘crizzled’ with a network of fine surface cracks and all ancient excavated glass should not be washed, and should be handled as little as possible.
 
Ancient or excavated glass or ceramic glass with a flaking iridescence; no attempt should be made to scrape or clean the surface.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Many problems can be avoided by always drying glass thoroughly after cleaning, and by always storing or displaying it in well-ventilated, damp-free surroundings. The best way to dry all types of glass is to wipe it gently with either a chamois leather or a soft, lint-free linen cloth. (You should not use a cotton or woollen cloth as these can deposit small flecks of material that will spoil the appearance of the glass.) If you can’t pass a cloth through the neck of a vessel such as a decanter, direct a hair-drier, on a low or medium heat setting, into the opening for two or three minutes. Do not overheat the glass or you risk cracking it.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
The following methods can be used to dry the inside of a decanter.
 
  • If you can not pass a cloth through the neck of a decanter, direct a hair-drier, on a low or medium heat setting, into the opening for two or three minutes. Do not overheat the glass or you risk cracking it. Put it in an airing cupboard, preferably upside down
 
  • Roll up some kitchen roll paper and stuff it inside. This should absorb the moisture
 
  • Put some alcohol inside (something like Gin), swill it around and then leave to evaporate.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Cut Glass Decanters 1
Glass stoppers often become stuck in the neck of decanters and claret jugs, particularly if they have not been removed for some time and were replaced when the neck was still wet with wine.
 
If there are no signs of structural damage (cracks, restored break lines) to the vessel or stopper, one of the following methods can be used to try to remove a stopper which has become jammed in place.
 
Slowly heat the neck of the decanter around the stopper by wrapping a piece of hot wet cloth round the neck of the decanter. The theory is that this will cause the glass to expand and thus release the stopper. Hold the decanter in one hand and gently pull the stopper with the other.
 
Use a small amount of penetrating oil (e.g.WD40 or similar) - this gradually seeps into the gap and can provide sufficient lubrication for the stopper to be removed.
 
Rarity4u Method
Never try to wrench or tap out the stoppers otherwise, you risk breaking the neck of the vessel. Instead, pour a small quantity of olive oil around the stopper where it enters the neck. Leave to stand for a few hours, during which time the oil will very gradually seep between the two surfaces. It should then be easy to remove the stopper.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
Virtually all alcohol stains form on the inside of decanters. The following are five traditional methods, so if the first proves unsuccessful, try one or more of the other methods.


 
  • Pour white vinegar into the decanter to a depth of around 2.5cm. Add 5ml (1tsp) of mild scouring powder and fill the rest of the decanter with warm distilled water. Insert the stopper, shake the decanter thoroughly and let it stand for 24 hours.
 
  • Pour off the cleaning solution, rinse with warm water, and dry with a hair-drier.

Pour white vinegar into the decanter until it is around a quarter full. Add 10ml (2tsp) of table salt and then insert the stopper and shake the decanter vigorously. Leave for 24 hours and then empty the contents and rinse and dry as before.


 
  • Crush a handful of eggshell and drop them it into the decanter. Add warm distilled water and a few drops of ammonia. Shake vigorously and leave for 24 hours. Empty the contents and rinse and dry as before.


 
  • Fill the decanter with lemon juice and 10ml (2tsp) of salt. Shake well and leave for a while and then empty, rinse and dry as before.


 
  • Put a handful of coarse sand or lead shot into the decanter. Add a little water and gently shake for a few minutes. Empty, rinse and dry as before.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
These whitish, cloudy calcium deposits left by hard water can sometimes be removed with a mild acid such as household white vinegar. The vessel should be filled with the vinegar and left overnight, then thoroughly washed, rinsed and allowed to dry.
 
If the deposits are more stubborn, the following method can be used, to remove or reduce a build-up of grey-white cloudy deposits of lime scale (calcium carbonate) left by hard water:
 
  1. 

