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Subject: Window putty

Window putty

From: Shayne Rivers <s.rivers>
Date: Wednesday, December 12, 2001
Amanda Clydesdale <mandyc [at] aocscot__co__uk> writes

>We have a set of 200 year-old windows that are about to undergo
>refurbishment prior to re-installation. ...
>... Has anyone come
>across a safe and commercially viable way to remove said putty with
>minimal damage to the glass?

As Chris Norman says, most glazing putty uses linseed oil as the
binder. This means that, like oil paint, it can be softened and
swollen by methylene chloride (the main component of some paint
strippers) and by alkaline reagents. Both these alternatives are
often incompatible with the wood glazing bars. Usually the most
effective technique (and the traditional one for this problem) is
careful application of heat to the putty, followed by mechanical
removal. Avoid heating the adjacent wood and glass. Even
inadvertently touching the glass with a heated spatula can crack it.

Shayne Rivers
Senior Furniture Conservator
Victoria and Albert Museum
London SW7 2RL

                  Conservation DistList Instance 15:43
                 Distributed: Monday, December 17, 2001
                       Message Id: cdl-15-43-005
Received on Wednesday, 12 December, 2001

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