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Subject: Removing pressure sensitive tape

Removing pressure sensitive tape

From: Hans-Christoph von Imhoff <xoph>
Date: Saturday, November 18, 2000
Dorothy Blunt <dblunt [at] mail__dos__state__fl__us> writes

>I have recently been very successful in using Wei T'o
>deacidification solution #4 (non-spray) in the removal of pressure
>sensitive adhesive from an early 1800's document.

For many years I have used a particular mineral spirit, white
spirit, benzine--whatever name characterizes best its constituent
ingredients. It is a mixture of low boiling point aliphatics, which
in German is called Medizinal-Benzin, medical benzine, used to wash
open wounds, etc. Its appellation stems from its particular
production procedures: it is rectified--cleaned by distillation--,
and sulfur free. Its boiling point is 110-140 deg. C.; the most
similar product on the conservator's marketplace is the solvent
mixture Siedegrenzenbenzine 110-140 (this indicates the boiling
point limitation of the mixture in Centigrade), Lascaux offers as
diluent for its consolidant-varnish Plexisol 550.

I haven't yet found a Canadian supplier for medical benzine, so
Lascaux's Siedegrenzenbenzine 110-140 will be probably your best
alternative available in North America. Fisher may be able to supply
the purified product.

It is (really) dissolving the adhesive, not just moistening and
swelling it. The dissolving power is far greater, the action quite
more effective then that of acetone or toluene. I understand
concerns that, by dissolving the adhesive, it will--at least
partially--be absorbed by the support on which it sits and thus may
cause longterm damage. I deal with the problem as follows: Once the
bulk of the adhesive is taken off, for example each time with a new
swab (don't re-roll or re-use the swabs, you only distribute the
solvent-adhesive solution only further), I pass a.s.a.p. a blotter
paper moistened with this benzine, sometimes with a dry one of the
same size over the top, and put a spatula warm-heated to about 40
deg. C, to have the warmth pull the solvent-adhesive solution into
the blotter. This method seems to have worked well so far, as I
haven't found any change in the objects so treated.

This works well not only to remove the sticky junk from art and
artifacts but also to remove sticky prize label left overs (after
scratching, with fingernails and scissors from new bought tools,
food containers, packages of all kinds. It also removes the black
leftovers from self-adhesive band-aids from wherever you placed
those on whoever's body parts. Just always change your cotton.


                  Conservation DistList Instance 14:29
                 Distributed: Monday, November 20, 2000
                       Message Id: cdl-14-29-009
Received on Saturday, 18 November, 2000

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