If the deposits are inside a container, pour enough distilled water into the container to cover the stain. If the deposits are on the outside of a piece of glassware, submerge the piece in a plastic basin filled with distilled water.
  2. Make sure the work area is well ventilated, and put on protective goggles, chemical-resistant rubber gloves and a face mask. Very slowly pour hydrochloric acid into the water until the deposit starts to bubble.
  3. Leave until the deposit has completely dissolved (carefully adding a little more acid if necessary). Pour out the acid solution.
  4. Rinse the container with warm water. Then wash it with warm water and a little washing-up liquid before rinsing again and drying thoroughly.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.

 

Glass can become iridescent and cloudy after use. To treat this condition proceed as follows:
 
Soak the glassware in distilled water for up to seven days, changing the water every day. At the end of this period, remove any remaining cloudiness with a soft-bristled brush. If this proves only partly successful, try the following method:
 
  1. If the deposits are inside a container, pour enough distilled water into the container to cover the stain. If the deposits are on the outside of a piece of glassware, submerge the piece in a plastic basin filled with distilled water.
  2. Make sure the work area is well ventilated and put on protective goggles, chemical-resistant rubber gloves and a face mask. Very slowly pour hydrochloric acid into the water until the deposit starts to bubble.
  3. Leave until the deposit has completely dissolved (carefully adding a little more acid if necessary). Pour out the acid solution.
  4. Rinse the container with warm water. Then wash it with warm water and a little washing-up liquid before rinsing again and drying thoroughly.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
You may be able to shift ‘’tidemarks’ from glass, such as wine stains in a decanter, with a solution of denture cleaner and warm water, or with acetic acid (vinegar). Leave either in the glass for 24 hours, then rinse, drain and dry thoroughly. Methylated spirits or pure alcohol can be tried for alcohol perfume bottle stains; change the alcohol every hour or so until the stain has gone.

Ammonia or ordinary household bleach, which contains chlorine, will remove stains on most glass, as long as there is no gilding or other fragile decoration.

If the decanter is old (pre 1930) and the inside is badly lime-scaled, then the only way it can be effectively cleaned is by mechanical polishing - this should be done by an expert restorer. Lead shot is put inside the decanter together with jeweller’s rouge and water and the decanter is then stopped up with a cork. The decanter is wrapped in bubble wrap and then placed inside a revolving tumbling machine for a couple of days.

If the decanter is relatively new (post 1930) and is made from lead crystal or full lead crystal, then it can be acid dipped in a hydrofluoric and sulphuric acid mixture. Acid polishing should not be attempted on old glass as the lead content is unpredictable and the decanter could be spoiled in the process. An expert restorer should do this technique.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Jewellery 1The value of jewellery depends on the quality of the materials used to make it, its design, maker and condition, and the prevailing fashion and taste.

Rare gems of the highest quality are usually a good investment because the political and physical problems involved in mining them and the scarcity of fine stones means that supply is unlikely to exceed demand. Diamonds are the exception as their supply is controlled by an international cartel to maintain prices, but demand can always be fulfilled so no dramatic rise in pieces is likely
 
No faqs found in this category
Leather
 
Leather, has been used by mankind ever since time began. With correct care and cleaning, leather items will give many years of service and will outlast most other materials.
 
The high levels of sulphuric acid and sulphur dioxide in the atmosphere in some cities and industrial areas pose a threat to leather. These air-borne pollutants, when they are combined with excessive humidity, can initiate a process of corrosion that causes leather to decompose and eventually crumble into a fine red powder. This condition is known as ‘red rot’, and once it has set in it is incurable.
 


The best way to avoid it is to regularly ‘feed’ and polish the leather. Hide food will remove the dirt, restore suppleness and to some extent revive the original colouring – follow manufacturer’s instructions. Gently buff the surface with cotton wool or a very soft cloth. Finish off with an application of microcrystalline wax polish. Apply it sparingly, using a soft cloth on thinner leathers and a shoe brush on thicker ones. Buff to a shine with a soft cloth as the wax starts to dry, but before it dries completely.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
MetalwareMetals are a natural and abundant resource that is both malleable and extremely durable, which makes them suitable for all manner of practical purposes. Pure metals such as copper, iron, lead and tin, and various alloys including brass bronze and pewter, have been used around the world for thousands of years. Metals have played a significant role in the development of human civilization, with bronze and iron used to make early tools and weapons. Drinking vessels and utensils for making and eating food have been fashioned from metal since ancient times. Pewter and Spelter were inexpensive alternatives to more precious metals.
A gold object may be solid or plated, silver gilt or ormolu and it is advisable to establish which before treating it. Gold is soft and therefore a thin layer of gold on silver can be rubbed away all too quickly. It also scratches easily so should be handled with care but it does not tarnish unless it has a high silver content as is the case with some 9 carat gold. Light dusting or gentle washing in warm soapy water is all that is recommended in the way of cleaning.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Art
 
Now that you are the proud owner of a piece art, it is necessary to learn how to keep the piece in good condition. The following Care & Repair tips will help you achieve that goal.
 
 
 
Apart from dusting frames and the glass protecting works on paper, picture cleaning should only be done by a skilled professional.
 
Never clean gilded frames with a damp cloth or sponge as this will eventually remove the gold leaf.
 
Flaking oil paint, dirty varnish and a whitish bloom on the surface of an oil painting caused by damp can all be treated without too much difficulty by a professional restorer.
 
Stains and foxing on works on paper can also usually be dealt with by a paper conservator.
 
Inspect your pictures regularly as any signs of damage or staining should be dealt with as soon as possible to prevent further deterioration which will make the problem more difficult and expensive to deal with.
 
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Yes a picture can be hung anywhere, but not if you want to keep it in top condition. Use the following guidelines when looking for a place to hang a picture:
 
  • Avoid hanging pictures over a fire or radiator, unless there is a mantelpiece or radiator shelf, as dirt and smoke in the warm air stream will be carried up and could mark the picture.
  • Watercolours will fade if hung in strong light, especially sunlight, and some types of paper may discolour; it is best to hang them on a wall which receives indirect light.
  • Consider covering vulnerable works on paper with a cloth when away on holiday, especially in the summer, or draw the curtains in the room. Alternatively roller sun-blinds cut out the rays of the sun without darkening the room.
  • Because of their sensitivity to light, valuable works on paper should never be photocopied.
  • Oil paint is less likely to fade but will sometimes dry and crack in high temperatures caused by central heating, fires, direct sunlight or even picture lights. Panels too may warp or crack as a result of heat or extremes of temperature. Wide variations in temperature and humidity are not good for any works of art.
  • Do not hang pictures on damp walls. To help air circulate and avoid the build-up of any damp, especially if hung on an outside wall, allow a picture to lean away from the wall at the top and also glue a thin sliver of cork from a wine bottle or a corn pad on to the bottom corners of the back of the frame. While damp can leave brown tide marks or cause paper to ripple when it dries out, very dry conditions, often caused by central heating, can make paper dehydrate and become brittle. Humidifiers and dehumidifiers can solve these problems.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
 
Hanging
Pictures should be hung securely using nylon cord for preference. There are various strengths of cord so check with your dealer for the most suitable. Brass or copper picture wire can also be used but it can corrode over time. String is not normally strong enough and it can also stretch and be prone to rotting. Eye hooks should be screwed into the frame only and not the stretcher or backboard. For smaller works,'D hooks' can be attached to the backboard provided a barrier board is also used to prevent contact with the work. Both the strength of the hook and its fixing into the wall must be commensurate with the weight of the picture. For very hard walls special hooks are available or alternatively the wall may need drilling. It is usually advisable to use two hooks, not only for additional safety but also to prevent the picture 'swinging'. Very heavy paintings may also need to be supported at their base by brackets fixed to the wall, or by two short lengths of chain hung vertically from secure fixings and hooked onto brass plate hooks screwed into the frame.

Avoid hanging pictures over a fire or radiator, unless there is a mantelpiece or radiator shelf, as dirt and smoke in the warm air stream will be carried up and could mark the picture. Watercolours will fade if hung in strong light, especially sunlight, and some types of paper may discolour; it is best to hang them on a wall which receives indirect light. Consider covering vulnerable works on paper with a cloth when away on holiday, especially in the summer, or draw the curtains in the room. Alternatively roller sun-blinds cut out the rays of the sun without darkening the room. Because of their sensitivity to light, valuable works on paper should never be photocopied. Oil paint is less likely to fade but will sometimes dry and crack in high temperatures caused by central heating, fires, direct sunlight or even picture lights. Panels too may warp or crack as a result of heat or extremes of temperature. Wide variations in temperature and humidity are not good for any works of art. Do not hang pictures on damp walls. To help air circulate and avoid the build-up of any damp, especially if hung on an outside wall, allow a picture to lean away from the wall at the top and also glue a thin sliver of cork from a wine bottle or a corn pad on to the bottom corners of the back of the frame. While damp can leave brown tide marks or cause paper to ripple when it dries out, very dry conditions, often caused by central heating, can make paper dehydrate and become brittle. Humidifiers and dehumidifiers can solve these problems.

Framing & Mounting
Traditionally, oil paintings are framed without glass as they already have the protection of their coat of varnish. However works on paper -watercolours, drawings and prints -must be glazed to protect them from surface damage and dirt. While perspex sheeting can be used and is lighter and less fragile than glass, it scratches easily and attracts dust. For valuable works on paper, consider glazing with one of the modern UV filter glasses which are expensive but can filter out up to 95% of harmful UV rays.
 
It is important for works on paper to be set behind a card 'window' mount as this separates the glass from the artwork, preventing any rubbing and providing some circulation of air to deter mould. Both the bevel top window mount and the under-mount must be acid-free as acidic paper will eventually discolour and in damp conditions it can develop mould or brown spots known as 'foxing'. You can check whether an existing card mount is acidic by looking to see if there is a brown stain around the inner edge of the 'window': if there is then the mount should be replaced. In order to allow paper to expand and contract, it should not be taped directly to the under-mount but attached to it with T-shaped paper hinges fixed to the back or held by conservation-quality paper corners. With valuable works on paper, it is worth considering changing the mount and backing every ten years or so.

When fitting the work into a frame, the whole should be backed with modern double-sided smooth hardboard. Never use a wooden backboard as it is acidic, nor grey pulp board. Pin the backing into the frame and seal the edges with gummed paper tape to help keep our dust and insects. It is not advisable to have works 'dry laid' onto an under-mount.

Storage
It is important to store oil painting and works on paper in clean, dry conditions, preferably somewhere dark and where the temperature is cool and fairly constant. Paintings should be placed upright on blocks to keep them off the floor with acid-free board between each one. The largest and heaviest should be at the back of the stack and picture hooks should be removed to prevent them damaging the next frame or canvas. Cover the stack with a clean dust sheet but do not use plastic as this can cause mould. Unframed works on paper, such as maps or prints, are best kept flat in acid-free boxes or folders with acid-free tissue between each work.
 
Cleaning and Conservation
Apart from dusting frames and the glass protecting works on paper, picture cleaning should only be done by a skilled professional. Never clean gilded frames with a damp cloth or sponge as this will eventually remove the gold leaf. Flaking oil paint, dirty varnish and a whitish bloom on the surface of an oil painting caused by damp can all be treated without too much difficulty by a professional restorer. Stains and foxing on works on paper can also usually be dealt with by a paper conservator. Inspect your pictures regularly as any signs of damage or staining should be dealt with as soon as possible to prevent further deterioration which will make the problem more difficult and expensive to deal with.
 
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Silver 1Ever since it was discovered silver, like gold, has been converted into gleaming artefacts of great splendour and beauty. Such symbols of wealth and power are collected for their superb workmanship, but smaller, more ornate pieces also have unique attraction. This is in part because silver has always been a precious metal.

The intrinsic value of silver has had one undesirable effect, silver objects have long been regarded as recyclable and thousands of pieces have been lost over the centuries, melted down to finance wars, to cover up theft, or simply to make something more fashionable.
 
A gold object may be solid or plated, silver gilt or ormolu and it is advisable to establish which before treating it. Gold is soft and therefore a thin layer of gold on silver can be rubbed away all too quickly. It also scratches easily so should be handled with care but it does not tarnish unless it has a high silver content as is the case with some 9 carat gold. Light dusting or gentle washing in warm soapy water is all that is recommended in the way of cleaning.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.
 
If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Wax
Wax
 
 
Most people when asked do not believe they need a protective layer for their items. Location, environment, standard of finish required, all influence the decision about what to do and more importantly which product to use.
 
 
 
Almost all surfaces react with oxygen to form a protective oxide layer to prevent further attack. The oxide layer causes the surface to become dull and usually creates a coarser surface finish. To prevent oxidation or attack from other atmospheric pollutants, a protective layer is necessary. Towns and cities in a coastal location will have a salt laden atmosphere. Salt reacts with aluminium and other materials very readily and so the surfaces need protection. Since this will be an exhibition item, it needs to be in pristine condition, because although the public may not handle the product, it still needs to be boxed, transported to the exhibition and physically handled to be placed into position. The acid from the fingertips will leave unsightly marks on the surfaces that will eventually need to be polished away.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Money spent on good quality cloths is money well spent.

We normally used 3 cloths, one to apply the wax, one to remove the wax and the third to buff to a shiny finish. Remember the cloths will eventually become saturated with wax and will need to be washed or renewed. Use different parts of the cloth each time especially the cloth used to remove the wax since these will become more wax saturated. Remember the seams of the cloth are usually thicker and harder than the body of the cloth and should be removed.


The first layer of wax is the most important so do not rush the process. You should apply at least four to six layers of wax minimum. Each layer will become easier to apply and the shine obtained will improve with each wax layer. Basically any surface when inspected through a microscope will look like a mountain range. The wax essentially fills up the valleys, which once at the level of the mountain peaks then improves the surface finish and reflects the light better. Thus the more thin layers of wax the deeper the shine.
 __________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
To achieve a high lustre shine, the surface of the base material must first be treated before wax is applied. The degree of treatment will depend on the type of base material, the initial condition of the surface and the standard of surface finish required. Basically one would start with a coarse grit product and advance to finer grit products until the surface finish required is achieved. EasyShine Gold & Silver polish or Renaissance Pre-Lim Surface Cleaner can be used as the final surface treatment. When the surface is to the standard required, one or more thin layers of Renaissance Wax can be applied directly to the base material surface.
 
A smoother surface reflects more light, thus the smoother the surface finish the more shiny the item becomes.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Yes pH neutral is very important.

The silver birch trees once a common feature in the mountains of Norway are now dead, dying or struggling for survival due to acid rain. The concentration of acid in their bio system has caused thr trees to die.

Human beings also suffer a number of health problems from too much acid in the body.

The pH of blood is usually slightly basic with a value of pH 7.4. This value is often referred to as physiological pH in biology and medicine.

Plaque on teeth can create a local acidic environment that can result in tooth decay by demineralisation.

A few examples pH values in the human body are given below:
 
pH Neutral

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The human body is a carefully balanced biological system, which when upset gives rise to a number of medical problems. Planet earth is also a carefully balanced biological system, which when upset gives rise to a number of problems including global warming due to pollution. Unfortunately there is no health care system for planet earth, so we must ensure that we each do what we can to ensure the survival of planet earth. By using ph neutral products, we are at least helping to keep planet earth clean.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Absolutely not true because this depends on the environment.
 
Pieces subjected to ocean environments need protection with lacquers or clear coats.
 
Show vehicles want their bright work to be waxed where it counts; aluminium is normally waxed to improve the lustre. With stainless it depends on the quality of finish. Show chrome should never really need more than an ultra fine wax free maintenance polishing.
 
Areas subject to heat should be wax and lacquer free.
 
Antiques and museum pieces should be waxed with a PH neutral wax to protect them.
 
Lacquers and clear coats discolour with age. In fact most of them detract from the finish immediately. They also tend to crack and become porous. This allows oxidisation to start again.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Sorry, Carnauba is acidic so it will attack what ever is underneath. It is also porous which means it will get oxidization going too. Just as a bonus it will probably increase pitting on road vehicles as well. This is because by putting a soft surface over your wheels, tanks or whatever - you are helping to guide the missiles in.
 
Carnauba is great for show vehicles that are subject to regular re-polishing, and useful for protecting from road salt in northern climates otherwise, leave it off.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Each and every one of us are stewards of planet earth and it is our individual and combined responsibility to ensure the planet is left in good condition for future generations to enjoy. Whilst it is necessary for politicians to legislate and sign treaties, you the consumer have the means and power to make change happen now. You should always choose ecological friendly products in preference to the vast array of non friendly polluting products. Choice by price alone may condemn future generations to a life that we find unacceptable to us today. John Lennon wrote "Give Peace A Chance", but our message to you is "Give Planet Earth A Chance".
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
pH is a technical term used in chemistry to measure the acidity or basicity of a solution.
 
Pure water is said to be neutral, with a pH close to 7.0 at 25°C (77°F).
 
Solutions with a pH less than 7 are said to be acidic and solutions with a pH greater than 7 are said to be basic or alkaline.
 
pH measurements are important in medicine, biology, chemistry, food science, environmental science, oceanography, civil engineering and many other applications.
 
Most waxes contain trace acid and it is these acids that attack the surface that you are trying to preserve. Most hardwoods are naturally acidic, so using a wax that contains trace acid only compounds the problem.

Try to avoid using a wax that is not pH neutral.
__________
 
We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
  • Cleanliness of the work area
  • Freedom from abrasive particles
  • Softness of the cloths being used.
  • Temperature when the wax is applied.
  • Thickness of each wax layer
 
Surface pressure applied to buff the wax to a shine
The work area has to be clean and free from stray particles that could be abrasive. Similar comments apply to the surface to be polished. You will need to be sure the surface has been degreased. Remember town water contains chemical additives that can stain metal surfaces.
 
You should use the softest cloths available
Apply the wax in very thin layers to small areas in a cool temperature. Remember the material surface will be at room temperature and will contribute to drying the wax more quickly. If you apply the wax in a cool environment it will slow down the drying time. Apply the wax thinly to small areas and buff to a shine before the wax dries.
 
Take care if you are using power tools
It is very easy to apply too much pressure for too long time over too small an area with a power tool running at too high a speed. Orbital or rotary motion will cause friction between the polishing cloth or lambs wool bonnet and the wax. Friction causes heat to be generated, which in turn could cause the wax to melt, or simply wear away the very thin layer of wax.
 
After use, store the polishing cloths, in closed plastic bags to ensure no abrasive particles contaminate the cloths. Also remember to keep particles from entering into the open tin of wax, so keep the lid on the container during use.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Allow a minimum of 30 minutes minimum drying time between coats. The ambient temperature and the type of material will affect drying times considerably, so these are by necessity broad guidelines that can be modified to suit a particular application. Generally we allow 24 hrs drying time before applying the next wax layer.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information.

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.
 
Renaissance Wax is a clear acid free wax that does not contain any abrasive or colouring agents. The wax primarily protects the surface, but it will give some shine to even fairly rough surfaces. Because the wax only shines and protects and does not polish the surface, any imperfections in the surface before applying the wax will remain after the wax has been applied. So unless the base material surface is smooth to begin with, a high lustre shine will not be achieved.
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We have published our years of experience gained from caring and repairing antique and collectable pieces to help you care for your collection. Whilst we have taken every care producing these care and repair tips, we cannot accept any liability or responsibility for any ensuing damage to pieces by using this information

If you have found these tips useful, you will find the Rarity4u Antique & Collectable Care & Repair Handbook invaluable.